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Dietrich could see time in both OF corner spots

MLB.com @JoeFrisaro

JUPITER, Fla. -- Derek Dietrich projects as the Marlins' regular left fielder, but don't be surprised if he also sees some time in right --  perhaps playing the two spots in the same inning.

The Marlins are at least talking about some outfield swapping, flipping Cameron Maybin to left and Dietrich to right depending on the batter. Dietrich has moved to the outfield because the club wants to get his bat in the lineup. On Tuesday, he belted a home run off Carlos Martinez in Miami's 11-4 loss to the Cardinals at Roger Dean Chevrolet Stadium.

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JUPITER, Fla. -- Derek Dietrich projects as the Marlins' regular left fielder, but don't be surprised if he also sees some time in right --  perhaps playing the two spots in the same inning.

The Marlins are at least talking about some outfield swapping, flipping Cameron Maybin to left and Dietrich to right depending on the batter. Dietrich has moved to the outfield because the club wants to get his bat in the lineup. On Tuesday, he belted a home run off Carlos Martinez in Miami's 11-4 loss to the Cardinals at Roger Dean Chevrolet Stadium.

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Dietrich has already appeared in left and right field in Spring Training, as the Marlins get him acquainted to the two positions. He is scheduled to play right field against the Mets on Wednesday.

"The value of the versatile player these days, I'm watching around the league, they want guys who can be versatile and be athletic, and play all over," Dietrich said. "That's what I've always put myself in position to do, play multiple positions, keep my bat in the lineup. They can see the league is going towards that. Because I can play the outfield, I'm playing every day now."

:: Spring Training coverage presented by Camping World ::

A converted infielder, Dietrich has appeared in 59 big league games in the outfield, all in left. Maybin plays all three outfield spots.

Depending on the batter, the Marlins may shift Dietrich from left field to right, and then bring him back to left.

"You've got to at least be ready for it," Marlins manager Don Mattingly said.

It's a concept the club considered before, but hasn't yet done.

"If you have three premium defenders out there, and they're all good defenders [you don't consider switching]," Mattingly said. "Not to take anything away from Dietz, but Cam and Dietz, there's a difference."

Position battles
Caleb Smith, competing for a rotation spot, threw four shutout innings on Tuesday, striking out four and walking four. Acquired from the Yankees in November, Smith has a 2.45 ERA in 11 innings with 11 strikeouts.

"He's a different look," Mattingly said. "He's got that little turn for a lefty. He can get the ball to both sides. He can square it up with the four-seam and has a two-seam. He can backdoor the breaking ball. He can down-in the breaking ball. He's a little wild every once in a while, so it's not always around the plate. It's been pretty good."

With the Yankees last year, Smith appeared in nine games (two starts) and posted a 7.71 ERA in 18 2/3 innings. The left-hander spent most of the season at Double-A and Triple-A, combining for a 2.41 ERA in 100 2/3 frames.

Video: CLE@NYY: Smith retires Gonzalez to escape trouble

Injury report
Right-hander Elieser Hernandez, initially scheduled to start on Thursday at the Mets, is being pushed back a few days. Hernandez had some dental work on Monday and has stitches in his mouth. Justin Bour (back spasms) was initially scheduled to play on Tuesday against the Cardinals. Instead, he was given another day off from game competition. Bour did take batting practice and perform other baseball activities.

Quotable
"After that, a pretty good ballgame. It's just their two innings were better than our two innings, when we scored. I was glad to see us keep coming and try to get back in it there." -- Mattingly, on putting up the final four runs after falling behind by 11 in the second inning

Up next
The Marlins take on the Mets at 1:05 p.m. ET on Wednesday at Roger Dean Chevrolet Stadium (listen live on Gameday Audio). Dan Straily, already tabbed as the No. 2 starter, will take the mound for Miami. Lefty Steven Matz will go for the Mets. Bour is expected back in the lineup for the Marlins, and prospect Magneuris Sierra is scheduled to lead off and play center.

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

Miami Marlins, Derek Dietrich