Prospect expected to play every day
NEW YORK -- The wait is over. Mike Stanton is joining the Florida Marlins.
The highly touted slugger will make his major league debut Tuesday night in Philadelphia, part of a roster shakeup designed to spark the slumping Marlins.
Stanton wowed the Marlins during spring training with his power but the 20-year-old outfielder was sent to Double-A Jacksonville for seasoning. He responded by dominating the Southern League, hitting .311 with 21 homers and 52 RBIs in 52 games to earn the promotion to the majors.
"I think he's going to be fine," second baseman Dan Uggla said. "He's a very humble kid with a huge amount of talent and I think he's going to continue to work hard. Hopefully, he's going to be able to help us out."
Stanton's anticipated debut comes at a key time for Florida (28-30), which has lost four of five to sink to fourth in the NL East. But the Marlins were quick to dial down expectations and were confident the 2007 second-round draft pick would be able to handle the hype.
"The young man is mature and humble and I think he'll handle it just fine," said manager Fredi Gonzalez, who declined to get into where Stanton will play and how he fits into the lineup.
Stanton won't be the only top prospect making his big league debut Tuesday night. Right-hander Stephen Strasburg, the No. 1 overall pick in last year's draft, is scheduled to start for the Washington Nationals against the Pittsburgh Pirates.
Florida also called up reliever Rick Vanden Hurk and speedy utilityman Emilio Bonifacio from Triple-A New Orleans after Sunday's game. Right-hander Tim Wood and outfielder Brett Carroll were sent down, and infielder Mike Lamb will be designated for assignment before Tuesday's game to make room for Stanton.
Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press
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