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Tag:Ozzie Guillen
Posted on: March 1, 2012 10:33 pm
 

Spring primer: Miami Marlins



By Matt Snyder


All of a sudden, in just one offseason, the Miami Marlins have undergone a complete makeover. They have a new name, logo and stadium. New, more colorful uniforms are part of the deal as well. Still, that's all window-dressing if the on-field product resembles the 72-90 one from 2011. And it doesn't. Not only did the Marlins bring in three highly-coveted and high-priced free agents, but they traded for fiery Carlos Zambrano and brought in one of the most outspoken -- and, at times, effective -- managers in baseball. How Ozzie Guillen's new-look troops fare in the 2012 season remains to be seen, but two things are certain: More people will be in attendance to find out and it's not going to be boring.

Major additions: SS Jose Reyes, LHP Mark Buehrle, RHP Carlos Zambrano, RHP Heath Bell, LHP Wade LeBlanc
Major departures: RHP Javier Vazquez, C John Baker, RHP Burke Badenhop, RHP Chris Volstad

Probable lineup
1. Jose Reyes, SS
2. Emilio Bonifacio, CF
3. Hanley Ramirez, 3B
4. Giancarlo Stanton, RF (a.k.a. Mike Stanton)
5. Logan Morrison, LF
6. Gaby Sanchez, 1B
7. John Buck, C
8. Omar Infante, 2B

Probable rotation
1. Josh Johnson
2. Mark Buehrle
3. Anibal Sanchez
4. Ricky Nolasco
5. Carlos Zambrano

Wade LeBlanc is the injury replacement.

Back-end bullpen
Closer: Heath Bell
Set-up: Edward Mujica, Mike Dunn

Important bench players

C Brett Hayes, IF Greg Dobbs, OF Scott Cousins, OF Bryan Petersen

Prospect to watch
For this year, there really aren't many guys on the radar ready to jump in and immediately help. Third base prospect Matt Dominguez is in Triple-A, but he's now blocked by one of the team leaders in Hanley Ramirez. All the other highly-ranked Marlins prospects are in the lower-levels of the minors. So we'll go with Dominguez here for this reason: Should he have a big first three months in Triple-A while the Marlins are in the thick of the pennant race, he makes for good trade bait at the deadline. Maybe they could use him to upgrade the bridge to Heath Bell or even as part of a package to landing a really good center fielder.

Fantasy breakout: Logan Morrison
"Morrison's track record suggests both his walk rate and BABIP should rebound, and in fact, his .268 BABIP from a year ago looks like the result of some horrendously bad luck. He is a strong bet to improve on his OBP and, at worst, maintain the home run power he displayed in 2011. Add in some improvement and subtract out his minor league demotion and DL time from last season, and Morrison suddenly profiles as a No. 3 mixed league OF." - Al Melchior [Full Marlins team fantasy preview]

Fantasy bounce-back: Hanley Ramirez
"Ramirez had a miserable first half last season, and just when he started to get untracked, he suffered a shoulder injury that led to season-ending surgery. As the season progressed, Ramirez adjusted and started hitting more line drives and flyballs, and his batting average and power numbers rose accordingly. Even though his overall stats were pale compared to his norms, a good sign for Ramirez was that his home run per flyball rate was not much lower than usual." - Al Melchior [Full Marlins team fantasy preview]

Optimistic outlook
Everyone behaves, Ramirez and Johnson stay healthy and have big seasons while the youngsters (Stanton, Morrison) develop into stars. Especially now that there are two wild cards, the Marlins have a great shot at the playoffs with this group. And once you get there, anything can happen, so I'd say an optimistic outlook has them winning the third World Series in franchise history. If you look at the upside in the offense and rotation in particular, it's hard to argue against a best-case scenario being a championship. Then again ...

