Everyone has an opinion about who the Miami Marlins may trade before the July 31 non-waiver deadline. Now, ESPN.com’s David Schoenfeld has compiled a list of 31 players who could change organizations before next week.
Three of those players are Miami Marlins pitchers. As Schoenfeld wrote, everyone needed bullpen depth. The Marlins are among many teams with talented arms that have become the focal point of trade talks.
"“Given the weak crop of starting pitchers available, look for teams to add bullpen help instead. Also, consider how teams deployed their pitchers last postseason,” Schoenfeld writes. “There were 76 playoff starts, and the starting pitcher made it through five innings in just 41 of those games (54 percent) and through six innings just 25 times (33 percent). You need deep bullpens in today’s game.”"
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Either one of the three mentioned in the ESPN.com story could bring a nice ransom in return. All three could leave the Marlins bullpen a bit barren.
The other piece in this puzzle of mass hysteria (ok, maybe not that severe) is Brad Ziegler who is a free agent at the end of 2018. If he is not traded at the deadline, he figures to pitch somewhere else next season.
Schoenfeld spoke highly of the trio of young Marlins arms.
"“All three have had success in 2018, have plus stuff and also have years of team control left after this season — three for Barraclough and Conley, five for Steckenrider — so they won’t come cheap,” he said. “Yes, scouts have recency bias, and Barraclough’s five-run blowup in the ninth inning Sunday won’t help the Marlins extract premium value.”"
My biggest concern with making deals like these — if they even happen — is how it will affect the team’s depth for the future. Miami spent a lot of its offseason building a young pitching staff and acquiring young arms to develop. Wouldn’t trading away chess pieces fracture the blueprint owner Derek Jeter has drawn up?
Schoenfeld has also added starter Dan Straily to his list. Straily, the veteran of the Miami pitching staff, has become the leader of this rotation. He could become the fifth starter for a contender.
"“Is he exciting? No. Is he maybe better than somebody’s current fifth starter? Maybe. Or maybe not. He has a 4.02 ERA while averaging barely five innings per start and a FIP over 5.00, but he also has been better of late, with a 2.78 ERA over his past five outings (although that comes with a .220 BABIP).” Schoenfeld wrote."
The Marlins will begin a four-game series with the Washington Nationals on Thursday night. Straily will start the first game, giving teams a chance to see how he looks against the National League East rival.