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Marlins move No. 7 prospect Diaz to Triple-A

Second baseman was acquired from Crew for Yelich in January
MLB.com

ST. PETERSBURG -- Another highly ranked Marlins prospect has been promoted. Isan Diaz, who was acquired as part of the Christian Yelich trade with the Brewers in January, is moving up to Triple-A New Orleans.

The left-handed-hitting second baseman has bounced back from a slow start at Double-A Jacksonville, and he will now see regular playing time with the Baby Cakes.

ST. PETERSBURG -- Another highly ranked Marlins prospect has been promoted. Isan Diaz, who was acquired as part of the Christian Yelich trade with the Brewers in January, is moving up to Triple-A New Orleans.

The left-handed-hitting second baseman has bounced back from a slow start at Double-A Jacksonville, and he will now see regular playing time with the Baby Cakes.

Ranked by MLB Pipeline as Miami's No. 7 prospect, Diaz had a slash line of .245/.365/.418 with 10 home runs and 42 RBIs for the Jumbo Shrimp. MLB Pipeline also ranks Diaz as the No. 4 second-base prospect in the Minors.

A power threat, Diaz also compiled 19 doubles, one triple, 10 stolen bases and 44 runs scored in 83 games. New Orleans needed infield depth after placing Cito Culver on the disabled list.

The Marlins have not hesitated to promote players who are performing. Diaz, who impressed the big league staff in Spring Training, got off to a slow start, and then he missed time on the disabled list due to a concussion he suffered after getting plunked in the head by a pitch.

Since returning, Diaz has made steady progress in the Southern League. He's picked things up over his past 10 games, hitting .314/.429/.714 with four home runs and 12 RBIs.

If he shows he can handle Triple-A pitching, the 22-year-old Diaz could be in line for a September callup with the Marlins. His progression to the big leagues also could be accelerated if Miami trades second baseman Starlin Castro.

The Marlins have promoted several of their top prospects since the season started. A few weeks ago, pitchers Sandy Alcantara and Pablo Lopez made the leap from Triple-A, although Alcantara (right axillary infection) is currently on the disabled list.

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

Miami Marlins, Isan Diaz

Prospect Lopez attacks strike zone to win debut

MLB.com

MIAMI -- It only took four pitches for rookie Pablo Lopez to experience the highs and lows of life in the big leagues.

The 22-year-old right-hander on Saturday made his Major League debut, and it got off to a sizzling start, with a three-pitch strikeout of Brandon Nimmo. Before Lopez could savor the moment, his very next pitch was smacked out of the park by Jose Bautista.

View Full Game Coverage

MIAMI -- It only took four pitches for rookie Pablo Lopez to experience the highs and lows of life in the big leagues.

The 22-year-old right-hander on Saturday made his Major League debut, and it got off to a sizzling start, with a three-pitch strikeout of Brandon Nimmo. Before Lopez could savor the moment, his very next pitch was smacked out of the park by Jose Bautista.

View Full Game Coverage

Like that, moods and momentum change in the big leagues. Showing maturity beyond his age, Lopez impressed in six innings, and his teammates eventually picked him up. Brian Anderson belted a two-run homer and J.T. Realmuto delivered a two-run double in the Marlins' 5-2 comeback victory over the Mets at Marlins Park.

"We got back to the dugout and said, 'Welcome to the big leagues, kid!'" Realmuto said of Lopez's first inning. "You're on top of the world the first three pitches, and the next time, homer. But after that, he made great pitches."

Video: NYM@MIA: Realmuto extends lead with a 2-run double

In the first two games of the series, the Marlins showcased two of their top pitching prospects. On Friday, Sandy Alcantara, the club's No. 2 prospect per MLB Pipeline, made his first big league start, and he gave up one run in five innings in an 8-2 win. Lopez was the victor on Saturday, throwing 97 pitches (71 strikes).

"I'm extremely happy with the way it went, with the atmosphere on the field and the atmosphere in the clubhouse with my teammates," Lopez said. "It's something I will cherish for the rest of my life. Having the opportunity to play at this level is already something magical, and special doing it at this level with these teammates and this atmosphere is unbelievable."

According to Stats LLC, the last time two pitchers on the same National League team earned wins in their first career starts on consecutive days was Gary Nolan and Mel Queen of the Reds, on April 15-16, 1967.

"There was a lot of yelling and screaming over the course of the winter," Marlins manager Don Mattingly said of the team's direction to build from the Minor Leagues on up. "We've talked about building something with pitching. It started at the Trade Deadline last year."

Video: NYM@MIA: Mattingly on Lopez's composure in MLB debut

The Marlins acquired Lopez from the Mariners last July as part of the David Phelps trade.

"These guys seem like they're a long way away in A ball, but then they're knocking on the door, and you get a look at what they could be," Mattingly said.

After surrendering a home run to Bautista in the first inning, Lopez was in control. At one point, he retired eight of nine before Todd Frazier homered on an 0-2 pitch in the sixth.

Getting the nod on Saturday had some extra meaning for Lopez, a native of Venezuela. It was Venezuelan Heritage Day at Marlins Park, and Lopez's father and some family members were in attendance.

Video: NYM@MIA: Lopez family on their son making MLB debut

Ranked by MLB Pipeline as the Marlins' No. 20 prospect, Lopez has arguably been the organization's top pitching prospect this season. The slender right-hander certainly has the numbers to back up the claim.

