Meet the new Marlins
By Thomas J. Harrigan, Fantasy Sports Writer
Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) - The Marlins' equipment staff has had to fit many new players for uniforms over the years.
The team has undergone more fire sales than it's had playoff appearances, with 2012 being the latest one despite the team unveiling a brand new stadium. Apparently, even with increased revenues generated by the shiny new ballpark, a more area-specific name and uniform change wasn't enough to erase the retailer's culture (everything must go!) in South Florida.
Gone are Hanley Ramirez, Omar Infante and Anibal Sanchez, and Josh Johnson and Heath Bell might want to pack a bag because they could be next.
Of course, the fantasy values of these former Marlins as they join their new teams will be the immediate concern of owners, but there are players on the other side of the equation who could help fantasy teams down the stretch.
Miami acquired two highly-touted arms in the two deals, and also opened up an everyday spot in the lineup for an overachieving outfielder. Let's take a look at those players now.
Nathan Eovaldi, RHP - Eovaldi was drafted out of high school in the 11th round of the 2008 draft and made his MLB debut last season. Ranked as the No. 2 prospect in the Dodgers organization by MLB.com, the right-hander started this season in Double-A and went 2-2 with a 3.09 ERA and a 30/13 K/BB in 35 innings over nine appearances (eight starts). Though he's never pitched at Triple-A, Eovaldi has recorded a 3.96 ERA in 20 appearances (16 starts) at the big league level, including a 4.15 ERA in 10 starts this season. However, he's pitched significantly better than that ERA indicates, as the figure drops to 3.16 if you remove an eight-run performance on June 25. He has allowed three runs or less in eight of 10 starts and two runs or less in six. Eovaldi figures to join Miami's rotation immediately, taking Anibal Sanchez' old spot.
Jacob Turner, RHP - The 21-year-old Turner was drafted ninth overall in the 2009 draft by the Tigers, also out of high school, and is currently ranked 10th overall on MLB.com's list of the top 100 prospects in baseball. Though he has registered an ERA of 8.28 in his first six big league starts, the right-hander has a ton of upside, especially now that he's in the National League. Turner has been a strike-thrower in the minors, walking just 89 batters in 330 2/3 minor league innings. Armed with a mid-90s sinker, Turner has allowed 20 homers in his minor league career (0.5 HR/9) while generating 1.07 groundouts to air outs in 2010, 1.15 GO/AO in 2011 and 1.51 GO/AO this season. The right-hander has been assigned to Triple-A for now, but he should receive a shot in the rotation this season, with a trade of Josh Johnson expediting a callup.
Justin Ruggiano, OF - Ruggiano has been getting regular playing time with Giancarlo Stanton on the disabled list, but the trade of Infante to Detroit ensured that he'll remain in the lineup even when Stanton returns. Center- fielder Emilio Bonifacio will get the first crack at replacing Infante at second base, and Ruggiano will assume the starting CF job. In 116 at-bats over 43 games, Ruggiano is hitting .367 with seven homers, 19 RBIs, 17 runs and seven steals, so the news that center field is his job to lose should immediately pique fantasy owners' interest. Now, Ruggiano obviously isn't going to bat .360 for the entire season, but his extensive minor league history suggests .300 is possible -- in 2755 minor league at-bats from 2005-12, Ruggiano hit .294 with 101 homers and 148 steals. If you need outfield help in deeper leagues, Ruggiano is likely available to provide a little bit of everything for your roster. Grab him and see if this hot streak lasts.
07/25 17:34:21 ET