Miami extended Giancarlo Stanton and his contract includes a no-trade clause but that will not prevent discussions with regard to Stanton's future with the organization.
The Marlins are expected to be active this winter but Stanton is not likely to be shopped. Regardless, ESPN's Dave Schoenfield deemed Stanton the number one big name player that could be traded.
Schoenfield explains his belief by noting the Marlins are "unpredictable enough" that he would not be surprised to see Stanton moved in the coming weeks. Miami is known to be seeking starting pitching and has expressed interest in building around both Stanton and Jose Fernandez. While a trade might not be realistic, it could remain a possibility.
Although there would likely be multiple teams interested in Stanton, the fact he has full no-trade protection could make getting a potential deal done challenging if the Marlins are open to the idea of trading him. Schoenfield points out Stanton would likely welcome a trade to the Dodgers since he grew up in Los Angeles.
If the Marlins were able to work out a deal with Los Angeles, the prospects involved would likely be notable. Corey Seager, Grant Holmes, Julio Urias and Joc Pederson might all interest Miami.
Stanton's health could make any interested club hesitant, however. While the Marlins have been rightfully cautious with Stanton, he still has not played in a major league game since June. Obviously, he would have to pass a physical but some teams might back out as a result of the amount of time he has spent sidelined over the last few years.
For the Marlins, a Stanton trade would signal yet another outfield transformation. Stanton anchors the outfield, and while Christian Yelich's solid second half is encouraging, Marcell Ozuna has struggled to remain consistent. If Stanton was moved, the Marlins would be forced to find another productive outfielder.
Whether or not Stanton is moved likely will also have a lot to do with the front office situation. Dan Jennings has yet to confirm he will return to the front office to become the GM and the organization has made multiple changes before the end of the week. Stanton signed an extension with Jennings as GM but another general manager might not look at Stanton in the same way.
Since Stanton is considered a core player, a trade might lead the Marlins to be evaluated by Major League Baseball. Baseball executives have reportedly been watching the Marlins' moves since their payroll has not fluctuated much over the last few seasons and have struggled of late. Would moving Stanton signal the end of Jeffrey Loria's career as the Owner of the Marlins?
Stanton, 25, is batting .265/.346/.606 to complement 27 home runs and 67 RBIs over 74 games this season.
A Stanton trade to this point remains unlikely. But that does not mean it will not be considered this offseason.