Miami Marlins 2024 Season Preview

The Marlins bring back a similar team from last year, who found their way into October, but a quiet offseason has taken some buzz from Miami.

Luis Arraez of the Miami Marlins bats against the New York Mets at loanDepot Park.
MIAMI, FL - MARCH 31: Luis Arraez #3 of the Miami Marlins bats against the New York Mets at loanDepot park on March 31, 2023 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Jasen Vinlove/Miami Marlins/Getty Images)

The Miami Marlins are entering the 2024 season after making, what many considered, a surprising appearance in the 2023 postseason.

The combination of strategic moves at the deadline by then GM Kim Ng, the depth within the organization stepping up on the mound when needed, and the spark that the former AL, and now reigning NL batting champion Luis Arraez, had Marlins fans excited to see what they would do to build off of this. headed into this offseason.

Unfortunately, this offseason could not have been any more opposite.

At the very beginning, shockingly, Kim Ng and the Marlins mutually agreed to part ways. Her departure led to owner Bruce Sherman hiring former Rays executive Peter Bendix to become the new President of Baseball Operations.

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Following that move, the Marlins moved on from long-time members of the Front Office and revamped it with a strong core of people who had successfully developed winning cultures in other organizations.

Now, as the start of the season approaches, there are many question marks surrounding the roster as a whole. From the plethora of injuries sustained to their pitching staff, to wondering what their lineup is going to bring them this season, there are reasons to worry about the outlook for the 2024 season.

Manager Skip Schumaker maximized the talent the organization provided him with last season and will now look to do the same for the upcoming one.


As of late, the Marlins are known as one of the best teams in terms of pitching development and a lot of that has to do with their pitching coach, Mel Stottlemyre Jr. Since his arrival in 2019, the Marlins continue to churn out Major League-caliber pitching even when it may not come from a likely source.

The Marlins pitching staff, as a whole, is heading into 2024 with a lot of question marks. Their ace Sandy Alcantara underwent Tommy John surgery at the end of last season and will be out all of the 2024 season. Aside from Sandy, the team is currently dealing with other injuries that will likely have a couple of their previously penciled-in starters start the year on the Injured List.

Starting Rotation

2023 was a breakout year for Braxton Garrett. He ended the season with a 3.99 ERA, 3.68 FIP, and a minuscule 4.4% BB% over 159.2 IP. Garrett’s start to spring had been delayed with left shoulder soreness, but he has recently begun throwing extended bullpen sessions and should soon progress toward live batting practice.

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Even with the positive progressions, he will likely begin the year on the IL because of the extended delay.

Just like his rotation mate, Edward Cabrera is also trending towards starting the year on the IL after being removed from his last spring training start after just a few warm-up pitches before the game started. The official diagnosis was a right shoulder impingement, which does not bode well for his case to start the season in the rotation.

After what would be considered a disappointing 2023, and being involved in multiple trade rumors during the off-season, Cabrera is going to look towards getting back to full health in order to prove to the organization that he is a part of their future going forward.

Aside from Eddy and Brax, rookie phenom Eury Perez looked to solidify himself as one of the best young pitchers in the game today. The 6’8” 20-year-old right-handed pitcher has been under the careful eye of Sandy ever since he “broke out” last spring.

In 2023, Perez had the largest workload in his career by far, but the Marlins came into 2024 hoping he could help fill the void that Sandy is leaving with his absence.

However, like some other teammates, Eury is also dealing with something on his own. Throughout spring, Eury has been dealing with a nagging blister that has taken him out of multiple games he has pitched in.

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Along with the blister issues, Eury was reported to be dealing with elbow soreness and will now be visiting the same doctor that performed the elbow surgery on Sandy Alcantara for further testing.

Yet another blow, not only to the future of the young right hander, but to the idea of a starting rotation that the Marlins had coming into spring training.

Now, here comes the positive.

Jesús Luzardo was essentially cast away from the Oakland Athletics organization for a couple of months of Starling Marte at the 2021 MLB Trade Deadline.

Now Luzardo was dealing with his fair share of struggles throughout his A’s career, but there was always a lot of potential in the talented lefty. In 2023, Luzardo broke out for the Marlins in a way that maybe they did not even expect.

He pitched a career-high 176.2 innings to a 3.58 ERA, a 10.48 K/9, and accumulated 3.7 fWAR for his team. As for 2024, he now looks to headline the Marlins rotation as their Opening Day starter, with a goal to pitch deeper into games than he has in the past.

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This is where further uncertainty kicks in when it comes to the Marlins rotation. As of right now, the final three spots are looking to be filled by stretched-out reliever A.J. Puk, another pitcher coming off an injured-riddled 2023 season in Trevor Rogers, and Mel’s latest reclamation project in Ryan Weathers, who was acquired at last year’s trade deadline.

What is certainly interesting, and a surprise to many, is the trio of lefties has been nails all spring. Now, spring performances do not always translate into the regular season, but this might be another one of what Marlins fans have coined a Mel’s Masterclass.

