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Inbox: Is Realmuto impacting FA pursuits?

Beat reporter Joe Frisaro answers questions from Marlins fans
MLB.com @JoeFrisaro

Is the Marlins' front office working toward signing any free agents, or is it waiting to figure out what will ultimately happen with the J.T. Realmuto situation?
-- @DillonTuttle8

The impression I am getting is there is a bit of a domino effect going on regarding Realmuto. The industry is waiting to see where free agents Bryce Harper and Manny Machado land. If, for example, Harper signs with the Phillies, that may motivate the Braves to make a stronger push for Realmuto. Or what if the Yankees -- or another club that has backed away in recent weeks -- feel more compelled to pick up negotiations? How the marquee free agents play out will also drive the market.

Is the Marlins' front office working toward signing any free agents, or is it waiting to figure out what will ultimately happen with the J.T. Realmuto situation?
-- @DillonTuttle8

The impression I am getting is there is a bit of a domino effect going on regarding Realmuto. The industry is waiting to see where free agents Bryce Harper and Manny Machado land. If, for example, Harper signs with the Phillies, that may motivate the Braves to make a stronger push for Realmuto. Or what if the Yankees -- or another club that has backed away in recent weeks -- feel more compelled to pick up negotiations? How the marquee free agents play out will also drive the market.

The latest Realmuto rumors

There are many moving parts going on with Realmuto, which has moved free agency for the Marlins to the back burner.

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The Marlins being in on DJ LeMahieu was interesting, and there were even some rumblings about being the mystery team on Machado. That aligns with what you've said about this rebuild not being a long one. Have you heard any other interesting names being linked to Miami?
-- @mpicardi

I saw MLB Network insider Ken Rosenthal's report that the Marlins explored signing LeMahieu before the Gold Glove Award-winning second baseman agreed to a two-year, $24 million deal with the Yankees. In general, I'm not surprised when any team checks in on any free agent. The contract LeMahieu signed with New York is affordable, so if you're Miami, why not see if there is a fit?

Keep this in mind with players like LeMahieu and other free agents who have been to the postseason and have offers from multiple teams: Their first priority -- aside from money -- is to be a part of a winner, not a team building.

I have noted that this build is more a three- to five-year plan, and not five and above. If Realmuto is dealt before Spring Training starts, which I expect will happen, that sets the build back another year, in my opinion.

As for Machado, the timing this year hasn't been right to place such a long-term investment into a superstar player. Miami has two years remaining on its current local TV deal, which is the lowest of all 30 big league teams. A year from now, I believe the team will be better positioned to sign high-profile free agents.

Hot Stove Tracker

Do you think Martin Prado would be a good candidate to join the organization's coaching staff?
-- Jose T., Miami

I'm confident in saying that once the 35-year-old is done playing, Prado would be a terrific coach on any club's staff. But we're not there yet. The veteran third baseman has one year remaining on the three-year, $40 million contract he signed in 2016. Prado is set to make $15 million in '19. He has endured his share of injuries the past two seasons, and his focus now is being healthy and in the lineup in '19. Depending on how this season pans out for Prado, he will make a call on whether to play again in '20.

To your point about Prado as a coach with the Marlins: Once he gets done playing, that would be up to him, depending on whether he wants to spend more time with his family.

Just speculating, I think Prado would have plenty of post-playing options. I wouldn't be surprised if the Braves, the club he broke in with, seek to hire Prado. More than just being a coach, I could see Prado in a player development role, perhaps being heavily involved on the international end.

There are ways to stay involved without immediately entering the grind of being with a big league club every day.

What is the projected progression in the Minor Leagues for Victor Victor Mesa before he is called up to the Majors?
-- @ZachGluck

Earlier this week, I was able to see Mesa take part in a three-day Marlins hitters camp for nine invited prospects. The 22-year-old shows plenty of promise, but remember, he hasn't seen game action since defecting from Cuba last year. Mesa spent the offseason training with his younger brother, Victor Mesa Jr., who also signed with Miami in October. Mesa is a non-roster invitee to Spring Training, which means he will report and work out with the big league club starting next month. He isn't on the 40-man roster, so he is expected to open in the Minor Leagues, either at Class A Advanced Jupiter or Double-A Jacksonville. Best guess, the earliest Mesa could reach the big leagues is late in 2019 or '20.

Video: Victor Victor Mesa, Gary Denbo discuss expectations

Who is a dark-horse candidate to make the Marlins' Opening Day roster?
-- @WilliamBlasL

There's going to be plenty of attention in Spring Training to prospects like Mesa, Monte Harrison and Isan Diaz. All three project to be a big part of the organization, but there's a strong chance each starts off in the Minor Leagues. An under-the-radar candidate is left-handed reliever Jose Quijada. The 23-year-old from Venezuela was added to the 40-man roster earlier in the offseason, and he has a chance to win a left-handed reliever role. The Marlins are thin in that area, besides Adam Conley and Jarlin Garcia. In 63 Minor League innings last year, Quijada struck out 81, while walking 29.

Joe Frisaro has covered the Marlins for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @JoeFrisaro and listen to his podcast.

Miami Marlins, Victor Victor Mesa, Martin Prado, Jose Quijada, J.T. Realmuto

Marlins Park transformed into golf course

Venue offering unique playing experience through Sunday
MLB.com @JoeFrisaro

MIAMI -- Marlins Park has undergone a makeover this offseason, with some of the additions being a new multitiered party zone in center field and a standing room only social section in right field.

This weekend, the ballpark is transitioning into a golf course for three days. The Marlins have partnered with Stadiumlinks to transform Marlins Park into a nine-hole golf course through Sunday.

MIAMI -- Marlins Park has undergone a makeover this offseason, with some of the additions being a new multitiered party zone in center field and a standing room only social section in right field.

This weekend, the ballpark is transitioning into a golf course for three days. The Marlins have partnered with Stadiumlinks to transform Marlins Park into a nine-hole golf course through Sunday.

"We want people to come here, regardless of whether or not they are a baseball fan," Marlins president of business operations Chip Bowers said. "We're going to make them a baseball fan. We want people here in South Florida and Miami to come out and know that Marlins Park is an asset. We're going to have a lot of diverse experiences that reflect the diversity of the community. We're excited about it."

Golf is a big part of the South Florida community, and working with Stadiumlinks, Marlins Park is offering a unique playing experience.

Tweet from @GabySanchez15: Hey @Marlins fans! Peter O���Brien and I just got to test out the @StadiumlinksHQ Golf Course at @MarlinsPark, and lets just say I won! Book your tee time for the weekend at https://t.co/eJXCGoZkBj. pic.twitter.com/bsc0DToG3Q

Nine holes have been outlined on the outfield grass, with stations to tee off set up throughout the stadium -- from the upper deck to levels closer to the playing field.

Adding a weekend golf event is part of a continued club initiative to make Marlins Park a destination.

"We have a lot of events coming to Marlins Park," Bowers said. "The idea is to introduce this park and this product to a lot of people, and get them excited about coming back for Marlins games."

Golf will be played with the backdrop of the other stadium enhancements.

All of the stadium projects are on schedule to be completed by Opening Day, which is March 28 against the Rockies.

"The Center Field Zone is coming together really nicely, and the [Standing Room Only] Social Section," Bowers said. "I think we're going to have products for the first time here at Marlins Park that are going to appeal to a lot of different folks. We want to have amenities for all fans."

Tweet from @MarlinsPark: ���The framework for the Center Field Zone has been installed, and next comes the details that will set it apart.��� Full update from Marlins��� President of Business Operations, @chipbowers: https://t.co/hp3ti2PLJK pic.twitter.com/yf60kpXUTB

Earlier in the offseason, the Marlins announced they were removing the colorful, elaborate home run sculpture, a staple at the park since it opened in 2012. The sculpture will be relocated to an art walk that will be designed and open to the public outside Marlins Park in '20.

