Marlins notebook

Ailing left shoulder causes Miami Marlins’ Justin Ruggiano to be scratched

 

mnavarro@MiamiHerald.com

After his big day Sunday in San Francisco, Justin Ruggiano was looking forward to seeing some more playing time in a crowded Marlins outfield this week.

Now, the Marlins’ leader in home runs and RBI could be looking at another stint on the disabled list.

Scheduled to leadoff and play in left field Tuesday against the Twins, Ruggiano came home from the Marlins’ first winning road trip of the season complaining of a sore left shoulder after diving for a ball against the Giants, manager Mike Redmond said, and was scratched from the lineup.

“We’ll see if it’s a short-term deal, long-term deal or what,” said Redmond, who instead turned to veteran Juan Pierre for the start Tuesday.

“We’ll just have to play it by ear.”

Ruggiano, 31, said a shoulder injury he sustained in mid-September last season in which he “tore some things in there” was still giving him problems from time to time. Asked if it was the same shoulder Ruggiano injured last year, Redmond said he didn’t know.

“To have such a great day, hit two home runs and then can’t play, that’s tough,” Redmond said.

Nolasco rumors

It has been known for quite a while now that Ricky Nolasco’s future with the Marlins likely won’t extend beyond the July 31 trade deadline.

Trade rumors involving the Marlins’ all-time wins leader continued to pick up steam Tuesday after ESPN’s Buster Olney tweeted that the Marlins have been aggressively working to move Nolasco as soon as possible.

Fox Sports’ Ken Rosenthal reported the most likely destination for Nolasco is the National League West — with the Dodgers, Giants, Padres and Rockies all showing strong interest. The Orioles are also reportedly kicking the tires on Nolasco.

Rotation decision

If the Marlins don’t trade Nolasco soon, it’s likely they will have a tough decision to make regarding their starting rotation.

Right-hander Henderson Alvarez, who tossed 6 2/3 scoreless innings Sunday for Double A Jacksonville in his comeback from shoulder inflammation, will probably have just one more minor-league start before the Marlins call him up. Redmond said Alvarez will start for the Suns on Friday and is on an 80- to 85-pitch count.

“He’s been good,” Redmond said. “They’ll figure out what to do with him after that.”

If Nolasco isn’t traded by the time Alvarez is ready to return, the likely candidate to slip out of the rotation is Tom Koehler.

“He’s had one or two shaky starts, but all in all I thought he’s done some good things, given us a chance,” Redmond said. “All in all, I’m very happy with the way he’s pitched. We’re going to have some tough decisions to make. But at the same time, too, those are tough decisions but will benefit you in the long run.”

Coming up

•  Wednesday: Marlins RHP Koehler (1-5, 4.65 ERA) vs. Minnesota Twins LHP Scott Diamond (5-6, 5.27), 12:40 p.m., Marlins Park.

•  Thursday: Off.

•  Scouting report: Koehler is coming off his first win of the season, a three-hit, one-run effort over seven innings against the Giants. Diamond has never faced the Marlins but is 0-2 with a 9.22 ERA in interleague play this season.

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