Results tagged ‘ Emilio Bonifacio ’

Business part of the game

Make no mistake, if the Marlins were in serious playoff contention Cody Ross would still be with the club.

Actually, holding onto hope is the main reason why the club didn’t receive any player compensation in return for one of the most popular Marlins in recent years.

Ross was rewarded to the Giants on a waiver claim after Florida lost 2-1 to the Astros on Sunday afternoon.

A few days ago the Giants placed a waiver claim on Ross.

The Marlins had until Monday to decide what to do. One option was to pull him back and retain him for the rest of the season. Another was to work out a trade with San Francisco. Lastly, Sunday’s scenario transpired. That was the Marlins simply said the Giants could have him, meaning they take on the remainder of his $4.45 million salary without giving up a player in return.

What San Francisco essentially did was take on the final $1 million or so left on Ross’ contract.

In the meantime, the Marlins will recall outfielder Cameron Maybin from Triple-A New Orleans on Tuesday when they open a three-game series with the Mets at Citi Field.

Maybin will get plenty of chances to see if he will be their center fielder of the future. Emilio Bonifacio also promises to see more playing time in the final few weeks.

So why weren’t the Marlins able to receive any player compensation for one of their most respected players on and off the field in recent history?

Bottom line is, the team was hoping to make a better playoff push rather than explore trade avenues for Ross. The best chance to get value in return would have been before the July 31 deadline. Not in late August. 

In late July, many teams called, including the Red Sox and Braves, but the Marlins viewed Ross as a valuable player to make a second half push. So in the days and hours leading up to the non-waiver deadline, the Marlins made it clear it wanted to retain its regulars rather than move them.

Trades can still be made before Aug. 31, but the process is more difficult because potential deals must go through the waiver process.

Had Ross cleared waivers, the Marlins would have had a better chance to work out a trade with any interested team. By the Giants putting in their claim meant, and getting dibbs on him, meant the Marlins had to negotiate exclusively with them.

The Marlins could have pulled Ross back off waivers, and kept him for the rest of the season. Then they could have explored a trade in the offseason.

Why that didn’t happen is because the team didn’t view Ross as part of their plans for 2011. So they wanted to get a look at Maybin over these final weeks. By doing so, they cut ties with Ross.

It was a painful and emotional decision since he is such a popular player who has a history of productivity. The Marlins haven’t had such a fun-loving, universally liked player since Kevin Millar. Like Ross, Millar also was a fan favorite. 

With Ross, cost also was becoming a factor. In the arbitration system, the 29-year-old was in line to see his salary rise to about $6 million in 2011.

The Marlins are in the process of trying to sign Dan Uggla and Ricky Nolasco to long-term contracts. So they are being careful with their dollars.

Ross, who is deserving of his raises, basically priced himself out of Florida.

— Joe Frisaro





Ross awarded to Giants

Cody Ross, a fan favorite and one of the Marlins’ steadiest players since 2006, has been awarded to the Giants on a waiver claim.

The Marlins announced the transaction after losing 2-1 on Sunday to the Astros at Sun Life Stadium.

The 29-year-old opened the season as the starting right fielder, but he was switched to center field after Cameron Maybin struggled early.

Maybin will be recalled from Triple-A on Tuesday and assume the center field spot when the Marlins open a three-game set with the Mets at Citi Field.

In February, Ross won his arbitration hearing with the Marlins, and he is earning $4.45 million this year, instead of the $4.2 million Florida offered. The Giants will assume about $1 million of the remainder of Ross’ contract.

A few days ago, it became public that the Giants had claimed Ross on waivers. The move was seen to block the Marlins from working out a possible trade with the Padres.

The Marlins had until Monday to decide whether to work out a trade, or pull him off waivers or to award him to the Giants.

Ross had two hits in Sunday’s loss, and is batting .265 with 11 homers and 58 RBIs.

Because he is in line to make about $6 million in 2011, his final arbitration year, he wasn’t part of the team’s plans. The Marlins considered trading Ross before the July 31 non-waiver trade deadline, but kept him in hopes of making a playoff push.

The Marlins record now is 62-61, and they face an uphill climb to seriously be in the race.

The Marlins now will get a longer look at Maybin, who appeared in 51 games for Florida and was batting .225.

The 23-year-old Maybin is batting .338 with New Orleans with four homers and 23 RBIs.

Moving Ross also should free up more playing time for Emilio Bonifacio, who also can play center field.

— Joe Frisaro


Bonifacio starting on Sunday

The Marlins look to avoid being swept on Sunday afternoon at Cincinnati.

Anibal Sanchez takes the mound for the Marlins, who now are one-game under .500 after dropping two straight at Great American Ball Park.

Emilio Bonifacio is starting in center field in place of Cody Ross. Mike Stanton, who is hitting .475 (19-for-40) with six homers and 11 RBIs, will be batting fifth for the third game this year.