Though he was just recently re-assigned to Triple-A Jacksonville, former top pitching prospect Max Meyer also looks to factor into the rotation during this season as he works his way back to pitching a full season post-Tommy John surgery. With the newest injury to Eury, he may be needed sooner than the Front Office was anticipating.


This is where the fun truly begins.

Tanner Scott headlines this bullpen as the Marlins closer heading into his final season of team control. Though spring has not necessarily been kind to him, Scott could have been considered the best closer in all of baseball last year.

There wasn’t another closer that pitched more than he did last year. His 33.9% K-rate ranked 4th best amongst all relief pitchers and he was only behind Josh Hader in limiting contact. The Marlins should not have any worries about locking down the 9th inning in 2024.

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The rest of the bullpen looks to be constructed by familiar names to Marlins fans. Andrew Nardi, George Soriano, and Bryan Hoeing will look to continue building off of the success they had in 2023. Former closer Anthony Bender is returning from Tommy John surgery and will now look to return to form and sling his Pitching Ninja-worthy slider.

Brace yourselves for this one.

Sixto Sanchez is back. Yes, you read that right.

The right-handed pitcher has been a pleasant surprise to almost everyone who has been following along. He has three appearances so far this spring, has pitched to a 0.00 ERA, and has hit the upper 90s consistently. Sixto has recently been quoted as saying he feels “100%”.

Sixto hasn’t seen Major League action since his dominant arrival during the COVID-shortened season and his strong performance throughout the postseason as well.

Since 2020, he has only thrown one inning due to a pair of shoulder surgeries. After dealing with a myriad of injury setbacks, and a ton of questions as to whether he would even pitch again, Sixto has looked to make the most of this offseason and working his way back to the Major Leagues.

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While his days as a starter may be over, the Marlins would sure take his pitching talent in short-inning spurts to help solidify the back-end of their pen.


Nobody has doubted whether the Marlins can pitch or not over the last few years. However, everybody has questioned if they can hit. Miami has failed to draft or sign-and-develop a single everyday big leaguer since the team was sold in 2017.

Only Jazz Chisholm Jr. and Jesús Sánchez can even be considered organization successes on this year’s roster. Those guys were acquired via trade later in their development process, but both spent at least some time in Miami’s farm system.

Because of that, it is really hard to say whether they were really developed by the Marlins.

Besides those two, every other player in this lineup was traded for or signed in free agency. This is not a great way to build a sustainable roster, as the Marlins have a plethora of plug-and-play veterans on short-term deals. The roster is fine and could allow them to contend for the playoffs again, but, likely, it will not look this way for much longer than two or three years.


The Marlins have plenty of interesting choices when it comes to choosing everyday starters. However, there are a few guys that are locked into positions and will play them nearly everyday this year.

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Of course, it starts at the top with the two-time reigning batting champion, Luis Arráez. It seriously cannot be overstated what Arráez’s presence meant to Miami in 2023. Not only was he their best hitter, but he gave fans a reason to come out and cheer for something special. He also makes everybody around him better and puts the Marlins in positions to score runs by setting the table.

Manager, Skip Schumacher, toyed around with Arraez at multiple different spots last year, but with a beefier lineup this year he is likely to lead off every day he is in the lineup. That is because behind him the Marlins have Jazz Chisholm, who we believe will slot into the two spot.

Jazz has said this offseason is the first time he has taken his health seriously after struggling with injuries his first three years in the league. While concerning that it took this long, it is certainly better late than never. Jazz has played just 157 games the last two years with a plethora of injuries, and it is time to finally show he can last an entire season.

If he can, he will provide a boost both at the plate and on defense. Jazz really came on as a center fielder later in the year and looks more and more comfortable there every day. Reports out of camp are positive about his defense improving, and he has his manager’s endorsement as well.

We all know Jazz has 30-30 potential if he stays healthy (he had 19 homers and 22 stolen bases in 97 games last year), but it is a huge question whether he will ever be durable enough to do it.

As we move through the middle of the order the Marlins have plenty of options for how to line up this area. You could see any of Tim Anderson, Jake Burger, Josh Bell and Jesús Sánchez anywhere in the 3-6 spots.

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TA is a guy Marlins fans have had their eyes on at shortstop for a while. He fills a huge need, and if he can return to his old form he will be a major boost to this team.

Miami was likely going into the year with Jon Berti as their everyday shortstop before signing Anderson. That is not the worst thing, Berti is not a bad player, but he’s better coming off the bench and playing 3-4 times a week rather than 6-7.

Burger and Bell provided huge boosts for Miami when they came over at the deadline. Bell found his power stroke in Miami, matching the 11 home runs he had in Cleveland in 44 fewer games. Burger did not hit for as much power as in Chicago (25 in 88 games against 9 in 53 games), but hit .303 with 131 wRC+ and dropped his K% by about 10%.

They will both be critical to Miami’s success on offense in 2024.

The bottom of the lineup is where things not only get messy, but ugly. Bryan De La Cruz is the most certain starter in this area of the lineup. He will start as the everyday left fielder, and while he has become a nice player he is wildly inconsistent. He is also a terrible defender, posting -9 defensive runs saved and -7 outs above average in left last year.

