See below for the latest Marlins-related rumors and my analysis leading up to the Monday 4 p.m. ET MLB trade deadline.
Several relievers in play for Marlins
The Marlins were among the teams that pursued Mychal Givens before the Orioles traded him to the Rockies, sources tell The Athletic. Marlins considering trades for a number of relievers, and their young starting pitchers are popular with other clubs.— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) August 30, 2020
The Marlins being linked to a specific player! It is somebody who’s now off the market, but this still hints at who their remaining targets may be.
Mychal Givens is earning a pro-rated $3.225 million salary in 2020 and due a substantial raise next year in arbitration. He’s been striking out an eye-popping 37.3% of batters faced this season with a career rate of nearly 30%. So Miami is seemingly willing to take on some real money at the deadline if it’s an arm who misses bats (the bullpen ranks dead last in the majors in strikeout rate).
Maybe reuniting with David Phelps is a possibility? The right-hander injured his elbow shortly after being traded away in 2017, but 2020 is treating him well (2.77 ERA, 2.75 FIP in 13.0 IP for Milwaukee). His contract includes a $4.5 million option for 2021 that the club could buy out for only $250,000 if he disappoints in September.
Young, controllable pitchers with some starting potential like Daniel Castano and Humberto Mejía would be most expendable for the Fish—they need to do 40-man roster housekeeping anyway with more key players due back from the COVID-19 Related injured list soon. Those with longer MLB track records like Elieser Hernandez and Caleb Smith ought to command substantial packages in return. MLB.com’s Joe Frisaro reports that both have drawn interest. Additionally, they have received inquiries on Edward Cabrera, Trevor Rogers and Braxton Garrett, refusing to engage on any of those three.
BA removed early from Sunday’s game
Matt Joyce took Brian Anderson’s place as a pinch-hitter in the bottom of the seventh. Hug watch?!
It’s extremely difficult to imagine why the Marlins would trade him now. However, this front office has shocked us before. Even though the score was lopsided (trailing the Rays, 12-6), no other Marlins starters were removed at that point.
After the game, Don Mattingly explained that he simply wanted to “get him off his feet.”
Anderson has posted a .221/.333/.400 slash line (107 wRC+) through 111 plate appearances in 2020. Next season will be his first year of arbitration eligibility.
Moreland, Martínez deals as a template for Joyce?
Two notable trades from Sunday:
- Red Sox trade Mitch Moreland to Padres for prospects Jeisson Rosario and Hudson Potts
- Rays trade José Martínez to Cubs for two players to be named later (prospects outside their 60-man player pool)
Matt Joyce, just like both of those veterans, is strictly platooned. The 36-year-old is older than them but also slightly cheaper (pro-rated $1.5 million salary). He’s slashing .286/.385/.393 with a 122 wRC+ in 65 PA this season, fairly close to his career norms.
As Don Mattingly acknowledged to the media prior to today’s Marlins game, Harold Ramirez is ready to come off the injured list. Moving Joyce would create an all-important 40-man roster opening while helping the club add more prospect depth (even if they settle for one PTBNL instead of two).
Tinoco Time is Up
Despite contributing five hitless innings over three relief appearances, right-hander Jesús Tinoco was designated for assignment by the Fish Sunday morning to make room on the 40-man roster for Sandy Alcantara.
After being plagued by the long ball as a rookie reliever with the Rockies in 2019, Tinoco’s performance so far this season has been intriguing (albeit in an extremely small sample). Most notably, he owns a monstrous 77.8 GB%. Tinoco pounded the strike zone as a starting pitcher coming up through the minor leagues, but that hasn’t translated to the bigs. He is in the midst of his final option year.
Jesús Tinoco continues to look like a sneaky-good find. Up to 5 hitless innings for the Marlins this season pic.twitter.com/uCEEmF1jkN— Fish Stripes (@fishstripes) August 30, 2020
The Marlins traded away minor league reliever Chad Smith to get Tinoco a couple weeks ago, and there’s no reason to believe that his stock has gone down since then. These circumstances suggest that a trade is imminent.