Gaby Sanchez to Start… For AAA New Orleans

Gaby Sanchez was the favorite to take over at first base but after a weak spring, he is heading to AAA. This likely means Jorge Cantu will move to first base and Emilio Bonifacio will take over third.

Marlins Acquire Catcher Ronny Paulino

Apparently not satisfied with their catching depth, the Marlins have acquired Ronny Paulino from the giants for minor league right-handed pitcher Hector Correa.

Paulino, 27, was traded to the Giants from Philadelphia for left-handed pitcher Jack Taschner Friday night prior to being traded to Florida. He was previously traded to the Phillies from Pittsburgh on December 10, 2008 in exchange for catcher Jason Jaramillo. He had spent his entire career with the Pirates, posting a career average of .278 (284×1021) with 49 doubles, 19 home runs and 128 RBI in 304 Major League games.

The Santo Domingo, DR native appeared in just 40 games with Pittsburgh last season while battling a right ankle sprain. For his career Paulino has thrown out 51 of 165 (24%) of runners attempting to steal. A right-handed hitter, he owns a career .355 (92×259) average against left-handed pitchers. Paulino was originally signed as a non-drafted free agent by the Pittsburgh Pirates on December 29, 1997.

I guess Mike Rabelo is still not good enough for the big leagues.

Update: The Marlins didn’t wait long. Mike Rabelo and Brett Hayes were sent down to AAA.

And Your Opening Day Starter is…

Ricky Nolasco.

I guess throwing a no-hitter in Spring Training made the decision easier for Fredi Gonzalez.

As expected, Josh Johnson will take the second spot and Chris Volstad will pitch the third game. Either Anibal Sanchez or Andrew Miller will take the fourth spot with the other going to the bullpen until April 18th, when the Marlins will need a fifth starter. Continue reading And Your Opening Day Starter is…

Tank to AAA and Other Roster Moves

The Marlins have made several roster moves in the past couple of days:

  • Taylor Tankersley and Ryan Tucker were options to AAA
  • Tim Wood was optioned to AA
  • Chris Coghlan was assigned to the Minor League camp
  • Carlos Vasquez (LHP) signed a Minor League deal
  • Frankie De La Cruz was claimed off waivers by the Padres. The Marlins pulled him back and then agreed to trade him for cash and a player to be named later.

County Approves Ballpark

Barring any more legal challenges, the Marlins are now on their way to breaking ground on the new ballpark after Miami-Dade County approved the ballpark agreements.

Miami-Dade County commissioners on Monday put to rest more than a decade quest by voting in favor of a roofed ballpark for the Marlins on the Orange Bowl grounds. Commissioners cast two separate votes; the first came back 9-4, and the second was 10-3.

The first three hours of the meeting were set aside for a public hearing, where more than 90 people made their voices heard — pro and con. For several hours, the commissioners debated the facts of the project.

To pass, the Marlins needed nine of 13 commissioners to vote in favor. The commissioners addressed five separate agreements — non-relocation, assurance, parking, operating and construction.

Update: I’ve been asked why I’m not showing more enthusiasm in this post. Honestly, until they break ground and heavy equipment shows up, I can’t celebrate. We’ve seen far too many curveballs the last couple of years that I’m wait and see until it happens.

Marlins Release Gibbons

Yesterday, Jay Gibbons hit a home run, today he’s looking for a new job. The Marlins surprisingly released the left-handed outfielder with weeks left in Spring Training. The Marlins also sent some of their best prospects to the minors including Kyle Skipworth, Matt Dominguez, Jose Ceda and Michael Stanton.