Welcome to the Big Leagues, Lewis Brinson. The Miami Marlins have notified the outfielder that he made the 25-man opening day roster and will be on hand when the team plays against the Chicago Cubs on March 29 at Marlins Park.
Shortly before Miami closed out its Grapefruit League schedule against the Astros, Brinson was called into manager Don Mattingly’s office and learned that he made the squad, Joe Frisaro of MLB.com wrote. First baseman/outfielder Garrett Cooper was also informed he was on the team.
The Marlins will have plenty of new faces when baseball become real later this week.
“Donnie told me, ‘Congrats, but the work doesn’t stop here,'” Brinson said. “He said, ‘We’re trying to win, and win as many games as we can.'”
Brinson is the team’s top minor league prospect, according to MLB Pipeline and is ranked 27th over all in MLB. A hometown native of Ft. Lauderdale, Lewis Brinson grew up with dreams of playing professional baseball in his own backyard. The trade by the Marlins that sent centerfielder Christian Yelich to Milwaukee made that wish come true.
The rookie will wear No. 9 in honor of his favorite player and former Miami Marlins star, Juan Pierre. Lewis Brinson and Pierre shared a moment this Spring Training when they met in Jupiter, the Marlins’ spring training home.
Both Brinson and Cooper were praised by Marlins manager Don Mattingly after the announcement was made about the team’s 2018 roster.
“Camp is about competition,” Mattingly said. “We think both of those guys earned a spot.”
The next question is where will Brinson hit in the Marlins’ lineup? There has been some talk he could lead off, but he could also hit anywhere in the order. Wherever the spot, Brinson hopes to make an impact in his first season with Miami.
“I take this opportunity and run with it,” Brinson said. “Very humbling. First Opening Day, and I’m very happy about that. Very excited to be playing on Thursday.”