At Double-A Jacksonville, Lopez posted an eye-opening 0.62 ERA with 51 strikeouts and eight walks in 43 2/3 innings. After dominating in the Southern League, Lopez got promoted to Triple-A New Orleans, where the sledding got a little tougher. His ERA was 3.38 in four starts spanning 18 2/3 innings.

More than the numbers, the Marlins tracked the quality of Lopez's stuff and his mound presence. All the intangibles also checked boxes.

On Saturday, Lopez was able to show he belongs, and in the process came out on the winning end against Jacob deGrom, the Majors ERA leader.

"He's so good, and he's the best at what he does," Lopez said of deGrom. "But our guys are good, too, and they put together great at-bats in that sixth inning."

Video: NYM@MIA: Lopez, Anderson on solid win over the Mets

MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
The way deGrom was throwing, the Marlins were having trouble getting hits. But they were able to break through with one out in the sixth inning. Derek Dietrich singled, and Anderson turned on a changeup, blistering a game-tying, two-run homer to left.

"He's a great pitcher," Anderson said of deGrom. "He's got great stuff. He was locating, it seemed like everything early in the game. Keeping the ball down, elevating when he needed to. We just kind of kept putting together good at-bats, and eventually we were able to take advantage of some mistakes."

Video: NYM@MIA: Anderson ties it with a 2-run homer to left

The Marlins plugged away. After Justin Bour walked and went to third on Starlin Castro's single, JT Riddle tapped a swinging-bunt single, and he avoided the tag by first baseman Wilmer Flores.

"Off the bat, you see it's kind of like a swinging bunt," Riddle said. "It's kind of in no-man's land. Run hard, try to beat the first baseman."

Video: NYM@MIA: Riddle plates go-ahead run on infield hit

SOUND SMART
Drew Steckenrider pitched a perfect eighth, extending his career-best scoreless streak to 15 2/3 innings. The right-hander did not allow a run in 14 appearances in June.

Closer Kyle Barraclough worked a perfect ninth for his eighth save. Barraclough allowed just one hit in the month of June, and he has a scoreless innings streak of 20 2/3, second longest in the Majors.

Video: NYM@MIA: Barraclough retires Mesoraco to seal the win

HE SAID IT
"Not in last place? Awesome. It's baseball. We've got a good ballclub. We're coming together and playing good baseball. We've got good, young guys, and we've got veteran guys who have been around. We're coming together. There's three months left. There's still ground, and still time to make up that ground."
-- Riddle, on passing the Mets and moving into fourth place in the NL East

UP NEXT
Dan Straily returns from his five-game suspension to face the Mets at 1:10 p.m. ET on Sunday in the series finale at Marlins Park. The Marlins' right-hander comes off a win over the D-backs on Monday, giving up three runs in 6 1/3 innings. Lifetime against New York, he is 1-1 with a 3.04 ERA in five starts. Steven Matz goes for the Mets.

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

Miami Marlins, Pablo Lopez

Alcantara battles wildness to win Marlins debut

MLB.com

MIAMI -- Sandy Alcantara's return to the big leagues included bouts of spotty command. Still, the 22-year-old rookie right-hander was able to navigate through five innings before exiting with a five-run lead on Friday night as the Marlins defeated the Mets, 8-2, at Marlins Park.

The Marlins' top pitching prospect attacked mostly with four-seam fastballs and changeups, and he was able to minimize damage on a night he walked five and struck out two.

View Full Game Coverage

MIAMI -- Sandy Alcantara's return to the big leagues included bouts of spotty command. Still, the 22-year-old rookie right-hander was able to navigate through five innings before exiting with a five-run lead on Friday night as the Marlins defeated the Mets, 8-2, at Marlins Park.

The Marlins' top pitching prospect attacked mostly with four-seam fastballs and changeups, and he was able to minimize damage on a night he walked five and struck out two.

View Full Game Coverage

"He's still a work in progress, like we've said," Marlins manager Don Mattingly said. "I think it's a good baseline to see the adjustments that he makes going forward. I think they'll continue."

Video: NYM@MIA: Mattingly on Alcantara's start, 8-2 win

Initially, Alcantara expected to make his Marlins debut against Jacob deGrom. But the All-Star right-hander was scratched to deal with a family issue and is scheduled to start on Saturday.

"I'm super excited," said Alcantara, the organization's No. 2 prospect per MLB Pipeline. "It's different coming from the Triple-A team, but I tried to do my best."

Corey Oswalt pitched in deGrom's place, but he was chased after allowing six runs in the third inning. Miami matched its season high with six runs in a frame. Lewis Brinson, who collected three hits and was a triple shy of a cycle, and JT Riddle each homered in the frame. It marked the first multi-homer inning of the season for the Marlins.

"I was telling everybody, I'm very excited [Alcantara] is up here, getting a chance to pitch," Brinson said. "He's got great stuff, we saw that in Spring Training. Glad that the more young guys that come up, the more we look at the future. But right now, we got a win tonight against a very good team. He did a great job, and so did everybody else."

Video: NYM@MIA: Alcantara's wife on his 1st start with Fish

In terms of the big picture, the night was about Alcantara appearing in his first big league game of the season. The lanky rookie also collected his first Major League win.

"I was super emotional because I'm working hard and I'm here and I did my best," Alcantara said.

