2014 MLB Preview and Rankings: #29 Miami Marlins

Published: Mar 06, 2014 19:40pm EST
By Michael Owen, Sports Writer for Konsume Sports

Please Note: This article was updated Mar 07, 2014 @ 07:39pm EST


Spring training games have already begun and Opening Day is still a few weeks away, but the rite of passage that comes every Spring and finally getting to see actual ballgames going on in Florida and Arizona is enough to get any fan going.

There is still a lot of work to be done for some teams, position battles, last minute signings and so on. While one of the best things about Spring Training is that when it starts, anything can happen and every team has a chance.  Unfortunately for many teams those hopes can be shattered and lost by May.

As we begin playing ball, we have a pretty good idea of where each team stands and while each season is unpredictable, things can change at the drop of an Ace lefties torn rotator cuff.  

Over the next few weeks we'll give you a preseason ranking and analysis of each team daily.  feel free to disagree and voice your opinion

So with with all that being said, here we go:

30. Houston Astros 

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29. Miami Marlins

While the Astros have dedicated themselves to the youth movement the Miami Marlins, in the midst of a youth movement as well, have chosen to pepper their lineup with some veteran leadership with the additions of  3 guys that didn’t play in the Majors at all last year.

Rafael Furcal, expected to be the Marlins Opening Day starting second baseman and leadoff hitter missed all of 2013 due to Tommy John surgery, signed a 1 year contract to be Miami’s every day second bagger despite having been exclusively a shortstop his entire career and not having played second since playing 24  games there his rookie year.  Barring a total meltdown from 24 year old starting shortstop Adeiny Hechavarria, second is Furcal’s new home.

The Marlins also signed 1B/3B Casey McGehee, who had a fantastic year last year batting a solid .292 with an .890 OPS to go along with with 28 dingers and 93 RBIs in 144.  That said, he did that while playing the Rakuten Golden Eagles in Japan and the Marlins felt that was a strong enough showing to give him a shot to be their starter at 1st.

Expecting anything from their offense this year is too much to ask for.  The Marlins offense last year was beyond bad.  Miami finished last in runs scored, batting average, On Base percentage and slugging. 

Giancarlo Stanton led the Fish in all categories last year which would be impressive, if those numbers weren't .249, 24 HR, 62 RBI and a .365 OBP.

If the Marlins are going to make any improvement off of their 100 loss season from last year, it’s going to need some help from their pitching staff, particularly their starters that have an average age of 21.4 years old.  That will be a tall order.

This staff does have a chance to succeed however.  With reigning NL Rookie of the Year Jose Fernandez leading the staff and finesse guy Henderson Alvarez at the top of the rotation they should have the ability to keep the Marlins in most games.  A re-tooled bullpen with the addition of former Cubs closer/prospect Carlos Marmol should help as well.

Aside from a hopefully healthy Stanton and newly signed Jarrod Saltalamaccia, the Fish will be fielding a team full of guys that probably need more seasoning in the minors so even the slimmest of chances of being a dark horse isn’t likely. There will be improvement off of last years 100 loss season, but not much.

Prediction: 64-98


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