Miami's focus has been adding starting pitching this winter, but the organization might be making a bullpen move in the coming weeks. Left-handed reliever Mike Dunn is drawing a significant amount of interest, according to Nick Cafardo of The Boston Globe.
Cafardo adds it appears "as if he'll eventually get moved," although some teams appear concerned with his ability to throw strikes consistently.
Since he is a comparably affordable late inning option, Dunn has been mentioned in trade rumors on numerous occasions. Miami has been seeking starting depth this off-season and likely will not be able to receive a top tier starter in exchange for Dunn. However, if Dunn is traded in a package with Marcell Ozuna, the Marlins could be able to maximize the return.
Dunn, 30, has been used in multiple roles in his time with the Marlins. After he was acquired in the Dan Uggla trade with the Braves, Dunn was used as a middle reliever. However, over time, he proved he can have success late in games, and the Marlins have given him an opportunity in the seventh and eighth innings.
Over 54.0 innings with the Marlins last season, Dunn pitched to a 4.50 ERA and 3.89 FIP. His career 3.56 ERA is notable, but his command troubles are punctuated by his career 4.69 BB/9 mark.
With the Marlins, Dunn has proven to be at his best when he is able to throw his slider for strikes. He struck out an average of 10.83 batters per nine frames in 2015 but has also been unable to throw strikes consistently at times late in games.
Miami has attempted to utilize Dunn as a left-handed specialist, but he does not appear to be best suited for the role. Lefties hit .227 against Dunn last season while right-handed batters hit .224. While Dunn can get left-handed hitters out, he is not necessarily a Randy Choate-type specialist.
The Marlins could opt to move Dunn before the season starts, but it might not be likely since the organization does not have a significant amount of left-handed relief depth. Brad Hand could also pitch out of the bullpen but is more of a soft-tossing lefty.
Miami could explore trades involving Dunn, but it is unlikely a deal gets done. Dunn is still affordable and could have a notable amount of success in 2016.