Results tagged ‘ Giants ’

Uggla a possibility in Baltimore

Count the Orioles in the mix for Dan Uggla.

Among the teams the Marlins have had at least preliminary discussions about Uggla are the Orioles.

The Marlins are believed to be seeking pitching prospects in return for their two-time All-Star second baseman.

Along with Baltimore, the Giants remain interested in the 29-year-old who is coming off a season where he belted 31 home runs and drove in 90.

With Brian Roberts at second base in Baltimore, Uggla would be a candidate to switch to third base, a position he hasn’t played in four big league seasons. Uggla played third base in the Minor Leagues.

Indications at the Winter Meetings were that Uggla will wind up with an American League club, unless a deal with the Giants can be worked out. There also is a feeling that there aren’t too many club seriously interested in Uggla, a former Rule 5 claim from Arizona.

Ideally, the Marlins would like to deal Uggla at the Winter Meetings, but the team is prepared to hang on to the slugger for at least a few more weeks if their isn’t a fit that makes sense.

Earlier in the day on Monday, Orioles president of baseball operations Andy MacPhail said the team had not yet had discussions with the Marlins about Uggla.

Marlins officials arrived in Indianapolis later in the afternoon and in the early evening, and the organization began measuring interest in Uggla later in the night.

The Marlins also are in discussions with multiple clubs, as many as 10, for relievers Renyel Pinto and Matt Lindstrom.

– Joe Frisaro

 

Report: Uggla wants to remain at second

Dan Uggla is a two-time All-Star second baseman who has already placed his name in the record books.

By belting 31 homers in 2009, Uggla is the first player in MLB history to reach 30 homers in three straight years in which he played at least 100 games at second base.

With that kind of track record, Uggla sees himself as a second baseman. And he has little desire to switch positions, according to his agent, Jeff Borris.

Borris on Friday told Yahoo! Sports’ Tim Brown that his client wants to stay at second base.

“Danny Uggla’s been a full-time second baseman for the last four years,” Borris told Yahoo! Sports columnist. “He’s performed exceptionally well at that position. Although he has the athleticism to play other positions, he’s performed remarkably over these four years at second base and there should be no reason to consider a position change at this time.”

In his second season of arbitration, Uggla’s salary is slated to rise for the $5.35 million he made this year.

At this week’s General Managers Meetings, the Marlins had conversations with several clubs about Uggla. The Giants reportedly would like to add Uggla and switch him to third base. The Red Sox would consider Uggla in left field. The Orioles also reportedly have interest.

The Nationals, too, are a team that could enter into the mix. So may the Diamondbacks, the team that drafted Uggla in 2001. Former Marlins third base coach, Bo Porter, has now joined the Arizona staff.

Uggla has 121 career home runs, and he is building his legacy at second base. He has not played any other position in the big leagues besides second.

– Joe Frisaro

Inquires into Uggla

Due for a hefty pay raise, it was expected that the Marlins would measure interest for two-time All-Star Dan Uggla.

On Wednesday, a few possibilities emerged.

According to FoxSports.com, the Giants and Orioles have expressed interest in Uggla. The Red Sox reportedly also may be an option.

The Giants, the report said, may consider Uggla as an option to play third base. The thinking is Pablo Sandoval would swift from third to first base. Uggla has exclusively played second base in the big leagues, although he had some work at third base in the Minor Leagues in 2005.

If Uggla, who will see his salary raise from $5.35 million to around $7 million, is dealt, the Marlins may be more inclined to keep Jorge Cantu, according to the FoxSports.com.

The Red Sox would consider Uggla as an option for left field.

Look for the Nationals also to show interest in Uggla.

– Joe Frisaro

 

Marlins offense — A big hit

Their winning streak may have come to an end on Wednesday night, but the Marlins’ offense remains a big hit.

In their 14-6 loss to the Astros at Land Shark Stadium, the Marlins collected 13 hits, which extends their franchise-record to nine straight games with at least 10 hits.

The streak is the longest of any team in the Major Leagues this year.

From Sept. 6-14, 2008, the Giants had a string of nine games in a row.

The previous Marlins mark was six, last done Aug. 13-19, 2000. 

Hanley Ramirez, leading the National League with a .351 batting average, has hit safely in eight straight games. Rookie Chris Coghlan extended his hitting streak to 11 games with an RBI single in the eighth inning.

– Joe Frisaro

 

Lindstrom still closing … for now

It wasn’t a ringing endorsement, but it was an endorsement, just the same.

Marlins closer Matt Lindstrom was relieved with the bases loaded and two outs on Saturday night, and ultimately Leo Nunez worked out of the jam in a 5-4 win over the Giants at Land Shark Stadium.

