JUPITER -- Justin Bour is only worried about what he can control. The veteran first baseman may have had an opportunity to compete for time at first base in 2015 before the Marlins signed Michael Morse in January. Bour can still earn one of Miami's final roster spots with a solid spring, and his mindset did not change when he learned of the Morse signing.
"Just as long as I take care of business the way I need to I'll get an opportunity to play at some point," Bour said. "[The Morse signing] doesn't really change anything for me too much. Morse is obviously a great player."
Bour, 26, saw time in 39 games with the Marlins last season. He posted a .284/.361/.365 batting line to complement one home run and 11 RBIs. Although he gave the Marlins depth at the end of the season, Bour spent most of 2014 in Triple-A New Orleans, posting a .306/.372/.517 line in addition to 18 home runs and 72 RBIs. Bour received an opportunity to pinch hit, and he is confident that experience will help him improve this spring.
"I was the guy who was coming off the bench," Bour said. "That was a good experience for me to kind of learn that side of it. I think that's going to help me in my future playing in the big leagues."
If the Marlins opt to carry 12 pitchers, five backup bench spots would be available. Jeff Baker, Jeff Mathis, and Ichiro Suzuki will take three of them, with Derek Dietrich, Donovan Solano, Miguel Rojas, and a handful of non-roster invitees battling for the final two spots this spring. Miami has sought versatile players throughout the course of the offseason, however Bour only plays first base. Despite impressing the front office in 74 at-bats last season, that may hurt his chances of making the club.
Bour is confident the Marlins will be competitive in 2015, and he is hoping to receive an opportunity to play consistently. Whether that be with Miami or Triple-A New Orleans, he is ready to compete.
"I just need to keep doing what I'm doing and when I get an opportunity make the most of it," Bour said. "Everybody is very excited about the moves we made this offseason. It looks great on paper and we'll see how things shape out during the spring."