Struggling defensively, Dietrich optioned to Triple-A

Infielder leads second basemen in E's; slugger Bour expected to be called up

Struggling defensively, Dietrich optioned to Triple-A

MIAMI -- Derek Dietrich, who handled a majority of the playing time for the Marlins at second base, was optioned to Triple-A New Orleans on Tuesday night.

The transaction was announced after the Marlins blanked the Rays, 1-0, at Marlins Park.

The Marlins have yet to announce a corresponding move, but it is expected to be Triple-A first baseman Justin Bour, who the Marlins acquired in the Minor League phase of the Rule 5 Draft. In 55 games with New Orleans, Bour, who was not in the Zephyrs' lineup on Tuesday night, is hitting .330 with nine homers and 36 RBIs.

With the Marlins using the designated hitter in St. Petersburg this week and Texas next week, the left-handed-hitting slugger could see playing time. Miami would need to clear room on the 40-man roster for Bour.

Signed in the offseason to be Miami's regular second baseman, Rafael Furcal still needs time before being activated from the disabled list, where he's been all season. On rehab assignment with Class A Jupiter, the former shortstop went 2-for-3 on Tuesday in the Hammerheads' 14-2 loss to Dunedin at Roger Dean Stadium. Furcal was replaced in the later innings of the blowout, and it was not believed to be due to an injury.

The Marlins have been planning on Furcal taking Wednesday off to travel to continue his rehab assignment at Double-A Jacksonville on Thursday. He has played in five of the past six games for the Hammerheads. The 36-year-old is 6-for-13 in his last four games.

Furcal strained his left hamstring in Spring Training, and he strained his right groin while on rehab assignment, setting him back another month.

As for Dietrich, he's appeared in 41 games and is batting .241 with five doubles, two triples, five home runs and 16 RBIs. Defensively, he's had his issues, committing eight errors, which is the most of any second baseman in the Majors.

Ed Lucas has started the past two games at second base, and the Marlins also have Donovan Solano and Jeff Baker who can man the position.

"We're just in a situation where we wanted to make sure that [Dietrich] plays," manager Mike Redmond said. "There are some defensive things that obviously we want him to work out. He needs to play. He's still a young guy. We love him and we love what he can do. He just needs to be more consistent. He understands that. We know he will go down and work on, not just his defense, but all aspects of his game. The guy is a big leaguer. It's all about consistency up here in the big leagues. I know he will go down there and do what he needs to do to come back here as soon as possible."

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