While there have been rumors regarding the Red Sox being interested in acquiring current Miami Marlins outfielder Giancarlo Stanton, it’s another one of the Marlins outfielders that could make some sense if Dombrowski explores a trade.
Outfielder Marcell Ozuna has seen his level of play rise over the past few seasons. This includes making the NL All-Star team the past two seasons. Ozuna broke into the majors in 2013 and quickly proved to be one of the better players on an up and coming Marlins team that includes Christian Yelich and the aforementioned Stanton.
With a new ownership that includes Derek Jeter in place, the Marlins are hoping to be able to lower payroll by trading players such as Stanton, Dee Gordon, and Martin Prado. Despite those players, it is Ozuna who could be of interest to Dombrowski and company.
“The Marlins have 2018 payroll obligations of $95 million owed to eight players, and it takes 25 to make up a roster. Stanton alone will pocket $25 million next season, his gargantuan contract coming home to roost just as Bruce Sherman and Derek Jeter are preparing to take over.” – Miami Herald
Here are my reasons why Ozuna makes sense compared to trying to acquire Stanton.
Age: Ozuna 26 / Stanton 28
Contract: Stanton 13 Years / $325 Million
Details: Stanton’s salary will increase from 25 Million in 2018 to 26 million in 2019 / 20. His salary will again increase to 29 million in 2021 & 22, then 32 million from 2023 – 2025. The number will decrease back to 29 million in 2026 and fall to 25 million for the final two seasons of his contract in 2027 and 2028.
Contract: Ozuna 1 yr / $570,000 (Abritration until 2020)
Ozuna possesses plenty of inexpensive team control before reaching free agency in 2020.
Yes, Stanton would bring the power bat that Dombrowski is in need of and would hit massive homers over the Green Monster. While I agree that it would be lots of fun to watch the damage that he would cause to opposing pitchers, it’s his contract that would hurt the Red Sox more than help them.
The Red Sox already have limited payroll flexibility and with new punishments for going over the agreed upon $197 million payroll. This would include the loss of their second highest draft pick, as well as a reduction in their international bonus money by $500,000. The penalties would cause more damage to the team than benefit, in my opinion.
Furthermore, to acquire Stanton the Red Sox would have to dip into an already depleted minor league system, as well as potentially trade players off the active roster. A trade including JBJ, Xander off the main roster, plus Jalen Beeks, Jay Groome, or Michael Chavis seems incredibly unreasonable.
Most likely, a trade including Marcell Ozuna would not do as much damage to their farm system. Ozuna has upside due to his low salary and years of team control; however the idea of acquiring farm talent could entice Derek Jeter.
The offseason has just begun and it’ll be interesting to see what moves that Dombrowski and company make to improve the team for 2018.