Posted on August 15, 2016 by Bryan Zarpentine
Less than three days after his final game with the New York Yankees, which was followed by his unconditional release, another major league club is reportedly interested in possibly signing Alex Rodriguez. The Miami Marlins have at least discussed the possibility of signing A-Rod, who grew up in Miami and resides in South Florida. Interest from the Marlins comes on the heels of the team placing outfielder Giancarlo Stanton on the DL with a groin injury that may keep him out for the rest of the season.
“I think we’re going through that process right now,” Marlins president of baseball operations Michael Hill said about looking for players outside the organization to help replace Stanton. “We’re putting our list together of options. [Rodriguez] is available, so he will be on that list. We’ll see where that goes.”
This may just be the Marlins doing their due diligence with regard to every player available, but it could be more than that. “There has been information out there about his situation,” Hill added. “I have no idea what his interest level is to continue playing. He has something set up to move into the Yankees front office; I don’t know where his head is on that, but where we are now, this team has played too well for too long. We’re right in the thick of this thing, and we’re going to do everything in our power to help in any way we can. If it’s him, or if it’s someone else, we’re going to try to find a way.”
The appeal of Rodriguez to the Marlins is that he would be able to provide a power threat, something they are missing with both Stanton and first baseman Justin Bour on the DL. Bour suffered a high-ankle sprain in early July and the Marlins aren’t expecting him back until September, depriving them of their two biggest power threats.
Of course, the caveat to the Marlins signing Rodriguez is that without a DH in the National League, he would have to play the field. Rodriguez would most likely be part of a platoon at first base with Derek Dietrich, starting at first base against left-handed starters and coming off the bench as a pinch hitter the rest of the time. Rodriguez has one career start at first base. The alternative would be playing Martin Prado at first base and Rodriguez at third base, although at this point in his career, A-Rod may do less damage playing first base than the hot corner.
Marlins manager Don Mattingly, who was on the Yankees coaching staff when Rodriguez made the switch from shortstop to third base, believes he’s capable of playing first base. “He moved over to third, almost seamlessly,” Mattingly said. “There’s no reason he couldn’t play first.”
There’s no indication that the Marlins signing Rodriguez is imminent, and it’s unknown if A-Rod is looking to play with another team this season. However, A-Rod seems to fit a need the Marlins have, and the team is at least considering the possibility. With Rodriguez being a South Florida resident, the Marlins could be a good fit for him if he wanted to continue playing. At the very least, it’s a situation worth keeping an eye on moving forward.