Bob Nightengale of USA TODAY Sports reported on Wednesday that the Marlins extended president of baseball operations Michael Hill recently. The contract is believed to be in excess of $10 million over five years.
The detail came as part of a larger report on the Marlins. Owner Jeffrey Loria is expected to sell the team soon, but the team has some loose ends and may end up having yet another fire sale. According to Nightengale, “It doesn’t matter if your name is Marcell Ozuna, Christian Yelich, AJ Ramos or even Giancarlo Stanton, the Marlins are preparing to strip it down for the next ownership group.”
A group involving Wayne Rothbaum and Tagg Romney is considered to be the favorite to purchase the Marlins. Loria, who bought the team for $158.5 million in 2002, is expected to sell the team for $1.1-1.3 billion.
Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald reports that Major League Baseball will need to be consulted if the Marlins have a fire sale while Loria attempts to sell the team.
The Cincinnati Reds have signed outfielder Nicholas Castellanos to a multi-year deal. That’s the report from C. Trent Rosecrans and Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic. Jon Morosi of MLB.com was the first to report the Reds as frontrunners. The deal is pending a physical. UPDATE: The deal is four years. Financial terms have yet to be reported.
With Castellanos in the fold the Reds are going to have a lot of outfielders when they hit Goodyear, Arizona in a couple of weeks, with newcomer Shogo Akiyama, Jesse Winkler, Nick Senzel, Aristides Aquino, Travis Jankowski, Scott Schebler, and Rule 5 draftee Mark Payton already on the roster. Senzel was an infielder before last year, of course, so he could move back to the dirt, perhaps taking over short from Freddy Galvis, who could be dealt. Alternatively, the Reds could trade from their newfound outfield surplus.
Castellanos, however, will have left field to himself. While he’s shaky at best with the glove, he had a breakout year at the plate in 2019, hitting .289/.337/.525 overall (OPS+ 121), but slugging at a blistering .321/.356/.646 pace (OPS+ 151) after being traded from the Tigers to the Cubs. In Chicago — rescued from cavernous Comerica Park — his big doubles power turned into big homer power.
Now that he’ll be playing in hitter-friendly Great American Ballpark one can only imagine the damage he’d do.