The report from the Miami Herald on Monday will likely do little to ease the minds and hearts of Miami Marlins fans – the team will reportedly look to trade superstar right fielder Giancarlo Stanton in order to cut their payroll down to a more manageable level.
But that’s not all – the team will also look to trade highly-paid infielders Dee Gordon and Martin Prado to further cut salary, while intending on keeping both outfielders Marcell Ozuna and Christian Yelich.
Here’s the relevant information from the Herald.
According to two sources, the Marlins will look to trade outfielder Giancarlo Stanton, who’s due $25 million next season, and also will try to trade second baseman Dee Gordon and third baseman Martin Prado.
There could be a market for Gordon, who’s due $10.5 million, $13 million and $13.5 million over the next three seasons, with a $14 million team option in 2021.
But it’s highly questionable if the Marlins will be able to trade Prado, who’s due $13.5 million in 2018 and $15 million in 2019. Prado, who turned 34 on Friday, was limited to 37 games because of injury last season and hit .250.
My main takeaway from this – they’re really going to end up screwing this trade up, aren’t they?
Prado is coming off a year where he slashed .250/.279/.357. He’s 34, missed about 75% of the 2017 season, and is still highly paid.
Gordon hit .308/.341/.375 with 60 stolen bases last year, which is quite strong, but was handed a PED suspension in 2016 and is already 29 – he’s not going to be getting faster any time soon. His backloaded contract hits eight figures in…oh, 2018. What a coincidence.
Stanton’s contract also balloons to $25 million in 2018, more than $10 million more than his 2017 salary. If the Marlins are so concerned with shedding payroll, they’re likely going to have trouble finding a team willing to take on all of these contracts (in separate deals, or the same deal in case a team is really willing to gambling) while also giving the Marlins fair value for the production of the players.
If I were a Marlins fan, I’d be worried that the team’s new front office would be prioritizing “saving money” over “bringing back talent” in these trades. When the Reds traded Brandon Phillips, who had one year and $14 million left on his contract in 2017, to the Braves, they ate all but $1 million of his salary and got back a 29-year old Cuban reliever they released after one minor league appearance, and a 27-year old minor league reliever recovering from Tommy John surgery. And that’s with eating the money! The Marlins want to completely dump the salaries of Gordon and Prado!
The worst case scenario for the Marlins is that they’re able to shed the salaries of Gordon and Prado without receiving a whole lot of anything in return, making the major league team worse in both the short and long-term. And if they’re not able to dump those contracts and are forced to eat portions of those deals, the team would probably be less inclined to eat part of Stanton’s heftier contract in a trade, meaning that the expected return will come in lower, making the major league team and farm system worse than expected.
And folks, that’s what happens when you prioritize saving money over being competitive. It might be a long winter for Marlins fans.