Have the Marlins latest roster moves opened the door for Giancarlo Stanton to leave Miami?
Late Monday night on July 22nd, minutes after the Marlins’ 3-1 win over the Brewers in which the team snapped a franchise long 37-inning scoreless streak, beat writer Joe Capozzi sent out this tweet.
A video has already surfaced on Marlins President Larry Beinfest addressing the move.
This move shocked me at first. Marcell Ozuna and Derek Dietrich have been mainstays in the Marlins line-up for a majority of the season, playing 69 and 57 games respectively. Ozuna hit .300 through his first two months in the big leagues, but has slumped through the month of July, hitting .162 in his last 68 ABs. Dietrich came over to the Marlins after Yunel Escobar was flipped to the Rays shortly after the Blue Jays blockbuster. Dietrich was one of the Marlins to represent the team for their MLB Fan Cave visit, but he has been consistently underwhelming in this year. He’s hitting .214 on the year, and doesn’t boast any impressive stat categories. A common thread between Ozuna and Dietrich is their high strikeout rates, and low walk rates. Both are around 4% BB and 20% K, which the Marlins are hoping they can improve on in the minors.
The two young outfielders coming up have me excited. Christian Yelich was the Marlins first round pick in 2010, and has participated in the past two Futures Games. I thought he should’ve made the club out of Spring Training, and Jose Fernandez should’ve started in the minors, but obviously that didn’t happen. Who knows, maybe the script would’ve been flipped and Yelich would’ve been our All-Star? After a slow start, Yelich has recovered to hit .277 in AA so far, but also put up a .364 OBP and .518 SLG. Yelich has a similar K% in AA that Ozuna and Dietrich did in the Majors, but Yelich also walks more. The hit on his BB% in the majors will be monumental to his success. If he can keep it around 10%, I see him being successful, but if he drops down into the dangerous territory that Ozuna and Dietrich fell into, his stint in the Majors will not be long. Yelich is an exciting OF with a strong bat, who projects to be the Marlins future CF. Hopefully that stage begins now.
Jake Marisnick came over to the Marlins in the controversial trade with the Toronto Blue Jays in this pas off-season. Marisnick and Yelich were teammates at AA Jacksonville before being called up together, and had great chemistry hitting 1-2 in the order. Marisnick put up similar numbers to Yelich, but with a slightly higher batting average, and lower walk rate. Being similar to Christian Yelich is a great thing, and hopefully these two have successful debuts and stay in the bigs.
What Does This Mean Moving Forward?
I think that this move has a huge impact on what the Marlins will do at the trading deadline in about a week. The Marlins have been receiving interest in Outfielders Justin Ruggiano and Giancarlo Stanton. The Marlins don’t want to trade either player. He’s not arbitration eligible until the end of the next season, unlike Stanton who will be a First-Time Arbitration Eligible player this Off-Season. A history of injuries could limit what he’s worth, but he definitely has a case to be payed big money, which the Marlins don’t want to pay if they have other options. The promotion of Marisnick and Yelich shows that the Marlins are ready to try out their potential new outfield. Ozuna was in those plans, but he’s back in the minors again to hopefully sort out his slump. If Marisnick and Yelich show that they’re big league ready, it spells the end for Giancarlo Stanton and/or Justin Ruggiano in Miami. That’s the only way I see looking at this move. The Marlins were hesitant on trading Ruggiano because of Major League outfield depth. They just sent one OF down to bring up two, and if I’m reading this correctly, Ozuna will be back in the big leagues once Ruggiano or Stanton are traded at the deadline.
Stanton is the more likely candidate to be traded. He’s owed more money in the off-season and has an astronomically higher value than Ruggiano. As mentioned in previous “Be a GM” posts, the Marlins can bring in a huge package for Stanton, whose value is as high now as ever. The Marlins have called up Stanton’s potential replacements to the big leagues, so this means:
Giancarlo Stanton is more available now than he’s ever been