WASHINGTON -- On the eve of Opening Day, the Marlins announced their 25-man roster on Sunday, and as expected, the organization is carrying 13 pitchers and 12 position players.Going with the extra reliever and a shorter bench is a strategy that could change in a couple of weeks, but at
WASHINGTON -- On the eve of Opening Day, the Marlins announced their 25-man roster on Sunday, and as expected, the organization is carrying 13 pitchers and 12 position players.
Going with the extra reliever and a shorter bench is a strategy that could change in a couple of weeks, but at least early on, the decision has been made to carry more pitching until the starters are more stretched out.
Miami opens on Monday against Washington at Nationals Park, with Edinson Volquez matched against Stephen Strasburg. The batting order will be Dee Gordon (2B), J.T. Realmuto (C), Christian Yelich (CF), Giancarlo Stanton (RF), Justin Bour (1B), Marcell Ozuna (LF), Derek Dietrich (3B), Adeiny Hechavarria (SS) and Volquez (P).
A newcomer to Miami's roster is infielder Tyler Moore, a non-roster invitee who had his contract selected on Sunday. Moore, who missed all of 2016 due to a left knee injury, is a right-handed-hitting option at first base to lefty-hitting Bour.
As expected, three players were placed on the 10-day disabled list -- third baseman Martin Prado (right hamstring strain), left-hander Jeff Locke (left shoulder tendinitis) and right-hander Odrisamer Despaigne (left oblique strain). All three have their dates set retroactively to March 30. The best-case scenario for Prado to be back is mid-April. Locke is expected to miss all of April, and when Despaigne is ready, he will be joining the rotation at Triple-A New Orleans.
"I feel good about this team, as far as the attitude, the work process," manager Don Mattingly said.
The Marlins' rotation has been set with Volquez making his fifth career Opening Day start and his first with the Marlins. Off on Tuesday, the second and third games at Washington will be on Wednesday and Thursday, with Dan Straily and Tom Koehler starting, respectively.
On Friday, the Marlins begin a three-game set against the Mets at Citi Field. Wei-Yin Chen will open that series, and Adam Conley and Volquez will close it out. Straily is lined up for Miami's home opener against the Braves on April 11.
A strength of the club is its bullpen, which will bring back All-Star closer A.J. Ramos. Brad Ziegler, Kyle Barraclough, David Phelps, Junichi Tazawa, Dustin McGowan, Jose Urena and Nick Wittgren round out one of the deepest 'pens the organization has ever had. Urena, McGowan and Wittgren are each multi-inning candidates. Ziegler and Phelps are options to close if Ramos is not available.
The Marlins are carrying two catchers, Realmuto and A.J. Ellis. The starting infield features Bour (first base), Gordon (second), Dietrich (third) and Hechavarria (shortstop). Miguel Rojas and Moore are infielders who will come off the bench.
The outfield is another strength, with Ozuna in left field, Yelich in center and Stanton in right. Ichiro Suzuki, at age 43, enters his third season as the Marlins' fourth outfielder.
"We feel like this group is a special group and has a chance to do some special things," Mattingly said.
Joe Frisaro has covered the Marlins for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @JoeFrisaro and listen to his podcast.