The Marlins will gain some much-needed budget relief this offseason. Does it mean the franchise will become a player in 2020 free agency?
Which direction will the Miami Marlins travel this offseason? Is there a chance the front office decides to jump into the free agency market to acquire veteran bats to add to the 2020 lineup?
It’s a question that was brought up in Joe Frisaro’s MLB.com “In Box” feature. At some point, the Marlins will become a team looking to add free-agent talent without having to shell out big-name minor league prospects in the process.
"“With the salaries of Starlin Castro ($11 million) and Martín Prado ($15 million) coming off the books, I see the Marlins having some payroll flexibility to be more active in the free-agent market than they were this year,” Frisaro wrote. “I don’t necessarily expect Miami to make a major push for high-profile players, those seeking more than $100 million over at least four seasons.”"
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Miami has been lauded for the moves the organization has made this season to bring in talented hitters both on the college level and in the minors without selling off the team to do it. The moves Derek Jeter and Michael Hill orchestrated – grabbing Jazz Chisholm, Jesus Sanchez, and Lewin Diaz through trades in July and adding J.J. Bleday and Kameron Misner in the MLB Draft shows the front office has matured and worked to find the best fits for this franchise.
There are names out there who could be available to add impact on the Marlins young and impotent lineup.
"“I could see a push for someone like White Sox first baseman Jose Abreu. I hear Abreu is happy in Chicago, and he may not want to leave. But he would be a candidate to consider. A name to watch for is Blue Jays first baseman Justin Smoak, a left-handed hitter who may be a nice fit for Miami,” Frisaro added."
The Marlins could also look to trade for a veteran power hitter this offseason and use pitching prospects to lure a team into a deal that is beneficial to Miami’s future.
The front office must also take into account that their roster will look significantly different in 2020. Besides Castro and Prado coming off the company payroll, Neil Walker and Curtis Granderson won’t be resigned after coming to terms on one-year deals over the offseason.