Marlins round out roster with Murphy, Gaudin
Veteran edges Solano, reliever beats Glover in competitions
JUPITER, Fla. -- The final tough calls have been made, and the players have been informed. But officially, the Marlins have yet to announce their remaining roster moves.
That is expected to occur when rosters must be set on Wednesday, before the Marlins and Cardinals open the regular season at Marlins Park.
Miami plans to carry Donnie Murphy as a utility player, and Chad Gaudin, a non-roster invitee, as a long reliever.
The decision to go with Murphy was difficult, because infielder Donovan Solano, a non-roster invitee, had a sensational camp.
In 22 games, he batted .410 (16-for-39), compared to a .225 average for Murphy, who is 9-for-40.
"We talked to Solano today," manager Ozzie Guillen said. "Solano is staying in Triple-A. We're going to take Murphy. Solano has had the best Spring Training I've ever seen. I had to explain to him everything about the details, and why he's not on the ballclub. It was kind of hard."
Solano will travel with the team to Miami and be in uniform for the exhibitions on Sunday and Monday against the Yankees.
Solano will start off at New Orleans, playing every day.
His situation is similar to Wade LeBlanc being optioned to New Orleans, despite a strong spring.
As for the bullpen, Gaudin has had a strong spring, posting a 1.26 ERA in nine appearances. Gary Glover, another non-roster invitee, will be heading to Triple-A, despite not allowing a run in 10 2/3 innings.
Solano can play shortstop, third base and second base. Guillen noted he is likely to get the first call if there is a need at the big league level.
"He did something we never thought he was going to do," Guillen said. "He opened a lot of people's eyes. Sooner or later, that's the first guy who is coming up.
"I don't think it's fair, because this kid is playing very well, very well. I wish we could take 26, but we can take 25. We thought, as an organization, as a team, the best thing for him and for us is to send him to the Minors and see what happens. Baseball is not won with 25 guys. They have to be ready."
As for Murphy, Guillen said: "This guy has got big league experience. He got to pinch-hit. How we're going to use him, we don't know yet."
On Saturday, the Marlins officially selected the contract of outfielder Austin Kearns, who now makes the team.
Exhibitions vs. Yanks like old times for Reyes
JUPITER, Fla. -- Signing with the Marlins isn't stopping Jose Reyes from once again facing the Yankees.
In a trial run of the Marlins' new ballpark, the team will play exhibition games on Sunday and Monday against New York.
For Reyes, it will be like old times. A four-time All-Star with the Mets, Reyes annually played the Yankees in Interleague Play.
"It's going to be nice, even if it's a Spring Training game," Reyes said. "When you play against the Yankees, it's like you're playing a playoff game. It's like you're playing in the World Series.
"I had the opportunity in New York to play against the Yankees every year. It's an unbelievable feeling. The Yankees, they've been the best organization. It's fun to play them."
In New York, Reyes regularly was compared to Derek Jeter.
Reyes says he patterns his game after the Yankees' captain.
"Jeter is the guy that I look up to because of the way he plays the game," Reyes said. "He plays the game the right way. He plays hard every day. That's why Jeter is one of my favorite players in the big leagues."
Buehrle pronounces himself ready for season
JUPITER, Fla. -- Throwing poorly isn't entirely disappointing in Spring Training.
Marlins veteran Mark Buehrle points that out while assessing his camp.
"I feel like I've thrown terribly, like always," Buehrle said. "But again, it's not all about results. It's about getting your work in and your innings up and pitch count up. I'm ready for Opening Day."
Saturday was the final Grapefruit League tuneup for Buehrle, who worked 5 1/3 innings, giving up four runs (three earned) on seven hits. In four Grapefruit League starts, his ERA is 6.62.
Marlins manager Ozzie Guillen had Buehrle with him when they both were with the White Sox. Based on the left-hander's track record, this has been a productive Spring Training.
"That's the first time I've managed Buehrle where he's had a pretty good Spring Training," Guillen said. "Every Spring Training I saw him before was pretty ugly."
Most telling was that his pitch count reached 93 on Saturday.
Next up for Buehrle is the regular season. The lefty is Miami's No. 2 starter, and he will open on Thursday at Cincinnati.
"I'm healthy. I got up to 90 pitches," the veteran said. "Obviously, you want to go deeper into the game, innings-wise. But the pitch count is up. My offspeed pitches felt good today. It wasn't the greatest fastball command, but overall, I feel ready to go."
Ozzie not concerned about low spring average
JUPITER, Fla. -- Ranking near the bottom in Spring Training batting average doesn't bother Marlins manager Ozzie Guillen.
The fact that Miami rates near the top in ERA is more telling.
The Marlins entered Saturday, their last game of the spring at Roger Dean Stadium, with a 3.10 ERA. Only the Blue Jays' 2.65 ERA is better in the Majors.
Offensively, Miami's .234 batting average is the third-lowest in the Majors.
Injuries have been a factor. For most of camp, Giancarlo Stanton (left knee) and Logan Morrison (right knee) have been out. Stanton projects to hit fourth and Morrison fifth.
The team also has been without Greg Dobbs (left hamstring), who is their primary bench option.
"That can be an excuse, yeah," Guillen said. "Besides that, everybody has been DHing against us. We'd been using the pitcher [hitting] for 2 1/2 weeks. We haven't had the fourth, fifth and seventh hitter most of the time. Most of the time in Spring Training, you play three innings here, four innings there.
"But the one thing I'm very happy and excited and pleased is the way we've pitched. We're going to hit. The only question mark is how we're going to pitch."
Marlins Park exhibitions to be on local TV
JUPITER, Fla. -- For most of Spring Training, the Marlins received plenty of national attention. The focus the next two days will be more local.
The television cameras will be rolling when the Marlins face the Yankees in back-to-back exhibitions at Marlins Park.
Sun Sports will air Sunday's 1:10 p.m. ET game at Marlins Park, and Fox Sports Florida will handle the game on Monday, with the start time set for 7:10 p.m. ET.
Rich Waltz and Tommy Hutton will broadcast the games.
"We're going to use those as a nice little showcase, not only for the team, but for the new ballpark," Hutton said.
The two games with the Yankees are part of a series of soft openings at Marlins Park before the regular season begins on Wednesday night against the Cardinals.
ESPN will televise Opening Night.
"Since we're not doing Opening Night, ESPN has that, we're going to do our best to show off the new ballpark," Hutton said. "And show off the new ballclub. It looks like everybody is healthy. All systems go."
For most of camp, left fielder Logan Morrison (left knee) and Giancarlo Stanton (right knee) were out with injuries. The projected Opening Night lineup first played together on Friday at the Nationals.
Overall, the Marlins had a solid spring. The pitching has been strong, reflected by the fact the club optioned Wade LeBlanc to Triple-A on Friday, despite the lefty having a strong camp.
"It was hard to really formulate the whole lineup, because the whole lineup didn't really play together until [Friday]," Hutton said. "It was really hard to see how that was all going to come together. But when you can come out of Spring Training with pretty much everybody healthy, especially the pitchers ... When you have to send a guy down like LeBlanc, that's good. It's not good for him. But it's good for the organization."