The Miami Marlins are in rebuild mode, but what should be their best trade chips aren’t playing well enough.
The Miami Marlins have gotten a complete facelift since Derek Jeter arrived. Even their logo has changed, for the fourth time in franchise history. The on-field product has been altered too, as there are more first-year players getting a glimpse of the big leagues. Miami is transitioning to develop for the next five years in order to obtain future success. Guys like Giancarlo Stanton, Marcell Ozuna, and Christian Yelich are long gone. They finally traded catcher J.T. Realmuto this past offseason.
Many viewed those trades as ones that did not get as much value as they should have. Although the Marlins are not a top farm system, they still have decent talent. The club would like to get more prospects at this year’s trade deadline. Unfortunately, the trade chips they do have are not doing well so far. Lets take a look at three that have tough chances leaving Miami soon.
Wei-Yin Chen was a consistent pitcher when he was with the Baltimore Orioles, but he has not done that with the Marlins. Through his first three years in Miami, Chen’s ERA was 4.96 (2016), 3.82 (2017) and 4.79 in 2018. He is struggling even more this year with a 11.45 ERA. He has not lived up to the contract he signed in 2016 for five years and $80 million. Chen has always had a problem pitching on the road, and struggles after going through the batting order more than once. Maybe the Marlins should experiment with him as a reliever so he can regain confidence. There is no trade value with a bloated ERA and lucrative contract, so Miami will have to eat money no matter if he’s traded or not.
Another pitcher who is struggling is Sergio Romo. The right-hander was signed this offseason to help the young pitchers in the bullpen. So far, he is not someone to lead by example. Romo has a 6.00 ERA at the moment, but he has been a reliable reliever up to this point. He was the first pitcher to be used as an “opener.” Romo has won rings with the San Francisco Giants as well. The reliever has a career 2.93 ERA and has a nasty slider as an out pitch. If he can rebound from this start, there will be no doubt that he will be on a contender come July.
Finally, second baseman Starlin Castro is having a tough start. The last seven days he has hit .045 in 22 at bats. For the season, Castro is batting .215 with three home runs and 10 RBI. The infielder had the best season of his career with a 3.3 WAR in 2018, but has not been that player so far this year. If he can regain his value, there is a great chance the Marlins would take offers to receive talent back. In the summer there will be at least a few contenders who will need infield help. All the second baseman needs is a hot streak to get him back to himself. His bat is still there to make a difference on any team.