It is highly likely that at some time during the current offseason, the Miami Marlins will make a blockbuster trade involving the reigning National League MVP and their franchise player Giancarlo Stanton, as the club attempts to shed some payroll.
The contract Stanton holds is huge as he is still owed $295 million through 2027, and taking that off the Marlins books would help new ownership return to the black.
The contract Stanton holds is also a big obstacle to make any trade since not every Major League Baseball club is able to afford his contract short term or long term.
In addition, Stanton’s deal has a no-trade clause and he therefore is in full control of where he plays. He can choose his new team, which is something Miami must take into consideration. It was reported late Monday that Stanton told the Marlins the teams that he would be willing to be trade to.
It is not surprising that the first choice for Stanton is the Los Angeles Dodgers, said sources close to the matter. He grew up close to Dodger Stadium and the team is a true World Series contender.
Fitting Stanton into an outfield that includes players like Joc Pederson and Chris Taylor would be very easy. Pederson played well during the postseason but was on the bench late in the regular season.
However, what the Marlins lack is the ability to build sufficient leverage to guarantee a strong return for their trade. As much as they need to clear payroll, it is unlikely Stanton would be traded for just prospects in a straight dump of his salary.
In all likelihood sufficient interest by teams will come so that the Marlins will have solid prospects to choose from and one or two quality players.
There is reportedly strong interest from the San Francisco Giants and that would create a bidding war between the two NL West arch rivals.
There is a chance the AL East will have the Red Sox and Yankees bidding for Stanton or the NL Central having the Cardinals and Cubs bidding for the MVP.
However, the Marlins are content right now to take their time as the offseason is young and they can remain patient to see how the market for Stanton develops. Now knowing the teams Stanton is willing to waive his clause to join has made life in the Marlins front office slightly easier, as the guess work has been thrown out.