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Five low-cost starters for Marlins to target

MLB.com @JoeFrisaro

MIAMI -- Through trades, the Marlins stocked their Minor League system with several potentially high-end pitchers. Four of them are in the Top 10 on MLB Pipeline's list of Marlins prospects -- Sandy Alcantara (No. 1), Jorge Guzman (No. 2), Nick Neidert (No. 7) and Merandy Gonzalez (No. 10).

At some point during the season, the Marlins anticipate seeing some of these prospects. They just might not be big league ready by Opening Day.

MIAMI -- Through trades, the Marlins stocked their Minor League system with several potentially high-end pitchers. Four of them are in the Top 10 on MLB Pipeline's list of Marlins prospects -- Sandy Alcantara (No. 1), Jorge Guzman (No. 2), Nick Neidert (No. 7) and Merandy Gonzalez (No. 10).

At some point during the season, the Marlins anticipate seeing some of these prospects. They just might not be big league ready by Opening Day.

In case they're not, the Marlins are surveying the market for starting pitching depth. Before Spring Training gets underway on Feb. 14, the organization would like to add one or two veterans to low-cost free-agent contracts.

The candidates likely will be starters with previous track records of durability, or those looking to re-establish their careers.

MLB.com takes a look at five potential free agent targets for the Marlins:

1. LHP Wade Miley 
Miley has been on Miami's radar in the past, and the club once again could make a push for a one-year deal with the 31-year-old. The left-hander was with the Orioles last year, posting an 8-15 record with a 5.61 ERA in 157 1/3 innings. Miley has a history of durability, making at least 30 starts in six straight seasons.

Video: OAK@BAL: Miley fans six, allows two over six innings

2. RHP Chris Tillman 
A teammate of Miley's in Baltimore last year, Tillman is a bounce-back candidate. He comes off a rough season where he was limited to 92 1/3 innings due to right shoulder issues. The 29-year-old had his average fastball velocity drop to 90.65 mph last year, according to Statcast™. If he's able to regain arm strength, he could be a low-risk, high-reward pickup. When healthy, Tillman has been a top of the rotation-caliber starter. In '16, he was 16-6 with a 3.77 ERA in 172 innings.

Video: TEX@BAL: Tillman tosses six innings of one-run ball

3. LHP Jaime Garcia
Garcia was with three clubs last year, and ended up being on a playoff team with the Yankees. He started off with the Braves, before being dealt to the Twins, and then to New York. Marlins vice president of baseball development and scouting Gary Denbo and several new Miami team executives were previously with the Yankees, and they have a good feel for what the lefty can offer. Garcia combined for a 5-10 record with a 4.41 ERA in 157 innings in 2017.

Video: NYY@CLE Gm 1: Garcia allows no hits in 2 2/3 innings

4. RHP Ricky Nolasco 
No stranger to the Marlins, Nolasco is the organization's all-time leader in victories (81), strikeouts (1,001) and innings pitched (1,225 2/3). Now 35, the right-hander broke in with the Marlins in 2006 and was with the club until July of 2013, when he was dealt to the Dodgers. Nolasco was 6-15 with a 4.92 ERA in 181 innings with the Angels last year,

Video: LAA@WSH: Nolasco hurls 5 2/3 strong innings

5. RHP Bartolo Colon
At 44, Colon is wanting to pitch at least one more season, and the Marlins could provide a fit in a low-pressure environment. With all of his experiences, Colon would be a nice addition to mix in with young starters. Reportedly, Colon would only consider a non-roster invitation from the Mets. However, Miami could be a fit with for the 20-year veteran on an incentives-based big league contract. 

Video: DET@MIN: Colon tosses 6 1/3 innings of one-run ball

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

Miami Marlins