Getting to know the 2015 Miami Marlins

In the last 20 years, there have been four Major League baseball franchises that have won multiple World Series championships: New York Yankess (5), San Franciscio Giants (3), Boston Red Sox (2), and…. the Florida (now Miami) Marlins (2).

When you think about this franchise, your first thought is them dumping players and salaries, and being perhaps a bit of a “shady” organization. In 2013, Miami made a blockbuster deal with the Toronto Blue Jays that looked like a steal for the Jays. But in hindsight, maybe Miami was onto something. Here is that trade summary:

Toronto Traded:

shortstop Yunel Escobar,
infielder Adeiny Hechavarria,
right-handed pitcher Henderson Alvarez,
veteran backup catcher Jeff Mathis,
outfielder Jake Marisnick,
left-handed pitcher Justin Nicolino
and right-handed pitcher Anthony DeSclafani.

for (Miami traded):

shortstop Jose Reyes,
right-hander Josh Johnson,
left-hander Mark Buehrle,
catcher John Buck,
infielder/outfielder Emilio Bonifacio
and cash considerations.

What Miami did was dump over $200 million in guaranteed salary for Adeiny Hechavvaria (their current starting SS), Henderson Alvarez (now a key component in their rotation), some other castoffs and some cash. In turn, they took that money and used it on signing their key young prospects, especially Giancarlo Stanton, who they just signed for 13 years and $325 million.

The Miami fans were pissed, but it’s now turning out to be a Miami steal, and not the other way around. The way Miami had it figured in 2013/14 was they weren’t going to make the playoffs anyway with these players and their payrolls, so they might as well move them for some prospects and use that money to sign Stanton.

The Marlins build prospects, win a championship, and them dump their players for money. And then they start rebuilding again. They perhaps are not as dumb an organization as I originally judged and thought.

And what did Toronto get for that trade?: Josh Johnson was the key and he bombed as he got hurt from his opening start and didn’t do a thing (perhaps Miami knew that). John Buck was moved to pick up R.A. Dickie’s knuckleball catcher. Bonifacio lasted half a season as he couldn’t play on Toronto’s artificial surface. Buerhle is Buerhle and fine, but any team would rather have Alvarez instead. And Jose Reyes? He’s okay, but for all the money he’s making, Toronto could have 3 similair in production players on their payroll for the price of one Reyes.

So Miami is now ripe for the picking in getting that Wildcard spot. And what happens when the Marlins get a Wildcard spot? They win the World Series. 2 for 2 in playoff appearances.

This team should scare the rest of the National League. Young players and a terrific starting rotation.

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