The Marlins are dead-set on acquiring a No. 1 catcher in the offseason, Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald reports .
John Baker has missed the majority of the year to injury and recently underwent Tommy John surgery. While Baker's agent said the catcher is "cautiously optimistic" about being ready for spring training, that's no sure thing. In addition, Ronny Paulino is in the doghouse after being suspended for 50 games (eight of which must be served at the beginning of 2011) and Florida is expected to look elsewhere before deciding whether or not to tender the arbitration-eligible Paulino a contract.
Yorvit Torrealba, Bengie Molina and John Buck will be considered for the opening, Jackson reports. Just don't bet on Victor Martinez joining the team -- both due to his subpar defense and large pricetag. Miguel Olivo, an ex-Marlin, could also be a possibility if Colorado doesn't pick up his option.
Other names that popped up were Jason Varitek, David Ross, Matt Treanor (another ex-Marlin) and Rod Barajas, but these players would only play part-time.
That leaves the No. 2 job to be won between Baker, Brad Davis (pictured) and Brett Hayes, with Paulino given the pink slip.
Another possibility to lead the Marlins is Ivan Rodriguez, who led Florida to the 2003 World Series. Although he is under contract with the Nationals for 2011, I-Rod has said he wants to finish his career in Florida, plus the Nats are suddenly deep in young catchers. The Nats and Marlins could link up in a trade, much like when Florida sent outfielder Josh Willingham north prior to the 2009 season.
-- Evan Brunell
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