One of the centerpiece players in the Marcell Ozuna trade with the Cardinals in December, Alcantara was promoted from Triple-A New Orleans and made his first big league start. At New Orleans, Alcantara went 5-3 with a 3.71 ERA in 14 starts.

"Nice, easy delivery," Mets manager Mickey Callaway said. "Easy arm. Has pretty good stuff. Fastball, changeup for the most part. He looks like he's got a promising future."

Alcantara previously pitched in the Majors as a September callup for St. Louis last year. All eight of his appearances were in relief.

The lone run Alcantara allowed came in the fourth inning on Devin Mesoraco's two-out RBI double. A one-out walk to Wilmer Flores came back to hurt him.

Video: NYM@MIA: Mesoraco belts an RBI double to left field

Walks were the biggest issue for Alcantara, who finished with 98 pitches (50 strikes). The first batter he faced, Brandon Nimmo, drew a walk, and he issued a free pass to at least one batter in four of his five innings.

But even in deep counts or when he was behind in the count, Alcantara was mostly able to execute pitches to get out of jams. His four-seam fastball averaged 94.2 mph, and his maximum fastball speed was 96.5 mph.

Alcantara threw 34 four-seam fastballs and 35 changeups, mixing in 18 sliders and 11 sinkers, according to Statcast™.

In the fifth inning, Alcantara walked Jose Bautista, but he got out of the inning by inducing a 4-6-3 double play off the bat of Asdrubal Cabrera.

Video: NYM@MIA: Alcantara induces the double play

Alcantara is filling in the rotation spot vacated by fellow rookie Caleb Smith, who landed on the disabled list with a Grade 3 left lat strain. The Marlins announced on Friday that Smith will undergo season-ending surgery.

"Like I said, he did a great job, and I think you can tell out there on the field, it kind of energized us all to have him up here doing what he does," Brinson said. "It was a great win"

Video: NYM@MIA: Riddle on 3-run homer, Alcantara's outing

MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
One time previously the Marlins scored six runs in an inning, on May 20 in Atlanta. Brinson led off with a homer, which Statcast™ projected at 403 feet, with a 106.9-mph exit velocity. J.T. Realmuto added a run-scoring single. The big moment was Starlin Castro's two-out RBI single, which extended the inning for Riddle's three-run drive to right.

"Those two-out hits are really daggers," Mattingly said. "They have a chance to get out of that jam."

Added Riddle: "He was trying to get the fastball in and kind of jammed me on that first one, and I figured with two strikes he might come in again. I just told myself, 'Don't get beat.' I put a good swing on it."

Video: NYM@MIA: Marlins plate 6 on 2 HRs, 2 singles in 3rd

SOUND SMART
In a non-save situation, Kyle Barraclough worked a scoreless ninth, extending his scoreless-innings streak to a career-high 19 2/3 over his last 20 outings. But Barraclough did allow a one-out single to Nimmo, snapping his string of 11 2/3 innings without surrendering a hit. That was the third-longest streak in team history.

YOU GOTTA SEE THIS
A bruised left wrist kept Realmuto out for the four-game series against the D-backs. A few days off didn't hurt Realmuto's timing. In the second inning, the 27-year-old catcher picked Todd Frazier off second base. It was a big play with two outs and Alcantara already at 40 pitches. Per Statcast™, the pop time on Realmuto's throw to second was 1.88 seconds. The MLB average is 2.01 seconds. Realmuto put some pace on the throw, which was tracked at 84.5 mph.

"Frazier was getting pretty far off the bag there with two outs," Riddle said. "He had a big lead. We thought it was a good situation to do it in. J.T. gave me a good throw, I put the tag on him, call was out. It changed the game."

Video: NYM@MIA: Realmuto picks off Frazier at second base

HE SAID IT
"That right there is one of the reasons why he's the best catcher in all of baseball, I think. For a catcher to be able to do that defensively, plus the way he swings the bat? It's very good." -- Riddle, on Realmuto executing the pickoff and having another strong game

UP NEXT
Pablo Lopez, the Marlins' No. 20 prospect per MLB Pipeline, will make his Major League debut at 4:10 p.m. ET on Saturday. The right-hander tore up the Minor League circuit. In eight starts with Double-A Jacksonville, Lopez posted a stellar 0.62 ERA with 51 strikeouts in 43 2/3 innings before earning a promotion to Triple-A New Orleans. The rookie will face off with deGrom.

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

Miami Marlins, Sandy Alcantara

Prospect Lopez to make MLB debut Saturday

Right-hander will start vs. Mets on Venezuelan Heritage Day
MLB.com

MIAMI -- While all eyes were set on top pitching prospect Sandy Alcantara and his first Major League start on Friday night, another piece of Miami's future awaited his debut.

Pablo Lopez, a right-hander from Venezuela and the organization's No. 20 prospect according to MLB Pipeline, is set to make his first career Major League appearance on Saturday against the Mets.

View Full Game Coverage

MIAMI -- While all eyes were set on top pitching prospect Sandy Alcantara and his first Major League start on Friday night, another piece of Miami's future awaited his debut.

Pablo Lopez, a right-hander from Venezuela and the organization's No. 20 prospect according to MLB Pipeline, is set to make his first career Major League appearance on Saturday against the Mets.

View Full Game Coverage

After the Marlins beat the Mets, 8-2, on Friday night, the club announced right-hander Ben Meyer is being optioned to Triple-A New Orleans to clear a roster spot for Lopez.