Pessimistic outlook
Utter disaster. The club doesn't respond to Guillen, Johnson injures his arm again, Zambrano melts down, Morrison quibbles with management over Twitter, Ramirez starts slow and demands a trade due to wanting to play shortstop again ... you get it. I can't think of another club with such high-peak and low-valley potential entering the 2012 season. This group of personalities could be the new Bronx Zoo champion or a catastrophic mix on the field that finishes last. Almost literally, anything could happen. As I said in the intro, it certainly won't be boring. Just sit back, relax and enjoy the show.

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Posted on: February 28, 2012 11:34 am
Edited on: February 28, 2012 12:02 pm
 

Guillen's one rule: be on time for the anthem

Ozzie Guillen

By C. Trent Rosecrans


There's been a lot of talk about rules in the last couple of days in response to Bobby Valentine's new rule banning alcohol in the clubhouse. The Marlins don't have such a rule.

New Marlins manager Ozzie Guillen went on a rant -- a rant that could only come from Guillen -- about his one rule: be on time for the National Anthem.

Here's part of what he said, from Joe Capozzi of the Palm Beach Post:
"I don’t care if you go there buck-naked with your pants (bleeping) down your ass, your hair down to your legs. Just win games. When you win games you look cool. When you lose games, you look dirty," Guillen said.

"Be on time and play the game right – that's my rule. It should be that way. If you're late, you better give me a good excuse…

"You're late for the (bleeping) National Anthem? The National Anthem is (bleeping) 10 minutes before the game starts. We're going to start in 10 minutes and you're late?"
"A lot of people have been kllled to make this country free for us. You should be there for at least two minutes," he said.

"Respect that, especially if you come from another (darn) country, you should be there an hour before…

"I think it looks good for baseball when you are in the stands and you see the team respect the National Anthem," he said.

"Kids can see that, the respect."
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Posted on: February 17, 2012 11:44 am
 

Hanley Ramirez: '3B with Marlins forever baby'

By Matt Snyder

Thankfully, we're getting very close to putting this Hanley Ramirez-moving-to-third drama to bed. Earlier this week, Marlins manager Ozzie Guillen said Ramirez wasn't "100 percent" OK with the move, which is being made to accomodate Jose Reyes at shortstop. Guillen did say he felt Ramirez would be fine by opening day and that he thought any star wouldn't immediately be happy with changing positions.

It would appear Guillen was correct, as Ramirez now sounds completely on board with a move, seemingly in reaction to an opinion piece from a newspaper.

Responding to a column from a Dominican newspaper ("Hoy") where the writer said Ramirez's friendship with Reyes will inevitably be damaged -- in addition to claiming the Marlins signed Reyes to give them an excuse to rid themselves of an "immature" Ramirez -- Ramirez took to Twitter.

”Folks, via this medium I want to let everyone know that what came out in the newspaper Hoy about me, the team and Guillen is a lie,” Ramirez tweeted (in spanish, but translated by SunSentinel.com).

More: “And now what are you going to talk about if the whole world knows I’m going to play third base with the Marlins.” (in spanish, but translated by SunSentinel.com)

More: “Trying to soil my image with lies. Third base with the Marlins forever baby.” (in spanish, but translated by SunSentinel.com)

Finally, Ramirez tweeted a picture of himself sitting next to Reyes with both men smiling. I'm kind of surprised they weren't hugging.

It's good that Ramirez is embracing his move to third base, as well he should. It's the professional thing to do, and frankly, it will benefit him defensively. But in regards to him being angry people are talking about it, he needs to realize his manager is the one who fanned the flames earlier this week.

But now we know: Hanley Ramirez is happy and ready to play. So we can all move on.

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Posted on: February 15, 2012 11:17 am
 

Guillen: Hanley not '100 percent' OK with move

By Matt Snyder

While it made the offense much stronger, the signing of star shortstop Jose Reyes caused some drama for the newly-named Miami Marlins this winter. That's because, as we all know, the Marlins already had a star shortstop: Hanley Ramirez. The signing of Reyes pushed Ramirez to third base, though there were rumors floating around the Winter Meetings that Ramirez had demanded a trade. Those turned out to be false, but evidently he still isn't exactly happy about the move.

