Stanton’s Deal Momentous For The Entire Marlins Franchise


For the entirety of Giancarlo Stanton‘s Marlins career, especially following the infamous firesale with the Toronto Blue Jays, the sentiment has been “When will Giancarlo get to play for a real team?”  Finally, after years of trade rumors, criticism, and savoring every Stanton at-bat as if it were his last, Marlins fans can rejoice.

Firesales, alleged tax fraud, hiding records, and a general shroud of doubt have clouded the franchise’s reputation for the better part of the last decade. The team acquired a sparkly new stadium in 2012. With it came a promise from the team’s owner, Jeffery Loria – a promise for a winning ballclub for years to come, a real baseball team in Miami. The season of  the Showtime series The Franchise focusing on the Marlins was cut short due to the team’s lack of success, and the dealing of several players midseason. It’s safe to say that the Marlins were the laughing stock of the MLB. The national media has never hesitated to criticise the Marlins and all of their shortcomings. A multi-year extension for Stanton to stay in Miami? forget about it. Ever since his widely-overblown and over-refferenced tweet after the Blue Jays trade, the consensus was that Giancarlo was waiting for the first ticket out of Miami.  The above tweet also led to articles like this.

Hanley Ramirez, the most recent player to be a “face” of the franchise was traded mid-season in 2012. Jose Fernandez emereged as a home grown star in 2013, but suffered a devastating injury in May of last season. He’ll be back, but Giancarlo Stanton cemented his status as the franchise cornerstone last season, carrying the fish to 77 wins.

His season was cut short on September 11 by an unfortunate pitch that hit Stanton in the face and broke multiple bones. The thought crossed my mind more than once, what if that was Stanton’s last at bat in a Marlin’s uniform? Fortunately, fans no longer have to wonder.  This team now has a star to call their own, and he’s not going anywhere for a long time. Unlike those before him, Stanton’s contract comes with a no-trade clause, the first Loria has ever given. There was no saving face for Loria, as he has shown his full deck in trying to keep the young megastar.

Fans have used the same excuses as the media to support their lack of support for the team. Attendances figures have only marginally increased since the opening of Marlins Park. To be fair, the quality of the product on the field has also been unimpressive. This deal shows that there may be some truth to Loria’s promise that a new era for this still young franchise is closer than we think. Continuity has its cost, and Stanton occupies over half of the team’s payroll at the moment.  The rest of the off-season should be telling for the Marlins, as the salary figure is going to need to increase more than expected.

The infield remains a disaster, and the pitching staff could use an extra arm. The first step towards sustainable successhas been taken; they have their building block, now it’s time to build.