"It's still very unreal," Lopez said, speaking to the media prior to Friday's game. "It still doesn't feel real that I'm right here on this field, with these teammates, in this scenario. It's still just very overwhelming but very exciting as well."

Lopez had been tearing it up in the Minor Leagues since being acquired by the Marlins in a trade with the Mariners involving veteran reliever David Phelps last July.

In eight starts with Double-A Jacksonville, Lopez posted a stellar 0.62 ERA. Opponents were hitting a measly .184 against the 6-foot-3 righty, who tallied 51 strikeouts in just 43 2/3 innings. In Triple-A New Orleans, Lopez compiled a 3.38 ERA in four starts, with a WHIP of 1.07.

"He dominated Double-A this year and then was pitching well in Triple-A," Marlins manager Don Mattingly said. "You can tell he's a sharp kid, well prepared."

Beyond Lopez's promising production in the Marlins' farm system, it was during Spring Training that Mattingly and the rest of the organization got a glimpse of just how talented this 22-year-old is.

Video: MIA@NYM: Lopez gets Nido swinging in the 8th

"I remember hearing during the Winter Meetings how much our guys liked him and the presence he had," Mattingly said. "We were able to see him in Spring Training. He was impressive, his whole demeanor and the way he handled himself."

Lopez praised his routines and his relationship with his teammates for catalyzing the quick turnaround from Double-A to the big leagues, a speedy transition that took him less than half a season.

"I have developed good routines between starts, taking care of my body," Lopez said. "Going through hit maps to learn about the hitters that I will be facing next time, talking to teammates, picking their brains because you know, we feed off each other."

In addition to his debut, Saturday is also Venezuelan Heritage Day at Marlins Park. Lopez will be following in the footsteps of former Marlins Anibal Sanchez, Henderson Alvarez and Miguel Cabrera, Venezuelan players he has admired since he was a kid.

"I remember when Miguel Cabrera was just called up," Lopez said. "He hit that home run off Roger Clemens in the World Series. That was a big moment. I was just 7 or 8 years old. He's a big example and role model for all the Venezuelan players. … They told me it was going to be Venezuelan Heritage Night, and that made it super special."

Tweet from @Marlins: Venezuelan Heritage Day ser�� un d��a inolvidable. Welcome to Miami, Pablo. #JustGettinStarted pic.twitter.com/hX1iZwZQZe

Worth noting 
Left-hander Caleb Smith, who is on the disabled list with a Grade 3 left lat strain, will undergo season-ending surgery on July 9 in Philadelphia.

"Once we found out the MRI and everything, we knew it was long term," Mattingly said. "Obviously disappointing for him to miss the end of the season, but he looked at his options and thought this was the best one."

Max Goodman is a reporter for MLB.com based in Miami. Follow him on Twitter @Max_Goodman97.

Miami Marlins, Pablo Lopez

Marlins to summon No. 2 prospect Alcantara

MLB.com

MIAMI -- The feeling won't be exactly like when he made his Major League debut, but for Marlins touted pitching prospect Sandy Alcantara, it will be close.

The slender 22-year-old with the power fastball -- and Miami's No. 2 prospect -- will take the mound on Friday for the first time as a Marlin when he gets the nod in the weekend series with the Mets at Marlins Park.

View Full Game Coverage

MIAMI -- The feeling won't be exactly like when he made his Major League debut, but for Marlins touted pitching prospect Sandy Alcantara, it will be close.

The slender 22-year-old with the power fastball -- and Miami's No. 2 prospect -- will take the mound on Friday for the first time as a Marlin when he gets the nod in the weekend series with the Mets at Marlins Park.

View Full Game Coverage

"I'm super happy," Alcantara said on Thursday morning. "I can't wait to get out there tomorrow and take the mound for the first time."

The Marlins haven't yet made the roster move official, but they have announced that Alcantara will be recalled from Triple-A New Orleans and make his first big league start on Friday. Reliever Nick Wittgren will be optioned to New Orleans to make room for Alcantara on the roster.

Also on Friday, the Marlins expect J.T. Realmuto to be in the lineup to catch Alcantara's season debut. A bruised left wrist kept Realmuto out of the starting lineup for the entire four-game series with the D-backs.

Alcantara's arrival has been much anticipated, and it will give a glimpse of what the Marlins' future may look like.

Alcantara was acquired from the Cardinals last December in the Marcell Ozuna trade, and while he reached the big leagues at age 21 as a September callup, he didn't make a start. He appeared in eight games and logged 8 1/3 innings, all as a reliever.

Friday will be his first start, and he draws a tough assignment, being matched against Jacob deGrom, one of the top starters in the sport.

"It's going to feel a little different, because I'm with a different club in a different ballpark," Alcantara said. "But at the same time, it's still the same plan, the same game."

Alcantara is ranked as the 92nd overall prospect on MLB Pipeline's Top 100 list.

"He's a lot different than you would think, than just a guy who throws 96-99 [mph]," Marlins manager Don Mattingly said. "You'd think he throws just a ton of fastballs. He's a guy who has got a pretty good two-seamer."

Alcantara was 5-3 with a 3.71 ERA in 14 starts for New Orleans. In 85 innings, he's struck out 64 with 34 walks. Standing 6-foot-4 and 170 pounds, Alcantara's fastball in the past has touched 100 mph. He's been 95-99 mostly this year.

