Marlins notebook

Full-strength Marlins lineup produces win over Cardinals

 

Special to The Miami Herald

As Opening Day inches closer on the calendar, Marlins manager Mike Redmond had the whole family back together with Giancarlo Stanton and Steve Cishek returning to Miami’s camp for a 6-0 win over the St. Louis Cardinals on Sunday.

Ricky Nolasco regained his footing after getting roughed up for seven runs in his previous start against the Houston Astros.

“It was good to know what I was doing wrong. I felt it immediately, I just couldn’t correct it that day,” the Marlins’ Opening Day starter said. “In between starts I was just trying to focus on keeping the front side closed, and I was able to do that.”

The right-hander pulled together a scoreless outing, going six innings and striking out five. He threw 55 of his 75 pitches for strikes.

“He did a nice job, especially after his last outing was a little rough,” Redmond said. “Definitely good to see him bounce back and do what he needed to do to get through.’’

Cishek pitched the eighth inning in relief, recording a strikeout and a walk.

Stanton was 2 for 3 with a walk in his return, helping the Marlins break a three-game skid against the Cards.

“The last couple weeks is good for players because you start to see it coming together,” Redmond said. “I think it adds an extra level of excitement to players because they can see the light at the end of the tunnel. We’re getting there, we’re getting to where we need to go.”

Lineup logic

It was fitting that pre-game, Redmond discussed the logic behind the crafty lineup that led off with Juan Pierre, Placido Polanco and Stanton. It all came into fruition as if the manager had seen a fortune teller.

“There’s a lot of things that we’re looking at,” Redmond said of his lineup choices. “We don’t just fire it together and hope it all works out.

“We’re probably going to have to rely more on situational hitting and maybe some hit-and-runs, but we also have guys like [ Donovan] Solano and Polanco who can hit behind runners,” he said. “They’re able to hit through that hole, they’re able to pull balls, and they don’t strike out a lot.”

In Polanco’s second day back since returning from soreness in his oblique, he was 2 for 4, scoring twice on singles by catcher Rob Brantly. Pierre also benefited from Brantly’s fortune, scoring on a single and stealing his fourth base of the spring.

Brantly went 3 for 4 and had three RBI.

“All the scenarios we’ve talked about where they pitch around Stanton and having that guy that comes up and gets the hits,” Redmond said. “Brantly did it. It was perfect.”

When asked if there’s a chance the No. 4 spot might suit Brantly in the regular season, Redmond said he’s not afraid of seeing what the 23-year-old can do should he continue to swing the bat as well as he has in the spring.

“I wouldn’t have any reservations throwing him back there if I feel like that’s the best fit for our lineup on any given night.”

•  Austin Kearns and Greg Dobbs both played in a minor-league game on Sunday to get some extra at-bats.

Coming up

•  Monday: Marlins RHP Nathan Eovaldi (4-13, 4.30 ERA) at Minnesota Twins RHP Kevin Correia (12-11, 4.21), 1:05 p.m., Fort Myers.

•  Tuesday: Marlins RHP Jacob Turner (2-5, 4.42) vs. St. Louis Cardinals TBA, 1:05 p.m. Jupiter.

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