Results tagged ‘ Johan Santana ’

2011 opener likely at home

Josh Johnson vs. Johan Santana.

The pitching matchup attracted 41,245 at Citi Field on Opening Day when the Marlins took on the Mets.

The two All-Star pitchers are fixtures on their respective teams. Chances are, they will be matched up again on Opening Day in 2011. This time in Miami.

Nothing is official, as schedules for next season have yet to be released, but indications are the Marlins will face the Mets in the ’11 opener. The game most likely will be on a Friday night.

The 2011 season will be the Marlins last at Sun Life Stadium, their home since their inaugural 1993 campaign.

Recently, the Marlins worked out a one-year lease extension to play at Sun Life Stadium in 2011.

There was some speculation a few weeks ago that the Marlins would open against the Mets, but with the series being played in San Juan, Puerto Rico. While the Marlins are expected to play three games in Puerto Rico in ’11, it won’t be their first series.

In 2012, the Marlins are moving into their new retractable-roof ballpark in the Little Havana section of Miami.

— Joe Frisaro



Marlins shuffle lineup

The Marlins will have a revamped lineup on Thursday night when they face the Mets at Sun Life Stadium.

The pitching matchup features Josh Johnson against Johan Santana.

Brian Barden is getting his first start of the season at second base on Thursday, with Dan Uggla getting the night off.

Earlier on Thursday, the Marlins optioned outfielder Bryan Petersen to Triple-A New Orleans, and recalled catcher Brett Hayes.


1) Chris Coghlan, LF

2) Brian Barden, 2B

3) Hanley Ramirez, SS

4) Jorge Cantu, 3B

5) Cody Ross, CF

6) Ronny Paulino, C

7) Gaby Sanchez, 1B

8) Brett Carroll, RF

9) Josh Johnson, P

— Joe Frisaro





Opening Day observations

Opening Day at Citi Field on Monday was packed with anticipation, hype, an impressive pregame show and a promising pitching matchup.

There was tremendous buildup, and the crowd of 41,000 was into the contest that matched aces Josh Johnson and Johan Santana.

For five innings, there was drama and a close game. Then, the Marlins turned sloppy in the sixth inning, committing three errors, and New York capitalized on the mistakes and claimed a 7-1 win.

Tuesday’s day off provided an opportunity to reflect and digest all that took place in the opener.

* One thing is clearly, Josh Johnson is not yet on track. The stomach virus he dealt with late in Spring Training set his preparation back. And it showed. Granted, the 26-year-old is not yet in top form. Still, something else stood out. Johnson was doing more nibbling with his pitches than attacking. That was evident by four walks and a hit batter in five plus innings.

From the first batter he faced, that was clear. Johnson had Alex Cora in a 1-2 count, and then hit the Mets leadoff batter with a slider. With a 95 mph fastball, Johnson is at his best when he is pounding the strike zone, and not being so fine on the corners.

* A key play that didn’t get much mention was Luis Castillo’s at-bat in the first inning. After Cora reached, Castillo hit a grounder to second. Dan Uggla fielded it cleanly, flipped to Hanley Ramirez for the force at second. The Marlins nearly turned the double play, but a hustling Castillo beat the throw to first. Instead of two outs, the Mets had a base runner. David Wright followed with a two-run homer. Castillo pushing it down the line gave the Mets an extra run.

* The brightest star for the Marlins on Monday was Hanley Ramirez. With the big crowd and attention on the game, the two-time All-Star stepped up, going 2-for-4 with a stolen base. Ramirez also made a terrific unassisted double play, robbing Cora of a run-scoring hit in the fourth inning. With the bases loaded and one out, Cora ripped a hard liner. Ramirez dove to his left to make the nice grab. He showed the ball to the umpire, and then stepped on second to double up Jeff Francoeur.

* The wind conditions made just about every fly ball an adventure. The end result was center fielder Cameron Maybin had a tough day. Maybin has tremendous promise, and one rough afternoon is no reason to be overly critical. But getting better jumps and reads on fly balls will be something Maybin keeps working on. He had some issues with his reads in Spring Training. Citi Field has a lot of ground to cover, but Maybin will have even more territory to roam at Sun Life Stadium. Cody Ross, now playing right field, has shown he can play center field at a high level. If Maybin struggles in center, a possibility down the line could be switching Ross and Maybin.

* Wes Helms took part in his 11th Opening Day. Helms didn’t get into the game, but he was on deck in the ninth inning when Gaby Sanchez made the final out.

* The Marlins one run scored on Monday was the lowest run total for the team on Opening Day since losing 1-0 at Houston in 2006.

— Joe Frisaro



Opening Day lineups set

It’s down to a matter of hours before the Marlins and Mets meet on Opening Day at Citi Field on Monday.

The game, which starts at 1:10 p.m. ET, will feature Josh Johnson starting for Florida against Johan Santana of the Mets.








