Why The Marlins Future Is Very Bright: Team Payroll And Player Options Going Fwd
By Jordan Gluck (Lead Prospects Analyst/Organization Writer): Follow @jgluck777
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Why the Marlins Future Is Very Bright
The Fish are right now best known for two things. The first is the potential NL MVP Giancarlo Stanton who has the most raw power in Major League Baseball.
The second is for the “cheap” owner Jeffrey Loria who I think is given to much negative press and bashing.
This is a team that is incredibly young and has a total of ZERO dollars committed to the 2017 payroll and only 8 million to 2016.
Lets not forget about Jose Fernandez who just turned 22 and is coming back from TJ surgery.
Lets look at the current lineup and salary chart.
2014 Payroll Miami
A very affordable and not to bad lineup. Their weakest spot is at 2B which is the one area where i believe they really need to bring in a replacement.
Rotation, Bullpen and Salary chart.
Throw in Jose Fernandez for the people in that number 5 spot and you have a fine starting rotation coupled with a nice bullpen. They all have low salaries and are young. A team with arms moving in the right direction.
Before i go into what they should do lets review the big trades most notably the Blue Jays and Dodgers trades.
They gave up notable players and salary to Toronto in Jose Reyes, Mark Buehrle, and Josh Johnson. In return they got Henderson Alvarez, Adeiny Hechavarria, Justin Nicolino,Yunel Escobar (Derek Dietrich), Jake Marisnick, and Anthony Desclafani.
I would say with salary included that they absolutely won that trade. There trade with the Dodgers was basically Hanley Ramirez for Eovaldi which is a slight win for the Dodgers although Ramirez is a free agent this summer which will at least net the Dodgers a first round pick.
The Marlins have 14M committed to next year and i will project that with absolutely no moves they will have a payroll of about 43 million dollars. Now reports have said that the Marlins can have a payroll in the 75-80 Million dollar range.
That leaves a shade under 40M to make some changes and additions to the roster. The Fish have an average farm system with “top prospect (By others but not me)” Andrew Heaney they can possibly trade due to their current rotation, farm system and possible signings.
The fish only need maybe two or three moderate sized pieces to in my view be a legitimate WS contender.
The Fish NEEEEEEEED to spend money to convince Giancarlo Stanton to stay. The most pressing issue is 2nd base.
They can solve this option within with Derek Dietrich but i don’t believe that is a satisfactory enough improvement yet, They can sign someone or they can trade for somebody.
Potential Signings Targets:
For the above options i think that the Cabrera signing is the most realistic for the Fish. There are some players looking to rebuild value and that could work like Nelson Cruz with the Orioles or Michael Morse with the Giants.
Hardy and Lowrie may prefer to look for a gig at SS than at 2B. Overall I think the best and most probable route would be to trade for a 2B using Heaney as bait.
Of course each of these options would take a different package to acquire and some trading Heaney would be too much. I’m going to assume they acquire Kinsler for Heaney as it make sense for both.
Detroit needs SP depth and has Devon Travis on the farm – almost ready to play at the Major League Level. Kinsler is 32 and is under contract through at least 2017 with an option for 2018. He will be due 16M next year. This will bring the Marlins payroll to about 60M and counting.
They also want to sign a frontline SP which are usually not cheap. There are many options for this and I believe they look at the free agent pool rather than try to trade.
With Fernandez, right now they would have a complete rotation (throw out brad hand) but as you know injuries do happen not to mention subpar performance.
I like to have 7SP who can pitch at this level. Nicolino is one for the Fish in the minors and I think Brad Hand can be that long man/swing starter if they need. Add a starter and that means at about midseason you can have about 8 SP (if no one is hurt or sucks) in June.
I think Shields, Maeda or Brett Anderson are the most likely choices. All have high upside and come with a moderate high risk in terms of dollars or in terms of injury risk. All these players are pretty much “big name” players and some have past connections to the fish.
A prediction here. is that they sign Shields and factor that into the equation. That puts the Marlins payroll at about 79M. Shields is a big game pitcher the franchise lacks, and has proven to pitch well in Florida before, albeit in Tampa Bay.
I am also going to predict that the Fish trade away Garrett Jones for a pair of C prospects – as he really hasn’t been a very good fit for the organization, and would thrive more in a more hitter friendly park – or perhaps in the AL with the available DH slot.
I am going to say they will sign Michael Morse to a 2yr 16M deal which will put their payroll at 80M. Morse can also play a outfield corner.
This will make the Fish a very Righty heavy offense but that can be balanced out with how they use Yelich and Salty. I think the bullpen is good and will most likely remain untouched. Here is the team.
Kinsler 2B (or similar facsimile, even a lighter signing to bring Bonifacio back, maybe sign and move Asdrubal Cabrera there, or trade for another 2B)
That to me is one hell of a ballclub. They have a strong lineup headed by a potential MVP with speed at the top and bottom and power in the middle. an excellent starting rotation – to play in that big ballpark.
A good bullpen with top end 8th and 9th inning options. As far as the manager Mike Redmond this will be the year to prove himself or else he will be on the hot seat. The total opening day payroll ail be about 80 Million dollars.
Well damn that team in my eyes could be a World Series favorite.
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