Miami Marlins outfielder Monte Harrison has been called up to the major league roster and is expected to make his MLB debut this coming week when the Marlins continue their season in Baltimore, per Craig Mish. This call-up is one of several the Marlins are expected to make in the aftermath of a COVID-19 outbreak that will land most of their 2020 Opening Day roster on the injured list. The club hasn’t formally announced the move yet.
Despite a solid summer camp, the Marlins optioned Harrison down to their reserve squad in Jupiter. This could have been partly due to the fact that the Marlins wanted to gain an extra year of control over him—keeping him down through July 28 assured that he won’t qualify for free agency until after the 2026 season (at the earliest).
Regardless of the reason, Harrison made it very clear that he would be prepared when his opportunity arrived.
“I have prepared myself mentally and physically to be in the big leagues,” Harrison said in a conference call just prior to the season. “Actually, I don’t think I’m ready, I know I’m ready.”
Harrison provides power and speed to a lineup that will certainly have holes to be plugged. In 56 games in Triple-A last year, he slashed .274/.357/.451 with 9 HR, 24 RBI, and 20 SB.
Joining Harrison on the trip from Jupiter to Baltimore will be fellow outfielder Lewis Brinson. The 26-year old hadn’t been seen at all during summer camp after being put on the 10-day IL for unspecified reasons. Despite hitting for .345 and 3 HRs in 13 spring training games, the substantial time missed during the summer meant he had a lot of ground to make up in order to get into game-ready condition. With at least two Marlins outfielders sidelined (Garrett Cooper and Harold Ramirez), that gave Brinson the opportunity to find his way back into the big leagues.
Rounding out the outfield reinforcements will be Matt Joyce. Like Brinson, Joyce was also placed on the 10-day IL during summer camp and the Marlins have provided no definitive updates on his condition since then. But Mish reported Friday that he has tested negative for COVID-19. Joyce, who hit .295/.408/.450 with seven home runs in 238 plate appearances last year with Atlanta, was signed by the Marlins last offseason with the hope of having him be a veteran leader in the clubhouse, much like Curtis Granderson was last year.
Joyce celebrates his 36th birthday on Monday.
Also being called up is middle infielder Eddy Alvarez. Alvarez hit .323 with 12 HR in 70 games in 2019, with most of that production coming at Triple-A.
Right-hander Humberto Mejia will be available for the Fish, according to Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald, although only for emergencies as part of their taxi squad rather than the active 30-man roster. Mejia, who has yet to make his MLB debut, had a 2.09 ERA in 90 1⁄3 IP across Low-A and High-A.
The Marlins also added several pitchers through the waiver wire, free agency, and trades:
-Josh D. Smith
Mish reported that Jonathan Villar, Corey Dickerson, Jesús Aguilar, Jon Berti, and Brian Anderson are all healthy and ready to play. However, the Marlins attempted to plug their other lineup holes with the following recent acquisitions:
As of now, the Marlins are scheduled to resume play on Tuesday at the Baltimore Orioles, where they will play four games in three days. From there, they will go to New York to play the Mets from August 7-9, and then to Buffalo to play the Blue Jays on August 11 and 12. If all goes as planned, the Fish will come home to Miami on August 14 to play the Atlanta Braves.