"We actually are doing a lot of diligence around that," Bowers said. "As we've commented from the outset, it's really important that when we started to relocate the home run sculpture, that we did it the right way.

"We're doing a lot of studies on how to put it back together. When we put it back together, in part of the new art walk that we're putting together, we've got to make sure that it's done well, and works appropriately, so when we open it up for business, it's really a true art walk."

The Marlins are in the process of planning other ways to celebrate home runs.

"We're working through that," Bowers said. "We definitely will celebrate home runs. That's certainly what our fans want. We're thinking about how best to do that. The one thing we don't do is underthink a process. We're not there yet, but we'll be there by Opening Day."

Joe Frisaro has covered the Marlins for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @JoeFrisaro and listen to his podcast.

Miami Marlins

O'Brien, Cooper arrive to spring camp early

Sluggers expected to compete for Opening Day first-base job with Marlins
MLB.com @JoeFrisaro

JUPITER, Fla. -- Prospects weren't the only ones this week taking part in the Marlins' three-day hitter's camp at the Roger Dean Chevrolet Stadium complex. Peter O'Brien and Garrett Cooper, who are competing for Opening Day roster spots, joined the group of position-player prospects invited to the minicamp.

Infielder Miguel Rojas, a third Major League veteran, also showed up to get some early work.

JUPITER, Fla. -- Prospects weren't the only ones this week taking part in the Marlins' three-day hitter's camp at the Roger Dean Chevrolet Stadium complex. Peter O'Brien and Garrett Cooper, who are competing for Opening Day roster spots, joined the group of position-player prospects invited to the minicamp.

Infielder Miguel Rojas, a third Major League veteran, also showed up to get some early work.

"It's great to have those guys out here with those younger players around them," Marlins vice president of player development and scouting Gary Denbo said. "Those guys are here voluntarily. They're going to be coming out three days a week. They're going to be around our younger players."

For O'Brien and Cooper, especially, getting a head start on Spring Training is important. The two are in the mix for the starting first-base job, and both can play corner outfield. O'Brien has caught in his pro career, as well, and could fill in as an emergency catcher.

Cooper, 28, is recovering from right wrist surgery, and he is still getting back into game shape. Monday was the first time the 6-foot-6 right-handed hitter took batting practice on the field.

"He's been in the cage up until this point," Denbo said. "I think he looked great. The ball was coming off the bat really good."

Video: CHC@MIA: Cooper exits game after getting hit by pitch

Miami's Opening Day right fielder in 2018, Cooper was struck by a pitch on his right wrist in the second game of the season, and he dealt with the injury all season. On Aug. 31, Cooper underwent surgery. He appeared in just 14 big league games, and hit .212 in just 33 at-bats.

If healthy, Cooper could have an impactful role for Miami -- either at first, in the outfield or off the bench.

Tweet from @CoopaLoop1: Today I underwent a procedure to repair the ECU tendon in my wrist. Thank you for all the love and support I have received over the last few days. The worst part is not being on the field with all the fellas and competing. But with that said I can���t wait for Spring Training 2019.

O'Brien, 28, has put himself in an interesting position, because he opened eyes within the organization as a September callup, and followed that up with an impressive showing at the Dominican Winter League.

The Marlins are still in the trade and free-agent markets looking for a first baseman, but as things stand, O'Brien is the likely front-runner to start.

"He spent about a month in winter ball this year," Denbo said. "That's something that you won't see a lot of Major League players doing. He went down there and spent a month. Worked on plate discipline and worked on shortening up his swing and putting the ball in play more often. He did really well down there and accomplished his objectives. Now, he's back here ready to go and trying to make our Major League team."

In 15 games and 50 at-bats in the Dominican Republic, O'Brien hit .359 with two home runs and 11 RBIs.

With Miami in September, the Miami native hit .273/.338/.530 with four home runs, five doubles and 10 RBIs. O'Brien, who attended the University of Miami, was drafted by the Yankees in the second round in 2012. Denbo was with New York at the time.

Video: MIA@PHI: O'Brien crushes a 2-run homer to left field

"I've watched him closely over the years," Denbo said. "When he became available last year, we jumped on him. There's not many people in professional baseball who impact the ball like Peter O'Brien does. He does it almost effortlessly. It doesn't look like he's trying to hit the ball out of the ballpark. The ball jumps off his bat, and the exit velocities coming off his bat show that he's one of the top guys in baseball."

O'Brien's average exit velocity with the Marlins was 92.1 mph, according to Statcast™. He had 23 balls in play last September logged as hard contact -- 95 mph or higher. Eleven of those balls were 105 mph or higher, with a high of 112.2 mph.

Joe Frisaro has covered the Marlins for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @JoeFrisaro and listen to his podcast.

Miami Marlins, Garrett Cooper, Peter O'Brien

30 best defensive prospects -- 1 for each team

MLB.com

MLB Pipeline recently unveiled its annual All-Defense Team, but there were only so many spots to fill. It made us realize there were so many outstanding defenders across all 30 organizations.

Evaluating defense is still very much subjective, with metrics measuring fielding still imperfect. Still, each system has glovework that stands out more than others, and we considered many to present one best defender from each organization.

MLB Pipeline recently unveiled its annual All-Defense Team, but there were only so many spots to fill. It made us realize there were so many outstanding defenders across all 30 organizations.

Evaluating defense is still very much subjective, with metrics measuring fielding still imperfect. Still, each system has glovework that stands out more than others, and we considered many to present one best defender from each organization.

American League East

Orioles: Cadyn Grenier, SS, No. 9
Grenier's stellar glovework at shortstop was key in helping Oregon State win the 2018 College World Series, and in the process, he established himself as one of the best defensive prospects in the Draft before going to the Orioles as the No. 37 overall pick. With good hands, plus arm strength and plenty of range, Grenier has all the ingredients needed to stick at the position long term.

Red Sox: Bobby Dalbec, 3B, No. 6
Dalbec has always possessed a strong arm and has worked hard to improve his agility and range at third base, with several Red Sox officials rating him as a plus defender and scouts outside the organization grading him more as solid. He also owns prodigious raw power and ranked second in the Minors in extra-base hits (70) and RBIs (109) last year, and fourth in homers (32).

Yankees: Estevan Florial, OF, No. 1 (MLB No. 45)
Florial has some of the best all-around tools in the Minors, with well-above-average raw power, speed and arm strength. He continues to improve as a center fielder, projecting as a plus defender, and has an exceptionally strong arm for the position.

Rays: Lucius Fox, SS, No. 9
While there's no shortage of standout defenders in the highly athletic Rays system, Fox, a top-flight athlete with plus-plus speed, could be the best. He's played shortstop exclusively as a pro and committed 15 errors in 105 games last season while reaching Double-A at age 21. His athleticism makes him an electrifying defender, and he has the requisite physical tools to remain at the position for the long haul.

Video: EAST@WEST: Fox showcases range, slick glove in 3rd

Blue Jays: Kevin Vicuna, SS, unranked
The Blue Jays felt so good about Vicuna's defense in 2017 that they had the then-19-year-old handle shortstop duties for Class A Advanced Dunedin from April 23-June 1, even though Vicuna previously had never played above the Rookie Gulf Coast League. He's an athletic and, at times, flashy defender, with quick, twitchy hands that help him absorb anything hit his way and a quick release that causes his average arm strength to play up across the infield.

AL Central

White Sox: Nick Madrigal, 2B, No. 5 (MLB No. 49)
The White Sox may try Madrigal at shortstop, because he has the hands and actions to thrive there, but his average arm makes him a better fit at second base. With his quickness and instincts, he could be a Gold Glove Award winner at the keystone, and he also rated as the best pure hitter in the 2018 Draft, where he went No. 4 overall.

