Marlins Received Plenty of Calls at Trade Deadline
By David Levin
It wasn’t as if teams were trying to avoid the Miami Marlins as the minutes to the end of the MLB Trade Deadline continued to fade like sand through an hourglass.
There were plenty of offers, Miami Marlins president of baseball operations Michael Hill explained to the media, but the right deals didn’t come along. The Marlins, who have lost three straight after a 5-2 loss to the Philadelphia Phillies, are still looking to make deals during the waiver wire period.
Hill and the Marlins are once again waiting for a team to “wow” them when making the chess move.
"“This time of year is always quite hectic because the goal is always to find ways to make your organization better,” Hill said on a conference call via sun-sentinel.com. “I think that will always be a consistent theme for this organization to maximize our assets and make decisions that make sense for us as we continue to build a sustainable championship organization.”"
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That build won’t be complete this season and more than likely will continue through 2019. When the final puzzle pieces are put together and Hill and team owner Derek Jeter like what they see, this could be a franchise on the rise. Time and player development are what is holding up this rebuild.
The Marlins had been part of rumors involving relievers Brad Ziegler, Kyle Barraclough and Adam Conley. Starter Dan Straily drew interest from contenders as well. positions players Cameron Maybin, Starlin Castro and J.T. Realmuto were also considerations according to multiple sources.
Only two bites were worth the asking price and Ziegler is now in Arizona. Maybin is in Seattle. Not much damage to the current roster, although lost is veteran leadership in the outfield and clubhouse and in a youthful bullpen still trying to figure out consistency.
"“The calls were steady. I think in the end we were very happy with both deals we were able to make and maximizing the value of good expiring contracts,” Hill explained."
Since the trade deadline has come and gone with little fanfare in Miami – possibly to the delight of the fans – now Hill and the front office will continue to field calls through August, gauging teams’ interest in veterans who more than likely won’t be part of this roster next season.
There are others – Derek Dietrich and Miguel Rojas – who may be asked for but won’t move until possibly the offseason.
The Marlins and Realmuto must decide where the relationship will take them. A long-term deal is still a possibility. It looks like there will be more of a waiting game to see which side will flinch first. Realmuto could still be traded this offseason.
Hill said Ziegler’s name was one that continued to draw interest since the beginning of the trade period. The Marlins were rumored to be working a deal with the Boston Red Sox to send the 38-year-old back to the American League. Instead, he returned to the desert, where he pitched from 2011-2016.
"“We felt like Brad Ziegler would be a popular candidate because of the role he could potentially fill,” Hill said. “Once he moved into that right-handed setup role from closer, you saw from the numbers he was extremely effective. He’s a ground ball machine, an extremely difficult at-bat for right-handed hitters.”"