Minor League Moves
Earlier this week, the Marlins assigned right-hander Hector Noesi and catcher Tyler Heineman to Triple-A New Orleans. Noesi produced a 8.46 ERA over 12 appearances throughout 2019, while Heineman made his MLB debut in September and was used sparingly over the last few weeks of the season. Reliever Josh Smith was claimed off waivers by the Reds, too, so Miami now has three open spots on the 40-man roster which will be vital for protecting some of the organization’s top prospects from the upcoming Rule 5 Draft at the Winter Meetings.
Projecting the Rotation
The starting rotation was a bright spot for the Marlins this season, and there is a lot of promise to build upon moving forward with the likes of Sandy Alcantara and Caleb Smith on the roster. The pair are safe bets to make the Opening Day rotation based on what they have shown thus far, but there are more than a handful of players who will be battling for the final three spots in Spring Training, including some notable prospects. Having such a talented depth chart bodes well for the future.
Mesa's Debut Getting Closer
After all of the hype surrounding the Marlins when they made Víctor Víctor Mesa, the most expensive international signing in franchise history one year ago, the Cuban outfielder largely struggled through an underwhelming pro debut, batting .235 across High-A and Double-A. Now in the Arizona Fall League to gain further experience, results have improved markedly at the plate for the 23-year-old, which could be a sign that he is finally adjusting to the American game. Our own Juan Páez takes a comprehensive look at his 2019 performance and long-term outlook.
Keeping Hold of Prado
When Martin Prado was substituted out of the game in the ninth inning on Closing Day, the emotions he displayed when walking off the field suggested that the long-time Marlin may be hanging up his cleats instead of hitting the free agent market. A veteran leader on a young team over the past few seasons, Prado has earned huge amounts of respect from the entire organization during his tenure. He could still be an important part of this rebuild without playing another game if the organization does the smart thing and offers him a coaching/player development role.
Marlins beat reporter Joe Frisaro answered questions on both Mesa and Prado in his most recent fan inbox, as well as discuss the overall progress of the rebuild and potential veteran leaders on the 2020 team. The full piece can be found here.