Another day, another name brand Marlins player gone.
Today, it was Marcell Ozuna, who was being rumored as the next item up for bid.
— Joe Frisaro (@JoeFrisaro) December 13, 2017
Scott Boras referred to the Marlins as a “pawn shop” under new ownership.
Scott Boras on Miami #Marlins: “We’ve seen one of our MLB jewelry stores become a pawn shop.” Says MLB blew it on vetting process on sale of club.
— Scott Miller (@ScottMillerBbl) December 13, 2017
The new era has not been kind to fans and to Derek Jeter, who has been heavily criticized in his new role as team CEO and part owner. Even found hanging out at MNF despite the Winter Meeting’s going on in Orlando.
A reminder that Derek Jeter, who is at MNF instead of the Winter Meetings, is getting PAID $5M a year in salary/management fee/travel budget by the new owners, which includes him. pic.twitter.com/UxLlEwFX8o
— Darren Rovell (@darrenrovell) December 12, 2017
But what about the trade with the Cardinals for Ozuna? The Marlins are able to get back some young arms, which are desperately needed to retool the farm system. The Marlins plan, as it has been outlined, is very similar to what they went through in the fire sale of 1998. They are targeting pitching in order to rebuild their farm system and build a strong rotation from which they will be able to more sustainably win and, hopefully, contend.
Sandy Alcantara is one of those targeted arms. Magnueris Sierra is the other get from the Cardinals farm system – which is so rich with talent, a deal for Ozuna hardly saps their farm system. Estimates are that the Ozuna trade bumps the Cardinals up from an 85 to an 87-88 win team at this point – but they are still not done dealing.
This is obviously where the Marlins would hope to be. Building up a strong farm system is a must for a franchise that is crippled by poor revenue streams – their main source is ticket revenue as they are shackled by a poor TV contract ($20M per year) and still no naming rights on the stadium as of yet. I have debated this idea about blowing up the roster in order to rebuild. Normally, it is a sensible plan but with a market this poorly treated, it is hard for anyone to feel confident moving forward about the future. That said, building with pitching is one sure way to get a sustainable product on the field but you will need to be thick with pitching talent if the revenue streams are still not there in 4-5 years.
Sierra, however, looks to be a light-hitting OF with speed so the holes now apparent in the Marlins’ OF will be filled but not with the same kind of explosive bats they once supported.
So the purge continues for the Marlins but in Ozuna, they get cheaper (shed his expected $11M contract via arbitration) and get three pitchers and an OF coming back to help replenish the anemic farm system. Jeter is certainly following through on his plan of blowing up the roster, getting cheaper, getting younger, and attempting to rebuild for the future. The question will remain if the Marlins can attract a bigger crowd as a result.