1) Hanley Ramirez, SS
2) Logan Morrison, LF
3) Gaby Sanchez, 1B
4) Dan Uggla, 2B
5) Mike Stanton, RF
6) Wes Helms, 3B
7) Emilio Bonifacio, CF
8) Ronny Paulino, C
9) Anibal Sanchez, P

— Joe Frisaro

Marlins lineup for Friday

Matching their season-high four-game losing streak, the Marlins look to rebound on Friday against the Cardinals at Sun Life Stadium. Ricky Nolasco gets the start against Adam Wainwright.









1) Hanley Ramirez, SS

2) Emilio Bonifacio, CF

3) Logan Morrison, LF

4) Dan Uggla, 2B

5) Chad Tracy, 1B

6) Mike Stanton, RF

7) Wes Helms, 3B

8) Brett Hayes, C

9) Ricky Nolasco, P

— Joe Frisaro


Marlins-Rockies Tuesday

The Marlins go for their fourth straight on Tuesday when they face the Rockies at Sun Life Stadium. In a matchup of left-handers, Nate Robertson makes the start against Jeff Francis.







1) Dexter Fowler, CF

2) Jonathan Herrera, 2B

3) Melvin Mora, LF

4) Ryan Spilborghs, RF

5) Chris Ianetta, C

6) Brad Eldred, 1B

7) Ian Stewart, 3B

8) Clint Barmes, SS

9) Jeff Francis, P







1) Emilio Bonifacio, LF

2) Wes Helms, 3B

3) Hanley Ramirez, SS

4) Dan Uggla, 2B

5) Jorge Cantu, 1B

6) Cody Ross, CF

7) Mike Stanton, RF

8) Ronny Paulino, C

9) Nate Robertson, P

— Joe Frisaro


Marlins face Jimenez, Rockies

 Stephen Strasburg on Friday. Ubaldo Jimenez on Monday. The task doesn’t get any easier for the Marlins,w ho are looking to inch their way back into playoff contention.

The Marlins and Rockies open a four-game set at Sun Life Stadium on Monday. Anibal Sanchez takes the mound for Florida. Colorado is going with Jimenez, who carries a 15-1 record into the contest.









1) Seth Smith, LF

2) Jonathan Herrera, 2B

3) Carlos Gonzalez, CF

4) Jason Giambi, 1B

5) Miguel Olivo, C

6) Brad Hawpe, RF

7) Ian Stewart, 3B

8) Clint Barmes, SS

9) Ubaldo Jimenez, P







1) Emilio Bonifacio, LF

2) Gaby Sanchez, 1B

3) Hanley Ramirez, SS

4) Dan Uggla, 2B

5) Jorge Cantu, 3B

6) Cody Ross, CF

7) Mike Stanton, RF

8) Ronny Paulino, C

9) Anibal Sanchez, P

— Joe Frisaro


Marlins option Petersen

Bryan Petersen, who has seen limited playing time, was optioned to Triple-A New Orleans after the Marlins’ 7-3 loss to the Braves on Wednesday night.

The team didn’t announce who would get brought up. Manager Fredi Gonzalez said the team would announce who is getting the call up on Thursday.

A source said it will be lefty reliever Taylor Tankersley.

At Triple-A New Orleans, Tankersley is 3-2 with a 4.19 ERA. In 19 innings, he has struck out 17, while walking six.

If the Marlins consider adding a position player, among position players in line to be called up are Emilio Bonifacio, who is at Triple-A New Orleans. And Mike Lamb, who is not on the 40-man roster. Bonifacio is on the 40-man. It is still a week or two too early for Mike Stanton to get the call.

Petersen was 1-for-16 with the Marlins, with his lone hit coming in his first MLB at-bat.

“He’s a young player, sitting on the bench, and pinch-hitting every once a game, that’s not what you want to have with a young player,” Gonzalez said.

Gonzalez joked afterwards when asked if the initials of the player being called up is M.S, “You mean Mike Schmidt.”

— Joe Frisaro


Leadoff options? Maybe Bonifacio

On May 8, 2009, the Marlins promoted Chris Coghlan from Triple-A New Orleans in an attempt to upgrade production at the top of their order.

From an organizational standpoint, the decision was an easy one. Coghlan was batting .344 with a .418 on-base percentage after 96 at-bats for New Orleans. He initially slid into the No. 2 spot, but eventually secured the leadoff spot.

emilio-bonifacio-p1.jpgThe rest of the story, you already know. Coghlan became a terrific story. He caught fire in the second half, and won the N.L. Rookie of the Year, batting .321.

Almost a year later, the Marlins find themselves in a similar situation. Once again, theys are struggling to find consistency at the top of the order.

Coghlan opened the year in the leadoff spot, but he struggle and was swapped to second for Cameron Maybin. The trouble now is both Maybin and Coghlan are scuffling.

