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Offishial news, 2/3/21: New radio approach; M-V-Berti?

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The latest Marlins news roundup with two weeks until pitchers and catchers report to spring training.

MLB: San Diego Padres at Miami Marlins Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

A new WINZing formula

The Miami Herald’s Barry Jackson reports on pending changes to 940 WINZ Marlins radio broadcasts for the 2021 season “aimed toward diversifying their broadcast booth and using a new approach of pairing a trained play-by-play voice with an analyst, as opposed to two natural play-by-play announcers working together and splitting innings in the same game.” Hall of Famer Dave Van Horne will only be on the call for approximately one-third of the schedule, with Glenn Geffner taking the rest. The two will rarely (if ever) be paired together moving forward.

Analysts alongside Van Horne and Geffner will include J.P. Arencibia, Gaby Sanchez and Kelly Saco. Ordinarily a host and reporter on the television side, Saco made history in 2019 as the first woman to call a Marlins regular season game on the radio. She discussed that experience with me on the Fish Stripes podcast.

Jackson adds in his column that the Marlins and FOX Sports Florida (soon-to-be-called Bally Sports Florida) are “moving closer” to finalizing their long-awaited local TV contract. Paul Severino and Todd Hollandsworth will share the booth for a fourth straight season.

The computer says...

Baseball Prospectus has released its annual PECOTA projections with 2021 stat lines for thousands of baseball players (including those with virtually no chance of reaching the majors). Subscribe to BP for the full spreadsheets; I’m giving you a little taste of them for Marlins hitters and Marlins pitchers with separate tabs for the 50th percentile (average), 99th percentile (absolute best-case scenario) and 80th percentile outcomes.

Factoring in his elite baserunning ability and assuming he’ll be starting on a near-daily basis, PECOTA surprisingly believes in Jon Berti to contribute more value than any other Marlins position player based on WARP (Wins Above Replacement Player). The system’s most comparable players for Berti are José Valentín, Dale Sveum and former All-Star Ian Desmond. Starling Marte and Brian Anderson are second and third, respectively.

On the pitching side, PECOTA’s favorite Marlins are Pablo López, Elieser Hernandez, Sixto Sánchez and Sandy Alcantara, in that order.

Walk-off links

  • Co-hosting the Miami Herald’s Fish Bytes podcast with Jordan McPherson, Craig Mish holds out hope for a reunion between the Marlins and Brandon Kintzler and reports that the club “exchanged names” of young players with the Red Sox at one point during their Andrew Benintendi trade negotiations. However, he estimates that the likelihood of acquiring Benintendi before Opening Day is less than 50%. More nuggets from Mish in this column.
  • You want more pods? Of course you do. Locked On Marlins has reaction to Jordan Yamamoto’s departure while Swimming Upstream gets to know Quint Studer, owner of the Marlins High-A Beloit and Double-A Pensacola affiliates.
  • MLB Pipeline rates Max Meyer’s slider and Sixto Sánchez’s changeup as the best of any pitcher on the outlet’s updated Top 100 prospects list.
  • “I’ve finally settled on a (changeup) grip, but it’s been endless work,” Zach McCambley tells Baseball America. The third-round draft pick has spent much of his offseason at the organization’s complex in Jupiter.
  • Newly acquired infield prospect Federico Polanco has been posting hitting and running drills to his Instagram account to get us hyped for his future in the Marlins organization.
  • The latest SB Nation Reacts survey focused on potential MLB expansion teams.

  • Miami-Dade County wants a bigger slice of the pie from Jeffrey Loria’s sale of the Marlins. The board of commissioners delayed voting on a $4.2 million proposed settlement pending the review of additional documents.
  • Roger Dean Chevrolet Stadium is accepting applicants for various full-time and part-time positions and internships.
  • We have made it roughly two-thirds of the way through the All-Time Marlins Countdown.
  • Turn back the clock to one the Marlins’ most glorious regular season moments, courtesy of Emilio Bonifacio: