The Marlins lost their lone All-Star when Giancarlo Stanton’s knee injury caused him to be replaced Saturday, and they’re steamed that another Marlin wasn’t picked to replace him.
“I just think that all teams are supposed to be represented and if our guy had to have surgery, he had to have surgery,” team president David Samson said.
Samson made it clear he didn’t think Bryce Harper was the right choice to replace Stanton.
“If you look at the fact that this game counts and you need people to win games. Having (Greg) Dobbs as an All-Star as a pinch-hitter off the bench, having (Steve) Cishek come in and get some righties out. Having (Justin) Ruggiano coming who is completely clubbing the ball right now. I think he may have as much service time as the guy they named to replace Stanton this year, although I don’t know actually.”
Yeah, we’re sure more Marlins fans would have tuned in Tuesday night to see Ruggiano in the game.
Samson does have a point, though: all teams are supposed to be represented in the game and now the Marlins aren’t. It would have made a lot of sense to put Jose Reyes on the squad. He’s a legitimate star, at least, and the NL team had already replaced an injured shortstop (Ian Desmond) with an outfielder (Michael Bourn).
Bob Nightengale of USA Today says that the San Francisco Giants “have keen interest” in Rays third baseman Evan Longoria.
Longoria is coming off his worst season as a major leaguer, having hit .261/.313/.424 with 20 homers in 2017. He’s also still owed $86 million through 2022. Which, back when the deal was signed seemed like quite a bargain for the Rays — and likely has been over the duration of the contract — but now seems somewhat steep for the 32 year-old third baseman. That said, the Giants currently have Pablo Sandoval penciled in at third base on their depth chart, so Longoria would definitely be an upgrade, even if 2017’s dip wasn’t just a blip.
Nightengale says that for the Giants to take on Longoria, the Rays would have to take on a high salary veteran such as Denard Span or Hunter Pence. Span is owed $9 million in 2018, with a $4 million buyout on a $12 million option for 2019. Pence is owed $18.5 million in 2018 in the final year of his contract and has a full no-trade clause.
If he stays with the Rays, Longoria will achieve 10-5 rights — full no-trade protection due to being a ten-year veteran with five years of service on the same club — so if the Rays are going to move him, it’ll be much easier this offseason, not once the 2018 season begins.