Miami Marlins Bring in two Veterans

Miami Marlins Bring in two Veterans
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Miami Marlins bring in two veterans, both of whom have boosted the competition at Spring Training. The signings of infielders Yuli Gurriel and Jose Iglesias not only bring leadership and experience, but they will also be counted on to help a young inexperienced team. At this point, both players have agreed to minor league contracts with the opportunity to make the big-league club.

How they Fit

How the two fit in the lineup could be settled early. Gurriel spent his first seven seasons with the Houston Astros. He won the AL Batting title and a Gold Glove in 2021 and is a two-time World Series winner. He gives the Marlins a true backup first baseman and might be even a better defender than current starter Garrett Cooper.

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Gurriel turns 39 in June. If he can still show that he can hit, he could be a possible starter at first base on occasion or at DH. They are also hoping for him to provide offense for a team that ranked in the bottom three in runs and slugging last year.

Iglesias could immediately step in and provide backup at shortstop for Joey Wendle. A big problem for the Marlins last season was the lack of success when facing lefties. Iglesias hit .295 against lefties last season—and has hit them well during his career. He is also known for his glove work and would provide a right-handed-hitting complement to the lefty-hitting Wendle. Iglesias has experience at both second and third base and could be a spot starter at both of those positions.

Short Time Left

The two players were signed last week, leaving only a short time left in Spring Training to showcase their talents. They will need this time to try and win a spot on the big-league roster. While the Marlins need to watch out for overworking them and risking injury, they also need to know if either or both still have the stamina and any skills left to help out the team. Both Gurriel and Iglesias are veterans and know what it takes to get ready. They will take the rest of camp to get in game shape while proving they can still contribute.

Nothing is Guaranteed

Miami Marlins bring in two veterans, Gurriel and Iglesias, but nothing is guaranteed for either. Both players have opt-out clauses allowing them to elect free agency if they aren’t selected for the Opening Day roster. Nevertheless, they do fill roster positions as a backup first baseman (Gurriel) and as a platoon shortstop or late-inning defensive sub (Iglesias).

Leadership

Both players are at the end of their careers. Still, Gurriel and Iglesias can assist through their leadership, experience, and knowledge of the game. They can mentor younger and inexperienced players on what it takes to be an MLB player both on and off the field and help them improve their gameplay with tips and tweaks.

It is expected to be a challenging season for the Marlins and their fans. Having veterans like Gurriel and Iglesias in addition to veteran pitcher Johnny Cueto, veteran infielder Jean Segura, and some hungry up-and-coming young players could mean the difference between dismal and contending. The Marlins might not be as bad as the analysts have indicated they would be.

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James Marshall

James Marshall

Jim Marshall has lived in Phoenix, AZ for 50 years. He is an avid baseball fan, but enjoys all of Arizona's local sports teams, including Diamondbacks, Suns, Cardinals and Coyotes. In addition to the four major sports, he closely follows the Phoenix Mercury, Arizona Rattlers and Arizona State Sun Devils. Jim's passion for baseball continues beyond the field as he is an avid collector of baseball memorabilia. His favorite athlete of all time is Baseball Hall of Fame member Harmon Killebrew. In addition to watching, reading and talking about sports, he takes time to travel and appreciate the great state of Arizona with his lovely wife, Patti.

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