After a pair of home victories over the Yankees, the Marlins head to Yankee Stadium with the goal of inching closer to five hundred. The organization could both buy and sell as the July 31 non-waiver trading deadline approaches and the club has been considering external upgrades.
Before A.J. Ramos, who has had a fair amount of success, was named the Marlins' closer, the Marlins considered trading for Phillies closer Jonathan Papelbon, according to Barry Jackson of The Miami Herald.
...The Marlins, a couple weeks ago, made an inquiry on Phillies closer Jonathan Papelbon, who’s available...
Why it makes sense:
Steve Cishek, after successfully converting his first few save opportunities, struggled in the ninth inning before the Marlins opted to give Ramos a chance. Throughout the offseason, the Marlins were linked to Rafael Soriano before ultimately deciding he was too costly and would not be prepared to contribute immediately.
Papelbon, 34, has posted a 1.05 ERA and 2.44 FIP in 25.2 innings and has had a notable amount of success as Philadelphia's closer. He has consistently been attractive to teams in pursuit of late-inning relief help and would likely improve the back of the Marlins' bullpen.
Ramos has thrived and a combination of Papelbon and Ramos in the final two innings could prove to be valuable. Miami's starters are have been turning in quality starts on a nightly basis of late and the addition of Papelbon would likely improve the club's bullpen.
Why it does not make sense:
Although Papelbon has been an effective late-inning option, he is due $8 million and $13 million over the next season and a half. The Phillies have reportedly attempted to deal Papelbon in the past and were likely unable to do so because of his notably extensive contract.
While Papelbon might have enough success to make taking on such a large contract reasonable, Ramos and Cishek collectively may be able to post comparable numbers. The Marlins would likely have to send at least a pair of prospects to Philadelphia in a potential deal but with Ramos' success may not be inclined to do so.
Could it happen?
In May, CSN's Corey Seidman established a deal that may work for both clubs. But with Ramos, Cishek, and Mike Dunn pitching out of the bullpen, a deal for Papelbon is probably not realistic.
The Marlins have not had to rely on their bullpen the last few series because of productive starting pitching. But if the organization feels another bullpen arm would be beneficial, Papelbon may be a name to watch.