MIAMI (CBSMiami) – With Miami Marlins outfielder Christian Yelich’s agent describing the relationship between team and player as “irretrievably broken,” it appears the Marlins are now exploring the trade market.
But are they asking for the impossible in return?
CBS Sports’ Mike Axisa examined the latest trade rumor involving Yelich.
The Marlins, despite the rocky start to the Bruce Sherman/Derek Jeter era, know Yelich is extremely valuable. That’s why, according to Hall of Fame journalist Peter Gammons, the team asked the Atlanta Braves for No. 1 prospect Ronald Acuna in trade talks. Needless to say, talks didn’t go very far.
“The Marlins told the Braves, look, we’ll do a three or four or five for one (trade), but Ronald Acuna has to be in it no matter who the second player (is),” said Gammons during a recent MLB Network appearance. “That’s one guy the Braves are not going to trade.”
Acuna, who turned only 20 in December, is arguably the top prospect in baseball right now. MLB.com ranks him as the game’s sixth best prospect, though he is expected to climb a few spots when they release their 2018 Top 100 Prospects List in a few weeks.
There’s nothing wrong with shooting for the stars. Most negotiations start with overly-optimistic demands and end with compromise. Plus, it’s worth noting that Acuna is still a prospect, while Yelich is already a proven player, and only 26 years old.
At age 19, Acuna hit .325/.374/.522 with 21 home runs and 44 stolen bases while reaching Triple A.
Axisa notes that if the Marlins trade Yelich, it would be less of a cost cutting move and more of a chance to get a big return. His contract is more manageable than those of Stanton, Gordon and Ozuna. Yelich is owed $29.25 Million between 2018-2020 followed by cheap club options in 2021 and 2022.