There always is a surprise team in sports. There is always a team that, on paper, looks to be a bottomfeeder team but for whatever reason, the players mesh well and yield surprising results. This couldn’t be truer for the 2020 rendition of the Miami Marlins. Many people had them coming in last in the very top-heavy NL east however they did quite the opposite. They found early success after returning from an internal covid outbreak and they never looked back. While they were nowhere near a dominant team, they did just enough to sneak into the expanded playoffs as the 6 seed. So was this newfound success a result of their young core coming into their own or a result of getting hot at the right time in a 60 game sprint.
Marlins Projected Lineup and Slash lines
To preface this, for those who don’t know a slash line encompasses a player’s batting average, on-base percentage, and slugging percentage. The following lineup is a projection according to https://www.rotochamp.com/baseball/TeamPage.aspx?TeamID=MIA
- Corey Dickerson RF.280/.322/.464
- Starling Marte CF .285/.336/.465
- Jesus Aguilar 1B .261/.341./.461
- Brian Anderson 3B .264/.347/.444
- Adam Duvall LF .235/.301/.495
- Miguel Rojas SS .280/.338/.395
- Jon Berti 2B .267/.364/.394
- Jorge Alfaro C .263/.315/.424.
As you can see by these numbers, the Marlins are a team that preaches contact and working your way on base with six of eight position players having an on-base percentage of above .320. The newly added Adam Duvall will surely add some much-needed power to a squad that lacked home run pop last season. Duvall was the only player to have multiple three home run games in 2020.
Marlins Projected Rotation
- Sandy Alcantara 11-10 was 4.19 ERA
- Pablo Lopez 11-9 3.73 ERA
- Elieser Hernandez 7-9 4.41 ERA
- Sixto Sanchez 9-7 3.83 ERA
- Trevor Rogers 6-5 3.96 ERA
While these numbers aren’t very encouraging keep in mind that these pitchers are still fairly young and will grow. Whether that growth comes this season or not remains to be seen but as of this moment, the Marlins rotation looks pretty shakey. The development of these arms is the key if Miami is going to have any success this coming season.
Unlike the Toronto Blue Jays who snuck into the playoffs and they doubled down on their success by going out and signing free agents George Springer and Marcus Semien, The Mami Marlins have done very little to improve their team. The only moves they’ve made were signing the aforementioned Adam Duvall and trading young starter Jordan Yamamoto to the division-rival Mets in exchange for prospects.
For this reason, I think they will struggle over a full 162 games. I think that their lineup is solid and will be pesky to deal with. With that said, however, I’m not sure if that rotation is going to be able to hold up over a full season. For this reason, I am going to say that their rebuild is not complete. However, if the front office continues to make smart moves they will be there soon. It seems that their approach is to build slowly and lay a foundation. It seems to work for then so I’m sure they will continue this philosophy.