The Miami Marlins will make moves at the MLB Trade Deadline, but would they consider giving up a starting pitcher or two for hitting?
There is no denying the Miami Marlins have quality depth with their starting pitchers and there is no denying the team is just as comfortable in their minor league system for the foreseeable future. The question surrounding the Marlins as the MLB Trade Deadline approaches is will the front office deal one of their starters with a controllable contract for help with their lineup?
The Marlins lost once again Monday night, err struggled in a 9-1 game against the Chicago White Sox. It was the fourth straight loss for the team that cannot seem to find a rhythm of late. Trevor Richards once again took the loss, falling to 3-12 this season.
Richards record may be the worst in the rotation, but that has not stopped teams from inquiring about his price tag. Sources which include MLB.com indicate front offices have also called about Caleb Smith, who faces the White Sox tonight in his first outing against the AL Central team.
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Richards may be the one who is sent packing at the deadline or the Marlins may stay where they are and seek help from other areas by moving expiring contracts. The club has many options to consider, as Marlins president of baseball operations Michael Hill points out.
"“We’re mindful of what we’re building,” Hill said on Monday before the series opener against the White Sox at Guaranteed Rate Field. “But ultimately the goal is to win championships. If we see an opportunity to make ourselves better, and help us in our quests to win championships, then we’ll explore.”"
What the Marlins won’t do is let go of their building blocks for the future. Smith, who is 5-4 this season, appears to be the biggest surprise of the rotation aside from Jordan Yamamoto. He could be a solid No. 2 starter for years on the roster.
The four names we constantly read about and hear about are veterans who won’t be on this roster in 2020 – Neil Walker, Sergio Romo, Curtis Granderson, and Starlin Castro. Win, lose or draw, four players will take their place next season.
As for trading Richards or Smith, the Marlins still have five years of control on their careers.
"“We love the depth that we are starting to accumulate,” Hill said. “You see the pitching depth, it will allow us, whenever the situation arises, to be opportunistic. I think that’s the biggest thing. You have assets and you want to maximize the value of those assets. I think that’s our approach as we head to next week.”"
With eight days remaining before the deadline, the phones in south Florida figure to heat up even more. The team must decide when to sell and which players they are offering to playoff contenders.