Adeiny Hechavarria (pronounced Etch-a-Va-reeyuh) has a habit of making you forget how empty his bat is, with his nightly web-gems, but have no fear, I’m here to remind you of his tremendous downside.
Former Florida Marlin and high-kicking hurler Dontrelle Willis is working on his return to the big leagues yet again. The Milwaukee Brewers signed Willis yesterday to a minor league contract which includes a Spring Training invite. D-Train, now 33, has bounced around all over the place the past several seasons, and hasn’t pitched in MLB since 2011.
Of the 25 total so far, 10 are organizational minor leaguers currently not on the 40-man roster: right-handers Brian Ellington, Trevor Williams and Nick Wittgren; catcher Sharif Othman; infielders Justin Bohn, Austin Nola, Avery Romero, Viosergy Rosa and Jordany Valdespin; and outfielder Austin Wates.
A Marlins source said the team is cautiously optimistic despite MLB awarding San Diego the game for 2016, which normally would have gone to an American League team. But outgoing Commissioner Bud Selig and his successor, Rob Manfred, have indicated that alternating leagues is no longer a priority.
When your division rival makes the biggest free-agent splash of the offseason, you take notice. The Nationals landing Max Scherzer for a reported seven-year, $210 million contract has certainly gained the Marlins' attention.
The Marlins have invited 25 non-roster players to Major League Spring Training, including 15 players signed to Minor League deals. As of Wednesday afternoon, Miami will carry 65 players into Spring Training at Roger Dean Stadium in Jupiter, Fla.
Despite all the brilliant analysis, there's this one pesky thing called a 162-game schedule. It's a great thing, too, as it determines -- for real, and once and for all -- who are the best teams. So go ahead, prematurely coronate the Washington Nationals if you want. Everybody gets it.
The Marlins are in need of a fourth outfielder as Spring Training draws nearer, and 10-time All-Star Ichiro Suzuki still seems to top their list of potential targets. According to a report in the Miami Herald on Wednesday, the Marlins have offered Suzuki a one-year contract worth about $2 million, and they are "optimistic, but not certain" they will wind up signing him. MLB.com reported on Sunday that Miami has intensified talks with Suzuki and might be open to a two-year deal.
After he set national high school records with 88 hits and 119 RBIs in 2010, it took Realmuto a while to adjust to pro pitching, because he was focusing on making the transition from shortstop to catcher. Realmuto has become a solid receiver with a strong arm, as well as a line-drive hitter with doubles power and surprising baserunning savvy.
Guys throwing 100 mph in high school don't exactly grow on trees, and that's why Kolek was being considered to become the first prep right-hander to be taken No. 1 overall in the Draft. He went one spot later, much to Miami's delight. The Texas flamethrower is big and strong, with as much fastball as anyone on this list. He has two breaking balls, with the slider ahead of the curve. Kolek needs to keep improving his changeup and his command to become a complete top-of-the-rotation type.
Around The League
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Yasmany Tomas has only been working out for a few days at the D-backs' Spring Training facility, but already the team likes what it has seen from him at third base. Tomas, who was signed by the D-backs to a six-year, $68.5 million deal last month, was primarily an outfielder while in Cuba, but also played some third base. He has been working at third the last few days under the tutelage of former Major League infielder Andy Green, Minor League coach Tony Perezchica, manager Chip Hale and assistant hitting coach Mark Grace.
DETROIT -- Like a typical Michigan winter, the weather was chilly to greet David Price back to town Thursday for the Tigers Winter Caravan. Price, however, was not chilly to Detroit. If nothing else, he wanted to clear the air -- cold as it is -- about that when he talked with reporters Thursday for the first time since his roller-coaster 2014 season ended in October.
SAN FRANCISCO -- Ryan Vogelsong's return to the Giants appears close as the two sides near an agreement, even though the right-hander has been linked to numerous other clubs and San Francisco already has gathered a full contingent of starting pitchers. When contacted recently, Vogelsong's agent, Dave Meier, said that he has maintained talks with the Giants on his client's behalf, even while the free agent has been mentioned as a potential fit for rotation openings in Houston, Arizona and Philadelphia. It was reported that Vogelsong flew to Houston earlier this week to meet with Astros manager A.J. Hinch.
ATLANTA -- After spending the past couple of months making a flurry of trades, the Braves might have made their last significant offseason acquisition on Thursday night. Jonny Gomes and the Braves have agreed to a one-year contract for $4 million that includes a vesting option for the 2016 season. Financial terms were not revealed.
At Fish Stripes
The 30-year old starter improves a starting rotation that was already among the best in baseball.
The 26-year old may be available after the Nationals decided to sign Max Scherzer.
The Marlins could sign Ichiro Suzuki to a multi-year deal, but would such a contract be enough to coax the 155 hits the future Hall of Famer needs to join the 3,000-hit club?
The 41-year old was reportedly offered a $2 million contract for 2015.