Need for Solano
Before the Marlins sent Donovan Solano down to the minors last spring, manager Ozzie Guillen was hoping he could keep the 25-year-old utility infielder as an important fill-in on the 25-man roster.
A year later, Redmond is talking about Solano as a valuable part of the Marlins’ lineup, one the team sorely needs to be healthy for Opening Day.
“Right now I’m not as worried about the four-hole hitter as I’m worried about getting Solano in there,” Redmond said Sunday when asked who he might be considering to bat behind All-Star Giancarlo Stanton. “That’s a guy we need in our lineup and kind of makes our whole lineup come together.”
Solano, who injured his back Wednesday working out, had an MRI on Saturday and it appears the results were encouraging.
“He’s progressing,” Redmond said. “The trainer said he was doing much better [Sunday] and is going to play some catch. We’re hoping Wednesday-Thursday maybe get him back in a game. It’s definitely good news. He’s getting better. We’re hopeful he’s on board for the start of the season.”
If Solano isn’t ready, the Marlins are looking at several utility infielders as backup options.
Veteran journeyman Wilson Valdez, signed Saturday after being released by the Giants, started at shortstop Sunday after playing third Saturday and finished 1 for 2 with a sacrifice bunt.
“I know I’m ready to get this thing set,” Redmond said of roster decisions. “There’s a lot of anxiety for these guys. It would be kind of nice for guys to catch their breath, find out what’s going on. But we still have some decisions to make.”
Monday: Marlins LHP Wade LeBlanc (1-1, 3.86 ERA this spring) vs. Tigers RHP Rick Porcello (3-1, 2.50 ERA), 1:05 p.m. Jupiter (FSF)
• Tuesday: Marlins RHP Henderson Alvarez (1-0, 4.70 ERA) vs. Nationals RHP Dan Haren (0-4, 6.05 ERA), 1:05 p.m. Jupiter (FSF)