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Anibal throwing well

Eddie Altamonte

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Notes: Sanchez focusing on health

02/18/2007 6:06 PM ET

By Joe Frisaro / MLB.com


JUPITER, Fla. -- Everything is back to normal for Marlins right-hander Anibal Sanchez.

Hampered by some shoulder stiffness a few weeks ago, Sanchez was on the mound throwing a 10-minute bullpen session on Sunday morning at the Roger Dean Stadium complex.


"My arm feels better," said Sanchez, who is on a regular throwing schedule like the other pitchers who worked out Sunday.


A few weeks ago, Sanchez underwent an MRI exam after his shoulder acted up. He took it easy for a while, but was able to get three bullpen sessions in before Spring Training started.


"He was fine, I saw him throw a little bit," manager Fredi Gonzalez said.


Sanchez was part of a second group of six pitchers who took the mound Sunday morning.


He's on schedule to throw off the mound every other day early in camp.


Several pitchers threw off the mound Saturday, and they will again be back throwing Monday.


Sanchez was one of four Marlins rookies to win 10 or more games in 2006. The 22-year-old finished 10-3 with a 2.83 ERA after being called up from Double-A in June.


Sanchez threw 114 1/3 innings with the Marlins in 2006, and he added another 85 2/3 innings in the Minor Leagues.


"I just want to try to stay healthy," Sanchez said. "If I'm healthy, I can do anything. If I'm not healthy, I don't know what I can do."


Sanchez was an impressive 5-1 with a 1.88 ERA, including a no-hitter, in six starts last September.


"I had a good month, but I don't know what will happen this year," Sanchez said. "That is a really difficult month to throw. I was consistent that month, and my command and everything felt right. I was healthy last year."


Throwing groups: Gonzalez woke up at 4:45 a.m. ET on Sunday and immediately turned on the Weather Channel. The forecast for Jupiter was chilly and rainy.


One of his first decisions was to get the pitchers on the mound at 10 a.m. ET or hold back until noon. Gonzalez made the right call as the weather, while chilly, held up for the pitchers to get in some on-field work.


The first group of six pitchers was Dontrelle Willis, Scott Olsen, Renyel Pinto, Taylor Tankersley, Kevin Gregg and Ricky Nolasco.


Willis threw to Miguel Olivo, forming the probable Opening Day battery.


The second group had Sanchez, Mike Koplove, Nate Field, Felix Rodriguez, Eddy Rodriguez and Wes Obermueller.


The final group throwing bullpen sessions was Henry Owens, Randy Messenger, Lee Gardner and Sergio Mitre.


Financial challenges: Florida's payroll limitations are well-known, and now that All-Stars Miguel Cabrera and Willis have received major salary increases, many wonder how many more years Florida can afford them.


After winning his arbitration case Saturday, Cabrera will earn a team-high $7.4 million. Willis, meanwhile, signed for $6.45 million in early January. The two are by far the highest-paid players on the team, whose payroll will wind up around $28 million.


"We have our challenges here, and we're not going to turn our heads away from it," general manager Admin Beinfest said. "But there are probably a lot of people out there now who are surprised that Dontrelle is still here, and all those things are still circulating over the years. I can only tell you what I know. [Owner] Jeffrey [Loria] wants to win. We have our challenges here and we're going to do the best we can, and we'll look at what makes sense for next year's payroll when that time comes."


Both Willis and Cabrera are eligible for free agency after the 2009 season. So the team could sign them to one-year deals until then.


Cabrera, who turns 24 in April, has posted outstanding numbers and is one of the top players in the game.


"There is total recognition by the organization that we have a great player," Beinfest said of Cabrera.


Hold on Rodriguez: A non-roster invitee worth watching is veteran Felix Rodriguez, who has had a solid career setting up.


The 34-year-old right-hander appeared in 31 games and threw 29 1/3 innings for the Nationals in 2006. In 2005, he was with the Yankees, seeing action in 34 games, turning in 32 1/3 innings.


From the 2000 season to the present, Rodriguez has the second-highest amount of holds of any reliever in the Major Leagues. He has 131 holds in that span, second only to Arthur Rhodes' 143.


A hold, which is preserving a lead, is not a recognized statistic by Major League Baseball.


Since 2000, Rodriguez is first in holds among National League relievers with 128.

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Yes, that's great to hear. Now we just need JJ to say something along those lines; it'll bring me much needed calm.

JJ said he was fine during fanfest i thought


In one of the articles Eddie posted today, Johnson said he slept on his arm wrong the day before he was going to start throwing so he and the Marlins are taking it slow. Nothing wrong with that as long as he is healthy and ready come Opening Day.

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