Earlier today, we discussed the fact that the Miami Marlins are listening to offers on Giancarlo Stanton. Sure enough, in light of the certain panic that Marlins fans would begin to feel at the mention of a Giancarlo Stanton trade, I said this regarding the rumors:
This is par for the course for the Marlins really. Truth be told, it is par for the course for any team, including the Fish. Why would the Marlins not listen to any offers on anyplayers, even the nigh untouchable ones like Giancarlo Stanton? If the right offer comes along for the Marlins, the team should consider it, especially given the status of Stanton's relationship with the Marlins. Furthermore the Marlins need all the help they can get in terms of player talent to build up for the new core for the future.
In other words, you should listen on any player, because you never know when a team will overpay or give a disproportionately good offer for a player. Just because a player like Stanton is already a star and likely to get even better, it does not mean that the Marlins cannot get what is perceived as fair value or better in a trade; the likelihood is not high, but it can happen.
Sure enough, it sounds like assistant general manager Dan Jennings more or less said the same thing:
"Oh, I think that's been our [modus operandi]. I know in the 10 years I've been here, that's our M.O.," Jennings said. "We've never not listened to a deal on any player. Sometimes I chuckle when I hear people say, 'This guy's untouchable,' and 'That guy's untouchable.' You know what? They may be untouchable, until someone either overwhelms you or you get a package back that makes such a significant improvement on your club going forward. So we've always been willing to listen."
"I think Larry, he's never said, 'No.' But what we're not going to do is move a player for less than what we value their ability,"
Essentially, Jennings said the same thing I said and mentioned it as official Marlins policy. They will listen to any offers, meaning there will be no hanging up at the mention of Giancarlo Stanton's name in a trade offer. But the Marlins will not settle for less than fair value. They will not make a trade knowing that they are giving up more than they are getting back for their long-term goals, and for the most part that seems correct about the team's trade attempts in recent seasons. Even the blockbuster Toronto Blue Jays deal received a lot of compensation in return after you consider the hefty contracts that left the organization's ledger.
Of course, the Marlins will not settle for what they perceive is fair value, and it is not as if they have a perfect record on valuing players. But with a star like Stanton, it is unlikely the team will "miss" on its evaluation of his talent; it is hard to believe that the team could see Stanton as anything less than a cost-controlled star.
What may force the team's hand in the future and may possibly reduce what they perceive as fair value is the fact that the team has limited time with Stanton on board. Joe Frisaro of MLB.com makes the same assumption that I felt after the series of trades.
Stanton will not be arbitration eligible until 2014, and he isn't eligible for free agency until after the 2016 season. So the Marlins are in no rush to trade Stanton. Yet, it remains highly unlikely he will agree to a long-term contract.
It is appearing more inevitable that sometime before he reaches free agency that Stanton will be moved, because the Marlins are reloading their roster, and will look to add as many quality pieces in the next few years.
The actions of the Marlins in the offseason have thoroughly convinced Stanton that this organization is not where his future will lie. Given the team's lack of commitment to the players whom it has signed, Stanton must feel that his long-term future is not guaranteed with the Fish. As a result, expecting him to stick around after his free agent years seems unlikely, and as Frisaro mentions here and I have mentioned elsewhere, it is likely that the team trades Stanton in one or two seasons to get as much value from him as possible.
Again, that does not change the likelihood that he will remain a Marlin in 2013, simply because right now he is too valuable to be traded to any one team. But expect the Fish to deal him within the next two years as Frisaro mentions, as Stanton's relationship with the Marlins seems irreparably broken.