The Marlins have made a handful of moves in advance of tonight’s series opener with the Mets (relayed by Jordan McPherson of the Miami Herald). Starter Trevor Rogers has been placed on the 15-day injured list, retroactive to July 26, with lower back spasms. Miami also selected reliever Jake Fishman and infielder Charles Leblanc onto the big league roster, designating Willians Astudillo for assignment. To clear a second 40-man roster spot, the Marlins transferred Max Meyer from the 15-day to the 60-day IL. That was a formality, as the top prospect is set to undergo Tommy John surgery that’ll cost him the next year-plus.
Rogers had been slated to start tomorrow, but the Marlins will obviously have to find a replacement. The IL stint is the latest in what has been a frustrating season for the southpaw, who looked to have broken out as one of the game’s top young pitchers a year ago. Rogers pitched to a 2.64 ERA and earned an All-Star nod in 2021, but he’s gone in the opposite direction this season. He owns just a 5.85 ERA through 87 2/3 innings, watching his strikeout rate plummet from 28.5% to 20.8% in the process.
Astudillo has bounced on and off the roster a couple times this season. The former Twins utilityman signed a minor league deal with Miami over the winter, and he’s posted an excellent .321/.364/.557 showing through 33 Triple-A contests. Astudillo, owner of perhaps the sport’s best bat-to-ball skills, has only gone down on strikes in 4.3% of his minor league plate appearances, but he’s not made much of an impact in 21 MLB contests. Despite fanning in just three of his 55 trips to the dish, he owns a meager .241/.255/.296 showing with one homer and a 1.8% walk rate.
The Marlins will presumably again place Astudillo on waivers over the next few days. He’s already passed through the wire unclaimed this year and accepted an outright assignment to their top affiliate in Jacksonville. It’s possible he eventually winds up back with the Jumbo Shrimp, but he’d again have the right to elect minor league free agency if he goes unclaimed.
Leblanc and the aptly-named Fishman are each joining the Marlins for what’ll be their major league debuts. The former is a 26-year-old infielder who was a fourth-round draftee of the Rangers out of the University of Pittsburgh back in 2016. Leblanc spent six years in the Texas system, mostly splitting his time between second and third base, before signing a minor league deal with Miami last offseason. The right-handed hitter has impressed over 360 plate appearances in Jacksonville, hitting .302/.381/.503 with 14 home runs. Leblanc’s 27.2% strikeout rate is higher than ideal, but he’s done enough from a power perspective to get an MLB call.
Fishman, 27, also entered pro ball in that 2016 draft. He fell to the 30th round, where the Blue Jays selected the Union College product. Fishman briefly reached Triple-A in the Toronto system before qualifying for minor league free agency during the 2020-21 offseason. He’s spent the past two years working as a multi-inning reliever in Jacksonville. This season, the southpaw has an excellent 1.87 ERA with a robust 54.3% ground-ball rate across 43 1/3 innings, posting roughly average strikeout and walk rates (24.4% and 9.1%, respectively).