Please leave any Icthy picks in the comments below. Remember, we introduced a new grand prize for the contest this season.
9/1/18 Probable Starters
|Marco Estrada||Blue Jays||120.0||5.18||5.27||6.88||0.6|
|Lourdes Gurriel - SS||JT Riddle - SS|
|Devon Travis - 2B||Lewis Brinson - CF|
|Justin Smoak - 1B||J.T. Realmuto - C|
|Randal Grichuk - RF||Brian Anderson - 3B|
|Kevin Pillar - CF||Martin Prado - 1B|
|Russell Martin - 3B||Austin Dean - LF|
|Danny Jansen - C||Miguel Rojas - 2B|
|Teoscar Hernandez - LF||Magneuris Sierra - RF|
|Marco Estrada - RHP||Wei-Yin Chen - LHP|
How many good relievers do the Marlins actually have?
A couple months ago, it looked like a handful. The front office was so enamored with them that the only bullpen arm traded for young assets was free-agent-to-be Brad Ziegler.
Fast-forward to Friday night and there are now serious doubts about the effectiveness of, well, everybody. A stint on the disabled list didn’t “fix” Kyle Barraclough and Drew Steckenrider is experiencing his first significant major league slump. They combined to blow a 5-1 lead in the ninth inning, as Justin Smoak’s two-out grand slam put the Blue Jays ahead to stay.
The MLB regular season divides evenly into six 27-game stages, and this marked the close of the penultimate stage. The Marlins had been gradually progressing in a positive direction, but the July 31-August 31 stretch represented a discouraging step backwards:
- Stage 1: 9-18, -51 run differential
- Stage 2: 11-16, -43 run differential
- Stage 3: 12-15, -18 run differential
- Stage 4: 14-13, -19 run differential
- Stage 5: 7-20, -53 run differential
- Stage 6: ???
On the bright side, reinforcements have arrived! As first reported by SiriusXM’s Craig Mish, the “first wave” of September call-ups includes Sandy Alcántara, Jeff Brigham, Lewis Brinson, Chad Wallach and Nick Wittgren. All except Brigham already had 40-man roster spots and MLB service time, but he earned it.
In addition, Martín Prado (quad strain) was reinstated from the disabled list and rookie right-hander Pablo López is done for the season with a right shoulder strain. The 22-year-old showed promise in 2018 with a 4.14 ERA, 4.48 FIP, 1.26 FIP during his 58.2 IP after dominating the high minors. Placing him on the 60-day DL created space for Brigham.
Our own Luis Davila urges you to stay calm—López should be at full strength for spring training:
Pablo Lopez’s shoulder injury will sideline him for the rest of the season as he has been put on the 60-day DL. I can confirm that surgery will not be required.— Luis Davila (@luisrdavi) September 1, 2018
The news of this injury makes the the club’s rotation plans down the stretch fairly straightforward. Expect a six-man staff of Alcántara, Brigham, Wei-Yin Chen, Trevor Richards, Dan Straily and José Ureña.
Don Mattingly gives us a preview of how they’ll be ordered for the next few series.
Marlins rotation for the next games:— Daniel Álvarez Montes (@DaniAlvarez_16) September 1, 2018
Brigham vs TOR 9/2
Ureña vs PHI 9/3
Richards vs PHI 9/4
Alcántara vs PHI 9/5
Speaking of Chen, he’s coming off his best month as a Marlin. Pitching three of four August starts at home, he posted a 1.54 ERA/3.62 FIP/4.08 xFIP and 24.5 K% in 23.1 IP.
He’ll try to continue that trend on Saturday beginning with a 7:10 p.m. first pitch.
Thread Question: Do you think Chen would have any trade value in the offseason if his month of September is as good as his August was?