Video: Top Prospects: Nick Madrigal, 2B, White Sox

Indians: Eric Haase, C, No. 27
Haase reached the Majors for the first time late last season, seven years after the Indians took him in the seventh round of the 2011 Draft. Though he's blossomed on both sides of the ball during the past two seasons, it's been Haase's defensive gains that have helped him climb the Tribe's depth chart. After throwing out 37 percent of attempted basestealers in 2017, Haase improved that mark to nearly 49 percent in '18 (33 of 68).

Tigers: Jake Rogers, C, No. 12
The Tigers got Rogers as part of the Justin Verlander deal, and in Rogers' first full season with the organization, he cemented himself as the game's best defensive catching prospect, earning a spot on MLB Pipeline's All-Defense Team for the second year in a row. He threw out 55.6 percent of potential basestealers in 2018, upping his career rate to 48.5 percent.

Royals: Sebastian Rivero, C, unranked
M.J. Melendez is very athletic for a catcher and has a chance to become a plus defender with an arm to match. Yet South Atlantic League managers rated Rivero, his teammate at Lexington last summer, the low Class A circuit's best defensive backstop in a Baseball America survey last year. The Royals liken Rivero to a young Salvador Perez, and in addition to his physical ability, Rivero also draws raves for his leadership skills, intelligence and work ethic.

Twins: Gilberto Celestino, OF, No. 14
Signed by the Astros for $2.5 million in 2015, Celestino made his United States debut in '17, then got dealt to the Twins in the Ryan Pressly trade last season. He's drawn comparisons to Albert Almora Jr. for his instincts in center, and coaches in Elizabethton feel he's one of the best defenders they've ever seen.

AL West

Astros: Myles Straw, OF, No. 15
Straw has double-plus speed that gives him tremendous range in center field, where his plus arm also stands out at a position not noted for strong throwers. That quickness also plays well on the bases (he topped the Minors with 70 steals in only 79 attempts in 2018) and allows him to beat out hits (he led the Minors with a .358 batting average in '16).

Angels: Jordyn Adams, OF, No. 6
The Angels signed Adams away from playing football and baseball at North Carolina, and he immediately put his tools on display during his pro debut and during instructs. He's still raw, but the Angels feel he has elite range and the highest ceiling as a defender in the organization.

A's: Nick Allen, SS, No. 15
Allen was viewed by many scouts as perhaps the best defensive prospect available in the 2017 Draft, and he's done nothing to diminish that reputation after signing for more than double slot value as the A's third-round pick. There is no doubt among scouts that Allen can stick at shortstop. He's already a plus defender there, with outstanding range that leads to many highlight-reel plays and plus arm strength that allows him to make throws from all over the diamond.

Mariners: Evan White, 1B, No. 5
It's not often a first baseman is mentioned as one of the premier defensive players in the Minors, but that's the reality with White, who recently was named to the All-Defense Team. All signs point to him becoming a Gold Glove Award winner at the position, as he's athletic with outstanding footwork, a strong arm and plus range. His ability to pick throws is elite, and he makes every infielder on his team better as a result.

Video: Top Prospects: Evan White, 1B, Mariners

Rangers: Jose Trevino, C, No. 28
Trevino won Rawlings Minor League Gold Gloves in both 2016 and '17, before surgery on his non-throwing shoulder last July squashed any chances of a three-peat. He's an outstanding receiver and blocker, gets the most out of his strong arm with a quick release and accurate throws and also earns high marks for his ability to run a pitching staff.

National League East

Braves: Cristian Pache, OF, No. 6  (MLB No. 68)
Pache is generally considered to be the best defender in the Minor Leagues, leading our All-Defense Prospect Team. He has the speed and instincts to be a Gold Glove center fielder to go along with a right fielder's arm.

Video: Mayo looks at MLB Pipeline's 2019 All-Defense Team

Marlins: Jose Devers, SS/2B, No. 13
The cousin of Red Sox third basemen Rafael Devers, Jose was acquired by the Marlins last offseason in the blockbuster trade that sent Giancarlo Stanton to the Bronx. While he doesn't have his cousin's offensive profile, Devers is a far superior defender, with the soft hands, slick footwork and strong arm needed to be a big league shortstop. He showcased his defensive prowess last season, committing only seven errors and posting a .971 fielding percentage as an 18-year-old in full-season ball.

Mets: Andres Gimenez, SS, No. 1 (MLB No. 55)
The shortstop on our All-Defense Team, Gimenez reached Double-A in 2018 as a teenager. While he needs to add strength offensively, he has everything he needs to play shortstop defensively in the big leagues. He has plus hands, range and the internal clock to allow him to slow the game down.

Phillies: Luis Garcia, SS, No. 14
Signed for $2.5 million in July 2017, Garcia had a tremendous debut in the Gulf Coast League in '18 on both sides of the ball. He has a strong arm to go along with terrific hands and feet, and speed that gives him excellent range to stay at shortstop long term. He's only going to get better as he matures.

Nationals: Victor Robles, OF, No. 1 (MLB No. 4)
Revered as one of the top defenders in the Minor Leagues and a member of MLB Pipeline's All-Defense Team, Robles has game-changing abilities in center field. His near top-of-the-scale speed gives him range for days in center field, and he's made strides in improving both his reads and routes in the past two years. His plus-plus arm is among the strongest in the Minors, and he totaled 29 outfield assists from 2016-17 before an injury-plagued campaign in '18.

Video: Top Prospects: Victor Robles, OF, Nationals

NL Central

Cubs: Miguel Amaya, C, No. 1 (MLB No. 87)
Amaya's defensive ability and makeup led the Cubs to sign him for $1.25 million out of Panama in 2015, and he continues to impress even though he has been pushed aggressively in the Minors. His aptitude to frame and block pitches is advanced for a teenager, and his arm strength has improved to at least solid and plays up because of his quick transfer and accuracy.

Reds: Mike Siani, OF, No. 9
The Reds' fourth-round pick got first-round money to sign because of his all-around tools. But his defensive skills have long stood out, and he might have been the best defensive outfielder in the 2018 Draft class, with the ability to cover a ton of ground in center and an arm that allowed him to throw low-90s fastballs from the mound in high school.

Brewers: Payton Henry, C, No. 11
A sixth-round pick in 2016 who signed for nearly twice his slot value, Henry threw out nearly 44 percent (46 of 105) of attempted basestealers and had only six passed balls in his first full season. A quick release and a strong, accurate arm help Henry to combat the running game, and evaluators have been impressed with how he's developed a receiving style that utilizes his big, athletic frame. Henry is also praised for his energy and leadership skills.

Pirates: Ke'Bryan Hayes, 3B, No. 2 (MLB No. 48)
Hayes was the third baseman on our All-Defense Team, and for good reason. He entered pro ball as one of the better defenders at the hot corner, but he's gotten even better as he's committed himself to his conditioning, adding to his agility and range to make him the best in the Minors at the position.

Cardinals: Delvin Perez, SS, No. 28
The Cardinals' first-round pick in 2016 has had trouble finding any traction offensively, but there are no concerns about his defensive chops. He gets plus grades on his arm and his overall fielding, thanks to a plus arm when he needs it, above-average hands and plus speed that helps him cover a lot of ground.

NL West

D-backs: Geraldo Perdomo, SS, No. 21
Perdomo's United States debut in 2018 was solid all-around, and he even earned a promotion from the Arizona Rookie League to the Pioneer League in the process. Tall and rangy, the teenager has shown the tools to stay at shortstop long term with outstanding range, actions and hands to go with a strong arm.

Rockies: Yonathan Daza, OF, No. 18
Thanks to his plus speed and fine instincts, Daza covers a lot of ground in center field, and he possesses a plus-plus arm that stands out at his position. He's also a career .310 hitter who won the Class A Advanced California League batting title in 2017 with a .341 mark.

Dodgers: Will Smith, C, No. 5
An outstanding athlete for a catcher, Smith has already shown that he's capable of playing third base and filling in at second. He has very soft hands and impressive agility, making him a fine receiver and framer, and he has a solid arm that plays better than that because of his fast footwork.

