Trade speculation likely to heat up
MIAMI — A week ago, the Marlins opened a six-game road trip with a sense of urgency.
Manager Ozzie Guillen called it a crucial week, one that could sway whether trades could be made before the July 31 non-waiver trade deadline.
The trip opened with promise with a 9-5 win over the Cubs at Wrigley Field. From there, the team fell on hard times. Hanley Ramirez experienced inflammation in his right hand, and he was sidelined.
The state of the team also worsened as they lost the next five, and they are now a season-worst seven-games under .500. At 44-51, they are 11 1/2 games behind the Nationals in the NL East.
Each passing day creates more speculation regarding who will stay or go.
Anbibal Sanchez, a free agent after the season, is a name being mentioned prominently in trade talks. With the Braves reportedly about to acquire Ryan Dempster from the Cubs, Sanchez should generate more attention before July 31.
A recent report had the Tigers scouting Sanchez, but a source said that may not be a fit. Teams like the Red Sox, Yankees, Cardinals, Dodgers and Rangers are in the hunt for a starter. One of those teams may be more realistic than Detroit.
Coming out of the All-Star Break, the Marlins were reviewing where they’d stand after their three-game series with the Braves, which starts on Monday at Marlins Park.
The hope was they’d make up ground in the 13-game stretch after the All-Star Break. They’re so far 3-7 in the span.
Omar Infante, who signed a two-year, $8 million extension last September, is another player who has been speculated to be on the move.
If the Marlins do decide to part with Infante, they would free up the remainder of the second baseman’s salary this year plus $4 million for next year.
What would the Marlins do at second base, should Infante be dealt?
It depends what happens in center field. If the team acquires a proven center fielder, Emilio Bonifacio could switch to second base. Or the club could keep Bonifacio in center field, and give Donovan Solano a look at second for the rest of the season.
— Joe Frisaro