Miami is committed to giving the rookie his opportunity to showcase himself in the second half. The rotation opening was created when Caleb Smith was placed on the 10-day disabled list with a Grade 3 lat strain. Smith likely will miss the remainder of the season.

The Marlins have been careful with Alcantara in his development. Even though he reached the big leagues in 2017, he made the jump from Double-A to the Cardinals.

There were areas of Alcantara's game that the Marlins wanted to keep refining -- like his secondary pitches, holding runners and commanding his pitches. That's partly why he spent half the season in Triple-A.

"The one thing to keep in mind with Sandy is to just temper expectations," Mattingly said. "There is still room for growth and still areas we feel he can improve on. It will be good to be able to see him do that here, but without the expectations, he's going to come out and just dominate. Maybe he does, but I think we should expect there will be some bumps in the road for him. We feel like there's going to be growth with that."

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

Miami Marlins, Sandy Alcantara

Jeter: Alcantara will be called up to start Friday

MLB.com

MIAMI -- A big part of the Marlins' future is about to make the leap to the big leagues.

Sandy Alcantara, ranked by MLB Pipeline as Miami's No. 2 prospect, will be promoted from Triple-A New Orleans to start against the Mets on Friday at Marlins Park.

View Full Game Coverage

MIAMI -- A big part of the Marlins' future is about to make the leap to the big leagues.

Sandy Alcantara, ranked by MLB Pipeline as Miami's No. 2 prospect, will be promoted from Triple-A New Orleans to start against the Mets on Friday at Marlins Park.

View Full Game Coverage

Alcantara is stepping into the rotation spot vacated when Caleb Smith was placed on the 10-day disabled list with a Grade 3 left lat strain. Smith likely will miss the rest of the season. The Marlins have made it clear when Alcantara was promoted that they wanted to give him every opportunity to stay.

Marlins chief executive officer Derek Jeter made the announcement on Wednesday afternoon.

"Sandy is going to come up and pitch on Friday," Jeter told reporters before the Marlins faced the D-backs. "So we're looking forward to getting a close look at him.

Video: ARI@MIA: Jeter talks Alcantara, player development

"You want to have patience with guys, but they've been developing fairly quickly, which is fun for us to see. It's great for us as an organization. You look at the players we've acquired, whether that is via trade or the Draft in previous years. They're developing. We have a lot to be proud of."

Alcantara, 22, was one of the centerpiece players acquired from the Cardinals in the Marcell Ozuna trade in December. Alcantara does have Major League experience, making eight relief appearances with St. Louis last September. He logged 8 1/3 innings and had a 4.32 ERA in a brief big league stint.

Friday will be the 6-foot-4 right-hander's first MLB start. The organization views him as a future top-of-the-rotation staple. At New Orleans, he was 5-3 with a 3.71 ERA in 14 starts. And in 85 innings, he struck out 64 and walked 34, with a WHIP of 1.27.

Alcantara's fastball has tracked from 95-99 mph this season.

"He's got a great arm," Jeter said. "We wanted to take our time with him, and give him an opportunity to continue to develop. The one thing we've said, the best players in this organization are going to get an opportunity to play. He's obviously one of our top prospects."

Alcantara likely won't be the only touted Marlins' prospect to make his Miami debut this weekend. It's not official, but the club is leaning towards also promoting right-hander Pablo Lopez from New Orleans to make his MLB debut on Saturday against the Mets.

Lopez, a native of Venezuela, is the club's No. 20 prospect per MLB Pipeline, although he's arguably been the most successful pitcher in the Minors this season. Acquired last July from the Mariners as part of the David Phelps trade, Lopez had a 0.62 ERA at Double-A Jacksonville in 43 2/3 innings with 51 strikeouts and just eight walks.

Saturday is also Venezuelan Heritage Night at Marlins Park, which adds more appeal to Lopez making the start.

Lopez, whose fastball has been in the 93-96 mph range, was promoted a few weeks ago to New Orleans, where he has a 3.38 ERA with 15 strikeouts and four walks in 18 2/3 innings.

Dan Straily has been announced to start on Sunday, the first day he is eligible to return from his five-game suspension.

"You want to see constant progress," Jeter said of the Minor Leaguers. "You want to see them moving in the right direction. You talk about Sandy, he got some time in the Minor Leagues, in New Orleans. We've seen him progress the first few months of the season, and he deserves this opportunity."

Jeter repeated that the organization is building from the Minor League system on up. Next week, he plans on visiting some affiliates, starting off at Class A Greensboro. He will also make stops in Jacksonville, Jupiter and New Orleans.

The Marlins on Wednesday also announced D.J. Svihlik has been named director of amateur scouting, where part of his duties will be overseeing the MLB Draft. He replaces Stan Meek, who is remaining with the organization, working closely with president of baseball operations Michael Hill.

Svihlik has worked in the past with Gary Denbo, the Marlins' vice president of player development and scouting.

"He comes with a lot of experience," Jeter said of Svihlik. "I've gotten the opportunity to get to know him over the last few months. Gary has known him for quite some time. He has a lot of experience in the scouting department. We've added great people to the front-office staff here in Miami, but also player development and scouting. We look forward to a lot of successful Drafts under D.J.'s leadership."

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

Miami Marlins, Sandy Alcantara

2nd-round pick Johnson works out with Marlins

Jimmy Rollins' cousin will report to Gulf Coast League
MLB.com

MIAMI -- Osiris Johnson made a spacious Marlins Park look small during Monday's batting practice, giving players and management a reason to stop everything and get a glimpse of the future.

