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Leading by example: Straily off to superb start

Having tossed 2 scoreless outings, righty ready to shoulder load for staff, be a clubhouse mentor
Special to MLB.com

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- So far, this spring couldn't be going any better for right-hander Dan Straily.

Straily, who appears to be the frontrunner to be the Marlins' Opening Day starter, had his second straight clean outing, giving up one hit and striking out one over three innings in Miami's 5-2 loss to the Braves on Sunday.

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LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- So far, this spring couldn't be going any better for right-hander Dan Straily.

Straily, who appears to be the frontrunner to be the Marlins' Opening Day starter, had his second straight clean outing, giving up one hit and striking out one over three innings in Miami's 5-2 loss to the Braves on Sunday.

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"It's the kind of bone-stock Spring Training start you hope for," Straily said. "Get in there, get some outs, work on some stuff and get out of there. It doesn't get much more cliche than this.

"I was trying to throw a lot of strikes, a lot of fastballs for strikes and keep it simple. It was a very basic gameplan."

Straily threw 37 pitches, 25 for strikes, and said he didn't want to show too much to a team that he'll see several times this season.

"I think that's part of it," Straily added. "I went against them five or six times last year. The least they could see of me today, the better, but at the same time it's good to get a look at some of the guys you'll be seeing later on."

Straily made some news last month when he said he wanted to be a major part of the Marlins' rebuilding plan, and he agreed with moves that led to the trades of 2017 National League Most Valuable Player Award winner Giancarlo Stanton and outfielder Christian Yelich.

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He is also excited about the opportunity to be a mentor to the young players in camp, both on and off the field.

"It's good to see the excitement and some of the youth that we're building here in Miami," Straily said. "There is a lot of competition, and a lot of guys excited about their opportunity. I just want to go out there and execute, give my team the best chance to win and lead by example."

Bench coach Tim Wallach, who was serving as acting manager Sunday while Don Mattingly stayed in Jupiter, Fla., to attend to a family matter, said that Straily will not only provide leadership for the Marlins when he takes the ball every fifth day, but also in the dugout communicating with the younger pitchers and passing on information.

"He wants to be here with all these young guys and I think he can be a really good example for them," Wallach said. "And we need that. We want guys here that are showing these guys the right way to do it and how to go about it. Good and bad, you're going to get it all in this game. It's how to react to it."

Ralph Long is a contributor to MLB.com.

Miami Marlins, Dan Straily