December Recap: How Have the Miami Marlins Changed?

ST PETERSBURG, FLORIDA - AUGUST 30: Jesus Aguilar #21 of the Tampa Bay Rays runs the bases after hitting a three-run home run off of Adam Cimber of the Cleveland Indians during the seventh inning of a baseball game at Tropicana Field on August 30, 2019 in St Petersburg, Florida. (Photo by Julio Aguilar/Getty Images)
ST PETERSBURG, FLORIDA - AUGUST 30: Jesus Aguilar #21 of the Tampa Bay Rays runs the bases after hitting a three-run home run off of Adam Cimber of the Cleveland Indians during the seventh inning of a baseball game at Tropicana Field on August 30, 2019 in St Petersburg, Florida. (Photo by Julio Aguilar/Getty Images) /
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This offseason, the month of December has been a pretty busy time for the Marlins.

With 11 personnel moves, December 2019 will unlikely go down in history as a game-changer. For the Marlins, however, these moves could add up to something substantial in the long term.

Judging by the 2018 offseason, the Marlins made 20 moves in total, but only one after December 15th. That was to promote Mike Jacobs from their Short-season-A affiliate, the Batavia Muckdogs in the New York-Penn League to the Single-A Clinton LumberKings in the Midwest League, as manager.

This offseason, there haven’t been any managerial changes in the Marlins system reported by Pro Sports Transactions, a pari-mutual tracker for all four major sports. There have, however, been a total of 422 transactions throughout major league baseball. That’s not even counting two of Miami’s more notable recent acquisitions, including Matt Kemp signing a minor league deal.

Kemp is a two-time Gold Glove, two-time Silver Slugger, three-time all-star who rose to stardom with the Los Angeles Dodgers. Since he turned 30-years-old in 2014, he’s played for four different teams. He’s given them slightly diminishing returns in each season, save for an abberant all-star campaign back with the Dodgers in 2018. He’s been a free agent since the New York Mets released him in early June.

Now-35-years-old, can Kemp give a shot-in-the-arm to a rising Marlins roster? This is what we were hoping for from Curtis Granderson through the 2019 campaign, but Grandy managed to hit just .183 in 138 games for Miami, with 12 homers and 34 RBI.

The Marlins hope that Kemp can revert to his 2018 form, when he surprised the Dodgers by hitting .290 with 21 homers in 146 games. He would provide an invaluable safety net to the group of young outfield hopefuls the Marlins are seeking to employ in 2020, also serving as the voice of experience in a young locker room. If Kemp can play to the level of 1.0 WAR, it will have been a success. This is a slideshow. The right arrow will take you to the next page.

What else has Miami been up to?

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