The Marlins' second-round pick in the 2018 MLB Draft officially signed and worked out with the team in the afternoon. He will report to Miami's Gulf Coast League affiliate in Jupiter, Fla., on Tuesday.

View Full Game Coverage

MIAMI -- Osiris Johnson made a spacious Marlins Park look small during Monday's batting practice, giving players and management a reason to stop everything and get a glimpse of the future.

The Marlins' second-round pick in the 2018 MLB Draft officially signed and worked out with the team in the afternoon. He will report to Miami's Gulf Coast League affiliate in Jupiter, Fla., on Tuesday.

View Full Game Coverage

"I'm glad to be part of the organization," Johnson said, wiping sweat away from his brow after partaking in the team's full warmup routine before its evening matchup with the D-backs. "I'm glad [the Marlins] chose me with their second-round pick. I'm ready to start."

Despite being one of the youngest prospects from this year's Draft class, as Johnson is only 17 years old, the 53rd overall pick from Encinal High School (Calif.), showcased his raw talent, speed and agility, along with a swing that packs a punch. He is the cousin of former big leaguer Jimmy Rollins.

In the cage, Johnson showed power to all fields, as he consistently smashed line drives to both gaps, at one point crushing three straight towering home runs to the hedges over the wall in straightaway center.

"For a young, very young, Draft pick, he held his own," president of baseball operations Michael Hill said. "With Osiris, you see a package … a part of the future and what we think will be a very good player for us in the years to come."

Tweet from @Marlins: Bienvenidos a Miami, Osiris.#JustGettinStarted pic.twitter.com/eU0va2kNxN

Moments after turning heads at the plate, Johnson jogged out to shortstop, the position where he looks to fine-tune his skills and make a name for himself in the Marlins' farm system. He was comfortable, moving laterally with smoothness and quickness as he fielded and fired across the diamond with ease, making manager Don Mattingly's glove pop as he shagged at first base.

"When we talked about our Draft philosophy, we talked about building up the middle, building with athletes, guys who are capable of impacting the game on both sides of the ball with their speed, their defense, offensively," Hill said. "[He's] an athletic shortstop as you guys saw him field there during batting practice, a live body … so we're excited that it's official now. He's on board."

Johnson, who had committed to play collegiate ball at Cal State Fullerton, went to the same high school in Alameda, Calif., as former Marlins left-hander Dontrelle Willis, as well as Hall of Famer Willie Stargell and Rollins.

After inking Johnson, the Marlins have agreed to terms with each of their 11 picks from the first 10 rounds in this month's Draft, as their third-round pick, outfielder Tristan Pompey from the University of Kentucky, is poised to sign in the coming days.

"When you make the Draft and draft your players, the ultimate goal is to get out and start your career as soon as possible," Hill said. "Our scouting department has done a tremendous job in getting our guys signed, getting them out and playing and starting their professional careers."

Johnson spent the vast majority of his time at the ballpark with outfielder Lewis Brinson, and although it's far too early to tell if the two will play together in the Major Leagues down the road, Johnson was confident and concise when asked what his plans were moving forward.

"Just try and showcase my skills and get to the bigs as fast as I can," Johnson said.

Max Goodman is a reporter for MLB.com based in Miami. Follow him on Twitter @max_goodman97.

Miami Marlins

Marlins sign No. 69 overall pick Banfield

MLB.com

MIAMI -- Will Banfield is ready to get to work.

Selected with the 69th overall pick in the 2018 Draft, Banfield on Thursday officially signed with the Marlins. The 18-year-old catcher from Brookwood High School (Snellville, Ga.) will now get down to business and begin working with the organization's Gulf Coast League team in Jupiter, Fla.

MIAMI -- Will Banfield is ready to get to work.

Selected with the 69th overall pick in the 2018 Draft, Banfield on Thursday officially signed with the Marlins. The 18-year-old catcher from Brookwood High School (Snellville, Ga.) will now get down to business and begin working with the organization's Gulf Coast League team in Jupiter, Fla.

Marlins' Draft results

Via Twitter, Banfield responded on Thursday: "I would like to thank the Marlins organization for putting their trust in me and allowing me the opportunity to live out my dream! All glory to God and officially part of the Miami Marlins!"

Tweet from @will_banfield: I would like to thank the Marlins organization for putting their trust in me and allowing me the opportunity to live out my dream! All glory to God and officially part of the Miami Marlins! pic.twitter.com/V3PHuIv8Bz

The deal was expected because Banfield reached agreement within days after being selected in Competitive Balance Round B. Banfield signed for $1.8 million, well above the recommended slot value of $894,600.

By signing with the Marlins, Banfield is passing on the opportunity to play at Vanderbilt University.

Advanced defensively, Banfield projects to be a frontline big league catcher and potential Gold Glove winner. In his senior season, he batted .409 with seven home runs, nine doubles, one triple and 33 RBIs in 37 games.

Banfield joins other recently signed Draft picks at the Roger Dean Chevrolet Stadium complex in Jupiter. He is no stranger to the facility, having played in a Perfect Game event there last October. In that showcase, he displayed an exit velocity of 102 mph on one of his singles.

