Nick Cafardo: Miami Marlins in good position to make moves

Matt Marton-USA TODAY Sports

Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe was recently told by an industry source that the Miami Marlins are not opposed to being "buyers" come July because of their current position in the NL East. Miami was tied for first place as of Sunday night.

As of Sunday evening, the Miami Marlins are tied for first place. Despite the fire sale trade with Toronto and belief that the front office was persistent in signing stopgap players with no long term future in Miami, the Marlins are sitting atop the National League East two months into the season.

In anticipation of making a run at the playoffs, Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe heard from an industry source that the Marlins could try to add at least one player and are in a good position to do so considering their minor league depth.

What’s interesting is there are teams who would normally not be thinking playoffs, but now must decide whether to buy rather than sell.

The Marlins, White Sox, and Twins haven’t been in this position often in the recent past. The Marlins are thinking about buying because they know the Braves are full of holes.

The Marlins, even with the loss of Jose Fernandez, have all sorts of chips to offer in a deal. They could stockpile their bullpen or add a veteran starter.

A Marlins official told me there’s no reason they won’t add a player through a trade. The National League East seems wide open, and they feel even without Fernandez they can snatch a playoff spot, which would be a coup for the franchise.

Miami already improved one of baseball's more inconsistent bullpens by questionably trading a draft pick to the Pirates in exchange for Bryan Morris and signing Kevin Gregg, who has closing experience at the major league level.

With the Marlins, everything, despite the fact that owner Jeffrey Loria reportedly relinquished control to his baseball executives, is about the payroll. That's why the pick was traded (worth $1.4 million) in order to put the Marlins in a position to sign Gregg. The signing couldn't happen by itself. Any trade will have to be cost effective.

Having already added a pair of arms to the bullpen, it is notable that the source mentioned the possibility of addressing the bullpen. Perhaps a veteran lefty could be added, with Dan Jennings and Mike Dunn struggling in that department.

Randy Wolf was signed to replace Jose Fernandez, but should the Marlins want a more consistent option, a trade is always a possibility. The inconsistencies of Jacob Turner could also encourage the Marlins to add a starter.

Miami's depth does put them in a great position to explore various options, but the Marlins won't finish a deal if they don't feel it is beneficial for both sides. That was evident in the talks with the Athletics involving Jim Johnson, who the Marlins passed on because of an undisclosed player request on the part of Oakland.

Top prospects Andrew Heaney and Justin Nicolino are likely off limits, but a team seeking starting pitching could find several choices in the Marlins' system.

As Cafardo notes, with the draft complete, it isn't too soon to speak about trades. And with the Marlins atop the division, it is a good time to fill some holes.

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