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2012 Miami Marlins: Sun Sentinel staff predictions

The new-look

Miami Marlins

have a new stadium, new name, new uniforms, new manager in

Ozzie Guillen

and went on a spending spree that landed key additions shortstop

Jose Reyes

, starter

Mark Buehrle

and closer

Heath Bell

. The Marlins also boast holdovers

Josh Johnson

,

Hanley Ramirez

, Giancarlo Stanton,

Emilio Bonifacio

,

Logan Morrison

and

Gaby Sanchez

.

Sun-Sentinel reporters, editors and columnists make their picks about how the Marlins will fare in an exciting new era of baseball in South Florida:

Mike Berardino

Sports columnist

Record:

92-70

Finish:

First in

NL East

Comment:

All that positive energy from the new stadium, new players and new manager leads to the first division title in franchise history. Amazing what a little climate control can do.

Dave Hyde

Sports columnist

Record:

91-71

Finish:

First in NL East

Comment:

Philadelphia has the best three starters in baseball, but its lineup is cracking.

Marlins

spent smartly to fill holes and have a very good defensive team. Of course, if

Josh Johnson

isn't healthy for 30 starts, all bets are off.

Joseph Schwerdt

Marlins Editor

Record:

87-75

Finish:

Second NL East

Comment:

The Marlins will be good this year for a lot of reasons: great young talent, solid starters; great speed and a smart, fiery manager in

Ozzie Guillen

. But the youth may still be a season away from blossoming and the starting rotation goes only as far as Josh Johnson's fragile arm.

Juan C. Rodriguez

Marlins reporter

Record:

86-76

Finish:

Third NL East

Comment:

Expect the Marlins to be in it until the end, where the

Mets

will be waiting. The floundering Mets will remember how the Marlins knocked them out of the postseason twice in recent years, priming them to return the favor in the final regular season series of 2012 at Marlins Park. Does baseball work any other way? Look for the

Phillies

and

Nationals

to edge the Marlins in the NL East.

Keven Lerner

Online Sports Editor

Record:

83-79

Finish:

Second NL East

Comment:

The Marlins should boast the best batting lineup in the hotly contested NL East, but it won't be enough to overtake the Phillies and their stellar starting rotation and superb defense.

Craig Davis

Staff Writer

Record:

85-77

Finish:

Third NL East

Comment:

Too many uncertainties with an overrated starting rotation to rise higher in a competitive, pitching-rich division. A healthy season from Josh Johnson could put a wild card within reach. But only steady Mark Buerhle can be counted on for reliable production.

Steve Svekis

Multimedia Reporter

Record:

82-80

Finish:

Third NL East

Comment:

A lot of ‘x factors’ need to come through for the Marlins to truly threaten the Phillies and Braves: Jose Reyes¿ legs, Josh Johnson¿s arm, Hanley Ramirez¿s attitude for starters.

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