With Banfield's deal official, all but two of the Marlins' top 10 picks have signed. On Friday, MLB.com learned that infielder Osiris Johnson, a second-rounder from Encinal High School (Alameda, Calif.), and and outfielder Tristan Pompey, a third-rounder from the University of Kentucky, were close to signing. Slot value for Johnson was $1,318,500; slot for Pompey was $642,600.

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

Miami Marlins

Marlins 2nd-round pick Johnson visits team

High school shortstop has yet to sign with Miami
MLB.com

SAN FRANCISCO -- A special guest was on the field watching batting practice on Monday at AT&T Park.

Osiris Johnson, the Marlins' second-round pick on June 4 in the 2018 MLB Draft, and his parents were at the series opener against the Giants. Johnson has yet to sign with the Marlins, and he has a commitment to Cal State Fullerton.

View Full Game Coverage

SAN FRANCISCO -- A special guest was on the field watching batting practice on Monday at AT&T Park.

Osiris Johnson, the Marlins' second-round pick on June 4 in the 2018 MLB Draft, and his parents were at the series opener against the Giants. Johnson has yet to sign with the Marlins, and he has a commitment to Cal State Fullerton.

View Full Game Coverage

Johnson, from Encinal (Calif.) High School, was the 53rd overall pick. The 17-year-old is the cousin of former All-Star shortstop Jimmy Rollins.

"It's pretty exciting," Johnson said of being in a big league setting. "I'm kind of used to it, being with Jimmy when I was younger."

Wearing a Marlns cap and a "Re2pect" hoodie, Johnson spoke at length with Marlins president of baseball operations Michael Hill, and was introduced to manager Don Mattingly.

"He seems really cool," Johnson said of Mattingly, noting he had to hurry along to get ready for the game.

Johnson made great strides in his senior season, batting .535 with six home runs and 24 RBIs in 26 games. What stood out to the Marlins' evaluators was Johnson's bat speed.

Before his final prep season, he worked with Rollins.

"I'm sure that had something to do with the vast improvements Osiris Johnson made from last summer to this spring, which enabled him to be in position for us to take him in the Draft," Marlins vice president of player development and scouting Gary Denbo said the first night of the Draft. "I think it's always good to have somebody in the family that's been through those types of experiences to advise a player. It's really important to have a support system for Minor League players that are coming through, because it's a tough game."

Asked what he gained from working with Rollins, Johnson said: "Just the discipline part of the game. Making sure I stayed disciplined."

Video: Draft Report: Osiris Johnson, High School shortstop

The Marlins have already announced 16 Draft signings, including outfielder Connor Scott, who was taken 13th overall from Tampa (Fla.) Plant High School. They've yet to announce, but have reached agreement with catcher Will Banfield, taken 69th overall from Brookwood (Ga.) High School in the Competitive Balance Round B.

Worth noting:
•  Garrett Cooper played four innings in left field in a rehab assignment game for Class A Advanced Jupiter, going 2-for-2. Cooper is recovering from a right wrist contusion, and is expected to need several weeks to get back into playing shape. After a few games with the Hammerheads, he is expected to continue his rehab assignment at Triple-A New Orleans.

• Third baseman Martin Prado (left hamstring strain) is progressing in his recovery, and could return before the All-Star Break.

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

Miami Marlins

Source: Marlins come to terms with Banfield

MLB.com

MIAMI -- The Marlins aren't wasting much time getting some of their top picks under contract. MLB.com has confirmed catcher Will Banfield, a Competitive Balance Round B selection in the 2018 MLB Draft, has come to terms.

Miami chose Banfield, a standout from Brookwood (Ga.) High School, with the 69th overall pick, and he is expected to report to the Roger Dean Chevrolet Stadium complex in Jupiter, Fla., once everything is finalized.

View Full Game Coverage

MIAMI -- The Marlins aren't wasting much time getting some of their top picks under contract. MLB.com has confirmed catcher Will Banfield, a Competitive Balance Round B selection in the 2018 MLB Draft, has come to terms.

Miami chose Banfield, a standout from Brookwood (Ga.) High School, with the 69th overall pick, and he is expected to report to the Roger Dean Chevrolet Stadium complex in Jupiter, Fla., once everything is finalized.

View Full Game Coverage

The club has not confirmed the agreement.

MLB Network insider Jon Heyman reports Banfield agreed to $1.8 million, well above the recommended slot value of $894,600.

Marlins Draft Tracker

Selected on the first day of the Draft, which took place on Monday, the Marlins acted quickly trying to get him under contract, and terms were reached a day or two after he was taken.

The Banfield deal comes a few days after the Marlins finalized an agreement with their top pick, outfielder Connor Scott, the 13th overall selection, from Tampa Plant (Fla.) High School.

Scott was a guest of the franchise on Friday at Marlins Park, taking batting practice on the field with the big league club before the Marlins faced the Padres.

Scott signed for the recommended bonus pool money for the 13th pick of $4,038,200.

Video: SD@MIA: Scott on being drafted by Fish in 1st round

The Marlins also have agreed with their fourth-rounder, catcher Nick Fortes from the University of Mississippi. Fortes was the 117th overall pick, and he is under contract for $425,000, under the value of $474,000.

By signing with the Marlins, Banfield is passing on the opportunity to play at Vanderbilt University.

Advanced defensively, Banfield projects to be a frontline big league catcher and potential Gold Glove winner. In his senior season, he batted .409 with seven home runs, nine doubles, one triple and 33 RBIs in 37 games.

