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Pierre, Ruggiano lose time after prospects' callups

Pierre, Ruggiano lose time after prospects' callups

Pierre, Ruggiano lose time after prospects' callups

DENVER -- With two talented young outfielders called up from Double-A Jacksonville before Tuesday's game against the Rockies, Justin Ruggiano and Juan Pierre will likely see even less playing time.

Top prospects Christian Yelich and Jake Marisnick both started in their debuts. Yelich hit second and played left field, and Marisnick hitt sixth and played center field, filling two of the most common spots for Ruggiano and Pierre.

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Pierre, a center fielder for most of his career, has mostly played left field for the Marlins and been a fairly steady presence in the lineup, playing in 72 games. Ruggiano has appeared in 83 games, primarily playing center field and occasionally filling in for Giancarlo Stanton in right.

As the Marlins continue to build for the future, manager Mike Redmond said Yelich and Marisnick will have consistent presences in the lineup. Redmond said he met with Pierre to talk about his future role with the team.

"We're bringing up these young guys up, they're going to play," Redmond said. "I think those guys understand that, JP understands his role and I know Ruggiano, too. But at the same time too, we'll still use those guys, and if a guy needs a break, [Ruggiano] can play can all those different positions and JP, we can utilize him off the bench and his speed."

In his first year back with the Marlins after being an essential piece of the 2003 World Series-winning squad, Pierre is hitting .243 with 32 runs scored and 18 stolen bases.

Ruggaino is in the midst of a troubling slump and has just four hits in his past 55 at-bats. He's hitting .202, but has shown some power, with 12 homers and 32 RBIs.

"There's still a value there for those guys," Redmond said. "Although it's definitely going to take a hit for them playing-time wise, in talking with them, I know they're going to be fine with that, they'll do whatever it takes to help this team."

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