Marlins manager Ozzie Guillen point blank, almost emphatically, said, "no," when asked if Ramirez was "100 percent on board" with the move to third base. He didn't even hesitate, also saying that Ramirez was upset with having to change positions. Guillen did say, however, he expects Ramirez to be 100 percent OK with the move by the time they play St. Louis (opening day of the regular season) and that everyone should "just let it be."

Here's the entire video of Guillen discussing the situation, shot by Miami Herald writer Clark Spencer:



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Posted on: February 14, 2012 10:04 pm
Edited on: February 14, 2012 10:12 pm
 

MLB, Showtime believe 'The Franchise' has legs

Ozzie GuillenBy C. Trent Rosecrans

Over the next couple of weeks, Major League Baseball and Showtime will be planning out the rest of their shoots over the course of the season for this season of The Franchise, which will follow the Miami Marlins' season. But by the time the regular season begins in April, Chris Tully, MLB senior vice president  for broadcasting, said they'll already be looking for the 2013 subject.

"We think this concept has legs," Tully said on Tuesday. "I think Showtime has as much passion for the project as we do. The challenge was getting it launched, but once we were able to get over that hurdle, the reception has been excellent."

After following the Giants in season one, Tully said several teams approached MLB about opening their doors for the cameras in 2012. But as many teams as expressed interest, there was one team that just stood out and made the decision easy -- the new-look Marlins.

"I think we're foturnate with the players already on hand and the new players they brought in. With Ozzie (Guillen), the new stadium, the new branding, the new uniforms. We're catching them at the most opportune time."

Miami Marlins
It seems so. There will be no shortage of storylines for this season of The Franchise -- the show, Tully said, will no doubt touch on Guillen, Hanley Ramirez's move to third base to accommodate newcomer Jose Reyes, the addition of Heath Bell and Mark Buehrle, as well as the opening of a new stadium. Tully confirmed a Miami Herald report that the filming has already begun, including the Marlins' meeting with Cuban outfielder Yoenis Cespedes last week. The cameras will certainly be rolling when the Marlins' pitchers and catchers report for spring training this weekend.

But it's the stories that have yet to emerge that are the most exciting, Tully said. One of his favorite storylines in the Giants season was the unlikely emergence of Ryan Vogelsong, who hadn't pitched in the big leagues since 2006 and then made the All-Star team in 2011.

"One of the key things is giving access to viewers that they don't usually get," Tully said. "How do they interact with each other, with management and how they interact with their family and friends."

Last season the series started with a "sneak peak" in April and then started in July for a run of nine total episodes. This season is expected to be nine episodes, but it's unlikely they'll have a preview episode, starting the full nine half-hour episodes shortly after the All-Star break and running through September.

Most exciting, though, may be that we'll get the full, uncensored Guillen, who is known to like an expletive or two. Those were bleeped when he was featured as part of The Franchise's precursor The Club, on MLB Network.

"We didn't use bleeps last year," Tully said. "I don't think language is a focus or a concern."

It's just going to be a bonus.

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Posted on: February 13, 2012 12:38 pm
Edited on: February 13, 2012 12:48 pm
 

Showtime series to feature Guillen's Marlins

Ozzie Guillen

By C. Trent Rosecrans

Let the Ozzie show begin.

The Miami Marlins will be featured in this season of Showtime's The Franchise, MLB and the network announced on Monday. Last year the Giants were featured in the six-episode show that followed the Giants from spring training through the season.

The Marlins  are the perfect choice for the series, with not only new manager Ozzie Guillen, but also a new ballpark, new uniforms and new stars in Jose Reyes, Mark Buehrle and Heath Bell. Throw the ever-volatile Carlos Zambrano into the mix and you may have some television magic.

The 2012 version of the series has already started filming. The Miami Herald reported last week that a camera crew from Major League Baseball filmed the team's meeting with free-agent Cuban outfielder Yoenis Cespedes last week in Miami, while Monday's release from MLB and Showtime noted the production has already begun.

The Marlins seem ideal for the task, just looking at the players on the team, and their new manager.

