#MarlinsMonday – November 3, 2014

Marlins Monday

Jeff Mathis returns to the Marlins for the 2015 season. Photo Courtesy: Steve Mitchell – USA Today

By Roger Hoover / Jacksonville Suns

I hope everyone had a great weekend as we’re past October and now firmly into November. Having no baseball games to talk about is not ideal, but now we get to fire up the “Hot Stove” and start to figure out how rosters will change going into the 2015 season.

One of the more intriguing Marlins roster story-lines was largely solved over the weekend, as Miami exercised the option of catcher Jeff Mathis, who will be the back up for Jarrod Saltalamacchia in 2015. We had discussed whether or not Mathis would be back for the 2015 all throughout this past season, mainly because of J.T. Realmuto’s future.

If the Marlins were to let Mathis go, there would have been a chance for Realmuto to compete for the backup catching role in Spring Training, but now this move allows Realmuto to continue his development, likely at Triple-A. Realmuto has proven himself at the Double-A level with Jacksonville as a two-time All-Star and the 2014 Marlins Minor League Player of the Year.

Not that Realmuto was expected to be back with the Suns for 2015 anyway, but this also further paves the way for Austin Barnes to be the starting catcher for the Suns on Opening Day, if indeed he sticks with the position after impressing at second base for most of the second half of the season.

While we’ve had news about the Chicago Cubs getting a new manager in Joe Maddon since last week’s #MarlinsMonday, today is the day the Cubs will officially introduce him at The Cubby Bear across from Wrigley Field at 3 p.m. The Minnesota Twins also look to be closer to finding a manager, as they reportedly made an offer to Hall-of-Famer Paul Molitor.

As for me? My beloved Tennessee Volunteers picked up their first SEC win of the season in an overtime thriller over Jason Patterson’s South Carolina Gamecocks, and now my focus is getting prepared with what will be a busy college basketball season!

Here are today’s #MarlinsMonday links, lots of great content coming up this week here on the blog and jaxsuns.com!

Marlins.com: Nola continues progress, improved hitting in AFL win
Marlins.com:Marlins exercise club option on Mathis
Marlins.com: Marlins expect to be active during Hot Stove
Fish Stripes: Marlins Snarkbox: Cishek, Bour, Gold Gloves
Fish Stripes: Key offseason dates to remember
Sun Sentinel: ESPN documentary ‘Brothers in Exile’ features ex-Marlin Livan Hernandez
Los Angeles Times: Vin Scully says he’s OK with adding a protege to Dodgers booth
Yahoo! Big League Stew: Royals decline $12.5 million option on Billy Butler, but he’s not ready to leave
Sports on Earth: Maddon A No-Brainer For Cubs
The New York Times: Pitchers, Hitters and a Panda
Smokies Radio Network: Hot Stove Baseball Podcast #1 (Mick Gillispie & Gary Hughes)



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