Hill hoping to 'build on success' at Meetings

Hill hoping to 'build on success' at Meetings

NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. -- As an organization, the Marlins continue to overcome incredible grief. The death of Jose Fernandez sent the franchise, the South Florida community and the baseball world into mourning.

More than two months have passed since Fernandez died in a boating accident, and with the same resolve the Marlins showed in the face of adversity, they remain determined to push forward. Miami made a statement on Thursday that it intends to contend in the National League East by finalizing its two-year deal with Edinson Volquez.

Now, with the Winter Meetings set to begin, Marlins executives arrived at National Harbor on Sunday with the purpose of finding more pitching -- both starters and relievers.

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"We've been given our marching orders," Marlins president of baseball operations Michael Hill said. "As you can see, I haven't been given orders that we have to move anything off of our club. We're trying to add to it and build on the success that we had in 2016."

MLB.com and MLB Network will have wall-to-wall coverage of the 2016 Winter Meetings from the Gaylord National Resort & Convention Center outside Washington, D.C. Fans can watch live streaming of all news conferences and manager availability on MLB.com, including the Rule 5 Draft on Thursday at 9 a.m. ET.

Marlins manager Don Mattingly will be on hand at the Meetings, and he will address the media at 9:30 a.m. ET on Wednesday.

For the most part, the Marlins have had a low-key offseason as the organization coped with Fernandez's passing.

Miami continues to be in the market for starting pitchers, targeting mostly free agents with track records of durability. It hopes to back them up with a lights-out bullpen.

Until Volquez agreed on his two-year, $22 million deal, the most significant moves the club made were signing third baseman Martin Prado to a three-year, $40 million extension, along with picking up the $2 million club option on outfielder Ichiro Suzuki.

Along with pitching, the Marlins have some other unfinished business. They remain in the market for a backup catcher, especially since Jeff Mathis agreed to terms with the D-backs, as well as a right-handed bat off the bench.

"We still have to finish off those pieces of the club, but we're trying to build as much pitching depth as we can, both starting and bullpen as we head to D.C.," Hill said.

Joe Frisaro has covered the Marlins for MLB.com since 2002. 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.