The Marlins minor league affiliates have wrapped up their 2018 seasons. Many prospects now return home to recover from the grind, but a few will earn cup of coffees with the Fish for the rest of the September schedule.
Beginning last Saturday, MLB active rosters expanded from 25 to 40 spots. Miami’s first wave of call-ups included right-handers Sandy Alcántara, Jeff Brigham and Nick Wittgren and catcher Chad Wallach. Lewis Brinson (hip) and Martín Prado (quad) were activated from the disabled list.
MLB.com’s Joe Frisaro reports that more reinforcements are on the way. Utility man Christopher Bostick and right-hander Tyler Kinley will earn promotions from Triple-A New Orleans.
Bostick is a minor league journeyman who provides some defensive versatility. Long considered a second baseman, he’s gained plenty of experience at all three outfield spots over the past two seasons. The 25-year-old posted a mediocre .281/.338/.297 slash line in 16 games with New Orleans, though he had been a much more formidable .295/.351/.436 with the Pirates’ Triple-A affiliate earlier in 2018. The Marlins purchased him from Pittsburgh in the aftermath of the Justin Bour trade.
I’m intrigued by Kinley. The Twins surprised many across the industry in December, acquiring him from the Marlins during the Rule 5 draft. Entering his age-27 season, Kinley had no experience above Double-A, yet they liked what he showed in spring training and seemed convince that he could contribute to a contending team’s bullpen.
Whoops! The South Florida native coughed up nine earned runs in his first 3 1⁄3 innings (24.30 ERA) and the Twins promptly returned him. Kinley has been with NOLA ever since (2.93 ERA/3.25 FIP/3.87 xFIP, 32.6 K%). He does not have a 40-man roster spot, but one could simply be created by placing an injured player on the 60-day DL.
The additions of Bostick and Kinley would give Don Mattingly 32 healthy players in the clubhouse, and there’s reason to suspect even more later in the week. Jarlin García (right ankle contusion) and Elieser Hernandez (right finger blister) both made multi-inning appearances for the Baby Cakes on Sunday. It’s unclear why they would bother with those brief rehab assignments unless the Marlins expected to use them down the stretch.
Follow us on Fish Stripes for further coverage. As we await these official moves, here’s Andrew’s final farm report.