Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Blue Jays/Marlins Trade Reaction

I'm pretty sure that this sentiment is shared by every player on the Marlins, as well as every fan of the team. Before the 2012 season everybody involved in the organization, from the front office to the fans, had reason to be optimistic. While many picked Miami to make the postseason, some even had them winning the NL East. However the exact opposite of a division title occurred, as the Marlins finished dead last in the NL East, 29 games back with a run differential of -115.

They won't feel any better when I add a couple other big trades that happened after the start of 2012, in order to make a pretty impressive list (2012 fWAR in parenthesis)...

Omar Infante (Detroit) - 3.2
Anibal Sanchez (Detroit) - 3.8
Hanley Ramirez (Dodgers) - 3.0
Jose Reyes (Toronto) - 4.5
Josh Johnson (Toronto) - 3.8
Mark Buehrle (Toronto) - 2.1
Emilio Bonafacio (Toronto) - 0.6
John Buck (Toronto) - 1.2

Maybe this cute Marlins fan will make things better.

Not only were the Marlins considered a contender going into the 2012 season, but they were opening the new Marlins Park, a 37,000 seat retractable roof dome. The stadium cost around $634 million, 80% of which was funded publicly. Therefore the team and fans weren't the only ones heavily invested in the team, the city of Miami, and the Miami-Dade County were as well.

A good friend of mine is a Marlins fan, and I honestly feel bad for him. I mean, it's hard enough to root for a team that finishes 29 games in back of 1st place, but after today's trade he must feel even worse. I don't know about the crop of prospects the team got, as they could help usher in a dynasty for the team a few years down the road, but it's really hard to feel optimistic about them.

As Joe Posnanski pointed out on MLB Network this morning, it's hard to believe that any good to great player would be interested in signing anything close to a long-term deal with the Marlins. Which means Giancarlo Stanton could be the next big player out of Miami to be dealt, as I see no way he'll sign another deal with a team that could very well trade him in their next fire sale.

The new stadium may not have saved baseball in Miami, rather it may have simply delayed the inevitable.

I don't care about the paint job, the Smart Car is still ridiculous.

But what about Toronto? Some are saying this trade makes them legit contenders in the AL East. My cohort Daniel Burch went as far as to use the word "scary" when he announced the deal last night. Personally I'm not scared of the Blue Jays, but the team has always been a thorn in the Yankees side. Over the past 3 seasons, the Yankees only lead the series 30-24 (a winning percentage of .556, compared to an overall winning percentage of .591).

I don't mean to say the Jays aren't going to be a better team, but I don't see them going from winning 73 games to 90+, and thus competing for the AL East crown. The trio of Johnson, Buehrle, and Morrow would be excellent, but Josh has had shoulder issues that led to him missing 150 games in 2010 and 2011, and Mark Buehrle's ERA went from 3.25 in the 1st half of 2012 to 4.36 in the 2nd half. Toronto and it's fans are also hoping Jose Bautista is able to come back from wrist surgery strong, Jose Reyes keeps his head on straight, and Brett Lawrie's numbers are closer to 2011 than 2012.

While I thought the blockbuster trade between the Red Sox and Dodgers was something we may never see again, this trade shows that it may happen more than anyone would ever think. And people like Jon Heyman think we may seen some big trades happen again soon.

We'll see a trade like that before ever seeing a Blockbuster Grand Opening again.

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Sorry for the Capatcha... Blame the Russians :)