Results tagged ‘ Giants ’

Interest in bringing Edgar back?

It appears the Marlins have interest in bringing back Edgar Renteria.

The 35-year-old, who delivered the World Series-winning base hit for Florida in 1997, reportedly is considering the Marlins, Cardinals or returning to the Giants. A decision could be made soon, as Renteria is figuring out the best fit.

In recent days, speculation is that Renteria is leaning towards going back to San Francisco, where he was the MVP of the 2010 World Series.

But if the Marlins offer a better opportunity, he may opt to return where his career started.

The Giants are reportedly offering about $1 million, a figure the Marlins likely could match.

If the Marlins added Renteria, he likely would provide insurance at third base if prospect Matt Dominguez doesn’t make the team out of Spring Training.

— Joe Frisaro



Cody made pitch for Ferrari

After joining the Giants, Cody Ross cashed in with a World Series championship.

In the aftermath of celebrating a title, the former Marlin wondered if he also was due a red Ferrari.

Clark Spencer of the Miami Herald blogs that Ross made a stab at trying to collect on an incentive thrown out by Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria prior to the 2009 season. Hoping to pep up the team, Loria stated that he would give his red Ferrari to the player voted MVP of the NL Championship Series.

Ross was named the NLCS MVP in San Francisco’s win over the Phillies.

At the GM Meetings in Orlando, Loria clarified the situation: “I said whoever wins the MVP in the World Series and playing for us can have my car. The whole concept was to get to the World Series.”

On Wednesday, Ross responded in a text message to “The deal was made back in ’09. He said whoever was the NLCS MVP he would give his Ferrari. … So I texted him wondering if the deal was still valid.”

No, the red Ferrari offer was off the table since Ross didn’t win it as a Marlin. Ross certainly isn’t walking away empty handed. He is receiving a World Series ring.

— Joe Frisaro

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





Uggla keeps slugging away

Home runs, Dan Uggla likes to say, come in bunches.

They certainly have for the Marlins second baseman. Leading off the second inning on Tuesday, Uggla belted a solo shot off Roy Halladay.

Halladay, of course, threw a perfect game on May 29 at Sun Life Stadium, The Phillies right-hander retired the side in order in the first inning, meaning he had retired 30 straight in Miami before Uggla’s homer.

For Uggla, it was his eighth home run in the last 11 games. The hot streak began on July 23 against the Braves, and on July 27 at San Francisco, he enjoyed a two-homer day.

Last Saturday at San Diego,Uggla’s homer was the 144th of his career, making him the Marlins all-time home run leader. Mike Lowell previously held the mark with 143.

Uggla now has 145 homers in his career, and 24 on the season. He is on pace to top 30 homers for the fourth straight season.

— Joe Frisaro


Debut in review

Heckled and a hit all in one night.

Logan Morrison achieved a couple of firsts in the Marlins 6-4 loss on Tuesday night to the Giants.

The 22-year-old, who is one of the highest ranked players in the game, made his Major League debut. 

With one out in the fourth inning, Morrison delivered his first MLB hit, slapping a single to center field off Matt Cain. As is tradition, the ball was tossed into the Marlins dugout as a souvenir. 

Morrison plans on giving the ball to his father.

“I’ll give it to my dad, he’s helped me a lot through the years,” Morrison said.

Morrison is making a quick adjustment to the big leagues, taking over in left field on a full-time basis now that Chris Coghlan is on the disabled list with a torn meniscus in his left knee.

A natural first baseman, Morrison has been on a crash course learning to play the outfield because Gaby Sanchez has secured first base.

As part of his transition to the outfield, Morrison worked in previous weeks with Hall of Famer Andre Dawson. He also worked with team special assistant Jeff Conine, and Tarrik Brock, now the Marlins outfield coach.

Morrison said he didn’t think about keeping the bat he used for his first hit. On his third plate appearance, his bat broke, and he gave it to a kid in the stands.

The Marlins now have three rookies in their every day lineup — Morrison, Sanchez and Mike Stanton.

On his first day in the big leagues, Morrison still had a blue New Orleans Zephyrs bag. 

The fact that it took him two at-bats to get his first hit was a bit of a relief.

“To get that out of the way was nice,” Morrison said. “Maybe I can trade [my Zephyrs bag] in for a Marlins’ bag. That will be sweet.”

In left field, Morrison has already endured some heckling from fans, which is common for outfielders in visiting ballpark.

Morrison said the fans at AT@T Park had a chant for him.

