8/16/2013 11:35 P.M. ET
Marlins promote hard-throwing Caminero
With a fastball that reaches triple digits, right-hander could be future closer
By Joe Frisaro / MLB.com
MIAMI -- With a fastball that's reached 100 mph, Arquimedes Caminero is a prospect who may profile someday to be a closer. Time will tell.
But for the 26-year-old, the time is now for his first big league callup. The Marlins on Friday recalled Caminero, who is ranked as the team's No. 20 prospect by MLB.com, from Double-A Jacksonville two days after reliever Steven Ames was optioned to Triple-A New Orleans.
A Dominican Republic native, Caminero is one of the hardest throwers in Miami's system. At 6-foot-4, 255 pounds, he is an intimidating presence.
"It's a pretty exciting thing," Caminero said. "I wasn't really thinking about getting called up. I was trying to do something good in Jacksonville."
At Jacksonville, Caminero was 5-2 with a 3.61 ERA in 42 appearances. He had 68 strikeouts in 52 1/3 innings. While he throws hard, Caminero hasn't always consistently thrown strikes. For the Suns, he walked 21.
Caminero's fastball has topped 100 mph in the past. At Jacksonville, he was pitching between 96-99 mph. He also throws a slider and split-finger fastball.
"This is a guy who has the ability to go in there and pick up some strikeouts," manager Mike Redmond said.
Caminero has finally reached his big league dream, two years after he was sidelined due to Tommy John ligament repair surgery.
"You just have to keep fighting," he said.
The Marlins have been looking for candidates to work in the sixth and seventh innings. Ryan Webb, A.J. Ramos and lefty Dan Jennings are candidates. Caminero now likely will join them as he breaks into the big leagues.
If he progresses as expected, Caminero could work his way into an eighth-inning setup role, which currently is being anchored by Chad Qualls and lefty Mike Dunn. Steve Cishek has established himself as the closer.
In terms of pure stuff, Caminero may eventually emerge as a closer. The organization's philosophy on closers is they earn the job on performance, not projection.
Ames, 25, was acquired by the Marlins from the Dodgers as part of the Ricky Nolasco trade in early July. The right-hander made four appearances for Miami, going 0-1 with a 4.50 ERA (two earned runs in four innings). He struck out four and walked two.
In the Minors this year, Ames is a combined 2-2 with a 3.05 ERA and 34 strikeouts in 41 1/3 innings. He is a candidate to rejoin the Marlins in September when rosters expand.
Polanco should be fine after getting hit in head
MIAMI -- A wild Friday night at Marlins Park had a scary moment when Placido Polanco was struck on the helmet by a pitch.
After the Marlins lost, 14-10, to the Giants, Miami manager Mike Redmond said the 38-year-old third baseman should be fine. But his status will be treated as day to day.
"He kind of got hit on the back of the head," Redmond said. "He seems like everything is fine, as of right now, which is a big relief. It looks like he's going to be fine."
Leading off the eighth inning, Polanco was plunked by Santiago Casilla's 94 mph fastball. Polanco fell to the ground and was immediately tended to by team athletic trainer Sean Cunningham. Collecting himself, Polanco sat up as he was examined. A few minutes later, he walked off the field and was replaced by Ed Lucas.
"I hope Polanco was OK," Giants manager Bruce Bochy said. "That was a scary moment right there."
The Giants prevailed by four runs on a night both teams combined for a Marlins Park record for runs (24) and hits (35). Polanco went 1-for-4 with an RBI on the night. He is batting .253 on the sason with one home run and 21 RBIs.
The Marlins have been using Polanco and Lucas at third base.
"They evaluated him when they took him into the training room," Redmond said. "He didn't show any signs of a concussion. He should be fine. But obviously, we're going to monitor him day to day."
LoMo holding up well, getting hot at plate
MIAMI -- The daily grind is not wearing down Logan Morrison. In fact, the Marlins first baseman is heating up as the season progresses.
How Morrison holds up certainly is something the club is monitoring, since he is overcoming two surgeries to his right knee.
Friday night marked his 48th game since being reinstated from the disabled list in June.
"I feel good," Morrison said. "I'm getting more comfortable in the box. But I feel you're only as comfortable as your last AB."
Morrison is enjoying a productive August, batting .340 (16-for-47) with nine RBIs.
For the season, he is hitting .276 with four homers and 21 RBIs.
Missing so much time the past two seasons has put the left-handed-hitting first baseman in position of playing catchup.
"I don't really feel the fatigue part of it," said the first baseman, who turns 26 on Aug. 25. "The mental grind hasn't gotten to me. It's taking every game as another game. Every at-bat is another at-bat, and every pitch is the pitch you've got to win. Just staying in the moment, which is what you've got to do."
He credits a change in his hitting stance for helping him improve his timing.
"I think it's a mechanical change," Morrison said. "Not to get too technical, it's staying behind the ball."
Stanton back in lineup after mental breather
MIAMI -- A couple of days off may be exactly what Giancarlo Stanton needs to get back on track.
That's the hope. It hasn't always been the case in the roughest stretch of the 23-year-old's career.
The Marlins slugger is batting .237 with 13 home runs and 35 RBIs. In August, he's hitting at a .136 (6-for-44) clip. His last home run came July 28 at Marlins Park against Pittsburgh.
To help ease Stanton's mind, manager Mike Redmond gave him Wednesday off at Kansas City. Because the team had a scheduled off-day Thursday, Stanton should be refreshed with a two-day breather.
"You have a guy who obviously is so important to this lineup and this ballclub," Redmond said. "I wish I never had to give him a day off. Obviously, that would be easy for me.
"At the same time, too, you've got to look at him. I know he's been struggling. It made sense for me. As tough as it is to get him out of there, sometimes it's the right thing to do."
In Stanton, Redmond sees a hitter who is lacking conviction.
"Personally, for me, it's always centered around one thing, and that's confidence," Redmond said. "It really comes down to confidence. All hitters ride those streaks. When they're confident, they can hit anything. When they're not, they struggle."