Offseason Changes: Marlins
In: Omar Infante, John Buck, Javier Vazquez, Edward Mujica, Ryan Webb, Michael Dunn, Dustin Richardson, Shawn Hill, Greg Dobbs, Joe Thurston, Ruben Gotay
Out: Dan Uggla, Cameron Maybin, Ronny Paulino, Andrew Miller, Will Ohman, Chad Tracy, Jorge Sosa
The Fish made two big trades in the offseason, sending slugger Dan Uggla to Atlanta and enigma Cameron Maybin to San Diego. On the surface, it appeared that the Marlins were bested in both deals, but when you look at it from the perspective of flexibility — and looked at the other moves made by them in the winter — it all made sense.
Though losing Uggla would seem to be a huge blow, you have to consider that Omar Infante is a pretty good all-around ballplayer, and the trade freed up money to sign heavy-hitting catcher John Buck and starting pitcher Javy Vazquez. Vazquez had a predictably poor year in New York, but has been stellar when competing in the NL East. Buck’s homerun power helps defray the exit of Uggla, and you must also remember the Fish have slugging youngsters Mike Stanton and Logan Morrison pushing themselves into the lineup.
The Maybin deal was more of a head-scratcher, considering that Florida doesn’t have much depth at the centerfield position. However, they’re assuming that natural infielder Chris Coghlan can cut the mustard out there, and they were able to acquire two sorely needed, solid relievers in return for Maybin — Edward Mujica and Ryan Webb.
Along the way, the Marlins also picked up two lefthanders who may help in the bullpen — Michael Dunn and Dustin Richardson. The 25-year-old Dunn was a top prospect in both the Yankees and Braves organizations and seems to have more upside; Richardson is similar to the man he was traded for (Andrew Miller), in that he is tall, lefthanded, and a disappointment thus far. Who knows, maybe a change of scenery will help him out.
As for their spring training invitations, the name Ruben Gotay jumps out at me, as he was a favorite Met of mine back in 2007. Ruben hasn’t been in MLB since ’08 but has posted OPS totals of .845 and .879 in AAA the past two seasons. Former Nats hurler Shawn Hill gets another crack at a big league job, but it seems that injuries have ravaged his career. Standout pinch-hitter Greg Dobbs is in camp, as is DeWayne Wise, who is best remembered for the remarkable catch he made to preserve Mark Buehrle’s perfect game; Wise is summarily forgotten for his career .260 OBP / .645 OPS.