Results tagged ‘ Javier Vazquez ’

Nolasco signing now official

It’s now official.

The Marlins on Friday announced the signing of Ricky Nolasco to a three-year contract.

Both sides reached agreement on the deal on Sunday night, and the deal became official after the 28-year-old right-hander completed his physical, which was on Thursday.

The three-year contract is worth $26.5 million, and it includes base salaries of $6 million in 2011, $9 million for 2012 and $11.5 million for 2013. Based on innings pitched, Nolasco also can earn bonuses of up to $500,000 for each season, or another $1.5 million total.

Projected as the Marlins’ No. 2 starter, Nolasco was 14-9 with a 4.51 ERA in 26 starts in ’10. He struck out 147 and walked just 33. With a 54-39 record, the right-hander is second in Marlins’ history in wins. Dontrelle Willis is the franchise leader with 68 victories.

The Marlins’ rotation is solidified with ace Josh Johnson, Nolasco, Javier Vazquez, Anibal Sanchez and Chris Volstad.

– Joe Frisaro

Would pursuing Greinke make sense?

Speculation at the Winter Meetings had the Marlins expressing trade interest in Royals’ ace Zack Greinke. There was little substance to the rumors, and the story faded as fast as it surfaced.

But now that the Phillies have assembled their dream rotation by adding Cliff Lee, should the Marlins counter and make a run at Greinke? Such a move would create a formidable one-two punch with Josh Johnson and Greinke. It certainly would stack up with Philadelphia’s duo of Roy Halladay and Lee.

South Florida already has the “Big Three” with Wade, LeBron and Bosh in basketball. So the possibility of having Greinke in the Marlins’ rotation would clearly stir plenty of excitement in a big-event market. For Internet sites, newspapers, blogs and talk radio, this would give the fans and the media plenty to talk and write about.

But at what cost could making a “dream rotation” happen? This is the sticking point, and the major reason why it is highly doubtful that Zack Greinke will  become a Marlin in 2011.

To even get the Royals seriously to engage in trade talks for Greinke, the Marlins would have to be willing to part with Mike Stanton. Foremost, the now 21-year-old slugger would be the centerpiece. The asking price may also include Logan Morrison. Then, the Marlins would likely have to be prepared to include Ricky Nolasco as well a prospect or two. In all, it would take about four or five players, including major parts of the current club, to land the former Cy Young award winning right-hander.

Some have speculated that Nolasco and Leo Nunez could get the deal going. It wouldn’t even pique Kansas City’s interest.

Considering the Marlins already have a formidable rotation with Johnson, Nolasco, Javier Vazquez, Anibal Sanchez and Chris Volstad, there isn’t the urgency to acquire Greinke. At least not at the price of trading perhaps the best young power hitter in the game, who is under club control through 2016.

As the Marlins front office has repeatedly stated, the price of quality starting pitching is extremely high. It is either costly in terms of contracts (Lee will make $120 million over five years), or players offered to obtain a true ace. Grooming your own starting pitching — like the Giants have done — remains the most effective way to build a rotation.

When you look at the possible return for someone like Greinke, it also shows why the Marlins have no intentions of trading Johnson to the Yankees or anywhere else.

With Lee going to the Phillies, it didn’t take long for reports out of New York to suggest the Yankees inquire about JJ. For the record, the Marlins’ ace is not on the market. But if he were, Florida wouldn’t narrow its trade partner to exclusively the Yankees. A player like Johnson would generate wide appeal, and even the best package the Yankees may be able to offer might not stand up to other clubs.

The bottom line for the Marlins on the Greinke front is — is it worth overpaying for a right-hander they’d have under contract for two years?

– Joe Frisaro

How Lee decision impacts Marlins

Landing Cliff Lee gives the Phillies the strongest rotation in the game.

The pending signing also reinforces what the Marlins have been preaching for a long time — Pitching and defense wins.

“A good team just got better,” Marlins manager Edwin Rodriguez said of Lee joining Philadelphia. “Our plan has been to build a team to win, and to do that, you have to beat the best teams. So, we’re planning to do just that.”

Well before Lee picked Philadelphia, Florida’s front office has been working towards crafting a formidable starting rotation. The recent free agent signing of Javier Vazquez was another step in piecing together a top-flight starting five.

The Marlins certainly like their rotation of Josh Johnson, Ricky Nolasco, Vazquez, Anibal Sanchez and Chris Volstad. The team feels they can match up favorably on most nights. It’s just a matter of these young starters gaining consistency, along with staying healthy.

With Lee off the market, the Marlins certainly aren’t looking to trade away their top starters. There will be speculation about Nolasco, who has a three-year contract offer on the table that hasn’t been agreed upon.

But Nolasco has two more years left in arbitration, and the Marlins certainly value him as either their No. 2 or No. 3 starter, depending on the competition in Spring Training shapes up.

Florida is prepared to go year-to-year with Nolasco, who remains a highly valued right-hander for the cost. The team has no urgency to move him.

Obviously, the Marlins would listen to offers, but to trade Nolasco, Florida would covet pitching in return. Because the team is trying to compete in 2011, they would seek a big league-ready starter in any trade.

Johnson, who has three-years remaining on his contract, is a franchise player who isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. The Marlins are looking for Johnson to be their Opening Day starter in the first game in their new ballpark, which opens in 2012.

In order to contend in the NL East, the Marlins will be banking on their rotation. They won’t be looking to break it up.

– Joe Frisaro

 

Winter Meetings leftovers

It’s no secret the Marlins are exploring lefty relief help. Randy Choate has been added to the mix of possibilities. Also on Florida’s radar is Joe Beimel.

