Sixto Sanchez is facing a pivotal moment as he enters a critical phase. Can he find a way to revive his tenure with the Marlins?

During the initial day of spring training, Sixto Sanchez expressed optimism, declaring, “This is the year,” emphasizing his dedicated self-improvement efforts to make a comeback. Enduring three years of setbacks, the once-prominent prospect for the Miami Marlins, initially seen as a potential ace, is now striving to salvage any chance of returning to the big leagues. With no minor-league options left, the 25-year-old right-handed pitcher must either secure a spot on the Marlins’ Opening Day roster or start the season on the injured list to remain in the organization without being subject to waivers. In essence, it’s a decisive moment for Sanchez to prove his value to the Marlins.

Marlins pitching coach Mel Stottlemyre Jr. acknowledged the urgency, stating, “It is crunch time in terms of where he’s at.” Sanchez made his case by delivering a perfect fifth inning in a recent spring training win, marking his first appearance in a live game since March 25, 2021. As he threw a mix of offspeed and breaking pitches, Sanchez later showcased his fastball, reaching up to 95.3 mph.

The critical question arises: What path can Sanchez take to contribute to the big-league club? Despite his history as a starter, the Marlins are contemplating a role shift, considering the bullpen for shorter stints or competing for a rotation spot. Manager Skip Schumaker highlighted the need to evaluate Sanchez’s recovery before deciding.

Sanchez, once the Marlins’ top prospect, encountered significant obstacles after an impressive debut in 2020, including shoulder discomfort leading to two surgeries. Despite challenges, he returned to the mound for Double-A Pensacola in September 2023 and now feels close to 100 percent this spring. His recent successful outing brings hope for his return, but the Marlins remain cautious about his progress.

Catcher Curt Casali commended Sanchez’s confidence and enjoyment on the field, emphasizing the importance of a positive outcome for Sanchez’s self-assurance. The pitcher expressed gratitude for the feeling of greatness during his return but remains focused on continuous preparation for future opportunities. With time ticking, Sanchez is determined to maintain his momentum and contribute to the Marlins’ success.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *