Marlins deciding how to use Koehler out of 'pen

Moved into relief role with return of Alvarez, former starter could be setup man down the line

Marlins deciding how to use Koehler out of 'pen

MIAMI -- Just because Tom Koehler has primarily been a starter doesn't mean he primarily will be used now as a long reliever. The Marlins anticipate the 28-year-old being ready for any situation.

Closing may not be in the picture right now, but setup spots are certainly possible.

"He's got the stuff," manager Mike Redmond said. "He's got a good fastball and curveball. I know he'll compete in any situation we put him in. So we'll see going forward where we can mix him in. But you saw today, he came in with first and second and got out of it. It's the type of stuff he has."

Koehler fans Freeman

Koehler threw three innings of scoreless relief, striking out four, in the Marlins' 5-3 loss to the Braves on Saturday at Marlins Park. He was rushed into action in the fourth inning when starter Mat Latos was struck on the left shin by Cameron Maybin's comeback liner.

The Marlins are reshuffling their pitching, and Koehler, who made 32 starts last year and seven this season, was asked to go to the bullpen. Initially, he was set to start on Sunday, but the club will reinstate Henderson Alvarez from the disabled list, and the Opening Day starter will get the nod.

Saturday was Koehler's first relief appearance since May 6, 2013, at San Diego.

"I don't know if this is a permanent move or if it's temporary," Koehler said. "We haven't had too much discussion on the whole thing. They informed me [Friday]. It's still fresh to me too. Bottom line is, you've still got to get guys out, whether it's for three innings or 18. It's the way I'm going to look at it. My mentality's not going to change in that regard."

Joe Frisaro is a reporter for MLB.com. He writes a blog, called The Fish Pond. Follow him on Twitter @JoeFrisaro and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.