Update: Since the beginning of the 2012 season, the Marlins have shed themselves of: Hanley Ramirez, Omar Infante, Anibal Sanchez, Heath Bell, Ozzie Guillen, Jose Reyes, Josh Johnson, Mark Buehrle, Emilio Bonifacio, and John Buck. This after Jeffrey Loria pleaded to the city of Miami to fork over the funds to produce a lavish new stadium, so he could rebrand the team and draw in premium talent so said team could compete. Well, as we say in the biz: Loria has skin-dicked the city of Miami, whatever fans his team has left, and players on his team, such as Giancarlo Stanton, who deserve better.
LOSER: The City Of Miami
You know that thing in center field at Marlins Park? Up until now, nobody’s been able to figure out what it is, but now we’re starting to see that it is really emblematic of the clusterfuck of a ship Loria runs down in the Sunshine State. No fanbase deserves to be swindled quite like the Marlins’ has. They saw their team’s ownership stick their hands into their pockets and use their winnings it to build a stadium that has put them billions in debt.
So they bring in high-profile players, hoping their team will contend and fans and revenue would start to flow. Since that didn’t happen, Loria started shedding weight in all of the players he brought in to accomplish the original mission, culminating in today’s trade.
The Marlins aren’t strangers to total roster deconstruction. After their 1997 and 2003 World Series-winning seasons, they cut down out of necessity — they were still a coupon-clipping club despite the success, and had to rebuild from the bottom up after players like Josh Beckett were going to claim more than they could afford. But the fire sale that started with shipping Hanley Ramirez to the Dodgers in July and ended(?) today with sending Jose Reyes and Josh Johnson, among others, to Toronto, was selfish, aimless and unfair to the team’s fans.
LOSER: Jose Reyes
I don’t know much about Jose Reyes’ psyche. What I do know about him, as a lifelong Mets fan, is that he was beloved in New York and he reciprocated. He is a high-profile, energetic, exciting ballplayer, who fed off the big-city spotlight. Not to mention, the Dominican-born shortstop found kinship in strong Latino fanbases in both New York and Miami. Toronto does not offer big-city appeal, nor the comfort of playing for “his people”. It was hard for him to leave the Mets, the team who raised him to stardom and didn’t offer him a lick after the 2011 season, but thanks to his new home’s culture and a friend in Hanley Ramirez, Miami was an easy adjustment. Jose Reyes in Toronto makes about as much sense as Jeffery Loria running a baseball club. I am still a fond admirer of Reyes and it hurts to think about how headless a chicken he might be playing for the Toronto Blue Jays.
LOSER: Giancarlo Stanton
Stanton is pissed. Look below and you’ll see how pissed he is. And he has every god-given right to be. He plays for an owner with no head on his shoulders, a city who doesn’t support him, and soon with teammates who should be assuming roster spots in the minors. Yunel Escobar is a nice concession, but after the stunt the Marlins pulled, it would be hard for Stanton to find any redeeming qualities in this shit-show of a trade.
Escobar is a loser too, but he doesn’t get a subheading. Sorry, Yunel.
WINNER: Toronto Blue Jays
OK, before you get all up in a huff about what the Jays are paying for their new cogs, from a sheer personnel standpoint, the Blue Jays are clear winners. Happy or not, we all know what Reyes is capable of. If he can get on base at even a merely above-average clip, Edwin Encarnacion and a healthy Jose Bautista should have no trouble driving him in. Josh Johnson is oft-injured and had a down year in 2012, but he can be a brilliant ace, and it is simply too early in his career to write him off completely. Buehrle is aging, but is still a solid middle-to-back of rotation starter. Buck is capable behind the plate in relief.
Now, Reyes is still owed $92 million, Johnson will make $13.75 million in 2013 before entering free agency, and Buehrle will earn $12 million in 2013, but $19 mil a year later and $20 mil in 2015 (numbers you and I know will be much too high for Buehrle at that point in his career). It is a matter of concern, but it’s more of a “We’ll cross that bridge when we get to it” kind of situation for the Jays. And at the very least, they still have a bridge to cross. Miami might need to seek out a few engineers and architects to construct a bridge of their own.
Original post below.
It didn’t take long into the offseason for things to get crazy on the MLB’s hot stove. The Miami Marlins, who constructed an entirely new team and identity for 2012 — only for it to crash and burn miserably — are unloading just about every key player on the roster and sending them up north to Canada. The trade is confirmed, but facts about it are in their infancy. Here’s what we know from one of the foremost words in baseball, Buster Olney:
The Blue Jays-Marlins trade is done… This is going to be one of the all-timers, with Reyes, Johnson, Bonifacio, Buck, Buehrle…holy crow.
— Buster Olney (@Buster_ESPN) November 13, 2012
For you laymen, that’s Jose Reyes, Josh Johnson, Emilio Bonifacio, John Buck and Mark Buehrle. In return (so far), Miami is getting Yunel Escobar, Henderson Alvarez, Adeiny Hechavarria and left-handed pitching prospect Justin Nicolino. Follow Fox Sports’ Jon Paul Morosi and Ken Rosenthal for more updates about the trade that has forced Giancarlo Stanton to declare this:
Alright, I’m pissed off!!! Plain & Simple
— Giancarlo Stanton (@Giancarlo818) November 13, 2012
And stay here throughout the night for more updates on the blockbuster deal, including winners, losers, and the city of Miami.