Notes: Gio impresses; Floro debuts

March 15th, 2021

JUPITER, Fla. -- Marlins non-roster invitee looked sharp across a 32-pitch live batting practice session on Monday morning at the Roger Dean Chevrolet Stadium complex. While simulating two innings, the left-hander walked Eddy Alvarez and struck out prospects Connor Scott, Demetrius Sims, Víctor Víctor Mesa and Brian Miller.

The 35-year-old's fastball sat around 91 mph, which would be his highest mark since 2016. González averaged just 90.0 mph on his four-seamer last season while dealing with shoulder issues. The club will re-evaluate González on Tuesday and decide where his next outing comes.

"I thought it was really good," said manager Don Mattingly, who watched González's first inning before heading to West Palm Beach for the Grapefruit League game. "His breaking ball had more action today. The guys that were hitting said it was tougher to pick up today, it was staying closed longer. Had better bite from his breaking ball. Looked like he was throwing the ball where he wanted to today."

Should he make the club, the 13-year veteran would provide valuable experience to a young starting staff. Following Monday's 6-5 win over the Astros at The Ballpark of the Palm Beaches, there are 11 Grapefruit League games left. The Marlins will also have "B" games on their remaining off-days on Friday and March 24. Opening Day is scheduled for April 1. Through the latest turn of the spring rotation, Sandy Alcantara, Pablo López and Elieser Hernandez have pitched into the fourth. Mattingly said it is getting hard to find innings to go around.

Floro's debut
pitched a scoreless sixth inning on seven pitches in his first Grapefruit League outing. Following a lineout to center, Floro worked around a missed catch at first base by inducing a 5-3 double play.

"You couldn't ask for much more than that," Floro said during a Zoom call. "I was just wanting to get out there and get a feel for the mound kind of facing somebody else besides our own players. Everything was feeling good, and the command and everything was there."

The 30-year-old right-hander, slowed early this spring with soreness, said he never shut down and kept throwing with a couple of live BPs and bullpen sessions. Miami acquired him via trade in February as part of its offseason bullpen makeover. Floro, who appeared three times during last fall's World Series with the Dodgers, could be a high-leverage option for the Marlins this season.

Latest from Pop
Zach Pop, who had to wait 23 months before returning to the mound following Tommy John surgery, followed up a solid return with another scoreless outing on Monday. He needed just 16 pitches in the seventh to retire the side in order. He struck out Martín Maldonado looking, induced a groundout of Taylor Jones and fanned Jose Altuve swinging on a full count.

Prospect watch
• Sixto Sánchez (MLB Pipeline's No. 15) pitched 1 2/3 scoreless innings in his spring debut.

• Jazz Chisholm (MLB Pipeline's No. 66) went 2-for-2 with one run.

• Nick Neidert (Miami's No. 11) allowed three runs on four hits in 1 2/3 innings.

• José Devers (No. 13) finished 0-for-1 with a sacrifice fly.

• Jerar Encarnación (No. 17) went 1-for-2 but committed a missed catch error at first base.

Roster moves
• The Marlins optioned seventh-ranked prospect Braxton Garrett to Triple-A Jacksonville. The 23-year-old lefty started two doubleheader games upon his MLB callup last season. Prior to that, he had just one start at the Double-A level.

• Miami reassigned the following players: catcher Will Banfield (No. 30 prospect), right-handers Alexander Guillen and Luís Madero, and infielders Luis Marté and Nasim Nunez (No. 20 prospect). Last Wednesday, the Marlins announced their first 17 cuts from big league camp, including MLB Pipeline top 100 prospects Max Meyer and Edward Cabrera.

Injury updates
• Jesús Sánchez (Miami's No. 5 prospect) has a right groin strain and will begin rehab this week. He last appeared in a Grapefruit League game on March 8. The 23-year-old outfielder, who made his MLB debut in 2020, was 1-for-8 with two walks and three strikeouts in six spring contests.

• Jorge Guzman (Miami's No. 26 prospect), sidelined with right elbow inflammation, will begin a throwing program later this week.

Up next
Rookie left-hander Trevor Rogers, who is poised to make the Opening Day rotation, will make his third spring start at 6:05 p.m. ET on Tuesday against the Nationals at The Ballpark of the Palm Beaches. Veteran southpaw Patrick Corbin will pitch for Washington.