28 April 2011
Right now the Marlins although the Marlins have one of the best records in the NL the news about them has been about small injuries to Mike Stanton, the Hanley Ramirez, and now Logan Morrison is on the DL. Also they have had to deal with struggles from the plate from Mike Stanton (who looks to have turned it around), Omar Infante (who has been better the last few games), John Buck, and most notably Hanley Ramirez. But all those distractions have covered up the Marlins biggest issue, and that is the third base position.
This has been the issue for the Marlins going into spring training when they hoped Matt Dominguez would win the position. Unfortunately his hitting woes resulted in Dominguez being sent to the Minors where he was hurt in one of the first games of the year, and Donnie Murphy, who was given the starting job as a result, has hit just as poorly from the plate with an average of .105 with only one extra base hit. The original plan out of spring training was to have Murphy start for two months or so, then bring up Dominguez and have him get his chance to play. However that idea got thrown out the window when Matt got hurt and it turned out he probably would not be ready to come up till July at the earliest, and lately it has been a daily rotation at 3rd, depending on the pitching match up, between Emilio Bonifacio, Greg Dobbs, and Wes Helms. With this being the teams biggest weakness and the team looking like it should be in contention all year long it seems like the Marlins organization is beginning to look outside the organization to for an answer to their problem.
ESPN reported yesterday that the Marlins have been in contact with the San Francisco Giants about the availability of Mark DeRosa. DeRosa is a good player who has started for a lot of different teams, although right now he is a backup behind Pablo Sandoval at third and Aubrey Huff at first. Of course their are also rumors that the Marlins are still in contact with the Texas Rangers about Michael Young, but the Marlins want the Rangers to lower their asking price. Neither of these players are going to be available for the Marlins to get in the next week or so; DeRosa just went on the DL and most likely the Rangers will wait till Josh Hamilton to come back before they trade Young. Other backup players that might be available for the Marlins to trade for right now are Jorge Cantu with the Pardres, Eric Chavez with the Yankees, and Mike Aviles with the Royals. If they wait till the middle of the sumer or the trade deadline you could see Blake DeWitt, Jose Lopez or Ty Wigginton, and possibly, but less likely, Pedro Alvarez become available. All of those options though would just be quick fixes to get the Marlins through this year, with the exception of Alvarez.
The one player who may also become available who would is an All-Star and will could be the Marlins third baseman for years to come is... David Wright. I read this idea originally on a the Bleacher Report, and they just kind of this idea out their for the heck of it, and the more I think about it the more I believe it is a good idea and it is possible. The Mets right now are in 4th place in the NL East, just a half game ahead of the Nationals, and that is about where they will finish up and with their financial problems they are going to be dumping players at the trade deadline. People expect to see big name players Carlos Beltran, Jose Reyes, Francisico Rodriguez all get traded away and also listen to offers on Jason Bay, Johan Santana, and David Wright. No doubt Wright of all of those players is the guy the Mets would like to keep. However the Marlins could put together a package of 3 young MLB ready players with Ozzie Martinez, Scott Cousins, and Matt Dominguez. If the Marlins offer that up, it would be a deal that would be almost to good to pass up for the Mets.
I know that there are Marlins fans who would hear this deal and say that the Marlins are giving up too much, but they need to take a step back and think about it. Next year all three of these guys are going to be MLB ready, and the Marlins will only have one every day spot open. The Marlins could have an opening for Dominguez at third, or if they were to move Infante to third they would have an opening at second for Martinez, or they move Infate to third, Coghlan to second and have Cousins play center. No matter what they are left with two talented players just sitting on their bench, and they will not be able to rotate them depending on who is hot. Meanwhile if they trade them for Wright then they have their roster set for years to come and will just need to find some bench help. A lineup with Hanley, Wright, Stanton at the 3-4-5 spots plus Coghlan, Sanchez, and Morrison would be one of the best lineups in MLB for the next several years. Also while Dominguez is a guy the people project to be a gold glover, Wright is already a two time gold glover with a good bat. Also for the Mets, the Wright contact is some what reasonable. He is signed through 2013 and is suppose to make similar money to Hanley Ramirez with $10mil in 2010, $14mil in 2011, $15mil in 2012, and $16mil in 2013 (which is a club option), and if the Marlins can't get the Mets to pay some of that contract then they may only have to trade two of their three great young players.
Unfortunately, many in the Marlins Organization believe that Dominguez could be the Marlins third baseman of the future and would like to stick with that plan, so for right now the Marlins are stuck rotating players at the position. It looks as thought Emilio Bonifacio will get the majority of the playing time. I'm sure that once Dominguez gets healthy the Marlins if they do not make any additions will try and bring him up to the majors to get him his shot, and even if they do make a trade, it is doubtful the Marlins will make a big splash and give up one of their top prospects. But if the Marlins are serious about being contenders and wanting to be one of the top teams in the league for years to some, they need to take a serious run a getting David Wright.
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