Even though Lindstrom is 11 of 13 in save chances, and he’s recorded eight straight saves, the hard-throwing right-hander has struggled with command.

He walked two and filled the bases before handing the ball over to Nunez, who now has two saves this year.

Asked afterwards if there were a save situation on Sunday, who would get the ball? Gonzalez answered at that specific time — after 11 p.m. ET on Saturday – it likely would be Lindstrom.

Obviously, that is subject to change. And there is a catch with the question.

Gonzalez directly answered the specific question — who would close on Sunday? Well, Nunez likely won’t be available on Sunday because he’s pitched in three straight games. So that could play in Lindstrom’s favor. 

The unanswered question is: What happens if all things are equal?

Another possibility is Kiko Calero, who has been heavily used in a seventh inning setup role.

Ultimately, Gonzalez may play the matchups or who has the hot hand. The Marlins could have the makings of a committee situation.  

Lindstrom clearly has the talent to close. It’s a matter of him finding the consistency.

Gonzalez made this much clear after the game: “My responsibility as a manager is to 25 guys, and the Florida Marlins, not just one guy. We’re trying to get the win for the club.”

– Joe Frisaro

Manufacturing runs

When you strand 12 runs on base and lose 2-1, it magnifies the importance of situational hitting.

The Marlins endured a frustrating one-run loss on Friday night against the Giants at Land Shark Stadium.

Jorge Cantu was up with the bases loaded and two outs against hard-throwing Brian Wilson. Cantu grounded out to short.

Manager Fredi Gonzalez said the team constantly preaches the importance of situational hitting, but points out the opposing pitcher has a lot of say in how the game turns out.

“We talk about it all the time, putting the ball in play and all that stuff,” Gonzalez said. “We preach it in batting practice.”

Obviously, not all the results are going to pan out. You’re not always going to get that timely, two-out, walkoff hit.

Outfielder Cody Ross says it is tough to completely teach hitting in certain situations.

“In BP, we’ll sometimes work on situations,” Ross said. “Sometimes [hitting coach Jim] Presley will call out a situation with less than two outs — infield in or infield back. That’s what it comes to, working on situations. It’s really tough to work on. You have to put it in your mind when you get in those situations to do the best job that you can.”

Bottom line, Ross says, is finding a way.

“It’s a matter of getting it done,” he said. “That sometimes separates being a really good big leaguer and being an average big leaguer. It’s you thrive on situations when the game is on the line, and you get the job done.”

While the Marlins are coming off a 2-1 loss, the fact remains they still are generating their share of offense.

Heading into Saturday night, the Marlins were fourth of 16 National League teams in runs scored with 259.

The first four in runs scored in the NL are the Dodgers (300), Phillies (293), Rockies (266) and Marlins.

– Joe Frisaro

 

 

 

 

Rabelo, Hayes optioned

The Marlins worked into the early morning hours to solidify their catching situation.

Early Saturday morning, they obtained Ronny Paulino from the Giants for pitching prospect Hector Correra. Late Friday, Paulino was dealt from the Phillies to San Francisco.

About seven hours later, the Marlins announced that catchers Mike Rabelo and Brett Hayes have been optioned to Triple-A New Orleans.

Paulino will serve as John Baker’s backup.

– Joe Frisaro

Moves on the horizon?

It didn’t take long for the Ronny Paulino situation to resolve itself. Indeed, Paulino was the odd catcher out in Philadelphia. While the Marlins didn’t dismiss the prospect of bringing him in, they didn’t pursue him that hard either.

On Friday night it was announced that Paulino was dealt to the Giants for lefty reliever Jack Taschner.

Taschner, meanwhile, fit the bill for what the Marlins were looking for, a lefty with big league service time.

With so few catching options out there, expect the Marlins to go with Mike Rabelo or Brett Hayes as John Baker’s backup.

Other catching candidates who project to be available include Adam Melhuse, who isn’t part of the Rangers plans.

There isn’t much out there, barring trying to make a significant trade.

The Marlins appear to be in the market for a veteran left-handed bat off the bench to serve as a pinch-hit, spot starter option. And lefty relief help is high on the list.

– Joe Frisaro

Eyes on Pudge

As expected, a lot of scouts are on hand for the World Baseball Classic in Miami.

On the Ivan Rodriguez front, the Marlins remain a frontrunner, but there definitely is competition. The Twins, with Joe Mauer getting a second opinion on a back ailment, is a team that has interest.

If Mauer is only out for a little bit, though, they may not be a favorite to land Pudge. The Astros have a need behind the plate, but indications are Houston’s front office isn’t as interested.

The Marlins are well positioned, and the team is definitely following him closely in the Classic.

– Joe Frisaro

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