JUPITER -- The 8-7 loss to the Twins on Friday afternoon at Roger Dean Stadium featured the final performances of the early part of spring training for three Marlins headed to the World Baseball Classic: slugger Giancarlo Stanton, starting pitcher Henderson Alvarez and closer Steve Cishek.
Alvarez, who will likely make his next start for team Venezuela on March 9 against Puerto Rico in San Juan, got roughed up in his second spring start for the Marlins. Alvarez gave up three earned runs and six hits with a strikeout over two innings, throwing 27 of his 39 pitches for strikes. Henderson said afterward he left too many pitches up in the zone.
Despite the shaky outing, the 22-year-old, right-hander said he feels ready and proud to make his World Classic debut. He will be sitting on Venezuela’s bench when they take on the Marlins in an exhibition in Jupiter on Tuesday.
“Hopefully, he continues to progress and stays healthy and comes back to us ready to go,” manager Mike Redmond said.
Stanton, who changed up his workouts and “ran a lot more” to prepare himself for the WBC this offseason, finished 0 for 3 with an RBI, a walk and a strikeout and played nine innings as the designated hitter.
“I’m right on track, where I need to be,” said Stanton, who went 6 for 15 with four RBI in five games with the Marlins this spring.
Cishek blew a 5-3 lead by giving up four hits, three runs (two earned) with a walk and three strikeouts over 1 2/3 innings. Both will leave Sunday to join Team USA in Phoenix. The United States opens WBC play March 8 at Chase Field against Mexico.
The 16-team tournament runs through March 19, but the players will return to the Marlins as soon as their respective teams are eliminated in the tournament.
• During his days as a backup catcher with the Twins, Redmond said he always enjoyed watching manager Ron Gardenhire get upset and throw his hat on the turf. Informed of that Friday, Gardenhire quipped: “It’s funny because he never offered to pay my fines if he loved it so much.”
• Stanton’s left hand was wrapped in a thick bandage Friday, but it had nothing to do with any sort of injury. “I’m just making a mold,” Stanton said of a protective device he intends to wear on the hand this season when batting. He said he decided to wear the device after being struck in the hand by a couple of pitches last season.
• Saturday: Marlins RHP Alex Sanabia (6-7, 4.06 ERA at Triple A New Orleans) at New York Mets RHP Matt Harvey (3-5, 2.73), 1:10 p.m., Port St. Lucie.
• Sunday: New York Mets RHP Dillon Gee (6-7, 4.10) at Marlins RHP Nathan Eovaldi (3-7, 4.43 with Marlins), 1:05 p.m., Jupiter.