In all likelihood, the team will add a veteran lefty, who projects to join Mike Dunn on the Opening Day roster.

As the lefty search continues, don’t rule out the Marlins eventually exploring the possibility of landing an experienced closer. At the Winter Meetings, which wrapped up last Thursday in Lake Buena Vista, representatives of the organization inquired about the availability of Padres All-Star Heath Bell.

After Adrian Gonzalez was traded to the Red Sox, the Marlins checked to see if San Diego has more big moves ahead. For now, it appears Bell will be staying with the Padres. But that could change over the course of the next few months, and into the season.

The Marlins are planning on giving Leo Nunez the first shot at closing when Spring Training opens. Clay Hensley is a backup option.

* Manager Edwin Rodriguez offered a preliminary batting order for upcoming Grapefruit League games in March — Chris Coghlan (CF), Omar Infante (2B), Hanley Ramirez (SS), Mike Stanton (RF), Logan Morrison (LF), Gaby Sanchez (1B), John Buck (C) and Matt Dominguez (3B).

* Recently, Rodriguez came to terms on an endorsement deal with New Balance. “Edwin is honored as the first Puerto Rican-born Major League manager to be with New Balance,” said Burton Rocks, Rodriguez’s New York-based agent.

* Here are some contract details of recently signed Marlins. Burke Badenhop will earn $750,000 in 2011 after he avoided arbitration. John Buck’s three-year, $17,943,787 million contract includes base salaries of $4.5 million in ’11, $6 million in ’12 and $6 million in ’13. There also is a $1.5 million signing bonus, and incentives of $25,000 if he makes the All-Star Game and winning the Silver Slugger Award. He has a $50,000 Gold Glove bonus. Javier Vazquez’s one-year, $7 million deal includes a $25,000 All-Star bonus and a $100,000 bonus if he wins the Cy Young Award. Buck and Vazquez also can earn bonuses if the Marlins reach the playoffs and they are named MVP of either the League Championship Series or the World Series.

– Joe Frisaro
 

Vazquez officially a Marlin

Javier Vazquez, one of the most durable right-handers in the game, officially signed a one-year contract with the Marlins. The announcement came on Thursday, several days after both sides agreed to terms over the Thanksgiving holiday.

Before announcing the signing, Vazquez first completed his physical, which was on Wednesday in South Florida.

Vazquez will earn $7 million, and he has a full no-trade clause. Another stipulation in the contract is the Marlins also agreed to not offer Vazquez salary arbitration after the 2011 season. The conditions of the contract pretty much guarantee that Vazquez will be part of the Marlins for all of 2011. Now, if the team falls out of contention and wishes to shop the right-hander in a possible trade, they could ask the right-hander to waive his no-trade clause.

Vazquez, 34, is a 13-year veteran who was 10-10 with a 5.32 ERA in 157 1/3 innings with the Yankees in ’10.

– Joe Frisaro

 

Marlins-Braves Wednesday lineups

In their series finale with the Braves on Wednesday, the Marlins are sending Ricky Nolasco to the mound against Javier Vazquez.

Marlins

1) Coghlan, LF

2) Maybin, CF

3) Hanley, SS

4) Cantu, 3B

5) Gload, 1B

6) Uggla, 2B

7) Paulino, C

8) Carroll, RF

9) Nolasco, P

Braves

1) McLouth, CF

2) Prado, 2B

3) Chipper, 3B

4) McCann, C

5) Anderson, LF

6) Escobar, SS

7) LaRoche, 1B

8) Diaz, RF

9) Vazquez, P

– Joe Frisaro

 

Sanchez had no-hit stuff

As someone who has thrown a no-hitter, Anibal Sanchez understands more than most about how difficult it is not to surrender a hit in a game.

As a rookie on Sept. 6, 2006, Sanchez recorded the fourth no-hitter in Marlins history. In his 13th MLB start, the Venezuelan native made history in a 2-0 win over the Diamondbacks.

On Friday night at Turner Field, Sanchez flirted with another no-hitter. In his 41st MLB start, Sanchez held the Braves hitless until pitcher Javier Vazquez singled with one out in the sixth inning.

In many ways, Friday was one of Sanchez’s most impressive career starts. The 25-year-old hadn’t started since June 2 because he’s been on the disabled list with a right shoulder sprain.

Sanchez was on a pitch count of about 90-100. He exited after six-plus innings, after Ryan Church led off the seventh inning with a double.

“You never know if it can happen again,” Sanchez said on Saturday about tossing another no-hitter. “But if you think too much that they don’t have any hits, that’s when you probably won’t make it. When I threw my no-hitter, I never thought about them not having any hits. And it happened.”

The night Sanchez made history against Arizona, he said the no-hitter entered his mind in the last inning.

Because he lost the no-hitter in the sixth inning on Friday, he didn’t get caught up in what might have been. Also, because he was returning from an injury, he wouldn’t have been extended to more than 100 pitches.

“I didn’t think too much about it,” Sanchez said. “It was in the sixth inning that Vazquez got the hit.”

Sanchez next takes the mound on Thursday at home against the Mets.

On Saturday, he received a call from his mother congratulating him on the victory. A number of his friends also sent text messages.

Getting Sanchez back in the rotation provides the Marlins will a boost. While he has been hurt this year, he also is fresh right now. He has thrown 41 2/3 at the big league level this season.

“I’d like to help the team get to the playoffs,” Sanchez said. “That’s what the team wants. I want to help any way I can right now.”

– Joe Frisaro

 

 

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