MLB Trade Rumors: Marlins Interested in Evan Gattis and Chris Davis?


Atlanta Braves catcher Evan Gattis owns a career .289/.349/.608 career slash line with 8 home runs in 106 plate appearances against the Miami Marlins in his brief career. Maybe for that reason, the Marlins have interest in Gattis, along with Chris Davis, as a potential replacement for Garrett Jones at first base, according to Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald.

"Determined to upgrade over Garrett Jones at first base, the Marlins have begun exploring trades. Colleague Clark Spencer and I confirmed that the Marlins are interested in Atlanta’s Evan Gattis and Clark was told they also have inquired about Baltimore’s Chris Davis. Both Gattis and Davis are 28.Gattis –– who is primarily an outfielder and catcher but has played a bit at first — hit .263 with 22 homers and 52 RBI last season and isn’t eligible for free agency until after 2018.Davis, arbitration-eligible, hit just .196 with 26 homers and 72 RBI last season but was third in AL MVP voting in 2013 (.286, 53 homers, 138 RBI). The Marlins would need to offer quality pitching in return for either, potentially including top prospect Andrew Heaney."

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Gattis has just 33 career innings at first base for his career, and that certainly is not enough of a sample size to decide if he’s fit to be an everyday first baseman. In his brief tenure at first, Gattis owns a -0.4 UZR.

In all likelihood, if the Marlins were to acquire Gattis, it would not be for his defense. As a hitter, Gattis slashed .263/.317/.493 slash line with 22 home runs and a .352 wOBA. His 2.3 WAR would have been the fourth best mark on the Marlins last season. His .230 ISO would have been second to only Giancarlo Stanton.

The most important part about Gattis would be that he would be under team control through the 2018 season. He would not be arbitration eligible until next season.

To acquire Gattis, the Marlins would likely have to part with one of their top prospects, like Andrew Heaney. That’s a steep price and one I wonder if the Marlins would be more willing to use Heaney to upgrade elsewhere or with a better player.

The other player Jackson mentions is Chris Davis. He is coming off an awful year, slashing .196/.300/.404 for a .308 wOBA for the 2014 season. Along with his lowly season, Davis was suspended for 25-games for testing positive for amphetamines.

This is one year after he slugged out 53 home runs and had an impressive .286/.370/.634 slash line in 2013, placing third in the MVP balloting for the season.

Though Davis would fill a nice niche for the Marlins as left handed power bat, the Marlins would be wise to stray away from trading for the slugger. His suspension from amphetamines should be all the reason for the Marlins to stay away from him. His cost would also likely be more than what his actual production would be worth.

I’d be okay with the Marlins taking a flier on Gattis, however. He’d fill a need for the Marlins at first as well as take away an extremely dangerous bat that has terrorized them in the recent seasons from a division rival. He, however, won’t be cheap either.

Next: Marlins Interested in David Price and Rick Porcello?