The Giants are interested in Giancarlo Stanton, and this rumor will not die. It would appear as if the rumor has acquired some sort of undead beast, and now it’s threatening to melt its way through the mental barrier I’ve erected to keep it out, Bonds help us all.
This rumor comes to us from Bob Nightengale of USA TODAY Sports, and it goes like this:
But finally, the Marlins say, teams are calling, with the Giants expressing the strongest interest, a high-ranking Marlins’ executive told USA TODAY Sports.
In this article, I reminded you that the Giants would have $144 million committed to seven over-30 players in 2020 if they acquired Stanton, which doesn’t seem like a sustainable way to build a team.
In this article, I explained the Giancarlo Stanton paradox, which notes that if the Marlins were willing to pay down Stanton’s contract, other teams would leap ahead of the Giants with a better offer. That’s the bummer about having a poor farm system that’s having an even more disappointing season than the big-league club.
It’s not stopping the Giants from calling and calling, texting and texting, standing outside Marlins Park with a boombox hoisted above their head, though. And I guess that means less than nothing.
I guess we should stop and investigate just what the Giants’ best possible trade package would be. Not the best and most reasonable. Just the best. Like, the kind of offer they would make if they had an owner throwing a tantrum and declaring they absolutely had to have Stanton.
Start with the obvious: that Buster Posey and Madison Bumgarner aren’t going anywhere, and that Brandon Crawford is a fine player without a lot of surplus value because of his contract.
That leaves the Giants with a potential trade package of ...
- Joe Panik
- Chris Shaw
- Andrew Suarez
- Heliot Ramos
- Christian Arroyo
- Steven Duggar
- Tyler Beede
- Chris Stratton
- Bryan Reynolds
- Austin Slater
Sounds ludicrous, right? That’s the Giants’ starting second baseman and their eight best prospects, with Stratton thrown in because, lol, why not. The Giants wouldn’t do this. They value Stanton an awful lot, as they should, but they wouldn’t trade their whole top-10 prospect list to get him.
If the Marlins decided to pay $100 million for another team to take the contract, well, maaaaybe they’d consider something over the top like that. Unlikely, but pretend we’re still in the owner-throwing-a-tantrum scenario.
That’s when the Dodgers hear that the Marlins are offering a $100 million rebate on Stanton, and they offer this:
- Walker Buehler
- Alex Verdugo
That’s it. One pitching prospect, and one outfield prospect to replace Stanton.
I think the Marlins take the Dodgers’ package in that scenario. Especially considering the Marlins wouldn’t really have a place for Panik. Buehler and Verdugo have a ceiling that none of the Giants’ prospects can match, and they also have a floor that would make the Marlins more comfortable, too. This isn’t Baseball Mogul 2008, where you can just keep adding prospects until the AI gives in.
That’s if the Giants were willing to demolish their farm system to get Stanton at a discount.
The scenario remains the same, then. The Giants have a shot at Stanton only if the Marlins’ main goal is to shed as much money as possible, and the Giants are willing to absorb his contract. Stop thinking about this in terms of prospects like a normal trade. The Giants can’t compete with prospects. They can compete with money. Which I’m not sure they have in this case, especially compared to other teams.
Just so I’m clear, I’m okay with trading an awful lot of the above players for Stanton. This would fall under the Miguel Cabrera umbrella, in which it’s almost a guarantee that the list of players up there will make us giggle in five years, while Stanton is still a superstar.
Wait, you’re going to trade Gary Brown and Zack Wheeler and Tommy Joseph for Andrew McCutchen? Are you nuts?
But it’s instructive to point out that even if the Giants made a Dagwood sandwich out of prospects, the Marlins still might not care.
That’s not going to stop the Giants for trying, though. And I can respect that. They should be aggressive and explore all sorts of permutations. Just don’t get your hopes up. That’s all.