VIERA, Fla. -- With a dozen Grapefruit League games remaining, it's "crunch time" for players on the bubble to make the Opening Day roster. Barring anything unforeseen, the Marlins have roughly two position and a couple of bullpen spots up for grabs.
Miami is leaning towards carrying 13 position players and 12 pitchers, which is creating urgency for those in contention to step things up in the final days of camp.
"We have a lot of positions that are set, no doubt," manager Mike Redmond said. "We've got a couple of positions on the bench that guys are fighting for, man. It's a battle out there. All of these at-bats are important."
Kelly, a left-handed hitter, is getting a lot of attention because he can also play the outfield and first base, and he can step in as an emergency third catcher.
Solano is a proven commodity within the organization. He does have an option remaining, so he could be sent down if he flat out doesn't win a spot.
Brignac has had a terrific camp, and plays a solid shortstop. Johnson is a proven right-handed pinch-hitter who was a valued leader with Miami in 2014. Colvin and Sizemore also provide big league experience.
Miami hasn't had this kind of depth in a long time, but it will make for some difficult decisions.
"We talk about Spring Training as a tough time to evaluate," Redmond said. "We're trying to figure out what fits better on our bench. Those last couple of spots are important, as far as giving us flexibility and getting certain guys a day off."
Tight battles also are taking place in the bullpen. Tom Koehler, David Phelps and Brad Hand are vying for the fifth starter spot. The other two become long-relief candidates.