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Would Starling Marte trade destroy fans’ confidence?

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The Marlins have reportedly received serious interest in their center fielder as a contract extension looks increasingly unlikely.

Starling Marte #6 of the Miami Marlins in action against the Los Angeles Dodgers at loanDepot park Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images

Predictably, “a lot of teams” have reached out to the Marlins regarding the availability of Starling Marte, Craig Mish reported Friday on the latest episode of Swings and Mishes. Miami would go on to split a doubleheader with the Phillies later that day, putting their record at 40-51, which is fourth-worst in the National League.

Marte broke out of his recent slump in the Marlins’ night game victory with three extra-base hits. For the season overall, the 32-year-old is slashing .281/.387/.442 with a career-best 133 wRC+. He’s been arguably their most valuable position player despite missing an extended period with a fractured rib.

Fish Stripes original GIF

However, Marte is the most expensive Marlins player, still owed about $5 million of his $12.5 million salary through season’s end, and none of the major projection systems give the Fish better than a 4% chance of squeezing into the playoffs. After that, he’ll be able to elect free agency. According to Mish, a contract extension agreement between the two sides is doubtful due to the club’s preference for a shorter term deal. Jim Bowden of CBS Sports HQ identifies the Yankees as a Marte suitor.

The latest MLB Reacts survey was conducted early this week in the midst of the MLB Draft. The industry consensus is that the Marlins did extremely well despite picking in the middle of the first round. Taking into account that influx of young talent, 75% of survey respondents said they’re confident in the direction of the franchise.

But even though nothing is imminent, trading Marte would be perceived by many as a step in the wrong direction. Here’s a taste of the Twitter reaction to Mish’s update:

I’ll be fascinated to see how the fanbase’s vibe fluctuates as the July 30 trade deadline approaches. Register for MLB Reacts with your email address here.