“They’d yell — What’s wrong with Morrison? He’s a bum,” Morrison said.

Some fans greeted him with: “Go back to Triple-A.”

— Joe Frisaro




Internal talks underway to keep Uggla

Can the Marlins afford Dan Uggla?

Perhaps the bigger question is can they afford not to sign their power-hitting second baseman?

Mentioned in trade rumors for more than a year, Uggla remains a core player on the Marlins. The organization knows what it has in the gritty 30-year-old. They also are not in any rush to move him.

uggla.jpgWhile teams covet Uggla, the Marlins are not likely to trade him before the end of the season.

In fact, the front office already is talking internally about signing him to a multi-year contract this fall. They have yet to approach Uggla or his agent, Jeff Borris, about a long-term deal. But those conversations are underway.

The Marlins have tested the trade market on a number of players, including Uggla. What teams have offered in return for one of the top slugging second baseman in the game has not been worth making a move.

The Marlins could see themselves having Hanley Ramirez, Josh Johnson and Uggla signed to multi-year contracts when they head into their new ballpark in 2012.

For a team like the Marlins, who are overly cautious when signing multi-year contracts, they want to make as safe an investment as possible.

An argument can be made that since his rookie season in 2006, no other Marlin has been more consistent than Uggla. Once again he is on pace for 30 homers and 90 RBIs. Later this season, he will become the team’s all-time home run leader. He has 137, which is third highest. Mike Lowell holds the mark with 143.

Uggla is making $7.8 million this season, and his salary figure will jump again in 2011, his final season of arbitration. If the Marlins consider say, a three-year contract, they might be able to work something out in the $27 million range. That would average $9 million a season.

Now, if Uggla’s demands are well over $10 million a season, something likely won’t get done. But if there is willingness from both sides, something can be worked out.

It would seem in the best interest of both parties to make that happen. If Uggla is traded or signs as a free agent after 2011, he may have a limited market to play second base. Several clubs that have coveted him in the past — Rockies, Giants, Red Sox — all talked about moving him to third base, first base or left field.

From the Marlins standpoint, rewarding the two-time All-Star would show a sign of loyalty. Consider the bargain he was before he reached arbitration in 2009. From 2006-08, Uggla collected 90 homers and he drove in 270 runs. Over that span, Florida paid him $1.136 million.

By giving Uggla a minimum three-years means he and Ramirez would solidify the middle infield for the foreseeable future, as well as keep a power bat in the middle of the order. 

— Joe Frisaro

Marlins rotation stepping up

The collective benefit of starting pitchers working deeper into games is the bullpen gets a breather.

Unlike recent years, where the Marlins rotation struggled to pitch into the sixth or seventh innings on a regular basis, the 2010 staff is, thus far, doing their job. They already have three complete games, which is tied with the Phillies for most in the Major Leagues.

Florida’s starters have thrown 152 1/3 innings, which is tied with Cincinnati for the fifth most in the N.L. The Reds, meanwhile, have played one more game.

The Cardinals staff has thrown a league high 171 2/3 innings. On the flip side, Florida’s bullpen has thrown 70 2/3 innings, which is the 13th most in the N.L. In years past, the Marlins bullpen has finished near the top in total innings pitched.

TimLincecum_2007_007.jpgThe fewest amount of relief innings this season have been posted by the Giants (65 1/3).

The Giants, of course, are in South Florida this week to begin a three-game series beginning Tuesday night at Sun Life Stadium.

Cy Young award winner Tim Lincecum will take the mound tonight for San Francisco, while Anibal Sanchez gets the call for the Marlins.

A key to working deep into games, or throwing complete games, is pounding the strike zone.

“I think being around the zone, and being consistent, that’s the name of the game,” Marlins ace Josh Johnson said. “But that’s easier said than done. Sometimes, you are fighting to be consistent. Other times, when you find that groove, and things just happen and you don’t have to force it to make it happen.”
The complete game has been something in decline throughout baseball. Yet, it is still an important statistic because it helps keep bullpens rested.

