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Marlins Announce Ichiro Re-Signing, Jennings Return To GM And More

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MIAMI (CBSMiami) – The 2015 Miami Marlins entered the season with a revamped roster and playoff aspirations.

As the team began working its way through the early parts of the schedule, it became clear that several players who were expected to be a strength of the ballclub were anything but.

It wasn't long before any hopes for an appearance in the postseason were lost to yet another losing season.

On Tuesday the Marlins held their annual end of season press conference with team president David Samson and president of baseball operations Michael Hill.

Samson confirmed that Dan Jennings will not return as the Marlins manager in 2016, instead returning to his original role of general manager for which he is under contract.  Samson said that the search for a new manager will be "extensive and exhausting."

The Marlins have already interviewed former MLB managers Manny Acta, Bo Porter and Larry Bowa for the manager job. More interviews are expected to take place in the coming weeks.

"Interviews are ongoing," said Samson. "When it's right, it's right." He added that there could be "anywhere between four and 20 interviews."

Hill said the team would like to have a manager in place sooner rather than later so that he can be a part of the team's offseason decisions.

Samson also said that the dimensions will change at Marlins Park. This means that the outfield walls will be moved in to make the park more hitter-friendly.

Another announcement that was made was the re-signing of veteran outfielder Ichiro Suzuki to a one year contract.

During his first season with the Marlins, Ichiro appeared in 153 games and produced a .229/.282/.279 slash line with one home run, 31 RBIs and 11 stolen bases.

He also pitched an inning for the Marlins in the team's final game of the season, giving up one run on two hits in an inning of work.

Ichiro is close to a major milestone that he'll likely reach next season. He needs 65 hits to become the 30th player in MLB history to reach 3,000 for his career. He's also just two stolen bases away from becoming the 8th player in MLB history to reach 2,900 hits and 500 stolen bases.

A big part of the decision to bring back Ichiro was the positive impact he had on the team both on and off the field, which Samson went into detail about.

Ichiro is expected to have the same role with the Marlins next season, acting as the team's fourth outfielder.

Follow David on Twitter (@DavidDwork)


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