MIAMI -- No matter when Marlins manager Ozzie Guillen has asked Wade LeBlanc to pitch, the 28-year-old southpaw has delivered.
Since being called up from Triple-A New Orleans on July 1 as a long reliever, LeBlanc holds a 2-3 record with a 2.49 ERA in 47 innings. That includes 19 appearances, including five starts.
"It hadn't been any different, because to me, I approach both the same way," said LeBlanc, who returned to the bullpen when rookie Jacob Turner joined the rotation. "I understand some guys are more ready to do one thing rather than the other, but for me, pitching is pitching, especially with not dominant stuff. You have to maintain the same mindset no matter whether you're coming in out of the bullpen or starting."
LeBlanc made his first start on Aug. 12 in a 4-2 win against the Braves, but Guillen pulled him after 4 1/3 innings and 71 pitches. LeBlanc needed to be stretched out, having tossed no more than 31 pitches since his call to the big leagues.
In his third and fifth starts, LeBlanc reached 102 pitches. As a starter, he is 1-2 with a 3.29 ERA. Out of the bullpen, he is 1-1 with a 1.37 ERA.
In Spring Training, LeBlanc allowed three earned runs in 20 2/3 innings. The final bullpen spot, however, went to Chad Gaudin. As a member of the Padres for four seasons, LeBlanc made just two relief appearances in 54 games.
"Since '08, when I first got called up, I was Major Leagues, Minor Leagues, Major Leagues, Minor Leagues as a starter," LeBlanc said. "Well, here it's been bullpen, starter, bullpen, starter in the big leagues. Obviously I'd much rather do that. It keeps things fresh rather than getting monotonous over the course of 162 games. I actually don't mind it at all. It's fun coming to the field with something different every day."