The new look Miami Marlins had 12 players that made their first Opening Day roster. Miami ripped apart the old roster, trading away big names or releasing players who made an impact on the organization and the community.
Per Joe Frisaro of MLB.com, “All MLB rosters had to be set by 11:30 a.m. ET on Thursday, and Miami waited until pretty close to the deadline, finalizing details at 9 a.m. The last-minute moves included placing right-hander Brett Graves (left oblique) on the 60-day disabled list and designating catcher Austin Nola for assignment.”
Manager Don Mattingly has a tough task in shaping a team that only had one player in the Opening Day lineup from 2017. Despite the effort early on, the Miami Marlins fell to the Chicago Cubs, 8-4 at Marlins Park.
Mattingly sees this roster as 25 players who all need to grow together to bond. With 161 games remaining in the regular season, it could be a long year in South Florida.
“The maturation process is part of our older veterans, too,” Mattingly said. “Guys that have been there, you’re going to ask these guys to be part of our maturation process. That’s probably the greatest feeling for a manager and a coach is to help guys develop, and bring that along. When you see guys mature, it’s really fun to watch.”
The Miami Marlins are in their first year under new owners Derek Jeter and Bruce Sherman. Jeter hopes the moves made this offseason will yield a winner in time, but there is no true timetable for that success. Lewis Brinson, the team’s starting centerfielder, celebrated Opening Day. Brinson is a Ft. Lauderdale native and hoped to play in a Miami Marlins uniform when he was a child.
“It will definitely sink in once that first pitch is thrown,” Brinson said. “Luckily, it’s a day game, so I don’t have too much time to get nervous or excited or anything. Just wake up, get to the field and start playing.”
Frisaro points out Jarlin Garcia, Tayron Guerrero, Chris O’Grady, Dillon Peters, Caleb Smith, Drew Steckenrider, Chad Wallach, Tomas Telis, Garrett Cooper, Brian Anderson and Braxton Lee will be on an Opening Day roster for the first time.
Anderson looked sharp in his first game of the season. He said starting at third base in place of Martin Prado was what he hoped it would be.
“It’s extremely exciting,” said Anderson, who will start at third base. “It’s everything that you’ve worked for growing up. It’s a big personal goal to make an Opening Day roster. From here on out, it’s just continuing to work and continuing to get better and just be as consistent as possible.
The Miami Marlins have 13 position players on their roster and 12 pitchers.