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Ricky Nolasco Opening Day Starter

Like there was any doubt:  Ricky Nolasco will be the Marlins Opening Day starter.

Manager Fredi Gonzalez made it official on Friday, deciding to hand Nolasco the ball on April 6 against the Nationals at Dolphin Stadium.

Nolasco, the oldest pitcher in the rotation, got the nod over Josh Johnson, who will take the mound in the second game.

Chris Volstad will pitch the third game.

Gonzalez didn't reveal the fourth ot fifth starters. He says they are still competing.

Ricky deserves and frankly won the honor.

As for the two starters not revealed, Juan C. Rodriguez reports.

Anibal Sanchez currently is projected as the No. 5 starter. Since the Marlins don't need a fifth starter until April 18, manager Fredi Gonzalez is uncertain whether that guy would open the season in the minors or work out of the big-league bullpen.

Sanchez, who allowed six runs on 12 hits in five innings against the Orioles on Thursday, would just as soon avoid either scenario, saying, "I would like to be in the rotation among the top four, but that's not my decision. … They'll decide what they're doing with the fifth starter. If it's me, I'll take hold of it. I just want to be healthy for the season.

Boy, that is news to me.  From everything I could gather Anibal was going to be the fourth starter while Miller still worked on his new delivery in the minors at the start of the season.  Naturally, that still may be the case but Mr. Rodriguez is better plugged into the clubhouse than I am.

I think Anibal is the better pitcher, now, Miller may have better stuff but at this point, he doesn't understand the game as well as Sanchez.  Of course, health may be an issue here but neither one came into spring training with the Charles Atlas seal of approval.

We will see.