Days of Marlins Past

The Marlins have a long history of getting rid of players that are about to
make a lot of money. It wasn’t that long ago that the Marlins were a promising
young team with Miguel Cabrera, Josh Willingham, Dan Uggla, and
Hanley Ramirez. They have all since been traded away for pennies on the
dollar, and the Marlins are now the Marlins. It is certain that some of the
players they acquired in their most recent fire sale will have decent
major league careers, but then the Marlins will repeat the process all over
again.  

Miguel
Cabrera was a rookie in 2003 and thus survived the fire sale that preceded
that, but as he approached the age of 25 as one of the best players in baseball
the Marlins knew they weren’t going to be able to afford him. They started
shopping him and as everyone knew the price for a 24 year old with a career
.313/.388/.542 batting line was high, but the Marlins are the Marlins and their
main goal in trading a player isn’t to get value, but to fill their coffers.
The trade looked good at first. Cameron Maybin was thought to be a five tool
center field prospect and Andrew Miller a future left handed Ace. No matter
those players’ ceilings or what they could be they weren’t Miguel Cabrera.

Since the trade Cabrera has become an
even better hitter. Over his six seasons with the Tigers he is hitting
.326/.403/.580 with two batting titles, a triple crown, and an MVP award.
Miguel Cabrera is one of the best hitters of this generation. It is almost
inexcusable that the Marlins traded the player at all, and it is made worse by
what they got back. As far as the argument goes of the Marlins not having money
Cabrera’s contract is one of the best bargains in baseball. As a
Tiger he has made $86.7 million, and has produced 27.7 fWAR. If one WAR equal
$5 million then Cabrera has produced $138.5 million. In essence by trying
to save themselves money the Marlins cost themselves over $50 million.
    

The Nationals are not going to be happy
to have to relive the long lost days when Cabrera would take the field in a
teal uniform and launch homers into the upper reaches of RFK, but tonight they
will. In 368 plate appearances against the Nationals, Cabrera is hitting
.362/.455/.628, and he isn’t the only former Marlin with a history of owning
the Nationals who will be playing in this series.

No one was happier than the Washington
Nationals when Anibal Sanchez was traded to the AL and far away from the
division. The bad news is that the Tigers re-signed him in the off-season and
that the NL East was scheduled to face the AL Central in inter-league play this
season. As ridiculous as Cabrera’s offensive numbers are against the
Nationals Anibal Sanchez’s pitching numbers are even more so. For his career he
is 8-0 with a 1.97 ERA. As a team the Nationals have an OPS of .590 against
Sanchez. Of the Marlins who have been traded away since the Nats moved to town
these are the two they want to see the least.  

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