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Marisnick soaking in big league experience

Marisnick soaking in big league experience

Marisnick soaking in big league experience

MIAMI -- Whether he is in the lineup or observing from the bench, Jake Marisnick is simply enjoying the ride of being in the big leagues for the first time.

The 22-year-old has gone through his share of struggles since being promoted from Double-A Jacksonville in late July. He went from steady playing time in center field to a reserve role in recent weeks.

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There are still mechanical issues with his swing, as shown by his .183 batting average in 40 games and 109 at-bats.

Marisnick noted that when he first arrived, he had a little hitch -- or hesitation -- in his swing. He is working more on simply relaxing, while gaining as much insight as possible from veterans like Juan Pierre and Placido Polanco.

"I'm using this time to pick the brains of some of these guys," the rookie said. "I'm talking to them about their mental approaches and what they're picking up from other guys.

"The biggest thing is getting loose up there and getting more comfortable. The last couple of games, I've felt pretty good up there. I'm taking that and working on that every day."

Marisnick joined the Marlins as part of last November's 12-player deal with Toronto. He was on the disabled list for the first month of the season with a broken left hand and then opened the season at Class A Jupiter in late April, before he was moved to Double-A Jacksonville after three games.

At Jacksonville, Marisnick appeared in 70 games and had 265 at-bats.

Due to lost time, he is open to playing winter ball.

"More at-bats would never be a bad thing for me," Marisnick said. "But I haven't really talked to anybody about it."

A highly-touted prospect, Marisnick is glad he received his first big league chance, even if the results haven't been there.

When Spring Training opens, he will have to earn a roster spot, or else start off at Triple-A.

"I think when I first got called up, I tried to do too much," Marisnick said. "I kind of do that when I get promoted. I try to do too much instead of letting my natural ability show.

"I haven't had as many at-bats as when I first got up here. What they've stressed to me is when I get my opportunities, to make the most of them -- kind of enjoy the moment, get the feeling of getting comfortable. It's been coming around a little the last few weeks."

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