At catcher the Marlins will likely mix-and-match with the pairing of Christian Bethancourt and Nick Fortes. That does not exactly bode well for adding some offense to the bottom of the lineup.

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Bethancourt has 58 wRC+ this spring and 72 for his career, while Fortes has 86 wRC+ this spring and 77 for his career. Fortes is actually much better defensively (5 DRS and 69th percentile framing) than Bethancourt (0 DRS and 39th percentile framing), though the latter has an absolute rocket for an arm.

Schumacher can matchup as much as he wants, but he cannot reasonably expect to get a ton of offense out of this spot. Heck, anything even serviceable would be a welcome surprise.


At this point in time the Marlins do not have a clear DH, leaving them with plenty of options to change things up with some of their bench players. Guys like Nick Gordon, Xavier Edwards and Jon Berti will come off the bench to provide defensive relief and, hopefully, offensive sparks.

Gordon will likely provide relief to Jazz in center, but can also platoon with De La Cruz in left if the Marlins feel comfortable with him out there. Edwards will likely backup Tim Anderson at short, and maybe even play some second or third. On days when Schumacher wants to DH Burger to get him off his feet, Edwards is one guy he could turn to if need be. However, he has just 82 wRC+, and will need to show a lot more than that to become a reliable choice off the bench.

The guy Schumacher will be turning to more often than not is Berti. Just an incredibly solid baseball player, he can play all over the infield and defend serviceably at each. Berti had five DRS at third last year, and has even played some outfield in his career. He also managed to post 103 wRC+ last year and has 4.3 combined fWAR the last two seasons.

I will once again advocate for Troy Johnston to make the team. There is no reason he should not. The 26-year-old is hitting .357 with an .802 OPS and 127 wRC+ this spring, after posting 152 wRC+ in 82 games at Double-A last year and 133 wRC+ in 51 games at Triple-A. If the Marlins do not think he is ready yet, I am not sure they ever will. Call him up already and give the kid a shot.

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The main reason the Marlins should give Johnston a shot is because Avisaíl García is simply unplayable. There is no good reason for him to make the Major League roster this year. Period. End of story. He is hitting .179 with 22 wRC+ this spring. Just cut your losses and get rid of him.

It. Is. Over.

Dane Meyers, Jonathan Davis and Vidal Bruján are other players who have chances to occupy a roster spot on Opening Day. The Marlins also brought Trey Mancini to camp on an minor-league deal, but he has failed to impress.

The Marlins have not been a deep offensive team in a long time, and that remains the case now. This lineup is extremely top heavy and gets really thin at the bottom. It will be interesting to see how the Marlins, and especially Schumacher, try and find something to spark this season.


This has to be the biggest concern for me about these Marlins. Looking around the horn…there are not many good defenders on this roster. The best one might be Jazz? Who is just beginning his second season as a center fielder? That is not super encouraging!

Fortes is really solid behind the plate and that is huge for the Marlins. They have lacked solid backstop defense for years, and Fortes has brought some much-needed consistency back there.

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Berti and Edwards are nice options off the bench as defensive replacements, but they will have to hold leads in order to get there. Until then, things could be really ugly.

The Marlins projected starting infield (Bell, Arráez, Burger, Anderson) combined for -24 DRS last year, weighed down by Anderson’s -16 at shortstop.

Sánchez was not awful in right last year, posting 5 DRS, and Jazz has the tools to be successful. We discussed De La Cruz’s struggles in left, and Gordon has basically been an average outfield defender in his career.

The Marlins committed the fifth-most errors in baseball last year, and ranked 21st in DRS as a team. There are no serious Gold Glove candidates on this team–barring something really special from Jazz–and they did not get any better on defense. If guys do not make significant improvements, defense could be a serious weakness and possibly even the downfall of this team in 2024.

Casting a Net on the Fish’s Outlook

While the offseason did not pan out the way that many had hoped, it isn’t as if the Marlins are devoid of talent. A lineup that possesses the reigning National League Batting Champion and a rotation headlined by one of the best young pitchers in baseball is not one that should be taken lightly.

Peter Bendix is coming from an organization that is known to build from within and trust their development process in order to succeed at the Major League level.

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The Rays have been one of the more successful franchises as of late and it is far too early to negatively judge the way he has approached his first few months as a newly appointed President of Baseball Operations. Bendix also is not the only new addition to the Marlins Front Office.

After the departure of Kim Ng, owner Bruce Sherman appointed many new faces within the organization that do have a lot of experience working in successfully run organizations.

Lets also not forget that, in his first year in the role, Manager Skip Schumaker showed he is the right man for the job. He took a team with little to no expectations into postseason play for the first time since 2003, not including the COVID-shortened season in 2020.

The National League East is not going to be a cake walk with teams like Atlanta and Philadelphia, but the Marlins should look to compete for another Wild Card spot in 2024.

Reaching the playoff in 2023 built a lot of optimism for the team heading into 2024 and is likely why many Marlins fans have been disappointed with their quiet offseason.

The outlook for the team should be optimistic. While 2024 might not end in a result that Marlins fans want, the future does look bright for this team under the new Front Office and the approach they bring towards building winning ball clubs.

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