Through 55 games and 228 plate appearances this year, 24-year-old Washington Nationals' '06 1st Round pick Chris Marrero has a .306/.355/.502 line with nine doubles, a triple and 10 HRs for the Triple-A Syracuse Chiefs. In his last 10 games, the first baseman is 12 for 37 (.324/.405/.405) with three of his nine doubles this season over that stretch. After tearing a hamstring playing Winter ball following the 2011 season, Marrerro returned for 37 games in 2012, but back on the field full-time this year, the 6'3'', 230 lb, right-handed hitting and throwing Miami, Florida-native is hitting like he was in 2011 with the Nats' top affiliate when the then-22-year-old prospect had a .300/.375/.449 line before he was called up to make his MLB debut.
Marrero hasn't played in the majors since he got into 31 games in 2011 and put up a .248/.274/.294 line late that season. Davey Johnson hinted that winter that both Steve Lombardozzi and Marrero had earned an opportunity to see what they could do at the major league level, but with Marrero out for most of 2012, it was Lombardozzi and Tyler Moore who got the chance to play for the NL East Champions. The fact that Marrero was hitting again this season caught 106.7 the FAN In D.C.'s Danny Rouhier's attention, and the host asked Nats' GM Mike Rizzo on this past week's edition of The Mike Rizzo Show if fans might see Marrero up in the majors again at some point in the future.
"I think that there's certainly a chance," Rizzo said, "to be dictated [by] what happens on the major league level. Chris Marrero is swinging the bat very well, putting the bat on the ball very often and showing occasional power." Marrero's name came up the back on the 5/23/13 edition of the eponymous show as well, with Rizzo saying that the big thing this year was that he's remained on the field.
"Marrero's finally healthy," Rizzo told the show's hosts. "That's been the bugaboo on this guy since we drafted him, is that he has a propensity to be injured. But when he's healthy, he's a threat at the plate. He's got a good approach. He's got power to all fields. And he's a hitter first and a power hitter second and he's getting better and better defensively at first base." According to a report by the Washington Post's Adam Kilgore tonight, Marrero might get an opportunity to spark the Nats' dead-in-the-water offense:
Hearing 1B Chris Marrero is coming up tomorrow for the Nats doubleheader. Not sure if he's simply the 26th man or if there's more.— Adam Kilgore (@AdamKilgoreWP) June 9, 2013
It also sounds like Chris Marrero will be with the Nats for more than just tomorrow.— Adam Kilgore (@AdamKilgoreWP) June 9, 2013
No official word from the team, which can add a 26th man under the new rules for doubleheaders which went into effect last season. The Nationals and Minnesota Twins play a split doubleheader tomorrow after Friday night's game was postponed by rain.