Marlins all-in on pursuing Abreu

MIAMI — We’re about to find out how serious the Marlins are about signing Jose Dariel Abreu.

Earlier in the week, the organization was well represented at Abreu’s two-day workout in the Dominican Republic.

Word is the organization is highly impressed with the power-hitting first baseman. The latest is blind bids for Abreu are due on Saturday. Projections are it will take between $45-60 million to land the 26-year-old Cuban native, who is said to have a boyish face and fun-loving personality.

The Marlins are all-in on signing Abreu. But can they seal the deal? That will be up to team owner Jeffrey Loria, and how much he is willing to spend.

According to a source, the Giants are considered a favorite to land his services.

The Marlins, meanwhile, plan to make their pitch. The thought of having Giancarlo Stanton and Abreu in the middle of the order could immediately upgrade the team that scored the fewest runs in the Majors (513) this season.

At his workout, Abreu showed an easy swing, and the ball exploded off his bat.

Abreu is said to be more of a pure hitter than Stanton, who has the edge in raw power.

The Marlins are not expected to be major players in the free agent market for established big league veterans. However, the international market presents an attractive alternative.

Abreu’s price tag will be dramatically lower than, say, Robinson Cano, who is said to be seeking $300 million.

Even if that is an inflated figure to start off with, Cano still projects to make $200-plus million, still out of Miami’s price league.

Abreu also is interesting because he might be passable at third base. Ideally, he would play first. But he could be a candidate to play third, if the club also would like to retain Logan Morrison.

Bottom line with Abreu is his bat.

If he can hit the way some believe he will, he could play a defensive third base similar to what Miguel Cabrera is doing in Detroit.

Also telling about the Marlins’ interest in Abreu is the club may be willing to boost payroll to more than the projected $38 million they initially were leaning towards.

The exact budget the team plans to operate with has not yet been determined.

Perhaps the key is finding the right player to invest in to incresae payroll. Abreu just may be that guy.

— Joe Frisaro

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