Hand drawing interest in trade front

JUPITER, Fla. — A couple of left-handed Marlins’ pitchers are attracting interest on the trade front.

The Rangers, who have been scouting the Marlins in recent weeks, are in trade talks for Brad Hand, according to the Miami Herald.

With Tom Koehler emerging as the leader for the fifth starter spot, Hand could become expendable.

Out of options, Hand is in an uncertain spot because he can’t be sent to the Minor Leagues. The lefty has experience as a starter and in long relief, but his preference is to start.

The Dallas Morning News also reported the Rangers are interested in Hand or perhaps reliever Mike Dunn, who signed a two-year deal before Spring Training.

But Dunn is not being shopped, a source told MLB.com.

Because the Rangers are in the market for left-handed pitching, they’re a logical team to link to Miami.

Another lefty in Marlins camp attracting trade interest in Andrew McKirahan, a Rule 5 pick.

A source said number of teams have inquired about McKirahan, who either has to make the Marlins or be offered back to the Cubs. The Marlins could trade the lefty, but that may not be the team’s preference.

The source added Miami would like to keep McKirahan. If Hand is dealt, that could clear a roster spot for the 25-year-old, who would become a second lefty in the bullpen.

Left-handed relief help is hard to find, and also can be pricey. McKirahan, meanwhile, is a bargain at the $50,000 compensation fee that would go to the Cubs. The Marlins are in the process of seeing if he could be a fit as a second lefty.

Joe Frisaro

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