After what has been a crushing off-season for fans, the Miami Marlins come into the season with not much in terms of expectations. After the blockbuster trades of Giancarlo Stanton, Christian Yelich, Dee Gordon, and Marcell Ozuna, it is crystal clear that Derek Jeter has a plan. And that plan is to rebuild this team. Led by a veteran core of Wei-Yin Chen, Martin Prado, and Justin Bour, this could be a bumpy ride for the Marlins for a while.
Miami Marlins 2018 Season Preview
The Marlins have begun the process of turning over a new leaf with a new ownership group, and new-look team. With this comes some early struggles, which may put them at the bottom of the NL East. Keeping this in mind, the team still has some big questions. These will be examined in the Last Word on Baseball Miami Marlins 2018 season preview.
The Big Questions
Will J.T Realmuto Stay A Marlin?
After the trades of the “Big Three” in Miami, there was much speculation that catcher J.T Realmuto would be the next player to leave. There were even reports that the Washington Nationals had been in talks with the Marlins to acquire Realmuto, but nothing has happened as of yet. Realmuto requested a trade from the Marlins soon after the trades of Stanton, Gordon, and Ozuna. One can only assume he could be on the way out, but how long do the Marlins wait to get him out of town. With Realmuto being still young at the age of 26, and one of the best catchers in the game, he could come with a higher asking price. For now, it may be the waiting game to see if anyone bites.
Will Sandy Alcantara be in the rotation on Opening Day?
In the Ozuna trade, the Marlins acquired quite the pitcher in Sandy Alcantara. The young prospect is ranked as number three on the list of Top 30 prospects in the organization and is ready to compete for a spot in the majors. With it looking like the first four spots in the rotation are on lock with Chen, Dan Straily, Dillon Peters, Jose Urena, it’ll be a competition to see who can lock up that last spot in the rotation. If Alcantara gets the spot, it will be up to him to see how long he holds the spot. But this question will have an answer relatively soon as spring training gets underway.
How will the Starlin Castro saga play out?
Starlin Castro, the veteran second baseman, was one of the pieces that came back in the Stanton trade. It was almost immediately heard around the baseball world that Castro did not want to be part of another rebuilding project like he was with the Chicago Cubs. But as of now, Jeter has not moved Castro out of Miami. This may just turn into the same situation as Realmuto, where it just turns into a waiting game to see how long he is in a Marlins uniform.
Final Thoughts: A New Leaf
With the trades of all of their big stars, the Marlins have very clearly shown what they intend to do. Jeter and company want to tear the team up and start from the ground up, building off of the prospects that they have acquired. Will these trades pay off? Only time will tell. But for now, hang in there Marlins fans. It will get better, eventually.
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