Loria says he wasn't involved in twin-bill switch

Report indicated owner decided to swap Fernandez, Nolasco in Minnesota

Loria says he wasn't involved in twin-bill switch

MIAMI -- In response to a report that surfaced Friday morning, Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria denied that he was behind the Marlins' late decision to switch starting pitchers for Tuesday's day-night doubleheader at Minnesota.

Jeff Passan of Yahoo! Sports reported on Friday that Loria called for the Marlins to go with Jose Fernandez in Game 1 instead of Ricky Nolasco.

In response, Loria told Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports on Friday: "I had nothing to do with the decision. I was informed of the decision by the baseball department. I told them it was their call.

"I don't make decisions on who to pitch and when, how to go about it -- that's not my role. Sometimes they call me and tell me what they're doing. But I don't call them up and say, 'This is what is going to happen.' That's not true."

Before Miami faced Chicago on Friday night, manager Mike Redmond said it was a group decision.

"We were all on the call," Redmond said. "It was an organizational decision. I'm going to leave it at that."

Initially, Nolasco was set to pitch the first game at 2:10 p.m. ET, and Fernandez was lined up for the 8:10 p.m. ET nightcap.

But mid-morning, the Marlins made the switch, which caught Nolasco and Fernandez off guard. Nolasco was informed 2 1/2 hours before Game 1 as he was walking into Target Field. Nolasco headed back to the hotel to get more rest.

Fernandez, meanwhile, arrived at the ballpark at 10:45 a.m. CT, rushing to the field after receiving the call.

The Marlins lost the first game, 4-3, with Fernandez taking the loss, but Nolasco earned the win, 8-5, in the nightcap.

"I was told at 10:30," Nolasco said Tuesday night. "I'm not going to talk about that situation. I know what I've got to do. I've still got to go out there and pitch. Happy or not, whatever the situation is, I have to go out there and do my job."

Wintry weather conditions prompted the switch. Initially, Nolasco was scheduled to pitch on Monday, but that game was postponed. It snowed on Monday night, and a day-night doubleheader was scheduled for Tuesday.

Even in the morning, team officials weren't confident both games would be played. There was even talk, if necessary, of playing on Wednesday, a scheduled off-day for both clubs.

"We really didn't think we'd get two games in," general manager Michael Hill said on Tuesday.

"We weren't really sure what the weather was going to be like," Redmond said on Tuesday. "There was the possibility of just playing one game today, and not knowing if it was going to snow again, or what. When we saw the sunshine, it made sense to put Fernandez up to pitch Game 1. Ricky's a little more accustomed to throwing in the cooler weather."

The temperature ended up being warmer at the time of the first pitch for the second game, 42 degrees compared to 38. But as the day progressed, the day game was warmer. Temperatures dropped into the low 30s during the night game.

"It wasn't fun," Nolasco said after the game. "Just grinded it out. I felt like I did just well enough to win."

Joe Frisaro is a reporter for MLB.com. He writes a blog, called The Fish Pond. Follow him on Twitter