It was a surprise to find out that the Mets were looking for starting pitching in return for Ike Davis. But as long as we know that adding more pitching is a desired goal of the organization, it seems fair to speculate about trades where the Mets bring in a pitcher. That thought brings us to the Marlins.
On Tuesday, Joe Frisaro, the Marlins writer for MLB.com, wrote a piece saying the Marlins were looking for a third baseman. He went on to list some possibilities some of which, like Danny Valencia, are no longer on the market. Frisaro went on to state that the Marlins had pitching prospects to deal and offered up some names, too.
Not mentioned as a potential trade partner was the Mets. Yet that seems curious, as the Mets actively shopped Daniel Murphy during the Winter Meetings and the best position for Wilmer Flores is probably third base, too.
Frisaro said, “In theory, the Marlins have the pitching to get a deal done. In reality, finding a fit isn’t quite so easy. To part with a young arm, Miami is looking for players with controllable years before they reach free agency. The player also will have to be versatile to switch to another position once (2013 top draft pick Colin) Moran is ready.”
The top pitching prospect for the Marlins is Andrew Heaney, the ninth overall pick of the 2012 Draft. Heaney pitched in both Hi-A and Double-A last year, going a combined 9-3 with a 1.60 ERA in 95.1 IP. In six starts in Double-A, Heaney was 4-1 with a 2.94 ERA and a 1.188 WHIP.
FanGraphs’ Marc Hulet had this scouting report on the young southpaw:
“Heaney combines polish, above-average control/command and solid stuff. He throws three pitches — 89-93 mph fastball, slider, changeup — for strikes and his breaking ball serves as his out-pitch.”
So, is Flores enough to land Heaney? My opinion is no, but I’m more bearish on Flores than most. The drop from Heaney to the Marlins’ next pitching prospect seems substantial, so a Flores for Justin Nicolino swap does not seem like a good deal for the Mets.
But since we know the Marlins are looking for a third baseman, perhaps there’s room between the clubs to complete a deal. If Heaney is off limits, perhaps outfielder Jake Marisnick could be included in a deal. Hopefully Sandy Alderson is exploring trade possibilities with Miami President of baseball operations Michael Hill,