Padres: Buddy Reed, OF, No. 13
A member of MLB Pipeline's All-Defense Team, Reed's 70-grade speed and long, gliding strides allow him to cover huge swaths of territory in center field -- and he showcased that with his catch in last year's SiriusXM All-Star Futures Game. Reed also has a strong arm and recorded 12 outfield assists in 2018, surpassing his combined total from his first two seasons.

Video: WLD@USA: Reed wired up, makes great grab at the wall

Giants: Joey Bart, C, No. 1 (MLB No. 23)
The No. 2 overall pick in the 2018 Draft, Bart draws more attention with his bat, but his work behind the plate is impressive as well. He has improved markedly since high school, when scouts wondered if he could stay at catcher, enhancing his agility and receiving and improving the accuracy of his strong arm.

Jim Callis is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow @jimcallisMLB on Twitter. Listen to him on the weekly Pipeline Podcast.

Jonathan Mayo is a reporter for MLB Pipeline. Follow him on Twitter @JonathanMayo and Facebook, and listen to him on the weekly Pipeline Podcast.

Mike Rosenbaum is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @GoldenSombrero.

Marlins Park to host college football game

FIU will play Miami at stadium, which sits on site of former Orange Bowl
MLB.com @JoeFrisaro

MIAMI -- College football will be returning to the location of the historic Orange Bowl.

Florida International University announced it will host the University of Miami at Marlins Park on Nov. 23. Marlins Park, home of the Miami Marlins since it opened in 2012, is located on the grounds where the Miami Orange Bowl once stood.

MIAMI -- College football will be returning to the location of the historic Orange Bowl.

Florida International University announced it will host the University of Miami at Marlins Park on Nov. 23. Marlins Park, home of the Miami Marlins since it opened in 2012, is located on the grounds where the Miami Orange Bowl once stood.

"We are very excited to be able to provide our fan base and the local football fan base a marquee matchup," FIU executive director of sports and entertainment Pete Garcia said.

Tweet from @FIUFootball: Today was an exciting day to be a @FIUFootball fan! #PawsUp 🐾 | #PantherPride pic.twitter.com/jwEhX3oNNP

Marlins Park has been the site of college football in the past, hosting the Miami Beach Bowl from 2014-16.

With a football capacity expected to be around 40,000, FIU said that the only way to guarantee a ticket for the game is by purchasing or renewing season tickets for its 2019 football season.

FIU and Miami renewed their football rivalry in 2018, playing at Hard Rock Stadium, home of the Hurricanes.

The Miami Orange Bowl opened in 1937 as Burdine Stadium before being renamed in '59. It was the home of the Miami Hurricanes (until 2007) and Miami Dolphins (until 1986), as well as the annual Orange Bowl game and five Super Bowls.

FIU is coached by Butch Davis, a former UM coach. The Hurricanes are coached by Manny Diaz.

Joe Frisaro has covered the Marlins for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @JoeFrisaro and listen to his podcast.

Miami Marlins

Around the Horn: Infield

Options aplenty for Marlins with Castro, Prado leading charge
MLB.com @JoeFrisaro

With Spring Training approaching and pitchers and catchers beginning their workouts on Feb. 13 (with position players following on Feb. 18), MLB.com is posting a series of position-by-position breakdowns leading into camp. Up next: the infield.

MIAMI -- Perhaps the area on the Marlins' roster with the most certainty is the infield, but it's also a unit that may require the most flexibility.

With Spring Training approaching and pitchers and catchers beginning their workouts on Feb. 13 (with position players following on Feb. 18), MLB.com is posting a series of position-by-position breakdowns leading into camp. Up next: the infield.

MIAMI -- Perhaps the area on the Marlins' roster with the most certainty is the infield, but it's also a unit that may require the most flexibility.

When Spring Training gets underway next month, manager Don Mattingly will have a pretty good idea of his options for all four infield spots. He just may be rotating players in and out -- sometimes on a daily basis -- getting the right matchups.

MLB.com breaks down the biggest questions and leading candidates to secure the infield spots.

Still up in the air: Who plays first?
First base was the biggest question entering the offseason for Miami, and it remains unsettled. There's still time to make a roster move, such as a free-agent signing or an addition via a trade.

Until then, Peter O'Brien is the leading candidate to handle the position when Spring Training opens. A Miami native, and right-handed-hitting power threat, O'Brien made a strong impression as a September callup in 2018, belting four home runs and driving in 10 runs, while hitting .273/.338/.530.

Video: MIA@NYM: O'Brien smacks a solo home run to right

O'Brien also checks off some boxes in terms of hard contact rates. According to Statcast™, his average exit velocity of balls put in play is 92.1 mph, and his average launch angle is 16.5 degrees. Both figures are well above the league average.

On the flip side, the 28-year-old had not appeared in the Majors since 2016 with the D-backs, and he's struggled throughout his professional career making consistent contact.

Garrett Cooper, who was the Opening Day starter in right field for the Marlins last year, appeared in just 14 games all season due to a right wrist injury, which led to surgery. Cooper took batting practice on the field this week at the organization's hitters camp and will also get a shot to play first base regularly.

Is Castro on the trading block?
Barring being dealt before camp opens, Starlin Castro is expected back at second base. The four-time All-Star had a productive 2018 in his first season with the organization, posting a slash line of .278/.329/.400, with 12 home runs, 32 doubles and 54 RBIs.

The Marlins are open to dealing Castro, who is in the final season of his contract with a $16 million team option looming in 2020 (along with a $1 million buyout). But his $11 million salary for 2019 has reduced his trade value. A more realistic timetable to move Castro is around the July 31 non-waiver Trade Deadline.

Splitting time at shortstop?
Miguel Rojas made a case to be the everyday shortstop last year, appearing in a career-high 153 games. But it's likely Rojas will once again share the position with JT Riddle, who is projected to be the lone left-handed-hitting regular currently on the roster.

Rojas is also the most versatile player on the roster, capable of being a plus defender at shortstop, third, second and first base. Rojas started 78 games at short last year, and he was also the primary late-inning defensive replacement at first base.

Video: ATL@MIA: Riddle, Rojas turn 6-4-3 double play in 2nd

Riddle opened 2018 on the disabled list as he recovered from the right shoulder surgery that he underwent in 2017. The 27-year-old appeared in 102 games last year and had his ups and downs, batting .231/.277/.377 with nine home runs, 10 doubles, four triples and 36 RBIs. This is a big season for Riddle to see if he can be counted on as a productive regular.

Stability at third base
Brian Anderson is generally regarded as the third baseman of the future, yet the 25-year-old might wind up in right field. A year ago, Anderson played 71 games at third base, compared to 91 in right field. The status of Martin Prado, and how the outfield shapes up, will determine what position Anderson mostly plays.

Due to hamstring, knee and oblique injuries, Prado played in just 54 games a year ago. If he is healthy, the veteran could handle third base more regularly, meaning Anderson could wind up in right. Foremost, Prado has to establish health.

Prospect watch
Isan Diaz is getting closer to being big league ready, and he perhaps could take over at second base around June or July. Ranked by MLB Pipeline as Miami's No. 9 prospect, Diaz is a left-handed hitter who spent last season at Double-A Jacksonville and Triple-A New Orleans, where at age 22, he combined to hit .232 with 13 home runs and 56 RBIs.

Diaz projects to start off 2019 at New Orleans.

Joe Frisaro has covered the Marlins for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @JoeFrisaro and listen to his podcast.

Miami Marlins, Starlin Castro

Marlins prospect Harrison can relate to Murray

Outfielder who chose baseball over football in '14 weighs in on OU's two-sport star
MLB.com @JoeFrisaro

JUPITER, Fla. -- Football, baseball or both?

When deciding his career path in 2014, Marlins outfield prospect Monte Harrison found himself in a similar situation to what Kyler Murray is going through. Harrison is familiar with having to give up one sport for the other.

JUPITER, Fla. -- Football, baseball or both?