Here’s the list of teams with 10 or more complete games over the past decade:

* 2009: Giants 11, Royals 10, Blue Jays 10
* 2008:Blue Jays 15, Brewers 12, Indians 10
* 2007: Blue Jays 11
* 2006: Indians 13
* 2005: Cardinals 15, Marlins 14
* 2004: Expos 11, A’s 10
* 2003: A’s 16, Expos 15, Blue Jays 14, Cubs 13, White Sox 12
* 2002: Diamondbacks 14, Royals 12, Devil Rays 12, Tigers 11, Cubs 11, Marlins 11, Giants 10
* 2001: Tigers 16, A’s 13, Twins 12, Diamondbacks 12, Orioles 10
* 2000: Diamondbacks 16, Blue Jays 15, Orioles 14, Braves 13, Royals 10, Cubs 10, Devil Rays 10

— Joe Frisaro

McClung to join pen?

Looks like another former Brewer will be in Marlins camp when pitchers and catchers begin Spring Training on Feb. 20 at the Roger Dean Stadium complex in Jupiter, Fla.

Seth McClung, who will turn 30 on Super Bowl Sunday, is close to finalizing a Minor League deal with an invitation to Spring Training.

Last Friday, the Marlins announced they have signed former Milwaukee All-Star closer Derrick Turnbow to a Minor League contract.

If Turnbow makes the team, he will make $600,000 with a chance for $50,000 in incentives.

McClung will compete for a spot in the bullpen.

McClung also strongly considered the Cardinals, Giants and Nationals.

— Joe Frisaro


Uggla should remain a Marlin

Even after the Marlins agreed to terms with Dan Uggla, speculation remains that the team will trade the two-time All-Star before Opening Day.

From what I’ve heard, don’t believe it.

The Marlins are planning on retaining Uggla, who will be the team’s highest paid player in 2010. Uggla’s one-year deal is worth $7.8 million, which tops Hanley Ramirez, who will collect $7 million this season. Ramirez is in the second of a six-year, $70 million contract.

The Marlins explored trading Uggla in the offseason, but they couldn’t find a match. The Giants and Orioles each expressed interest, but no talks were serious since the Winter Meetings in December.

The way the roster is shaping up, Uggla should remain at second base and batting fifth, behind cleanup hitter, Jorge Cantu.

Uggla’s expected return pretty much secures Chris Coghlan in left field, and makes Emilio Bonifacio the probable super utility player.

The fact the Marlins are bringing Uggla back at $7.8 million means he fits into their 2010 budget. So there is no mandate to move him.

Now, the club can certainly explore trade options at any time. It appears now the only way that would happen is if the team is out of playoff contention at the July 31 non-waiver trade deadline.

Of course, during Spring Training, if another team has the need for a second baseman, they could check to see Uggla’s availability. But by that point, the Marlins also will be looking to secure their roster, and it would have to take a sweet offer for them to pull the trigger.

The Marlins maintained all along that they would not just give Uggla away. One reason why the few teams that expressed interest in Uggla shied away from a deal was the fact he was lined up to make more than $7 million.

The fact that his contract is now $7.8 million limits his market, at this point.

Another reason why Uggla is expected to be with the Marlins in 2010 is the team isn’t sure either Bonifacio or Coghlan is ready to be the every day second baseman. In Uggla, the Marlins have a proven 30 homer, 90 RBI slugger who can hit in the middle of the order.

One alternative the Marlins could have explored if they did move Uggla was switching Coghlan to second base and going with prospect Logan Morrison in left field. Morrison will be getting a look at first base in Spring Training, but he can also play either corner outfield spot.

— Joe Frisaro


Marlins having talks to sign Uggla

Whether Dan Uggla is on the Marlins’ Opening Day roster remains to be seen.

For now, don’t dismiss the chance of the Marlins signing the two-time All-Star second baseman. In fact, the team is currently engaged in dialogue with Uggla’s agent, Jeff Borris, about a contract for 2010.

Uggla, the first Marlin to ever have three straight 30 home run seasons, is in his second year of arbitration. A year ago, both sides couldn’t come to terms on a contract for 2009. His case went to an arbitration hearing, with the ruling going in Uggla’s favor.

In 2009, he made $5.35 million, and his salary projects to exceed $7 million in 2010. Fitting Uggla into their budget will be a challenge, since their payroll is expected to be less than $40 million.

The past few months, the Marlins have shopped Uggla, but there hasn’t been a big market for his services. The Giants and Orioles had interest, but talks with those clubs have since stopped.

The Marlins have insisted that they won’t just give the slugger away.

Even if he signs with the Marlins, the team could still seek to deal him before the start of Spring Training. Another possibility is the Marlins keep Uggla, and see if they are in the race at the July 31 non-waiver trade deadline. If they are, they may retain him for the final few months. If they aren’t, they would be in position to shop him.

— Joe Frisaro