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Miami Marlins to gain depth at first base after completion of rehab assignments

To begin the season, the Miami Marlins lacked depth at first base because of several injuries. After several players complete their rehab assignments, the Marlins will add depth to a position they have struggled to fill.

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Nick Green isn't a natural first baseman.

However, as a result of several different injuries that led to many different players playing the position, Green a few weeks ago was asked to step in and fill the void at first.

When he was first called up, Green was batting around .320 while playing in three or four games a week. Green has been in the lineup for 16 games, and has posted a .204 average. Although he initially had a hard time adjusting defensively, Green has since settled in and has yet to commit an error while he was in the lineup, regardless of the position he was playing.

Manager Mike Redmond frequently used Greg Dobbs at first base against right handed pitchers. Dobbs has been off to a slow start offensively, and Redmond felt he would contribute the most by coming off of the bench to pinch hit late in games.

Miami infield coach Perry Hill, in his second stint with the team, has done his best to ensure that defensively, whoever is playing the position is familiar enough to make the necessary plays.

"There's a lot more to it than running over there and putting your foot on the white thing," Hill said in an interview with "There's a lot of details to learn to make the job easier we've been trying to cover."

In addition to Green, Chris Coghlan and Chris Valaika, before he went on the disabled list, were taking ground balls at first base with Hill's guidance. Miguel Olivo, the third catcher the team decided to carry in addition to Rob Brantly and Jeff Mathis, could play first base, as can Matt Diaz, though Diaz was placed on the 15-day disabled list several days ago.

Thought the depth at first base has been limited through the first two months of the season, that is likely to change in the coming weeks. Logan Morrison, who is expected to see most of the time at first base, is currently on a rehab assignment and is eligible to join the club in June.

Joe Mahoney and Casey Kotchman are also currently in the process of getting healthy, and once both do, Miami will likely add Kotchman to the 25-man roster while sending Mahoney to Triple-A New Orleans.

Although it hasn't been easy, with the help of players like Green, filling out the lineup card hasn't been as difficult for Redmond. Hill, though, emphasized the importance of adding depth at first base.

"We've had so many injuries at first, we've got to give [Redmond] some options," Hill said.