The Miami Marlins go into the GM Meetings with many issues to resolve including the search for an everyday closer for the bullpen.
As the Miami Marlins sift through the countless inquiries about J.T. Realmuto and the possibility to lifting the All-Star catcher from the team’s roster, there are other concerns the front office has about the organization moving forward. After hitting a home run by signing both Victor Victor Mesa and Victor Mesa, Jr. Realmuto and his agent hit the team in the gut by announcing the catcher did not want to play in Miami next season.
The news will be the most followed story concerning the Marlins this offseason, but CEO Derek Jeter and president of baseball operations, Michael Hill have other holes to fill on the roster and in the minor league system. Jeter’s plan for the Marlins is very much still a work in progress.
Unless there is a deal out there that knocks the Miami brass off their feet, there is still a strong possibility Realmuto is wearing a Marlins jersey in 2019. If that is the case, then the team can focus on finding a reliable closer for next season – whether it is within the organization or through free agency. There is a chance a reliever could be part of the deal to land Realmuto.
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Basically what I am saying is there are plenty of options to look at. It should be a busy offseason once again in sunny South Florida.
"“As a bullpen, the Marlins converted 57 percent of their save opportunities (30 of 53),” Joe Frisaro of MLB.com wrote. “Not all of them came in the ninth inning, but locking down leads is a high priority. The team ERA for the ninth inning was 6.10, the highest in the Majors.”"
There is a chance Miami could find a low-cost reliever in free agency and plug him into the role. I personally would love to see Conley win the job, but his value is more of a long reliever.
"“A number of our young players in the ‘pen showed a lot of promise,” Hill said. “Drew Steckenrider and Conley and Guerrero all showed they can pitch high-leverage innings, and get meaningful outs for us. But as young players do, they had their hiccups, and had some missteps.”"
The Marlins could also look at the many pitching prospects in their minor league system and make them the closer.
For some reason, I keep thinking someone like Jarlin Garcia would be a candidate for that opportunity.
As long as there is a chance Realmuto will leave the organization, that will remain the focus of the media. That may allow the team to concentrate on finding the right fit for the closer’s role without a lot of attention from analysts who want to predict what will happen this offseason.