Miami Marlins' Christian Yelich may be headed to disabled list

Rick Yeatts

After getting a few days off, Miami Marlins starting left fielder Christian Yelich has yet to feel healthy following back spasms on Friday night. Yelich is likely to join Jarrod Saltalamacchia on the disabled list.

Miami Marlins catcher Jarrod Saltamacchia may be receiving company on the Marlins' disabled list. Left fielder Christian Yelich, who left Friday night's game against the Pirates in the first inning with back spasms and didn't see action in the final two games of the series, may be placed on the 15-day disabled list on Monday.

Miami will likely make a decision on what to do with Yelich before Monday night's game against the Chicago Cubs at Marlins Park. Juan C. Rodriguez of the Sun-Sentinel reported Sunday a stint on the disabled list is probable.

The Marlins won't make a final determination until Monday, but it appears Christian Yelich is headed for the disabled list. Yelich missed all but the first inning of the three-game weekend set against the Pirates due to back spasms.

Yelich, who served as Miami's leadoff hitter until Rafael Furcal returned to the club on Friday, posted a .259/.342/.418 slash line to complement 24 RBIs before injuring himself while fielding a single hit to left field.

Before going down, Yelich was productive at the top of Miami's lineup. After struggling a bit at plate, Yelich appeared to settle in during the two game series against the Rangers during which he collected five hits. Yelich is thought to be an ideal number two hitter for the Marlins, and he was placed in that slot behind Furcal in the first game against the Pirates.

Reed Johnson, who is batting .289 with 16 RBIs in 45 games as a Marlin, started in left field in Yelich's absence. However, because of Johnson's strength as a pinch hitter, the Marlins will likely look to a minor league option while Yelich is on the DL.

Presumably, the Marlins will promote Jake Marisnick, the organization's May minor league player of the month who has found his swing in Triple-A.

If Yelich does require a DL stint, the Marlins are all but sure to promote Jake Marisnick from Triple-A New Orleans. Marisnick through Saturday was slashing .264/.306/.404, but he had hit safely in five of his last six games. Four of those were multi-hit efforts.

After a rough April (.182 average), Marisnick put together a stellar May and garnered organizational player of the month honors. He went 35-for-101 (.347) with three doubles, two triples, three homers and a .894 on-base plus slugging percentage.

If Marisnick is promoted, the Marlins will likely shift Marcell Ozuna over to left field. Marisnick is a natural center fielder, and with Stanton starting in right, the only option is for Ozuna to shift to left.

Moving Ozuna to left field would give the Marlins a solid defensive outfield, with Ozuna possessing a right fielder's arm and Marisnick known for his plus defense.

While it may only be temporary, the Marlins are losing a smooth lefty bat. But with offensive production from Marisnick, should he be promoted, Yelich's loss should not be felt significantly.

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