When deciding his career path in 2014, Marlins outfield prospect Monte Harrison found himself in a similar situation to what Kyler Murray is going through. Harrison is familiar with having to give up one sport for the other.

Murray, the A's first-round pick in the 2018 MLB Draft and the Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback at the University of Oklahoma, announced on Monday that he will be entering the 2019 NFL Draft, while leaving the door open to try to play baseball. Harrison is aware of the complications, but in the end he boiled it down to one key element.

Video: Kyler Murray declares for the upcoming NFL Draft

"What's his love? At the end of the day, he's going to do what makes him happy," said Harrison, the Marlins' No. 2 prospect according to MLB Pipeline. "I know there is a lot of money and stuff like that involved."

Coming out of Lee's Summit (Mo.) West High School in 2014, Harrison was prepared to give football and baseball a shot at the University of Nebraska. Those plans changed that summer when the Brewers selected him in the second round and signed the power-hitting outfielder to play baseball exclusively.

"For me personally, I chose something that I love," Harrison said. "Whatever direction it was going to go, things were going to happen. [Murray is] in a very tough situation. Good luck to him as he goes through that. Hopefully, I can see him in a baseball uniform. It will be interesting to see what happens in the next couple of months or so."

Harrison keeps tabs on two-sport athletes, and he was aware of Murray for years.

"Yeah, I definitely watched him," Harrison said. "I knew about him in high school. There's not much you can really say about him. Look at the athlete he is. He kind of makes me wonder, 'Dang, maybe if I went to college ... .' It will be interesting to see what happens to him. He seems like a good dude. I've heard some things about him. Just the talent on the field is amazing."

If Murray decides to play both football and baseball, that's a workload Harrison right now says he wouldn't want to handle.

"Now? No," he said. "I was talking to somebody about this the other day. I can't imagine going to school, playing football and baseball. I'm not going to have a social life. I mean, you still have to have things that are outside the sports world. I can't imagine playing two sports right now."

Joe Frisaro has covered the Marlins for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @JoeFrisaro and listen to his podcast.

Miami Marlins, Monte Harrison

First Spring Training workout dates for all clubs

MLB.com @mattkellyMLB

Major League Baseball has revealed the first Spring Training workout dates for pitchers and catchers and those for the full squads for all 30 clubs. MLB also announced game times for all Cactus and Grapefruit League action in February and March.

Major League Baseball has revealed the first Spring Training workout dates for pitchers and catchers and those for the full squads for all 30 clubs. MLB also announced game times for all Cactus and Grapefruit League action in February and March.

:: Spring Training coverage presented by Camping World ::

The A's, fresh off their surprise run to the 2018 American League Wild Card Game, will be the first club to have its pitchers and catchers report. They'll do so on Monday, Feb. 11, followed by the Indians and Mariners on Feb. 12 and the remainder of MLB clubs in the days following. Oakland and Seattle will travel to Tokyo to stage two exhibition games each against Japanese teams on March 17-18, followed by the first two games of the 2019 regular season on March 20-21 at Tokyo Dome.

Complete Spring Training schedule

Oakland and Seattle will hold their first full-squad workouts on Saturday, Feb. 16, in Arizona, with the rest of MLB following suit in the days after. The Braves will be the last club to hold its first full-squad workout, doing so on Thursday, Feb. 21. The A's and Mariners open Cactus League action with a matchup on Feb. 21, and the Rays and Phillies open up Grapefruit League action the following day. The Red Sox and Tigers will play exhibition games against college teams on Feb. 22.

Here are first-workout dates for pitchers and catchers and full squads for each team:

AMERICAN LEAGUE
Angels: Feb. 13/Feb. 18
Astros: Feb. 14/Feb. 18
Athletics: Feb. 11/Feb. 16
Blue Jays: Feb. 14/Feb. 18
Indians: Feb. 12/Feb. 18
Mariners: Feb. 12/Feb. 16
Orioles: Feb. 13/Feb. 18
Rangers: Feb. 13/Feb. 18
Rays: Feb. 13/Feb. 18
Red Sox: Feb. 13/Feb. 18
Royals: Feb. 13/Feb. 18
Tigers: Feb. 13/Feb. 18
Twins: Feb. 14/Feb. 18
White Sox: Feb. 13/Feb. 18
Yankees: Feb. 14/Feb. 19

NATIONAL LEAGUE
Braves: Feb. 16/Feb. 21
Brewers: Feb. 14/Feb. 19
Cardinals: Feb. 13/Feb. 18
Cubs: Feb. 13/Feb. 18
Diamondbacks: Feb. 13/Feb. 18
Dodgers: Feb. 13/Feb. 19
Giants: Feb. 14/Feb. 19
Marlins: Feb. 13/Feb. 18
Mets: Feb. 14/Feb. 18
Nationals: Feb. 14/Feb. 19
Padres: Feb. 13/Feb. 18
Phillies: Feb. 13/Feb. 18
Pirates: Feb. 13/Feb. 18
Reds: Feb. 13/Feb. 18
Rockies: Feb. 13/Feb. 18

Matt Kelly is a reporter for MLB.com based in New York. Follow him on Twitter at @mattkellyMLB.

The MLB.com Hall of Fame ballot results are ...

MLB.com

Six MLB.com writers were among those eligible to cast ballots in the 2019 Hall of Fame vote conducted by the Baseball Writers' Association of America.

• Complete Hall of Fame coverage

Six MLB.com writers were among those eligible to cast ballots in the 2019 Hall of Fame vote conducted by the Baseball Writers' Association of America.

• Complete Hall of Fame coverage

As many as four candidates -- and possibly more -- could be elected, according to the public ballots amassed online. Here's a look at how the six voted, and at the bottom you can see what the totals look like among this group:

T.R. Sullivan
1. Barry Bonds
2. Roger Clemens
3. Roy Halladay
4. Edgar Martinez
5. Fred McGriff
6. Mike Mussina
7. Mariano Rivera
8. Billy Wagner
9. Larry Walker
10. Michael Young

There are many offensive players who could/should be elected based on their career numbers. I strongly believe McGriff is unfairly overlooked because he was one of the last great hitters before the offensive explosion of the late 1990s and early 2000s. Mussina also thrived as a starting pitcher in the American League right in the thick of that era. It should not have taken him this long to be elected. I'm not big on comparables, but Wagner was every bit as good of a reliever as Rivera or Trevor Hoffman.

Video: MLB Tonight on Mike Mussina's Hall of Fame case

Mark Feinsand
1. Barry Bonds
2. Roger Clemens
3. Roy Halladay
4. Edgar Martinez
5. Mike Mussina
6. Manny Ramirez
7. Mariano Rivera
8. Curt Schilling
9. Gary Sheffield
10. Omar Vizquel

Three of the players I voted for a year ago -- Vladimir Guerrero, Chipper Jones and Jim Thome -- were inducted into the Hall, so the holdovers (Bonds, Clemens, Edgar, Mussina, Manny, Schilling and Sheffield) took up the first seven spots on my ballot.

That left me with up to three open spots to fill. Rivera was an obvious choice for one of them in his first time on the ballot, as was Halladay, who, despite a modest win total (203), was one of the most dominant pitchers of his generation. Although I delved into their statistics to confirm what I already knew, these two were no-brainers.

Video: Roy Halladay's case for the Hall of Fame

The final spot was a little more difficult. After a first examination of the 26 players, I narrowed down my choice to Todd Helton, Andruw Jones, Jeff Kent, Fred McGriff, Andy Pettitte, Scott Rolen, Vizquel, Larry Walker and Vernon Wells. (OK, Wells wasn't really on my list, but he was one of my favorite players I ever covered, so I considered using my last spot for him for about 30 seconds.)

Although I probably would have voted for five or six of these players had the ballot been open-ended and without the 10-man limit, my choice ultimately came down to two: Pettitte and Vizquel.