At a Perfect Game event last October in Jupiter, the exit velocity on one of his singles was 102 mph.

Video: Draft Report, Will Banfield, High School catcher

Worth noting

• Right-hander Dan Straily, who sustained bruised ribs after being struck on the right side by a line drive on Saturday night, did his normal next day routine on Sunday. Manager Don Mattingly said he expects Straily to be ready for his next start, which is scheduled for Thursday against the Giants. That could change if he experiences any discomfort in the upcoming days. The line drive was 109.9 mph off the bat of Eric Hosmer.

Garrett Cooper, on the disabled list with a right wrist injury, is getting closer to starting his rehab assignment. Once Cooper begins it, he will have up to 30 days to get ready to be reinstated. The outfielder/first baseman is still several weeks from rejoining the Marlins.

• The Marlins will reshuffle how they handle the Draft moving forward. Stan Meek, their longtime vice president of scouting, will not oversee the Draft in 2019. Meek, under contract through next year, will remain in the organization in a different capacity. The Marlins expect to move quickly announcing a new vice president of scouting, as they get a head start on next year's Draft.

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

Miami Marlins

Marlins introduce 2018 1st-rounder Scott

Special to MLB.com

MIAMI -- Connor Scott wasted little time in winning over Marlins fans. The Marlins' first-round Draft pick was introduced to fans and media on Friday prior to the series opener with the Padres, which Miami won, 4-0.

Scott has already reached an agreement on a deal with Miami, pending completion of his physical. The slot value of the 13th pick is $4,038,200.

View Full Game Coverage

MIAMI -- Connor Scott wasted little time in winning over Marlins fans. The Marlins' first-round Draft pick was introduced to fans and media on Friday prior to the series opener with the Padres, which Miami won, 4-0.

Scott has already reached an agreement on a deal with Miami, pending completion of his physical. The slot value of the 13th pick is $4,038,200.

View Full Game Coverage

When asked what his goals were, the center fielder from Tampa's Plant High School had a simple reply that brought the small crowd to a roar.

"Bringing a championship back to Florida," Scott said.

Marlins Draft Tracker

Seated between president of baseball operations Michael Hill and CEO Derek Jeter, the 13th overall pick in the 2018 MLB Draft fielded a handful of questions from media and fans. A fan of both the Rays and the Marlins growing up in Tampa, the 6-foot-4, 180-pound left-handed hitter described his strengths.

"I think I'm big on leadership; being a good teammate, being a good person," he said.

The 18-year-old dressed in the Marlins' clubhouse and went through pregame workouts with the team.

"It was a little nerve-wracking at first, but the guys came up and introduced themselves," he said. "They were awesome. There's good team chemistry here, at least from what I've seen."

Scott said he couldn't be happier with the position and with the team that selected him.

"It's everything you dream of," he said. "It's the best day of your life. You start to play the game you love most as a job and a career. So, it's awesome. I'm glad the Marlins chose me. It couldn't have worked out any better."

Glenn Sattell is a contributor to MLB.com based in Miami.

Miami Marlins

Development process underway for Draft picks

MLB.com

ST. LOUIS -- Now that the 2018 MLB Draft has ended, the player development process begins. The way the Marlins have things outlined, the transition starts immediately.

The three-day Draft concluded on Wednesday, and in total, the Marlins selected 41 players in 40 rounds.

ST. LOUIS -- Now that the 2018 MLB Draft has ended, the player development process begins. The way the Marlins have things outlined, the transition starts immediately.

The three-day Draft concluded on Wednesday, and in total, the Marlins selected 41 players in 40 rounds.

Draft Tracker: Every Marlins pick

The Marlins made outfielder Connor Scott from Plant High School in Tampa, Fla., the 13th overall pick, and his pro career should get underway shortly.

Scott, 18, has already reached agreement on a deal with Miami, pending completion of his physical. With its first-rounder about to be in the fold, the organization is actively working towards signing as many of its picks as possible.

Pompey selected on Day 2 | Marlins add athletes

In the upcoming days and weeks, the Marlins will indoctrinate those signed in the 2018 Draft class into the organization.

Gary Denbo, Miami's vice president of player development and scouting, said the organization has had its "Handoff Meeting."

:: 2018 Draft coverage ::

That's where the area scouts who recommended the players who were selected, get together with the player development staff to exchange information.

"We'll take every step possible to put our players in the best position possible to be able to have success in the organization," Denbo said. "So right now, it's just a matter of gathering information from our area scouts, and from the players themselves."

The player development staff sat in on the Draft, which ran from Monday to Wednesday. Attending were Dick Scott, the director of player development, and Chris Michalak, the Minor League pitching coordinator.

"We called it a 'Handoff Meeting' so the scouts are letting all of our player development people know," Denbo said. "They're letting them know any information they feel like they need to be able to start the individual player development plan that we develop for each one of our players in the Marlins' organization."

For example, area scouts are passing along information about pitchers selected -- like how many innings they've thrown, when they were last on the mound or picked up a baseball and if there are coaches in the players' background who may provide additional information.

Before officially signing, the players will complete their physicals.

"A lot of them will report to Jupiter and have physicals, and we'll get the development process underway immediately, as soon as we can get them signed, and hopefully on their way to being a Major League player," Denbo said.

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

Miami Marlins

In first Draft under Jeter, Marlins add athleticism

Chief executive officer gives input as club selects young players
MLB.com