This is a second part of our “positions of need” series for the Miami Marlins..This time we’re going to take a look at third base. It’s another position that The Fish need to improve. A trade and later a big free agent signing would get this resolved.
The Miami Marlins need a new third baseman.
Brian Anderson is the Miami Marlins third baseman and he’s not doing that well. He’s batting .267/.374/.410 in 105 AB’s this season. He’s also batting .263/.349/.423 for his career. He never topped 20 home runs (he only hit 20 once) or 66 RBI in a season and is a bit injury-prone.
The other internal option for the Miami Marlins is Jon Berti, who is batting .269/.382/.398 in 93 AB’s. Berti is a better fit as a bench option who can play multiple positions. Anderson is best suited as a bench option due to his health and lack of power.
The best option is potentially coming after next season is Rafael Devers in free agency. The Miami Marlins are a big market team far below the luxury tax, so there should be no excuse not to sign an elite player and boosting attendance in the process.
Rafael Devers is a career .285/.341/.518 hitter, who is currently batting .335/.371/.596 in 245 AB’s. Devers is also only 25 and will be 27 when his new contract after free agency begins. Devers is known for defensive issues but has a 0.1 dWAR this season, which is average and seems to be working to improve.
There are other options of course such as by trade. One trade that makes sense and wouldn’t cost much is to acquire Eugenio Suárez from the Seattle Mariners. He currently has a 1.6 WAR (Anderson has 0.7) and after hitting 31 home runs last season, is on pace for that again with his 11 so far this season. He’s also traditionally a good defender.
The Miami Marlins would likely not have to give up much more than a lottery ticket prospect, to get Seattle to part with a player that makes $11.3 million annually through 2024. It should also be a fair price for The Fish, who need a power boost.
Third base is a problem position for the Miami Marlins, but a big signing such as Rafael Devers or a trade for a healthier and better power hitting player such as Eugenio Suárez.