Cishek, Slowey have chance to experiment

Cishek, Slowey have chance to experiment

PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. -- For Marlins closer Steve Cishek and Kevin Slowey, Monday's work in a "B" game was more than just getting some extra work -- it was an opportunity to experiment.

Slowey started the morning scrimmage against the Mets on Field 7 at the Tradition Field complex, and Cishek tossed one inning of relief. Both used the game to work on their secondary pitches.

Cishek is looking to mix in a split-finger fastball, a pitch he rarely used last season. Slowey, meanwhile, focused on throwing more curveballs after hardly using any in his first few Grapefruit League outings.

"When I'm trying to close out a ballgame, I'm not going to work on a split," Cishek said. "If it was, like, a blowout game or something like that, then I'd throw it."

He estimates throwing about 10 splits.

Slowey allowed four runs in four innings and threw about 50 pitches -- 20 to 25 of them curveballs, by his estimate.

"It's a good opportunity in a game like today to really work on stuff," Slowey said. "I haven't thrown a handful of breaking balls."

Whereas Cishek's role is secure, Slowey's is more uncertain. He is in camp as a non-roster invitee, and he is in the mix for a role as a long reliever/spot starter.

"Slowey was working on his breaking ball," manager Mike Redmond said. "In his first two outings, he may have thrown three breaking balls. His whole goal was to go over there and start mixing his breaking balls and curveballs. He just hasn't had to use it. He's predominantly thrown a lot of fastballs."

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