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Who should take Zac Gallen’s rotation spot on Monday?
Who should take Zac Gallen’s rotation spot on Monday?
May 19, 2024 3:48 AM

After the whirlwind that was the trade deadline on Wednesday, the Miami Marlins will have the rare off day on Friday to recalibrate before the weekend series on the road against the Tampa Bay Rays.

Zac Gallen was traded to the Arizona Diamondbacks for their top ranked prospect, shortstop Jazz Chisholm. His next start was slated for doubleheader on Monday at New York but now someone else will have to take that role.

Pablo Lopez will eventually take over that spot once he returns from the injured list. It’s ironic that his injury opened the door for Gallen to debut and him being traded leaves that very spot open for Lopez to return.

Lopez will make another rehab start in Double-A Jacksonville. Marlins manager Don Mattingly said he wants to see Lopez get up to 90-100 pitches before returning, similar to Caleb Smith.

Until then, the Marlins will have to make a decision for Monday. Wei-Yin Chen is one internal option considering his experience as a starting pitcher. He has spent the season as a reliever. From Triple-A, the Marlins can call on Robert Dugger or Hector Noesi to fill the void.

Dugger was acquired in the Dee Gordon trade in the offseason leading up to 2018. He has a 9.34 ERA in seven starts in Triple-A New Orleans since being promoted from Double-A (3.31 ERA in 13 starts). Mattingly said the organization plans on being careful in developing, not rushing prospects, meaning Dugger is most likely going to stay in the minors for now.

“Instead of having a guy you would say, ‘This guy could be good,’ and dragging him out of somewhere and he’s not quite ready, we want to let our guys get ready to compete and continue their development,” Mattingly said. “So when they get here, they can be a productive big league starter.”

Noesi is a 32-year-old veteran who hadn’t pitched in the Minor or Major Leagues since 2015 prior to joining the Marlins this season. He made his MLB debut in 2011 with the New York Yankees as a reliever and spot starter. He was traded twice in 2014 and spent the 2015 season with the Chicago White Sox and its Triple-A affiliate.

This season in New Orleans, he is 11-4 with a 3.82 ERA in 21 starts and has 133 strikeouts in 125 innings. This seems to be as good of a time to call him up for at least one start.

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