While Guillen will get plenty of face time to be sure, there's also several other entertaining players on the team. Outfielder Logan Morrison has made more of a name for himself with his antics on Twitter than his play on the field, while Bell is one of the game's great characters.

Then there's real-life baseball reasons to follow -- how will Hanley Ramirez take to moving to third base? How about Josh Johnson's return from shoulder inflammation that cost him the majority of 2011. And then there's just the sheer baseball thrill of watching Mike Stanton, one of the best young players in the game. Add a new park, new expectations and the fact that the pay-cable channel won't bleep Guillen and the Marlins were easily the best choice for Showtime -- and the viewers.

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Posted on: January 20, 2012 9:47 pm
 

Guillen tweets: 'When I talk going to be fun'

Ozzie Guillen

By C. Trent Rosecrans


Last week White Sox pitcher Jake Peavy fired a shot at former manager Ozzie Guillen on a Chicago sports talk radio show, saying it wasn't the pitcher who "quit" on the White Sox, but the manager.

"At the end of the day, Ozzie didn't finish the season with us the last few games, so I don't know who quit on who," Peavy told Chris Rongey on White Sox Weekly on WSCR 670-AM in Chicago. "It is what it is and we're all looking forward to 2012."

That didn't sit well with Guillen, who lashed out on Twitter Friday:



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Posted on: January 4, 2012 6:09 pm
Edited on: January 4, 2012 8:49 pm
 

Marlins agree to trade for Carlos Zambrano



By Matt Snyder


The Cubs have agreed to trade volatile and highly-paid starting pitcher Carlos Zambrano to the Marlins, with an announcement coming as soon as Thursday, CBSSports.com insider Jon Heyman has learned. The preliminary deal is that the Cubs would pick up the overwhelming majority of the $18 million Zambrano is owed for 2012 and that starting pitcher Chris Volstad is headed to the Cubs. Multiple reports indicate the Cubs will pay $15 million to the Marlins.

New Cubs president Theo Epstein has been publicly saying he'd give Zambrano one last chance in Chicago throughout the entire offseason. In fact, earlier Wednesday on a Chicago radio show, Epstein said that he was "skeptical" but would give Zambrano a chance to prove he's changed. It's not too surprising that he would be putting off that vibe publicly while privately trying to rid his club of a past cancer, though.

For stretches, when Zambrano could remain healthy and well-behaved, he produced as a frontline starting pitcher. He's a three-time All-Star who finished exactly fifth three times in NL Cy Young voting. After anger management sessions midseason in 2010, he closed the season in lights-out fashion, going 8-0 with a 1.24 ERA. But then Zambrano walked out on his team last August after getting ejected from a game in Atlanta. Then-general manager Jim Hendry basically kicked Zambrano off the team, sending him away and placing him on the restricted list.

Cubs/Marlins coverage
Considering this and the fact that Zambrano is owed such a lofty salary next season, it's easy to see why Epstein wasn't so quick to cut ties with Zambrano for nothing. But it's possible Zambrano's long-time friendship with new Marlins manager Ozzie Guillen made the deal easier to consummate.

Guillen was specifically asked about Zambrano during the Winter Meetings and said the two exchange text messages everyday.

"Every time I talk to Zambrano," Guillen said, "all of a sudden people think I'm talking about contracts or moving him to the Marlins. That's tampering."

He then joked: "We do that on the side, not around people."

So while Guillen hasn't publicly courted Zambrano, it's obvious the two are great friends and would love to work with each other. Thus, the no-trade clause shouldn't be much of an issue.

The Marlins already have a top two in the rotation in Josh Johnson and Mark Buehrle. With Anibal Sanchez and Ricky Nolasco around, they could feasibly slot Zambrano as the fifth starter in an attempt to alleviate any pressure he'd put on himself.

Volstad, 25, was 5-13 with a 4.89 ERA and 1.43 WHIP last season. He was once a fairly-highly touted prospect but hasn't made a great transition to the majors, aside from a solid rookie campaign (6-4, 2.88 ERA, 1.33 WHIP in 2008).

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The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com