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Boone getting early chance


Eddie Altamonte
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http://florida.marlins.mlb.com/news/articl...sp&c_id=fla

 

Notes: Boone getting his chance early

04/22/2007 1:14 PM ET

By Joe Frisaro / MLB.com

 

MIAMI -- As one of the few veterans on the Marlins, Aaron Boone fully understands that a big part of his role is to be a safety net in case of injuries.

In recent days, injuries to Miguel Cabrera and Mike Jacobs have pushed Boone into the starting lineup at third base and first base.

 

When Cabrera experienced discomfort in his right oblique Wednesday, Boone was called on to play third. Cabrera was back in the lineup on Sunday, switching Boone over to first base for Jacobs, who is resting a bruised right thumb.

 

Jacobs injured his thumb in the 14th inning on Friday night, and his status is day-to-day.

 

The 34-year-old Boone signed as a free agent to fill in when needed. And manager Fredi Gonzalez is going with the veteran until Cabrera and Jacobs show they are healthy.

 

"I'm here obviously as protection for Jake or Miggie," Boone said. "I didn't expect it to be this much, this early. But it's good to play.

 

"I prepared myself for anything, and I'm OK with anything. The bottom line is I want them [Cabrera and Jacobs] to be raking, and my job to pinch-hit every now and then. That would mean things are going pretty well. I know I'm going to get my spells here and there. But now, it's more in an everyday situation, that's awesome, too."

 

This weekend, Boone has hit a two-run homer and added a couple of doubles.

 

The Marlins are going through a rough stretch of injuries, and Boone says when the team is fully healthy, it should be highly competitive.

 

"This is a tough game. All the clich?s apply. You've got to come to work every day," he said. "Obviously, we're shorthanded and banged up. Then again, no one feels sorry for you. This is the big leagues. You have to go out. I'm big on going out, and playing, getting in your work. Even when things are going real well, not getting caught up in wins and losses. It's about playing well.

 

"Within the game, if you're a good team, those things will work themselves out. We feel when we have all hands on deck, we're a pretty darn good team."

 

Sanchez ready: Fears of something being wrong with Anibal Sanchez subsided on Sunday.

 

The cramping in Sanchez's right hamstring and calf subsided, and the 23-year-old says he will make his next scheduled start, which will be Friday at Philadelphia.

 

The Marlins are off on Thursday, so Sanchez will have an extra day to get ready. He experienced cramping to his hamstring and calf Saturday night, and was lifted before throwing a pitch in the sixth inning. Sanchez went to the mound ready to work in that inning, but his leg bothered him.

 

On Sunday, Sanchez did his typical routine, running and stretching in the morning.

 

"I'm OK. I'm ready," Sanchez said.

 

To combat the cramps, he says he plans on drinking more water to stay hydrated.

 

Healing process: A number of aching players are on their respective roads to recovery.

 

Ricky Nolasco, who is now eligible to come off the disabled list, with a rehab assignment on Monday for Class A Jupiter. And the right-hander, recovering from elbow soreness, will make another rehab appearance on Thursday in Jupiter.

 

The plan is to have Nolasco back in the rotation on May 1 against the Mets at Shea Stadium.

 

Reliever Jorge Julio, on the DL with a strained right calf, will have throwing sessions on Monday and Tuesday. He is slotted to pitch in a Gulf Coast League game on Thursday. Then on April 29, the team is hoping Julio will throw two innings for Class A Jupiter.

 

Jeremy Hermida, out since March 17 with a bone bruise to his right kneecap, is hitting off a tee, and he's doing some light running. There is no timtable for his return.

 

Sergio Mitre threw a bullpen session on Sunday, and he is slated to come off the DL with his blister problem on May 4.

 

Cheap Trick reaction: Jason Wood, who hit a home run on Saturday night, is a fan of the rock group Cheap Trick, which performed at Dolphin Stadium after the game.

 

The 37-year-old Wood noted that a number of Marlins weren't familiar with the band, which formed in 1973.

 

Well before the game, Wood went into the room where the bands' instruments were stored, and he picked up the five-neck guitar used by Rick Nielsen.

 

Cheap Trick performed as part of the Marlins' "Super Saturdays" promotion. After each Saturday night home game, a band will play for about an hour on the field. A fireworks display follows the concert.

 

Relief help: Gonzalez certainly has sympathy for his already taxed bullpen.

 

After Saturday's game, the Marlins' bullpen emerged as the most used relief corps in the National League, logging 74 2/3 innings. Washington is second with 74 innings.

 

Overall, Florida's relievers are getting the job done. They have a 3.62 ERA, and have given up 30 earned runs.

 

By comparison, the Giants' bullpen has been used for 41 innings.

 

The concern is the bullpen will wear down over the course of the long season.

 

So Gonzalez is hoping the starters can pick up a heavier workload.

 

"I'm hoping someday, somebody will give us a complete game," Gonzalez said.

 

Up next: The Marlins open a three-game series with Atlanta on Monday. Dontrelle Willis (3-1, 5.25) gets the call, while Kyle Davies (0-0, 4.50) goes for the Braves. Willis' wife is expecting their first child any day, and she may have labor induced Monday morning. Willis plans on making his scheduled start.

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