Marlins notes: Second baseman Dee Gordon gets night off in return home
MIAMI -- Miami Marlins second baseman Dee Gordon got a rare day off as the team opened a four-game set with the Colorado Rockies on Thursday night.
Donovan Solano filled in for Gordon, who has started all but three of Miami's first 60 games, and hit eighth in the lineup. Adeiny Hechavarria moved up to the leadoff spot.
Gordon leads the majors with 88 hits and a .356 average. Hechavarria is a .225 hitter (25 for 111) batting first over 26 games in his career. Solano is hitting .195 (8 for 41) with two doubles, a triple and five RBI in 29 games, but .235 in five starts.
"Gonna give Dee the night off, no reason other than it's a long season," manager Dan Jennings said. "Dee, it depends on his legs to be the guy he is. He's leading the league in hits and he's such a special, special energy. But you gotta pick and choose where you can give a guy a day off, and we just felt like right now was that time, so we're gonna give him a day and he'll be back in there tomorrow ready to go."
Marlins on the disabled list continue to make progress at varying degrees.
Right-hander Henderson Alvarez, on the disabled list for right shoulder inflammation for the second time this season, has been playing catch up to 60 feet. He will begin to stretch out and build up, according to Jennings.
First baseman Michael Morse, who has been on the DL with a right ring finger sprain since May 24, has been taking swings in the batting cages. Righty Jarred Cosart's Triple-A New Orleans start on Thursday will likely be his last before returning to the big leagues. He is on the DL with vertigo.
"Good signs all around with some of these guys who have been shut down that they're coming down and building it up again and getting going," Jennings said. "We'd rather shut a guy down for a little time versus losing a guy for the whole year."
Righty Mat Latos will rejoin the rotation to start Saturday's game against the Rockies. In a rehab outing for the Zephyrs on Monday, he allowed one run on three hits with four strikeouts and five walks over 4 2/3 innings.
"(Pitching coach) Chuck Hernandez and I called the Triple-A pitching coach the other day and said that he really threw the ball well, he was down there to get his work, got up to 99 pitches, saw the best that we had seen up to 95," Jennings said. "And talking to Mat today he said the knee feels strong. He was on the pretty extensive strengthening program during his time off, so it's good to hear him feel confident about his knee and put the work in that he needed to.
"We've been very fortunate to have Brad Hand fill in the way he had other than a rough outing the other night in Toronto. He pitches well. (Jose) Urena throwing extremely well against Colorado the other day in a tough place to pitch. And now Adam Conley. Having the experienced guys back will be huge for us. Hopefully they go in the ballgame and get the six- or seven-inning depth that we're looking for or better and that's how this team was built. We know that it's going to take pitching to get to where we want to go. And we also know that these guys are close to being back, ready to go, and hopefully that'll be exactly what the doctor ordered to put us back."
Following Thursday's 6-0 win, the Marlins optioned left-hander Adam Conley to Triple-A New Orleans. There will be a corresponding roster move Friday. Miami has been a position player short for a week.
Conley tossed a scoreless eighth inning Wednesday in Toronto in his major-league debut.