Miami is expected to pursue top of the rotation starters this winter and Zack Greinke could be an option. According to CBS Sports' Jon Heyman, the Marlins are expected to be among the clubs interested in the veteran right-hander.
Heyman was among the first to report Greinke is expected to opt out of his current deal with the Dodgers. If he remained in Los Angeles under his current contract, Greinke would be due $71 million over the next three seasons. While the Dodgers are expected to make him a qualifying offer, if he wants to remain in Los Angeles, the Dodgers might have to give him a new contract.
Once Greinke officially becomes a free agent, the Marlins would be one of many teams interested. However, if they want to add a top arm without moving top minor league talent, signing Greinke might be one of the best moves they can make.
Greinke, 31, pitched to a 1.66 ERA and 2.76 FIP over 222.2 innings in 2015. He made 32 starts, winning 19 of them and has posted an ERA under three in each of the last three seasons.
Although he will almost certainly request a large contract, Greinke would notably upgrade Miami's pitching staff. The Marlins are seeking an upgrade behind Jose Fernandez, and if free agents like David Price are not considered, Greinke should be.
Beyond Fernandez, the Marlins do not have a lot of certainty in their rotation heading into 2016. Henderson Alvarez is coming off of shoulder surgery and might not be healthy by the time spring training starts. Tom Koehler had a solid 2015 campaign, and Justin Nicolino and Adam Conley might have worked their way into the conversation with efficient second halves. However, the Marlins are still expected to pursue starting depth.
Rarely, since the notable moves preceding 2012, have the Marlins considered adding "big name" free agents. But with several other ace-type starting pitchers also set to become free agents, Greinke might not necessarily be placed in the same category.
The Marlins are not likely to significantly increase their payroll in 2016. While adding Greinke could be considered a long shot, Miami should at least think about how he would affect the rest of its staff.