Pettitte is viewed by many as a borderline candidate, a take I can't argue with. While his candidacy might be seen differently by voters, I think he belongs in the conversation. (Based on my voting history, I'm obviously not holding his HGH admission against him.) Having seen similar players such as Jorge Posada, Kenny Lofton and Johan Santana fall off the ballot in their first years, I considered voting for Pettitte in an effort to help him get the requisite 5 percent for him to be on the ballot again next year.

Ultimately, Vizquel's excellence in the field (he took home 11 Gold Gloves and is in the conversation as the best defensive shortstop ever) won out. He might not have been an offensive force, but Vizquel was far from an automatic out, finishing his career with 2,877 hits. Pettitte had a great career and will likely be in the mix for my vote again next year, but my belief that Vizquel should be in the Hall outweighed my hopes of seeing Pettitte remain on the ballot.

Jeffrey Flanagan
1. Barry Bonds
2. Roger Clemens
3. Roy Halladay
4. Andruw Jones
5. Edgar Martinez
6. Mike Mussina
7. Manny Ramirez
8. Mariano Rivera
9. Curt Schilling
10. Larry Walker

It was difficult leaving off McGriff and Rolen, but we only get 10 spots, which is why I've always favored a binary system -- simply yes or no to each candidate. As for the PED issue, my stance hasn't really changed: If what they did (or didn't) do is so egregious, the Hall of Fame should take those players off the ballot. Don't make us be the morality judges.

Video: MLB Network debates Bonds, Clemens' merits for HOF

Richard Justice
1. Barry Bonds
2. Roger Clemens
3. Roy Halladay
4. Edgar Martinez
5. Mike Mussina
6. Mariano Rivera
7. Scott Rolen
8. Curt Schilling
9. Billy Wagner
10. Larry Walker

Easy calls on nine of the 10. All belong in the Hall. As for Wagner, he's one of greatest closers ever, and if they're part of the game (same for DHs), the best of them should be in the Hall. I didn't like leaving off Andruw Jones, Todd Helton, Jeff Kent, Omar Vizquel, Andy Pettitte, Manny Ramirez and Gary Sheffield, who at least deserve to be in the conversation longer.

Jon Paul Morosi
1. Barry Bonds
2. Roger Clemens
3. Roy Halladay
4. Edgar Martinez
5. Fred McGriff
6. Mike Mussina
7. Mariano Rivera
8. Scott Rolen
9. Curt Schilling
10. Larry Walker

I voted for Bonds and Clemens, as I have every year. For now, at least, my policy regarding players tied to PED use remains unchanged: I do not vote for players suspended under MLB's drug policy from 2005 to present, but I support the best all-around players from the complicated era that preceded it.

Rivera is one of the clearest first-ballot Hall of Famers in history, and Halladay's dominant peak (in a hitter-friendly ballpark, against AL East competition) makes him worthy of the Hall. McGriff, overlooked for far too long, hit more home runs -- with a better adjusted OPS -- than first-ballot Hall of Famers Dave Winfield and Carl Yastrzemski; McGriff is eminently qualified for Cooperstown.

My toughest decision came among Rolen, Vizquel and Sheffield for the last of my 10 spots. I opted for Rolen, given the overall quality of his career, at a position underrepresented in the Hall. Rolen is one of only three third basemen in history with at least seven Gold Gloves and seven All-Star appearances. The others are Brooks Robinson and Mike Schmidt.

Video: MLB Network on Edgar Martinez's case for the HOF

Chris Haft
1. Barry Bonds
2. Roger Clemens
3. Roy Halladay
4. Jeff Kent
5. Edgar Martinez
6. Mike Mussina
7. Mariano Rivera
8. Curt Schilling
9. Omar Vizquel
10. Larry Walker

Rivera's career forestalls debate. And if you feel free to vote for closers, you should feel free to vote for other specialists, such as Martinez the designated hitter. I dismounted my moral high horse regarding Bonds and Clemens two or three years ago. I needed some persuasion to vote for Walker; by contrast, I remained stubbornly loyal to Kent. Mussina embodied consistency; Schilling dominated the postseason and Halladay finished 98 games above .500 in just 390 starts. As for Vizquel, I pity those who can't or won't comprehend his excellence.

Vote totals of the 6 MLB.com writers

With 75 percent of the vote needed for entry to the Hall, Bonds, Martinez, Rivera, Mussina, Clemens, Halladay, Schilling and Walker received enough support -- the first six appearing on all six ballots, and the other two appearing on five of six ballots (83 percent) -- from MLB.com writers.

Barry Bonds -- 6 votes
Roger Clemens -- 6
Roy Halladay -- 6
Edgar Martinez -- 6
Mike Mussina -- 6
Mariano Rivera -- 6
Curt Schilling -- 5
Larry Walker -- 5
Fred McGriff -- 2
Manny Ramirez -- 2
Scott Rolen -- 2
Omar Vizquel -- 2
Billy Wagner -- 2
Andruw Jones -- 1
Jeff Kent -- 1
Gary Sheffield -- 1
Michael Young -- 1

Miami flavor highlights new food at Marlins Park

MLB.com @JoeFrisaro

MIAMI -- Dining at Marlins Park in 2019 will have a Miami flavor.

The Marlins on Tuesday announced the additions of new food partners with local appeal as part of their ballpark enhancements for the upcoming season.

MIAMI -- Dining at Marlins Park in 2019 will have a Miami flavor.

The Marlins on Tuesday announced the additions of new food partners with local appeal as part of their ballpark enhancements for the upcoming season.

The Marlins are teaming up with Miami's Best Pizza, PINCHO, Novecento, SuViche and two concepts by Jose Andres' ThinkFoodGroup -- Butterfly Tacos y Tortas and La Pepa.

"It is important for us to continue to invest in creating a first-class fan experience at Marlins Park, and the addition of these well-respected partners with great Miami stories is another essential step in that process," Marlins chief executive officer Derek Jeter said in a statement. "The re-imagined concessions, representative of our community's rich culinary scene, as well as the enhanced premium experience in The Club presented by DEX Imaging will offer our guests fresh and unique experiences."

In their second season of owning the franchise, the group led by Bruce Sherman and Jeter has made a series of ballpark enhancements since the 2018 season ended. Among them has been updating the Diamond Club behind home plate, which is now The Club presented by DEX Imaging.

A multitiered party deck has been added in center field, and a standing room only section will be down the right-field line.

In 2019, Marlins Park will serve as the exclusive South Florida professional sports venue to host La Pepa, Butterfly Tacos y Tortas, Novecento and Miami's Best Pizza. The ballpark will also showcase unique menu items and activations via new partnerships with PINCHO and SuViche.

The five new partner brand concession locations for the upcoming season are part of a full reconception and reposition of the Promenade Level food and beverage experience by the Marlins and hospitality partner Levy.

"As we continue to look for ways to impact and enhance the fan experience at Marlins Park, we sought a dining experience authentic to Miami with brands who share our same commitment to the South Florida community," Marlins president of business operations Chip Bowers said in a statement. "We are elevating the food and beverage experience to feature a diverse array of concepts that are reflective of our ever-evolving community. Fans will notice their feedback was heard and will see an increase in the quality and variety of flavors, concepts, and food and beverage-centric experiences available to them throughout the ballpark."

Joe Frisaro has covered the Marlins for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @JoeFrisaro and listen to his podcast.

Miami Marlins

Top prospect Mesa making strong impression

Nine Minor Leaguers taking part in three-day hitting camp
MLB.com @JoeFrisaro

JUPITER, Fla. -- After months of training and conditioning, Marlins top prospect Victor Victor Mesa took some swings Monday on the main field at Roger Dean Chevrolet Stadium. The 22-year-old outfielder from Cuba made a strong first impression.

Mesa was one of nine hitting prospects invited to a three-day camp, which is being supervised by Gary Denbo, Miami's vice president of player development and scouting.

