Cervelli has one base hit in the past week and has seen reduced playing time due to his recent struggles. Chris Stewart made the start behind the plate on Tuesday and Wednesday, but Cervelli will get the nod today. Cervelli's batting average has been slipping consistently over the past couple of weeks and now sits at .267 to go along with just one extra base hit in nearly two weeks.
Shelby Miller's lack of success this season has been blamed on many things from a constant uncomfortable delivery to now a lingering finger issue that has been going on since April. Whatever the problem is, Miller has been far from the pitcher he was last year with the Braves, and the thought of sending him to the Minors has become an actual possibility. His 7.09 ERA and .311 Batting Average Against show that something drastic needs to happen, even if it requires a quick stint in Triple-A.
Belt suffered a mild ankle sprain in Wednesday's game against the Padres and was forced to leave the game. After x-ray's came back negative, Belt feels like he will be able to play Friday in the series opener against the Rockies, barring any unexpected set back on Thursday.
Wittgren has been recalled and will replace the injured Bryan Morris in the Marlins bullpen. Wittgren has already had two stints in the majors this season in which he owns a 3.18 ERA and 1.59 WHIP in 5.2 innings.
Yelich continues to deal with a back injury that has now kept him out of the last five games for the Marlins. The team still believes he can avoid a trip to the disabled list, but with the games mounting, it may be better for the outfielder to rest completely and return in a couple of weeks.
After a hot stretch, the 42-year-old has gone hitless in his last 10 at-bats and will now start the game on the bench. The Rays are also starting left-hander Drew Smyly which is another reason for Ichiro not starting. Adeiny Hechavarria will handle the leadoff duties for the Marlins and could be used a cheap option at shortstop on Thursday.