The Miami Marlins moved a step closer to completing their Opening Night roster with several cuts on Thursday per the Miami Herald.
Jake Marisnick and Donovan Solano were optioned to AAA New Orleans, while Matt Angle, Henry Rodriguez, Austin Nola, Juan Diaz, and Chris Hatcher were reassigned to minor league camp according to the report. The five players who were reassigned were all in camp as non-roster invitees and they will have their minor league level decided at a later date. Most, if not all are likely destined for AAA New Orleans.
Marisnick had a tremendous spring and outplayed Marcell Ozuna who will likely be the starting center-fielder. While he will open the year in the minors, Marisnick remains a likely candidate for a call-up later in the season. After having a rough time in the big leagues in 2013, Marisnick entered camp as the underdog but ended up with a slas hline of .432/.479/.591 and also swiped four bases. His eye at the plate was also exceptional as Marisnick walked four times and struck out only five times in 44 at-bats per Baseball-Reference.com.
Solano was battling Ed Lucas for the utility job on the roster and had a good spring. Unfortunately for Solano, his competition also had a good Grapefruit League and offers the benefit of playing first base. While Lucas is not going to see much time at first, he has experience there and the Marlins have shown they prefer players who can play as many positions as possible.
Hatcher couldn't have done more this spring turning in nine shutout innings with eight strikeouts according to his stat line but he isn't on the 40-man roster. In addition, there are a lack of bullpen jobs available right now at the big league level. Hatcher will likely serve as a late inning reliever for New Orleans, and could see big league time in 2014.
Rafael Furcal is also going to be placed on the disabled list according to the Herald, which would open the door to Derek Dietrich making the team. Dietrich who recently broke his nose had an excellent spring, but was likely destined for AAA prior to the injury to Furcal.
The Marlins will begin their season Monday night against the Colorado Rockies at Marlins Park.