Publish date:

5 MARLINS

Author:

ENEMY LINES

A RIVAL SCOUT SIZES UP MIAMI

What's the plan there? You got me. They're not going to be as bad as everyone thinks—but they're going to be bad.... J.T. Realmuto is the one golden piece that they have left right now. His power is increasing, and the guy steals bases too. You look at catcher depth in the league, it hasn't been this thin in years; he could be a very valuable piece on a contender.... One of the blessings of the fire sale is that we'll finally see what guys like Derek Dietrich can do. When Martín Prado got hurt last year, he got a chance and showed he could be an everyday player. He puts together good at bats and can beat you with the long ball.... . The rap on Justin Bour is that he's a one-dimensional home run guy, but he quietly made adjustments on lefties and showed he can hit for average. He could attract some interest in the trade market.... Either Dan Straily or José Ureña is the ace. Ureña is learning that you can't get by with just your fastball and seems to be starting to understand what it takes to fill the strike zone.... Justin Nicolino has ticked up in velocity. He could be a pleasant surprise.... For years they've been thinking Kyle Barraclough will be their closer, and he took a step in the right direction last year, but he's still way too inconsistent. Unless he cuts down on his walks, I just don't see it.

THE PAYOFF PITCH

It's certainly hard to sell the 2018 Marlins to anyone, much less to a fan base that spent last year watching the best outfield in baseball and Giancarlo Stanton's run at 60 home runs. The best player the Marlins got back in any of their deals was centerfielder Lewis Brinson. Acquired from Milwaukee in the Christian Yelich deal, Brinson, 24 in May, has been a rated prospect for three years in the Rangers, Brewers and now Marlins systems. He's shown good power and speed, with the primary concern being his bat-to-ball skills: a 26% strikeout rate in the minors that jumped to 31% in a brief, unsuccessful call-up with the Brewers. At worst, Brinson should be an entertaining centerfielder with good defensive skills, the best—maybe only—reason to watch the Fish.

OVER / UNDER

64.5

The Giants had the most losses in the NL (98) last year, and that's a lot, but it's likely that Miami—the league's worst team—will drop at least that many.

THE LINEUP

1. RIGHTFIELD

Cameron Maybin

.327 OBP/6 HR/16 SB

FANTASY BREAKOUT

2. CATCHER

J.T. Realmuto

.273 BA/14 HR/7 SB

The rare Marlin with fantasy relevance, Realmuto showed pop to go with a good average.

3. SECOND BASE

Starlin Castro

.272 BA/.423 SLG/16 HR

4. FIRST BASE

Justin Bour

.264 BA/.478 SLG/25 HR

5. THIRD BASE

Martín Prado

.273 BA/.397 SLG/7 HR

6. LEFTFIELD

Derek Dietrich

.251 BA/.420 SLG/10 HR

7. CENTERFIELD

Lewis Brinson

.254 BA/9 HR/7 SB

8. SHORTSTOP

Miguel Rojas

.264 BA/2 HR/2 SB

THE STAFF

1. RH STARTER

José Ureña

8 W/4.90 ERA/1.47 WHP

2. RH STARTER

Dan Straily

9 W/4.59 ERA/1.33 WHP

3. RH STARTER

Adam Conley

2 W/5.11 ERA/1.48 WHP

4. LH STARTER

Dillon Peters

2 W/3.93 ERA/1.36 WHP

CLOSER

Brad Ziegler

25 SV/3.88 ERA/6.0 K9

THE SKIPPER

Don Mattingly