Blog Entry

Reyes rounds out an impressive Marlins lineup

Posted on: December 5, 2011 12:10 am
Edited on: December 5, 2011 12:39 am
Jose Reyes Hanley Ramierez

By C. Trent Rosecrans

The winter meetings haven't officially started and the Marlins already seem to have locked up the Hot Stove League title with the signings of Jose Reyes and Heath Bell -- and they could add more.

So what does this mean to the product on the field come April? Well, the rotation may still need some tinkering, but the lineup -- assuming everyone is healthy -- appears stout.

With Reyes, let's look at the new-look Miami Marlins lineup:

Jose Reyes1. Jose Reyes, SS

When healthy, Reyes is the best leadoff hitter in the game, and one of the few real difference-makers in the top spot of the lineup. Reyes has a career .341 OBP and 370 stolen bases -- good for eighth among active players, with only one of the other players ahead of him on the list in his 20s, like the 28-year-old Reyes. Reyes is coming off his first career batting title, hitting .337/.384/.493 in 2011 and also led the league in triples (16) for the fourth time in his career. The knock on Reyes, though, is his ability to stay on the field. After playing in at least 153 games from 2005-2008, he played in just 36 games in 2009, 133 in 2010 and 126 last season. But when healthy, few in the game are as good as he is.

Omar Infante2. Omar Infante, 2B

While Infante didn't return to his All-Star form from a year before in 2011, he's a steady second baseman, if not exactly Dan Uggla. Infante hit .276/.315/.382 and led the league with 17 sacrifices if you're into that kind of thing. He has a career .318 OBP, but had a .353 OBP from 2008-2010 with the Braves. He's a solid No. 2 batter, especially sandwiched between Reyes and Hanley Ramirez.

Hanley Ramirez3. Hanley Ramirez, 3B

Ramirez will have to move to third to make room for Reyes, something he's been reluctant to do -- but it's probably best for him and the Marlins. At 6-foot-3, 230 pounds, he's physically more of a third baseman than a shortstop and the team's defense should benefit from the switch. The Marlins had been in the market for a third baseman and all of a sudden they have one with a .306/.380/.506 career split with 134 home runs in six seasons -- and will be just 28 when the season starts. With Reyes and Ramirez, the Marlins now have batting champs from two of the last three seasons in their lineup.

Mike Stanton4. Mike Stanton, RF

Perhaps the most exciting young player in the game, Stanton hit 34 home runs last season in his first full season, while hitting an impressive .262/.356/.537 overall. In an era where there seems to be fewer young power hitters, Stanton has it in spades. He's also proven to be an outstanding defensive outfielder and is under team control for several more years.

Logan Morrison5. Logan Morrison, LF

Morrison, 24 had a disappointing sophomore season, even finding himself sent to Triple-A in August. Even with the trip to the minors, he put up a .247/.330/.468 line with 23 home runs and 72 RBI. That's not ideal, but it's not bad for a 23-year-old in his second season in the majors, especially one that put up a .283/.390/.447 line as a rookie. He was also much better in the first half, hitting .267/.343/.489. The talent is there and he should get better.

Gaby Sanchez6. Gaby Sanchez, 1B

Sanchez was lost in the monster National League rookie class of 2010, but still put together a solid rookie season and pretty much equaled it in his second season, hitting .266/.352/.427 with 19 home runs in 2011. Sanchez is 28, the same age as Reyes and Ramirez, but with much less experience.

Emilio Bonifacio7. Emilio Bonifacio, CF

A switch-hitter, the speedy Bonifacio played all three outfield spots, as well as second, shortstop and third last season for the Marlins, but the team's biggest need now is center field, and he can stick there now that he doesn't need to fill in at any point for Ramirez at short. Bonifacio put up a .296/.360/.393 line last season and stole 40 bases. The team also has former Rookie of the Year Chris Coghlan, who started 64 games in center last season, but struggled, hitting just .230/.296/.368 and is expected to start next season in Triple-A.

John Buck8. John Buck, C

The oldest player in this lineup, Buck is just 31. While not an offensive superstar, he's a solid catcher and did put up a .316 OBP last season and hit 16 home runs. He also hit 20 homers in 2010 for the Blue Jays.

That's a pretty good lineup, and also a young one -- only Buck and Infante will be 30 or older at the start of next season. That said, the Marlins may not be done. Jayson Stark of reports Miami is expected to make "an aggressive run" at Albert Pujols. As good as the Marlins' lineup looks now, that could push it into a different stratosphere. Even without Pujols, that thing in center field could get a workout at the Marlins' new park.

