Here at Fish Stripes, we figure that you should keep your friends and your enemies closer. With that in mind, on Saturdays we will be linking not only to Marlins material from Thursday to Saturday, but also to the best in material from all over the NL East. Here are your Saturday afternoon links from the crew at Fish Stripes.
- In preparation for the move to the new stadium, the team named the roads around the stadium along with the official stadium address. It was a nice gesture to recognize the past with regards to baseball in south Florida.
- The Marlins a couple of things related to MLB's GIBBY Awards (stands for Greatness in Baseball Yearly). Mike Stanton is up for the "Wow Factor" award, while the praying mantis is up for the Oddity award. Vote as you please.
- Baseball America released their bit on the Marlins' Top 10 prospects. Chrisian Yelich earned top honors, and this should be of no surprise to anyone given how well he played.- As we all know, the Marlins are planning on spending some money this offseason, and it seems that their biggest priority will be pitching (H/T MLB Trade Rumors). One target among their "left-handed starter" needs is Mark Buehrle. Doug Padilla of ESPN Chicago says manager Ozzie Guillen's strong relationship with Buehrle could help lure him away from the Chicago White Sox.
- Still at Marlin Maniac, James Etzbach caused minor turbulence this week by posting these concepts for the Marlins' new uniforms from an unlisted source. It turns out that these may actually be closer to the truth than expected. My opinion? Sure, they're not pretty, but can we as a fan base tone down our whining? We got a free agency going on!
- ESPN's Buster Olney reported (Insider only) that the Marlins were concerned about C.J. Wilson's lack of control, particularly in the postseason (H/T MLB Trade Rumors). If you take a look at the last two years, including postseason play, he has walked just about 10 percent of the batters he has faced, which is fairly high. However, as I will chronicle on Thursday, the whole package appears to be worth it.
- Of course, all of those moves would be useless without Hanley Ramirez and Josh Johnson returning from injury. it would seem that both are on track for Spring Training, so keep your fingers crossed.
NL East Bites
- If you read my FIsh Stripes Plan for Offseason Success piece, you would know that I am interested in the Marlins pursuing Grady Sizemore. It seems that Capitol Avenue Club's Ben Duronio thinks that the Atlanta Braves would be suited to pursue him as well.
- Meanwhile in Braves land, it seems they are also interested in unloading starting pitching due to their copious depth. Mark Bradley at the Atlanta Journal-Consitution wonders why the Braves would be willing to trade Jair Jurrjens. I guess the Marlins aren't the only team worried about overpaying players who go to arbitration. And perhaps should the Marlins be making a call to see what it would take to get Jurrjens.
- The New York Mets will be moving in Citi Field's walls, and Adam Rubin of ESPN New York thinks that that will almost double the home run totals of struggling power hitters David Wright and Jason Bay. However, Bill Petti of Amazin' Avenue wonders whether how this will affect the team's pitching staff as well.
- The Mets may be boosting offense with the wall move, but their offense will most surely go south without top cog Jose Reyes next season. It seems as if the Mets' brass has accepted this fate according to Bob Klapisch of Fox Sports.
- Did you hear that Bill Baer of Crashburn Alley wrote a book? And it's not even filled with sabermetric snark either! No, for reals! But seriously, if you happen to be a browsing Phillies fan, you should check it out. Bill, I expect my check in the mail.
- The big news from the Philadelphia Phillies front is that they re-signed former first baseman Jim Thome. One of the great hitters of our era is returning to the NL East, and he might actually be playing in the field. While he'll likely take Ross Gload's place as the primary left-handed batter off the bench, there's a possibility Thome will be playing somewhat regularly, at least in the early going, as Ryan Howard's long-term prognosis remains cloudy following Achilles tendon surgery. While shielded from most tough left handers and rarely playing in the field, Thome has put up a .902 OPS in his age 38-40 seasons. Dude can still mash.
- The Washington Nationals re-signed Chien-Ming Wang to a one-year deal as part of their ongoing search for starting pitching. As we all remember, Wang was once a decent pitcher for the New York Yankees before injuries derailed him for two seasons. He returned to form last year with a very familiar 4.04 ERA (career 4.15) and 4.17 xFIP (career 4.19). This should be a decent Nationals investment.
- The Nats are also intrigued by Roy Oswalt, Of course, his bout with back injuries and difficulties in 2011 preclude him from getting a big deal, but it seems he still wants a long-term contract according to Jon-Paul Morosi of Fox Sports. We'll see how that works out.