It is no secret that the new Miami Marlins have a roster and coaching staff full of personality. Between Ozzie Guillen, Carlos Zambrano, Hanley Ramirez, and Jose Reyes, the Marlins have plenty of "spice". After all, their plethora of personality was enough to entertain and impress Showtime producers, and was obviously enough to earn them a spot on season two of the new show.
Although the Marlins brought him in to close tight ball games and provide veteran leadership in the clubhouse, Heath Bell has a side humorous side to him, as well. Most recently, Bell was caught lurking behind cameras, which were filming ESPN's Baseball Tonight episode that on Wednesday was primarily focused on the Marlins. Bell also gave reporters a laugh, when asked about the inconsistent personality of pitcher Carlos Zambrano.
"Every day I will give him a hug," Bell said. "Every day I'm going to smile. Beautiful friendship."
- As spring training gets underway, the Marlins have a bullpen that appears to be set. With Bell, Mike Dunn, Randy Choate, Edward Mujica, and Juan Oviedo expected to report some time in early March, only one spot may be available. That spot could be taken by Alex Sanabia, Wade LeBlanc, or Chad Gaudin, who will compete for the long-reliever role in the 'pen. If necessary, the Marlins will have depth in the minors, with pitchers such as Steve Cishek, Brad Hand, and Jose Ceda all earning valuable playing time last season.-Any doubts that Carlos Zambrano and Ozzie Guillen will clash or argue while not getting along at any point in the season were put to rest earlier this week, as Guillen said he "is not a fighter".
- Third baseman Hanley Ramirez arrived at spring training early to field ground balls, in an effort to adjust to his new position. Some believe that Ramirez is embracing the role so well is because his good friend Miguel Cabrera has also been asked to move to third base, as a result of the Prince Fielder signing.
-Upon his arrival to Jupiter, Marlins shortstop Jose Reyes is excited for the upcoming season, and more importantly a new beginning for him, to begin. Reyes feels that he will have a good relationship with his good friend Hanley Ramirez throughout the season.
- Throughout spring training, Ozzie Guillen will see the same power he will observe during the entire season from Mike Stanton. Guillen is impressed but doesn't require the power, most recently saying he "doesn't care about the distance" and he rather see Stanton "hit 40 310 foot homers than one monster shot".
- Fresh off an off-season of hard work, Josh Johnson pitched an impressive bullpen session Wednesday at Roger Dean Stadium. Johnson's health will directly affect the Marlins' success.
- After an injury plagued season last year, lefty setup man Randy Choate is once again ready to face some of the National League's toughest left handed hitters.
- According to Ozzie Guillen, even if Jose Reyes is unable to play shortstop for some reason, Hanley Ramirez will not slide back over. Bonifacio will likely play the position. "I'm not going to mess with his mind," Guillen said.
Around The League
- Mets manager Terry Collins was disappointed that new shortstop Ruben Tejada hadn't arrived at spring training for voluntary workouts. Collins also expects Johan Santana to pitch on opening day.
- The Washington Nationals and third baseman Ryan Zimmerman are close to reaching an agreement on a contract extension.
At Fish Stripes
- As the Marlins continue to preach and teach good pitching, several of their pitchers will have high expectations and many things to prove in 2012.
- Multiple position players should also set reasonable goals, as they too have high expectations to live up to.
- Who is your favorite current Marlin? Vote now.