When the Marlins acquired Carter Capps, they felt he would become their closer in a short amount of time. But if the organization adds a closer this winter, Capps will not receive an opportunity to pitch in the ninth inning.
FOX Sports' Ken Rosenthal reported the Marlins are interested in adding a closer after failing to add Aroldis Chapman before the non-waiver trade deadline in July. Such a move, if it were to happen, would mean the Marlins are open to looking past internal candidates such as Capps or A.J. Ramos.
Chapman could be a Marlins target again this winter and the club might consider other options. After trading Steve Cishek to the Cardinals, the Marlins have relied on Ramos to close games. He did not have a notable about of success throughout August and his inconsistencies might be the reason are leaning towards considering alternatives.
Ramos, 28, has pitched to a 2.65 ERA and 3.15 FIP over 57.2 innings while saving 23 contests. If the Marlins are able to add a more experienced closing option, Ramos would likely prove to be a quality seventh or eighth inning reliever. Capps would likely prove to be the same.
While Ramos has received an opportunity to close games for the Marlins, Capps has not. He has spent time on the disabled list this season but nevertheless has pitched to a 1.16 ERA and 1.10 FIP over 31.0 innings. Capps' velocity is notable and since he was acquired from the Mariners in exchange for Logan Morrison, several executives have labeled him a potential closing candidate. The Marlins might not agree.
Although the Marlins could turn to a more experienced option, Capps' delivery might be the reason he is not considered. Each time Capps has taken the mound this season, the opposing manager has questioned his delivery. Major League Baseball has publicly said Capps' motion is legal despite questions but some executives are not convinced. Perhaps MLB is prepared to review Capps' delivery this offseason. If the Marlins have received any idea that it might become illegal, pursuing other options could then make sense.
Regardless, the Marlins want to add a closing arm. Ramos and Capps are effective relievers but a bullpen featuring a different closer might be even better heading into 2016.