JUPITER, Fla. -- After months of training and conditioning, Marlins top prospect Victor Victor Mesa took some swings Monday on the main field at Roger Dean Chevrolet Stadium. The 22-year-old outfielder from Cuba made a strong first impression.

Mesa was one of nine hitting prospects invited to a three-day camp, which is being supervised by Gary Denbo, Miami's vice president of player development and scouting.

"He's in great shape," Denbo said of Mesa. "He had a great BP. The tools that he brings to the table are obvious. He's very serious about his work. He's done a lot of work with his trainers. It's obvious the work he's done has prepared him for Spring Training."

Ranked by MLB Pipeline as the Marlins' No. 1 prospect, Mesa was rated as the top international prospect when he signed along with his younger brother, Victor Mesa Jr., in October.

Since joining the Marlins, Mesa and his 17-year-old brother have trained together. But they didn't participate in winter ball, and they haven't seen organized game action since defecting from Cuba.

"I feel very anxious," Mesa said through an interpreter. "After all, what makes a player a player is the game. I'm looking forward to doing that."

Tweet from @VictorMesaRios1: Clutching 🧨🏋���������🤸���������#vmjr10 #thechosenone #justgettinstarted #marlins pic.twitter.com/4s0zHnQAB8

The elder Mesa will be a non-roster invitee when the Marlins open Spring Training with pitchers and catchers workouts on Feb. 13 in Jupiter. Full-squad drills get underway five days later.

The Marlins plan on giving Mesa plenty of at-bats in the spring. To expedite the process, Mesa -- as well as other hitters -- will spend time in the bullpen tracking pitches when they aren't playing.

When the season opens, Mesa likely will start off either at Class A Advanced Jupiter or Double-A Jacksonville.

Mesa understands he carries high expectations, especially being a promising star from Cuba living in Miami, which has a large Cuban population.

"I enjoy the Cuban community, it's one of the things I enjoy the most," Mesa said of South Florida. "But also I feel the pressure. They're expecting a lot from me. I want to work with the Marlins' organization, work and try to make everything they expect from me happen."

Video: Frisaro on meaning of Marlins signing Mesa brothers

Because this is his first season of professional baseball in the United States, and the fact he is not on the 40-man roster, Mesa isn't expected to be with the Marlins on Opening Day. Still, it will be a big Spring Training for him to showcase his talents to the organization and big league staff.

"There is great expectations, but I'm just going to focus on working hard, getting better," Mesa said. "I'm going to start knowing everybody in the organization, and going from there."

Among the hitting prospects at the camp were Mesa, Mesa Jr., No. 2 prospect Monte Harrison, infielders Joe Dunand (No. 23), James Nelson (No. 15), Justin Twine and Riley Mahan (No. 26) and outfielders Corey Bird and Milton Smith Jr.

Marlins hitting coach Mike Pagliarulo, assistant hitting coach Jeff Livesey and new Minor League hitting coordinator Eric Duncan are among the instructors at the camp.

This marks the third camp for hitters the Marlins have held in the offseason but the first with the Mesa brothers in attendance.

The elder Mesa is wearing No. 32, the number his father, Victor Mesa Sr., wore during his playing days in Cuba.

"He's got speed. He can fly in the outfield," Denbo said. "His defensive abilities are very good. His throwing arm is very good. We think he's going to hit for a high average. What remains to be seen is if he hits for power or not.

"With that being said, with all that tool package, he's got limited experience in professional baseball. So he's got some work to do. It isn't easy to get to the Major League level. It's even more difficult to stay at the Major League level."

Joe Frisaro has covered the Marlins for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @JoeFrisaro and listen to his podcast.

Miami Marlins, Victor Victor Mesa

Inbox: Does Guzman project as starter?

Beat reporter Joe Frisaro answers questions from Marlins fans
MLB.com @JoeFrisaro

Do you think Jorge Guzman can be a future closer for the Marlins? Or do you prefer him to be a starter?
-- @antonioadolfo6

That's an easy one. Of course, the preference is for Guzman to be a starter. But if he isn't able to command his fastball to both sides of the plate, then his future may ultimately be as a reliever. The Marlins acquired Guzman, their No. 6 prospect per MLB Pipeline, from the Yankees in December 2017 as part of the Giancarlo Stanton trade.

Do you think Jorge Guzman can be a future closer for the Marlins? Or do you prefer him to be a starter?
-- @antonioadolfo6

That's an easy one. Of course, the preference is for Guzman to be a starter. But if he isn't able to command his fastball to both sides of the plate, then his future may ultimately be as a reliever. The Marlins acquired Guzman, their No. 6 prospect per MLB Pipeline, from the Yankees in December 2017 as part of the Giancarlo Stanton trade.

The flamethrower spent the entire 2018 season at Class A Advanced Jupiter, where his velocity maxed at 101 mph. Guzman is a physical presence, who also is polishing up his slider and changeup. The Marlins added the 22-year-old right-hander to their 40-man roster in the offseason, and he is expected to start off at Double-A Jacksonville, where he will be in the rotation. This season will give a better indication of whether Guzman profiles as a future option for the rotation. If he moves to the bullpen, whether he becomes a closer or not will depend on how effective he is at missing bats. To close, you need swing-and-miss pitches.

:: Submit a question to the Marlins Inbox ::

Which teams are still interested in Marlins All-Star catcher J.T. Realmuto?
-- @nynfa711

The landscape changed in recent days with Yasmani Grandal reportedly reaching agreement on a one-year deal with the Brewers. With Grandal no longer an option to return, the Dodgers are in the market for a front-line catcher, and they have the prospects and need to make a strong push for Realmuto. I'm hearing, in no particular order, the Dodgers, Braves, Astros, Padres, Reds and Rays have expressed the most interest in Realmuto. The Marlins' firm stance has not changed. They seek an overpay situation: a top prospect and more.

Realmuto agreed to a $5.9 million deal in his second season of arbitration, which is another reason the Marlins have insisted they have no urgency to deal their best player. Along with Realmuto, right-handers Jose Urena and Dan Straily, lefty Adam Conley and infielder Miguel Rojas avoided arbitration.

It's also important to note that if Miami does trade Realmuto, the club would then have to address its catcher situation by finding another option who has big league experience to work with a young pitching staff.

Do you think Starlin Castro will get traded this offseason to make room for Isan Diaz?
-- @josecuba305

The Marlins are open to trading Castro, but the second-base market had been slow moving until recent reports regarding Brian Dozier, Jed Lowrie and DJ LeMahieu. Teams also are reluctant to take on the $11 million Castro will make this season, and his deal has a club option of $16 million for 2020, with a $1 million buyout. The July 31 non-waiver Trade Deadline may realistically be a time when teams are more receptive to trading for Castro. As for Diaz, the 22-year-old left-handed hitter is considered the second baseman of the future. I suspect Diaz will open at Triple-A New Orleans, and how he performs will also determine how quickly he reaches the big leagues. If Diaz shows he can hit, Miami would find a place for its No. 9 prospect to play in the big leagues. He did play some third base in the offseason, but the hope is for him to be at second.

What are your thoughts on one of the Marlins' newest additions, Rosell Herrera? Do you think he makes the Opening Day roster?
-- @kevinmiller64__

The Marlins claimed Herrera off waivers from the Royals recently and added him to the 40-man roster, which gives him somewhat of an advantage to make the Opening Day roster, most likely as a utility player. The 26-year-old switch-hitter saw action in the big leagues in 2018 with the Reds and Royals, combining to hit .234/.286/.317. Herrera can play all three outfield positions, second base and third base. He came up as a shortstop and has good speed, but Herrera isn't a power threat..

Besides Realmuto, are there any possible trade candidates on this roster before the start of the season?
-- @ProfessorXXX88

Realmuto has taken up so much of the Marlins' offseason, and whether he stays or goes impacts other positions. For instance, Miami may be more inclined to trade for a first baseman rather than sign a free agent on what would most likely be a one-year deal.

