Jordan Yamamoto rejoins Miami, Lewin Diaz optioned

Jordan Yamamoto
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Amid a strong push for the Miami Marlins, the team has made some recent personnel changes.

Wednesday, the Marlins brought back 24-year old Jordan Yamamoto and optioned Lewin Diaz. Additionally, Adam Conley cleared waivers and was optioned off the 60-man player pool and sent to Triple-Wichita.

Yamamoto’s return

Yamamoto’s return back to Miami comes amid a time when the Fish are sporting a strong pitching staff. That includes a bullpen that is first or tied for first in September ERA (1.63), batting average against (.174), and first in opposing slugging (.272). The starting staff is also hot ranking fifth in MLB in stranding runners on base (76.1 percent left on base).

Jordan Yamamoto hasn’t shared much in that success as his first three starts in August forced him to the alternative training site. Through those three starts, he posted an ugly 11.42 ERA and four home runs through just 8 2/3 innings pitched. Despite a strikeout rate of 10.38 per nine innings, opposing batters were teeing off against him with a .312 average, largely due to a decreased fastball velocity from 91.5 mph last year to an 89.9 average this season. Opposing bats not only hit off of him often but with power, sporting a 92.8 mph exit velocity off of him. Such a mark ranked in the bottom three percent of the league before he was optioned. To put that into perspective, the average MLB exit velocity is 88.3 mph.

Now, the Marlins are looking for the rookie form of Jordan Yamamoto. A time where he ranked in the 28th percentile in whiff percentage, the 16th percentile in exit velocity, and 13th in fastball velocity.

Lewin Diaz optioned, Conley sent to Triple-A

At first, Diaz saw quite a bit of consistent playing time, but there was writing on the wall as to his journey back to the alternative training site in Jupiter. Recently, his time at the plate dwindled earning a start in just one of the past five games. His play certainly didn’t help things out producing a slash line of .154/.195/.205. That also came along with a lackluster mark of three RBI and 12 strikeouts. While it was a small sample size, the showing by Diaz wasn’t enough to keep him at the major league level. Especially with Jesus Aguilar and Garrett Cooper back from their respective injuries.

This isn’t Diaz’s first trip to the major league ranks in 2020. His first stint with the Marlins came in mid-August and was sent back to the alternative training site. During that brief stint, Diaz went 2-for-8 with his first RBI of 2020. He was later sent back to Jupiter on Aug. 17. He made a return trip to Miami on Aug. 24, but has now found himself back at the alternative training site to work on his game even further.

Adam Conley, who hasn’t seen major league time in 2020, will be on the move as well back to Triple-A Wichita. The former second-round selection appeared in 60 games for Miami in 2019. He sported a 6.53 ERA with 53 strikeouts and ten home runs allowed.

Chisholm Addition

All of this is without mentioning the addition of Jazz Chisholm to the major league ranks which occurred on Sept. 2. That also adds to the easy decision to option Diaz push Conley off of the 60-man player pool list.

It may not be a happy time for Diaz or Conley, but the re-additions of Yamamoto and Chisholm help strengthen the all-in mentality of the Marlins. They are saddling up with experience and who fits the best as they look for their first postseason push since 2003.

Main Photo: Embed from Getty Images