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The Pitching Plan

The Marlins will be addressing the pitching staff in the off-season which everyone knows is a must.

Let's look at the team's thoughts about shoring up the middle relief staff.

"We recognize [that we had] some shortcomings in the bullpen this year," Beinfest said. "We're continually trying to learn how to put together a strong, fortified bullpen, and it continues to be a challenge. No question, it needs to be looked at. We think we have some good, young arms who are inexperienced."

Internally, the Marlins will give opportunities to young relievers Logan Kensing, Chris Resop and Randy Messenger.

Some Shortcomings!?!  They were a disaster!

I will admit some of the kids have good stuff, but they appeared far from ready to anchor the middle relief staff.  Signing a free agent for more than a year could prove unlikely since the team is trying to shop its veterans and is not planning to sign its free agents.

My guess is the club will go with the young guys leaving the all to real possibility. we may have to live with the same pain we suffered last year.

So what about the closer, it is common knowledge that Todd Jones wants a two-year deal.  Oh, in case you didn't know the Braves have expressed some interest in him.

(Beinfest) did not indicate he would offer Jones the two-year deal the right-hander is seeking.

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"We still think that Guillermo can do it. He never really got that chance because of the injury and then Todd took the job and never looked back. We definitely have an eye on it, the whole bullpen. It's really worked out the last two years with (Armando) Benitez and Jones and we need to find that right guy again.''

Excuse me for a moment while I throw up in the corner.  You have got to be kidding me, Mota?!?  Did Beinfest attend any games last year?  I have an idea, Larry go watch the club play sometime you may learn a few things that will be enlightening to your job.

Since that is potentially the team's bullpen it has become clear that the starters will need to go nine.

Along with relief help, the rotation will undergo a transition. Dontrelle Willis and Josh Beckett are two premier starters, but A.J. Burnett, a free agent, will not return. Veterans Brian Moehler and Ismael Valdez, who shared the fifth starter spot last year, are both free agents.

Jason Vargas, a promising rookie who spent half of 2005 in the rotation, likely will earn a spot.

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Beinfest noted a couple of Minor League starters who may be ready to pitch in the big leagues. Scott Olsen and Josh Johnson, who spent most of the season in Double-A, will get chances to make the rotation in 2006. Both already have seen some action with the Marlins.

"We think they're ready to do it," Beinfest said. "Recognizing that we've got two premium pitchers in Josh and Dontrelle, you want to be strong up front. It's not like we don't have candidates there. We do have some good young guys. You obviously want to have some veterans. I don't have a good answer for that right now."

The pitchers that the team is contemplating taking over for next year reads like a lineup for a Minor League All-Star game and I do enjoy watching them develop. But this move would not be about player development, it would be about getting the cheapest payroll on the field and that's not what we were promised.

Can someone get me Montreal on the line? I think I have heard about this before.

The young players as back of the rotation starters and the middle relief corp with Mota to bring it home.  Buy stock in Maloxx people because I think there will be a hugh demand for their product next year.