3/3/2014 5:53 P.M. ET
Heaney's talent receiving high praise from Marlins
By Joe Frisaro / MLB.com
JUPITER, Fla. -- Early impressions have the Marlins wanting to see more of Andrew Heaney, their highly-touted prospect.
Ranked by MLB.com as the top left-handed prospect in the game, Heaney caught the club's attention. His first Grapefruit League appearance was impressive, two shutout innings with two strikeouts against the Cardinals last Saturday.
"Very intriguing. He's got great stuff," manager Mike Redmond said. "He's got a great arm. He's an exciting type of guy."
Heaney is scheduled to throw one inning in a "B" game against the Cardinals on a back field on Wednesday, and he may be squeezed into a Grapefruit League game later in the week. The team wants to see him against MLB hitters.
As of now, he isn't scheduled to make any Grapefruit League starts, but that is subject to change.
The Marlins are in no hurry to rush the 22-year-old. He is regarded as a long shot to make the Opening Day rotation, but performance could change those plans.
The Marlins aren't hesitant when it comes to promoting their prospects. A year ago, Jose Fernandez made the leap from Class A ball to the big leagues, and went on to be the National League Rookie of the Year.
"When you think about Jose and what he was able to do last year," Redmond said, "Heaney is one of those guys who is exciting. He's a big part of our future. When that future starts, who knows? We know he's a big part of it."
The ninth overall pick in the 2012 First-Year Player Draft, Heaney has college experience having pitched at Oklahoma State. He dominated at the Class A and Double-A levels last year, combining for a 9-3 record with a 1.60 ERA.
What Fernandez did last year raised the bar for pitching prospects. But that doesn't mean the Marlins are looking to speed the development of Heaney.
"Last year was a different set of circumstances," Redmond said. "We got in a situation where we had some guys get injured. We needed someone, and he was the best guy. It really became an easy decision. He was the guy we needed to take, so we did."
The Marlins have pitching depth, and several candidates are in line for the fourth and fifth spots.
Jacob Turner, Tom Koehler, Brad Hand and Brian Flynn are also in the mix for the fourth and fifth spots.
"We have more depth," Redmond said. "We don't feel like we have to push [Heaney]. At the same time, too, we want to see what he can do, and try to give him as many opportunities as we can."
Turner shows signs of potential, progress to be made
JUPITER, Fla. -- With Marlins right-hander Jacob Turner, it isn't a matter of pure stuff. The question remains command.
Turner's first Grapefruit League start on Monday against the Astros was another example of some mixed results.
"He's one of those guys -- no telling how good this guy can be," Marlins manager Mike Redmond said. "He has the ability to make guys swing and miss. What I saw was a tighter breaking ball today than I've seen in the past. You just look at the crispness of the way the ball was coming out of his hand, and it looked good."
To the first two batters, Turner's fastball was 92-95 mph, and his slider was 82-83 mph. Both are good readings. His changeup is a work in progress, and he needs to slow it down a bit to create some separation from his fastball. His changeup was clocked at 87-89 mph.
Where Turner got in trouble on Monday came in the first inning. With the count full to Marc Krauss, Turner grooved a 92-mph fastball, which was promptly deposited over the wall in right field.
The solo homer was the lone run Turner allowed in two innings in Miami's 4-0 loss.
"You're going to leave pitches up," Turner said. "I left one up, and he got me."
Turner was more upset at himself for not putting Krauss away after getting ahead 1-2 in the count.
The 6-foot-5 Turner projects to be Miami's fourth starter, but the job isn't automatically his. But chances are, he will be because he is out of options, and the organization would risk losing him if he didn't make the Opening Day roster.
Turner also is striving to avoid the pitfalls he had last year in Spring Training, when his ERA was 9.69 in 13 innings.
The 22-year-old isn't getting caught up in last year.
"Really, it's like any other spring," he said. "Go out there and get ready for the season."
On Monday, Turner was heeding the advice of pitching coach Chuck Hernandez.
"Fastball command," Turner said. "Everything builds off that. That's what Chuck preaches to all of us, being able to throw your fastball to both sides of the plate. If you can do that, a lot of things will go your way."
Marlins preparing for replay challenges
JUPITER, Fla. -- With so many Grapefruit League games being televised, the Marlins are using the feeds to test potential reviewable plays.
Manager Mike Redmond said a couple of plays in Sunday's 10-3 loss to the Nationals in Viera, Fla., could have been challenged.
There was a close call at first base, and Kyle Jensen was out at home plate on a play the Marlins felt catcher Jhonatan Solano might have missed the tag.
"We didn't have a good angle on it," Redmond said. "There were only three angles. But it looked like he might have missed him, didn't tag him."
In the Marlins clubhouse, video coordinator Cullen McRae is reviewing plays, and relaying questionable plays to Redmond in the dugout.
Redmond said he is getting in touch with McRae about 10 seconds after seeing the review. In general, Redmond feels bang-bang plays at first base could be heavily challenged.
• Henderson Alvarez threw a bullpen session on Monday, and he felt fine. The right-hander has been dealing with an infection on his right shin, which caused him to skip his first scheduled start. Alvarez is scheduled to start on Friday against the Cardinals.
• Carlos Marmol returned to the Dominican Republic on Saturday to tend to a visa matter. He could return to camp in the next day or two.
• Henry Rodriguez passed his physical. The hard-throwing reliever, in camp as a non-roster invitee, played catch on Monday and is starting his way into shape. Rodriguez reported to camp over the weekend, after he had been delayed due to visa issues in Venezuela.