After putting their toes into the deep end of the pool in 2012, starting with a payroll above $100 million, the Marlins continued to toss cargo overboard as they traded veteran Ricky Nolasco to the Dodgers in July. Is Giancarlo Stanton the next Marlin to go? The team has been fielding calls on their outfielder for nearly two years and he is now entering his first year of arbitration eligibility, which might make him too expensive for Miami. If so, their 62-100 record in 2013 might be a high-water mark.
This offseason, the Miami Marlins could be looking at acquiring upgrades to positions either through the free-agent market or through trades. A position the Marlins could look at upgrading is the catching position. Miami’s catchers were one of the positions that struggled offensively and defensively last season. The Marlins used five catchers last season, which is cause for concern.
Bloomberg released its rankings of the values of Major League Baseball teams today, with the Marlins coming in 25th place out of 30 teams. The sad sacks finishing behind the Marlins were the Athletics, Rockies, Indians, Royals, and Rays.
Baseball America has published their top 10 prospect for the Miami Marlins. The Marlins two most recent draft picks, Andrew Heaney and Colin Moran, were the top overall prospects for the Marlins.
The Miami Marlins last season had the worst catching tandem in all of baseball. Jeff Mathis, Rob Brantly, Miguel Olivo, and Koyie Hill combined to hit for a lowly .192/.249/.280 slash line. The .235 wOBA and -1.8 WAR were the worst in baseball, by far.
Entering this season, Webb was expected to be a contributing member of the bullpen. While not outstanding, he was certainly steady overall. His sinker is a valuable weapon out of the bullpen and if he continues this type of play, he will have no trouble finding work. He was especially clutch with runners in scoring position as opposing hitters batted only .196 with 2 outs in that situation.
For remaining on point, credit Mike Redmond for holding the youthful Marlins together, staying calm and pushing forward during a trying season. After breaking up the underachieving 2012 squad, the Marlins literally stripped the franchise down to the basics. High-priced veterans were traded for low-cost youngsters. The return stockpiled the Minor League system, especially with quality pitching, and gave the big league club some promising pieces.
Around The League
Atlanta pitching coach Roger McDowell will remain with the Braves, signing a new two-year deal on Saturday. The Phillies had targeted McDowell -- who pitched for the Phils over two and a half seasons from 1989-91 -- but did not have a chance to formally speak with him until his contract expired at midnight ET on Thursday.
General manager Jack Zduriencik returned to Seattle on Saturday to begin the second round of interviews for a new manager, with former Mariners second baseman Joey Cora among a handful of finalists, according to a baseball source.
With the deadline for exercising or declining options looming at 5 p.m. ET on Monday, teams continued to make those decisions Saturday. One such decision came from the Rays, who picked up options on second baseman Ben Zobrist and shortstop Yunel Escobar.
Former big league catcher Brad Ausmus, who played three of his 18 MLB seasons in Detroit, will replace retired manager Jim Leyland.
At Fish Stripes
The Miami Marlins saw a lot of names get promoted from the minors in 2013, but how did the farm system as a whole fare? Fish Stripes reviews the preseason top 20 prospects from the 2013 Marlins.
Baseball America has weighed in on the Miami Marlins' best prospects, and a couple of first-round draft picks top the list.
Miami Marlins first baseman Logan Morrison, who has been inconsistent in recent years because of knee injuries, is hoping to use the offseason to get healthy. Morrison was expected to be Miami's first baseman consistently before getting hurt.