Maybin is batting .238 with a .304 on-base percentage. He’s having trouble with strikeouts, having fanned at least once in 16 straight games. He struck out twice on Wednesday night, and was pinch-hit for by Wes Helms in the late innings.

Coghlan, meanwhile, is hitting .180 with a .240 on-base percentage in 89 at-bats. Of late, he has not started against left-handed pitching, with Brett Carroll getting the nod. And manager Fredi Gonzalez has said it isn’t automatic that he will bat second when he is playing.

Gaby Sanchez may get more of a look at that spot.

The problem facing the Marlins is, what are the alternatives? Unlike last May, the organization doesn’t have a natural leadoff-type hitter tearing it up in the Minor Leagues.

One alternative is Emilio Bonifacio. Actually, bringing back Boni and playing him every day for a while leading off may be what the team decides. Bonifacio was optioned to Triple-A a few weeks back. He’s hit leadoff for the Zephyrs, playing a number of different positions.

On Wednesday night, Bonifacio started in center field, which may be a sign of what the Marlins are thinking. Boni, though, has struggled getting on base consistently in 18 games and 74 at-bats. His batting average is .257 with a .286 on-base percentage.

What works in Boni’s favor is his game-changing speed, and the fact the Marlins want to see if he can turn it around. So promoting him and giving him an opportunity may be what the team decides. That move may be coming quickly.

The Marlins have Minor League outfield depth, especially now that John Raynor was returned to the organization after he was released by the Pirates. Last December, Pittsburgh selected Raynor in the Rule 5 Draft. Since he was designated recently, he once again rejoins Florida. The Marlins did explore a trade with Pittsburgh, but nothing could be worked out.

Bryan Petersen is a talented speedster who someday projects to be in the mix to lead off for the Marlins. Petersen is enjoying a strong first half for New Orleans. But not being on the 40-man roster hurts his chances of a quick promotion. Bonifacio, on the 40-man roster, is more likely to get the call than Petersen or Raynor, who also isn’t on the 40-man roster.

The way Mike Stanton has been dominating at Double-A Jacksonville makes it highly likely he will get called up in early June. At that point, the organization will have to create space on the 40-man roster for Stanton.

With so many talented outfielders in their Minor League system, a trade is quite possible after June. Raynor, Petersen, Stanton and Scott Cousins are close to being big league ready.

Some have speculated that Dan Uggla could be dealt by the July 31 deadline. That is highly doubtful, because the Marlins are expecting to contend. Uggla is having a strong season, and it is unlikely he would be moved during the season. Now, after the year is over, that is certainly possible.

The Marlins traditionally have made their trades based on depth in the organization. There isn’t an automatic replacement for Uggla at second right now. Some say Coghlan, but he has one game at second since joining the big leagues. The team wouldn’t switch him there in midseason.

Cody Ross may become a trade option, if the team hopes to put Stanton in right field. Again, the Marlins are trying to win this year. Ross is a proven player.

The way things are shaping up now, Stanton would project to replace either Maybin or Coghlan, if neither has turned it around by June.

— Joe Frisaro

Could Raynor return to Marlins?

When the Pirates purchased the contract of pitcher Jeff Karstens on Tuesday, they were forced to make a difficult roster decision. They ended up designating outfielder John Raynor for assignment.

Since Raynor was a Rule 5 claim by the Pirates off the Marlins’ Minor League roster, there is a chance the speedster will return to Florida.

Last December, Raynor was not protected on the Marlins’ 40-man roster, and the Pirates picked him in the Rule 5 Draft. The stipulation with Rule 5 claims is they must stay on the 25-man roster the entire season.

Technically, Raynor is going through waivers. The Marlins have first dibs to bring him back. If they do so, he could be sent to Triple-A New Orleans and not be on the 40-man roster.

The question the Marlins are asking themselves is whether they have a need for Raynor.

At Triple-A New Orleans, the outfield has Scott Cousins, Bryan Petersen and Jason Lane. Emilio Bonifacio also is seeing time in the outfield.

If the Marlins decide they don’t have a fit for Raynor, they could attempt to trade him back to the Pirates for a prospect.

— Joe Frisaro


Marlins make roster moves

The Marlins have made their first roster moves since the start of the season.

Infielder Emilio Bonifacio was optioned to Triple-A New Orleans, while reliever Jose Veras was designated for assignment.

The Marlins recalled right-hander Chris Leroux from Triple-A to fill in Veras’ spot in the bullpen. Outfielder Brett Carroll was activated off the 15-day disabled list.

Bonifacio was serving as a super utility player, but he is projected to be an every day second baseman. Now he goes to New Orleans, where he can play every day.

Carroll had been on the DL with a strained left oblique. He spent the past few days playing in rehab assignment games for Class A Jupiter.

— Joe Frisaro