Marlins notes: Jarrod Saltalamacchia hoping to be better in clutch
JUL 03, 2014 4:28p ET
Seven frames earlier with the bases loaded, he flied out to left field as the Marlins failed to get on the board. On the season, Saltalamacchia is 2 for 25 with two outs and runners in scoring position.
Saltalamacchia redeemed himself with a two-run shot off lefty Mario Hollands on a 0-2 slider.
"That's something I've struggled at this year is getting guys in when we needed to," Saltalamacchia said following the game. "That's on me. I need to do a better job of that, especially in that part of the lineup. The last two nights I've beared down, took a little less off my swing and tried to put the ball in play."
A key offseason acquisition by the Marlins, Saltalamacchia is hitting just .158 with runners in scoring position and .178 in late-and-close games.
Before landing on the disabled list with a concussion, the 29-year-old was hitless in four straight games. Since coming off the DL in mid-June, he has hits in eight of 10 games and an RBI in four of the past five.
Prior to this stretch, Saltalamacchia had gone nine in a row without driving in a run.
"He's a big part of this ballclub," manager Mike Redmond said following the game. "We need him not only behind the plate but to swing the bat. For him, I know especially to come out and be able to contribute with some big hits in back-to-back games is big. You see the difference his power and his presence in our lineup makes, even towards the bottom of the order. It's huge. He has the opportunity to drive in a lot of runs and hits with a lot of guys in scoring position. For him to get hot and start getting big hits is gonna do nothing but help us."
Right-handed reliever Carter Capps will begin to play catch in the next couple of days while the club goes on the road heading into the All-Star break.
Capps, who has been on the 60-day disabled list with a right elbow sprain since May 26, visited Dr. James Andrews for a second opinion and was told he didn't require Tommy John surgery, just rest.
The 23-year-old posted a 3.00 ERA in nine outings with Miami after being called up from Triple-A New Orleans. He struck out 15 batters and walked just three in 12 innings. Capps was acquired in the Logan Morrison trade with the Seattle Mariners.
Asked whether the Marlins dodged a bullet with the hard-throwing righty, Redmond said he hoped so.
"I think with all our guys with the extent of injuries, limit the injuries to guys, especially the guys that can make a big impact on your ballclub," Redmond said. "He's definitely one of those guys. Hopefully when he ramps this thing up everything goes well and is fine and we can get him back on the field as soon as we possibly can."
Right-hander Tom Koehler texted Redmond letting him know the impending birth of his baby is ongoing.
Following Koehler's victory Wednesday night, he rushed to the hospital to be with his wife, Ashley, who is giving birth to their first child, a girl named Riley.
Currently on the paternity list, the plan calls for Koehler to rejoin the club in Arizona to start Monday's series opener.
"Those things are unpredictable," Redmond said. "I remember when my wife had our first we sat there for forever. She ended up having to have a C-section."
Added Saltalamacchia: "I've caught a game on a night I went to the hospital, so I've been there, done that. It's an exciting time, especially your first. Hope he gets to enjoy it now that he's got this start out of the way. I know it was laying heavy on him.I hope he enjoys this moment and everything goes well."
Shortstop Adeiny Hechavarria is still set to begin a rehab assignment in Jupiter on Friday, but Redmond believes it "makes more sense" if Hechavarria comes off the DL (right triceps strain) on Monday rather than Sunday.
Hechavarria would play at least two rehab games with the Hammerheads. Since the Marlins have an off day next Thursday, the 25-year-old could play three games in Arizona, rest and then start another three in New York before the All-Star break.
-- Outfielder Brent Keys was outrighted to Double-A Jacksonville. He was designated for assignment earlier this week to make room on the 40-man for left-handed reliever Donnie Joseph, who was acquired in a trade with the Kansas City Royals.
-- The Marlins announced an additional International signing: right-hander Jose Veras of Venezuela.