Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Marlins' Mendez Shows Promise

September 15, 2010

I know football season has just begun and baseball season has taken a back seat in the minds of many sports fans. But, have you taken a glance at the Florida Marlins lately? Probably not as they've once again dug themselves in a hole too deep to rise out of. However, there is something worth looking at on the Marlins roster.

I'm talking about recent call-up Adalberto Mendez, who has shown some promise in his first two starts for the Fish. Both of those starts came against the reigning National League Champions and current N.L. East division-leading Philadelphia Phillies. Given the difficulty of his match-ups, you'll be surprised to see how he's fared: 10.1 innings pitched, two earned runs, seven strikeouts and a 1.74 ERA.

Coming from a 28-year old that is supposed to be a reliever, he has come in as an interim starter and has placed the Marlins in a position to win twice. And while his minor league career has been adorned with average, inconsistent performances, his MLB debut has shown he has worth in the Major League level.

Now, it's obvious that the Fish have no hopes at reaching the postseason this year, but it's never too early to look forward to next season (at least if you're a Marlins fan it isn't). What I am getting at is the possibility of Mendez becoming a part of a revamped bullpen next season for the Marlins.

It goes without saying how unreliable this season's crop of relievers have been. Hence, the thirst for a dependable reliever could extend Mendez' stay in South Florida. Manager Edwin Rodriguez suggested such a possibility himself: "Knowing that we need some help in the bullpen next year, that's a pretty good arm to consider."

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