1) Chris Coghlan, LF

JoshJohnsonawe.jpg2) Cameron Maybin, CF

3) Hanley Ramirez, SS

4) Jorge Cantu, 3B

5) Dan Uggla, 2B

6) Ronny Paulino, C

7) Cody Ross, RF

8) Gaby Sanchez, 1B

9) Josh Johnson, P









1) Alex Cora, SS

johansantana1.jpg2) Luis Castillo, 2B

3) David Wright, 3B

4) Mike Jacobs, 1B

5) Jason Bay, LF

6) Gary Matthews Jr., CF

7) Jeff Francoeur, RF

8) Rod Barajas, C

9) Johan Santana, P


— Joe Frisaro


J.J. ready for Opening Day

It wasn’t classic J.J., but it wasn’t any reason to be alarmed about either.

Josh Johnson’s final tuneup before Opening Day was basically a chance to stretch out to close to 100 pitches.

josh-johnson.jpgThe Marlins ace gave up three solo home runs in 4 2/3 innings on Wednesday against the Mets. He struck out five. About the best news is his pitch count reached 92. Although he had a few full-count situations, he didn’t walk a batter.

“I finally got some consistency,” Johnson said. “I threw some good pitches. But not great results at times.”

It was one of those awkward outings. Johnson was taking the mound against the team he will see in New York Monday on Opening Day at Citi Field.

Typically, teams try to avoid matching pitchers late in Spring Training against teams they will see the first week of the season.

It was unavoidable with Johnson.

Johnson had the task of balancing getting his work in while trying not to reveal too much of what he will throw in five days.

“Of course, I’ve still got to work on some stuff,” Johnson said. “I was trying to not show everything. Show them some stuff, but not everything.”

The Mets, for instance, didn’t match Johan Santana, their Opening Day starter, against the Marlins.

Johnson says there are benefits to avoiding seeing the same hitters.

“Not facing me for six months,” he said. “Maybe there is an element of surprise. They see how my fastball is right now. I don’t think it was great today. It was a little inconsistent.”

A positive from Wednesday is the fact Johnson was back in a competitive environment. A stomach virus caused him to miss his last start. The illness also disrupted his preparation over the past week. He hasn’t been able to run the way he normally does or lift weights.

“It was tough. I haven’t run in five days, which is a little tough,” Johnson said. “Other than that, I was a little behind.”

— Joe Frisaro


Weighing early rotation

A scheduled off day on April 6 gives the Marlins some rotation flexibility entering the season. As of now, the team is weighing how to set up its pitchers.

joshjohnson-532x778.jpgAn option the team has is to come back with Josh Johnson on Saturday, April 10 against the Dodgers, or to use whoever is the fifth starter on that day.

Johnson will pitch in the April 5 opener against the Mets. Because of the off day, Johnson could pitch the first and fifth games.

“We haven’t decided what to do yet,” manager Fredi Gonzalez said.

The Marlins have yet to set their five-man rotation. The only other pitcher officially announced is Ricky Nolasco, who will pitch in the second game on April 7.

Most likely, Anibal Sanchez will be the No. 3 starter, throwing on April 8 at New York.

The Marlins will have their Opening Night at Sun Life Stadium on April 9, with the Dodgers in town for a 7:10 p.m. ET start.

If Johnson stays on his regular five-day schedule, he would pitch the first Super Saturday concert series home game. If the Marlins opt to use their fifth starter on April 10, then Johnson would throw on Sunday, April 11.

Because the Marlins platoon their catchers, Ronny Paulino is expected to catch on Opening Day. The Mets will be throwing lefty Johan Santana.

— Joe Frisaro


Lineups vs. Mets on Sunday

The Mets are sending Johan Santana to the mound on Sunday at Roger Dean Stadium, while the Marlins are countering with Anibal Sanchez. The game is set for 1:05 p.m. ET.






1) Gary Matthews Jr., CF

2) Luis Castillo, 2B

santana-720353.jpg3) David Wright, 3B

4) Jason Bay, LF

5) Daniel Murphy, 1B

6) Jeff Francoeur, RF

7) Alex Cora, SS

8) Omir Santos, C

9) Johan Santana, P







1) Chris Coghlan, LF

2) Bryan Petersen, CF

3) Hanley Ramirez, SS

anibal-sanchez_392.jpg4) Dan Uggla, 2B

5) Wes Helms, 3B

6) Logan Morrison, 1B

7) Jai Miller, RF

8) Brad Davis, C

9) Anibal Sanchez, P

— Joe Frisaro


B Game before The Game

Fans headed to Roger Dean Stadium on Sunday will get a chance to see Johan Santana take the mound against fellow Venezuelan Anibal Sanchez.

Before the Marlins and Mets play their Grapefruit League game in Jupiter, there will be some game action on Field 2 at the stadium complex.

The Marlins and Mets have scheduled a B Game scrimmage beginning at 10 a.m.

It will mark the second straight day the Marlins will play a B Game before their regularly scheduled contest, which will start at 1:05 p.m. ET.

On Saturday morning in Sarasota, the Marlins and Orioles played a B Game. The seven-inning contest was before the Marlins faced the Rays in Port Charlotte.

— Joe Frisaro