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Four Marlins pitchers the Red Sox could acquire in the trade from Triston Casas

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On paper, the Boston Red Sox and Miami Marlins are perfect business partners. The Red Sox desperately need a controllable starter pitch at the top of their rotation and the Marlins could use a big bat.

Both have the assets to achieve such an agreement. In fact, Barry Jackson and Craig Mish of the Miami Herald report that the Marlins are interested in trading “an important player” for Red Sox first base prospect Triston Casas.

Tomase: Would the Red Sox trade Casas for one of the Marlins’ young arms?

Casas enters 2023 as the No. 2 ranked prospect in the Red Sox organization and plans to be the team’s opening day starter at first base. Miami would almost certainly have to part with one of its best starting pitchers in order to get him away from Boston. Jackson and Mish list Pablo Lopez, Trevor Rogers and Edward Cabrera as the candidates most likely to be moved. Jesus Luzardo’s name does not appear in the Miami Herald report, but the left-hander is another option that could intrigue the Red Sox front office. 2022 National League Cy Young Award winner Sandy Alcantara is off the table.

It’s also worth noting that the Red Sox — after losing star shortstop Xander Bogaerts in free agency — have reportedly shown interest in Marlins infielders Joey Wendle and Miguel Rojas. Maybe one of these could be included in a commercial package with one of the aforementioned starters.

While the Marlins’ young arms aren’t exactly household names, they would be significant upgrades to the top of the Red Sox’s starting rotation. But would the addition of one of these pitchers be worth parting with one of the organization’s most exciting prospects?

To help answer that question, here’s a breakdown of every Marlins starter that might be available in an offering.

Pablo Lopez, RHP

Lopez was a popular name before the 2021 MLB trade deadline, so it’s no surprise he’s been the subject of trade rumors this offseason. He appears to be the Marlins pitcher most likely to be moved.

The right-hander enters his season aged 27 and is under the control of the team throughout the 2024 campaign. Although there are question marks, he has shown a real advantage over the past two seasons. In 2021, he set a Major League Baseball record by striking out the first nine batters in the game against the Atlanta Braves. He finished that season with a 3.07 ERA and 1.12 WHIP in 20 starts.

The catch is, prior to 2022, Lopez hadn’t pitched more than 111.1 innings in a season. He eventually topped that mark with 180 innings over 32 starts last year as he amassed a 3.75 ERA and 1.17 WHIP. Solid numbers, but trading Casas for another mid-rotation arm who has only made more than 30 starts once in his five-year career seems reckless.

Jesus Luzardo, LHP

The Marlins acquired Luzardo from the Oakland Athletics in exchange for outfielder Starling Marte before the 2021 trade deadline. The 25-year-old initially struggled in Miami, but has shown flashes of his enormous potential in 2022.

Luzardo posted a 3.32 ERA and 1.04 WHIP in 18 starts (100.1 innings) with the Marlins last season. He missed part of the year with a forearm sprain suffered in May. Still, the former top prospect pitched over 100 innings and showed his serious edge for the first time in his big league career.

Luzardo is a contender for a breakout campaign in 2023 if he can stay healthy and in control of the team for four more seasons. It just wouldn’t make sense for the Red Sox to part ways with Casas over an unproven arm with injury issues.

Trevor Rogers, LHP

Rogers was phenomenal for the Marlins in 2021. He was selected for his first All-Star Game and finished the year with a sparkling 2.64 ERA and 1.15 WHIP in 25 starts (133 innings). He finished second in NL Rookie of the Year voting behind Cincinnati Reds infielder Jonathan India.

The 25-year-old southpaw returned to earth in 2022. He went 4-11 with a 5.47 ERA and 1.50 WHIP in 23 starts (107 innings).

In order to acquire Casas, the Marlins would undoubtedly have to include another play or two with Rogers. His regression in 2022 has all but ruined his commercial value, although being under the team’s control for four more years is a plus. This one just doesn’t move the needle as much as Lopez, or the last arm on this list…

Edward Cabrera, RHP

Cabrera was the Marlins’ No. 2 ranked prospect and he showed flashes of his star potential in 2022 after a rocky start to his career in 2021. The 24-year-old right-hander had an ERA of 3.01 and a WHIP of 1 .07 in 14 starts (71.2 innings). ). He is under the control of the team for another six years.

As appealing as Cabrera’s cap may be, the Red Sox already have a young former top prospect in their rotation in Brayan Bello. Trading Casas for Cabrera would be an interesting exchange of young talent, but keeping Casas’ bat in the lineup would likely be more beneficial than adding another unproven arm to the mix. Of course, the potential advantage of a Bello/Cabrera 1-2 punch in the rotation is fun to dream about.


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