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Matt Lindstrom working off the rough edges

Everyone finally admits Matt Lindstrom is in extended spring training but it is taking place in the majors.

The Marlins are waiting on Matt Lindstrom to develop into their closer, and it's unfair to evaluate Lindstrom after the first week because he is coming back from a rotator cuff injury this spring.

''I think he is still working through some things,'' Gonzalez said. ``This is still like spring training for him, because he didn't get the full spring. I think in another three or four games we'll see him.''

Lindstrom agrees.

''I'm still building arm strength. It's not all back right now,'' he said. ``I have had some real good bullpens and I feel it coming back, but on the mound at times I know it's not all there yet. Three weeks ago, I had a bad rotator cuff.

''I didn't get to pitch in as many games as I would have in the spring. Maybe that has something to do with it,'' Lindstrom said. ``I just run out of gas a little bit. I'm a guy who is used to having 100 percent of my stuff, and it's not 100 percent right now.

``I think the bullpen is going to get better. I think we have some good arms here.''

Gotta love that WBC.

As it stands right now, Lindstrom has speed on his pitches but very little velocity.  The physics lesson for today is that the difference between speed and velocity is that velocity is a vector which contains a directional component.  Speed does not.

To say it another way is that he can throw hard but he can't control the location of the pitches with any accuracy.

Hopefully he will rectify the situation soon.

Also, I do think the bullpen is better than it has shown so far this season.  I really don't think we have been transported back in time to 2005 when Todd Jones was the only reliever that could get anyone out with any consistency.

The problem early on is that they are work in progress which isn't the way you want to start the season.  But if the starters and the bats keep coming through, the Marlins have some time to right the bullpen ship.

Let's think back to last year, at the start of the season the starters weren't all that good but the bullpen and the hitters saved them from embarrassment. (Sort of)  Ricky entered the rotation and eventually did fabulous.  Scott Olsen did yeomen's work.  Both were coming off nagging injuries, it just took some time.

That completes the optimistic view of the bullpen.  But for now, none of them are completely trustworthy.  However that doesn't mean they won't be later on.  And even if they are not, the organization possess a lot of live arms in the minors.