Marlins' trade candidates not named Realmuto

A pitcher who could be dealt by the Marlins before Spring Training is Straily, the projected No. 2 starter. Clubs have touched base this offseason on Straily, who was in his second year of arbitration eligibility. If something makes sense, Straily could be moved.

A number of teams have checked in on Urena, who was arbitration-eligible for the first time. But Urena may be the closest player Miami has to being untouchable. The way its roster is presently constructed, Urena is a workhorse who can give the club 30 starts and about 180 innings. I could see July as a more likely window for Urena to be moved.

Joe Frisaro has covered the Marlins for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @JoeFrisaro and listen to his podcast.

Miami Marlins, Starlin Castro, Isan Diaz, Jorge Guzman, Rosell Herrera, J.T. Realmuto, Dan Straily, Jose Urena

The 1 player most likely to be a Marlin in '25

MLB.com @williamfleitch

The 2013 season doesn't seem that long ago, does it? It seems like it just happened. (The passage of time is a crazy thing.) But in the world of baseball, it was a long, long time ago. How long? Look at the top 10 hitters and the top 10 pitchers in WAR in '13. Of those 10 hitters and 10 pitchers, only two players on each list (Mike Trout and Joey Votto among the hitters, Clayton Kershaw and Adam Wainwright among the pitchers) are still on the same teams they were just six years ago. That is an astounding amount of turnover, and reminds us how difficult it can be to predict the future.

Nevertheless: Let's try. Today at the Thirty, we attempt to pick the one player on each team's current 40-man roster who is most likely to still be on that roster in six years. Sticking to the current roster raises the level of difficulty. Otherwise, I could just pick Vladimir Guerrero Jr. for the Blue Jays, and every other team's top prospect, and be done with it. For this list, you have to be here now and in 2025. The crazy thing about this experiment of guesses: There will be multiple, maybe double-digit, teams that have none.

The 2013 season doesn't seem that long ago, does it? It seems like it just happened. (The passage of time is a crazy thing.) But in the world of baseball, it was a long, long time ago. How long? Look at the top 10 hitters and the top 10 pitchers in WAR in '13. Of those 10 hitters and 10 pitchers, only two players on each list (Mike Trout and Joey Votto among the hitters, Clayton Kershaw and Adam Wainwright among the pitchers) are still on the same teams they were just six years ago. That is an astounding amount of turnover, and reminds us how difficult it can be to predict the future.

Nevertheless: Let's try. Today at the Thirty, we attempt to pick the one player on each team's current 40-man roster who is most likely to still be on that roster in six years. Sticking to the current roster raises the level of difficulty. Otherwise, I could just pick Vladimir Guerrero Jr. for the Blue Jays, and every other team's top prospect, and be done with it. For this list, you have to be here now and in 2025. The crazy thing about this experiment of guesses: There will be multiple, maybe double-digit, teams that have none.

AMERICAN LEAGUE

EAST

Blue Jays: Danny Jansen, C
Unlike Vlad Jr. and Bo Bichette, he's already on the 40-man roster; he hit three homers in 81 at-bats last season. Like them, he's currently a top-75 prospect.

Orioles: Trey Mancini, OF
The toughest call on the board. The Orioles are starting over in every conceivable way, and there will be a lot of turnover here in the next few years. The guess here is Mancini, who is a fan favorite already and could maybe hang around long enough to be a platoon or bench bat in 2025, when he'll be only 32.

Rays: Willy Adames, SS
Attempting to guess who will be on the Rays' roster in two years, let alone six, is a fool's errand, but Adames is the centerpiece of everything the Rays are going to be trying to do over the next decade.

Red Sox: Mookie Betts, OF
He's a free agent after the 2020 season, but the Red Sox should never let a star like this get away. And he wants to stay

Video: Betts signs record deal to avoid arbitration

Yankees: Giancarlo Stanton, RF
As the guy who is signed through 2027, he's the obvious pick here. Aaron Judge hits free agency in 2023, by the way.

CENTRAL

Indians: Francisco Lindor, SS
It's tough to imagine the Indians letting Lindor go … though they may have to choose between him and Jose Ramirez.

Video: Lindor gets his second career Silver Slugger Award

Royals: Salvador Perez, C
He survived the last teardown. He's their Yadier Molina -- he'll survive any future ones.

Tigers: Jeimer Candelario, 3B
He's more likely than anyone else here to be a member of the next contending Tigers team.

Twins: Max Kepler, OF
Kepler feels like the type of player the Twins would come to some sort of modest, Paul DeJong-esque extension with, doesn't he?

White Sox: Yoan Moncada, 2B
With any luck, Eloy Jimenez will be there right alongside him.

WEST

Angels: Mike Trout, OF
Put it this way: If Mike Trout isn't on the 2025 Angels, everything about that franchise is radically different than it is right now.

Video: Guardado on the latest between Angels and Trout

Astros: Jose Altuve, 2B
Alex Bregman seems like the most likely extension candidate -- Altuve's deal runs out after the 2024 season -- but the Altuve-Astros relationship feels like one that shouldn't be broken.

Athletics: Matt Chapman, 3B
The ideal extension candidate, Chapman could be the face of the franchise whenever it moves into its new digs.

Mariners: Justus Sheffield, LHP
He made his debut in September, so he's on the Mariners' 40-man, even if he might not start the season in the Majors.

Rangers: Rougned Odor, 2B
He, Elvis Andrus and Joey Gallo will be free agents following the 2022 season. Here's betting Odor is the one who sticks around, if anybody does.

NATIONAL LEAGUE

EAST

Braves: Ronald Acuna Jr.
He'll actually reach free agency after the 2024 season, if you are counting the days. (That's to say: If you're every other team in baseball.)

Video: Snitker on best lineup spot for Acuna Jr. in 2019

Marlins: Lewis Brinson, OF
Considering he remains the primary haul from their trades last offseason, Brinson will get every possible opportunity to prove himself.

Mets: Brandon Nimmo, OF
Though maybe only because first base slugging prospect Peter Alonso isn't on the 40-man yet.

Nationals: Juan Soto, OF
If the Nationals don't extend him, he'll hit the free-agent market with Acuna.

Phillies: Rhys Hoskins, 1B
This answer could very well change depending on how free agency shakes out this offseason.

CENTRAL

Brewers: Josh Hader, LHP
Yes, yes, he's a reliever, but still: He seems like one of the few relievers on earth worthy of talking long-term, under-market extension with, yes?

Cardinals: Paul DeJong, SS
The extension he signed last year gives the Cardinals team options on him in both 2024 and '25, and if he keeps playing like he has been, they'll happily pick them both up. (It's also possible the answer here is Yadier Molina, and may be through 2035.)

Cubs: Kris Bryant, 3B
This will be the most-watched are-they-gonna-extend-him-soon? story in baseball over the next couple of years.

Video: Kris Bryant is the No. 8 third baseman right now

Pirates: Mitch Keller, RHP
He's already on the 40-man, and he might be the best pitcher in an already underrated rotation by season's end.

Reds: Eugenio Suarez, 3B
He's signed through 2024, and the Reds have a club option on him for '25. Also, top prospect Nick Senzel isn't on the 40-man yet.

WEST

D-backs: Ketel Marte, SS
He's already got options for 2023 and '24, and he'll just be into his 30s when the D-backs have to make their next decision on him. Newly acquired catcher Carson Kelly could be the answer here as well.

Dodgers: Corey Seager, SS
Isn't right now the perfect time to start talking extension with Seager?

Giants: Buster Posey, C
As long as Posey is still playing, he'll be a Giant … right, Farhan?

Padres: Franmil Reyes, OF
It's tough to even imagine this kid being 30 someday.

Rockies: Nolan Arenado, 3B
They did a mega-extension with Charlie Blackmon last offseason, so they are clearly willing to go that route. Arenado is eligible for free agency next winter, so we'll find out his long-term fate pretty soon.

Video: Arenado seeks record $30 million in arbitration

Will Leitch is a columnist for MLB.com.