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Since: Oct 23, 2006
Posted on: December 6, 2011 9:06 pm

The Mets are officially a joke

I have been a Mets' fan since meeting Willie Mays at Shea Stadium, when I was 6, back in the early 70s after a game he took me to.  No more.

The Mets are in financial turmoil right now, I get it, thanks to an idiot owner.  What I don't get is this, which I have copied from the Mets' team section, regarding a story on them losing Reyes to the Marlins and speculation on David Wright:

"Alderson anticipates the Mets' payroll to be around $100 million, which he said gives them $20-$25 million in additional spending flexibility without Reyes. That includes money earmarked for outfielder Angel Pagan and starter Mike Pelfrey in arbitration. "

So Alderson sees nothing wrong with paying Pagan and Pelfrey (I am guessing here) a combined $14-17 million?  Are you kdding me? Both of those players should be gone, and the Mets should be looking at their farm system and other options besides re-signing those two.  You have already let Jose Reyes walk, when they easily could have kept him for what the Marlins paid.

I am no longer a Mets fan (forgive me Grandpa), as I have had enough.  This franchose deserves what it gets.  I would sooner root for the Mariners than them, and will never spend a penny to see a Mets' game again.   


Since: Oct 24, 2006
Posted on: December 5, 2011 5:23 pm

Reyes rounds out an impressive Marlins lineup

usa usa  got to love it now hope all illegals go to miami to watch their spic heroes

Since: Dec 5, 2011
Posted on: December 5, 2011 2:20 pm
This comment has been removed.

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Since: Jun 16, 2011
Posted on: December 5, 2011 11:05 am

Reyes rounds out an impressive Marlins lineup

2 very nice signings for the Marlins and I hope they both work out since the Padres and the Mets didn't deserve either one of them.  Do any of you really think they can sign Pujols or Fielder too?  I just find it hard to believe that one team could sign either one of them after adding Bell and Reyes.  If they do though...

Since: Aug 31, 2006
Posted on: December 5, 2011 10:50 am

Reyes rounds out an impressive Marlins lineup

The biggest issue regarding the Marlins has been pitching, and while Heath Bell is a good addition (save % is great) the team still needs to figure out their rotation.  They don't get quality starts out of many of their pitchers and often struggle with their bullpen because of it.  They struggle to find starters who can make it into the 7th inning and the pen gets taxed and is worn by July.  Also, while Josh Johnson is dominant, he struggles to make it to the end of the season healthy (been out a few times now in the 2nd half and unavailable at the end of the season).  I'm not sure if the Fish are going to keep him on a strict pitch count again this season even as they compete for a divisional title but it's something worth mentioning.  The team also has used AAA level talent to use as a 5th starter and that's something that needs to stop.

Since: Aug 31, 2006
Posted on: December 5, 2011 10:45 am

Reyes rounds out an impressive Marlins lineup

C. Trent Rosecrans wrote:

"While Infante didn't return to his All-Star form from a year before in 2011, he's a steady second baseman, if not exactly . Infante hit .276/.315/.382 and led the league with 17 sacrifices if you're into that kind of thing. He has a career .318 OBP, but had a .353 OBP from 2008-2010 with the . He's a solid No. 2 batter, especially sandwiched between Reyes and ."

You bring up a good point, however, you should also note that Omar had a good second half last year vs first half (PreAllStar= .251 BA, .293 OBP, .309 SLG, .601 OPS while PostAllStar= .314 BA, .348 OBP, .493 SLG, .842 OPS.).  If Omar can build on that success (I believe he had a finger injury in August) then the Marlins will have a great front 4 but that is assuming Hanley figures out how to swing again (broke down mechanically).

Since: Dec 7, 2006
Posted on: December 5, 2011 8:41 am

Reyes rounds out an impressive Marlins lineup

This is an impressive lineup. If Josh Johnson comes back and can be like the pitcher he has been in the past, and if the Marlins can add one more starter, the Marlins will be a very strong playoff contender.

One interesting stat about the Marlins is that they were 40-41 on the road. That is quite good. Their home record was terrible for some reason. Perhaps this new atmosphere will put them up there among the elite teams.

Since: Feb 8, 2008
Posted on: December 5, 2011 1:24 am

Reyes rounds out an impressive Marlins lineup

Pretty nice. If they can get their starting pitching all sorted out, they could knock off the Phillies.

Since: Dec 5, 2006
Posted on: December 5, 2011 12:48 am

Reyes rounds out an impressive Marlins lineup

That is a very impressive lineup.With Reyes and Ramirez in front of him I could see Stanton driving in 125 runs.

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