In a trade that’s as massive as anything we’ve seen in the last 14 years in baseball, Giancarlo Stanton has been traded to the Yankees. The Marlins officially announced Monday that they have traded Stanton and cash to the Bronx for infielder Starlin Castro and minor-leaguers Jorge Fuzman and Jose Devers.
Miami will reportedly send $30 million to the Yankees in the trade, meaning New York’s commitment to Stanton will be $265 million over the next 10 seasons before a $25 million option kicks in for 2028. Stanton has the ability to opt out of the deal after the 2020 season, though the Yankees will not receive the $30 million if he does.
Stanton, of course, had to approve the trade to the Yankees after already blocking agreed-upon trades to the Cardinals and Giants, respectively. The Dodgers were said to be his top choice, but Los Angeles never appeared heavily involved in the sweepstakes to acquire him.
Stanton, who hit .281/.376/.631 with 59 homers and 132 RBI in 159 games for the Marlins in 2017, is the first reigning MVP to be traded during the offseason since... Alex Rodriguez was dealt from the Rangers to the Yankees in Feb. 2004. He will join Aaron Judge to form one of the most dynamic power duos in recent memory, providing a tremendous boost to a lineup that also includes the likes of Brett Gardner, Gary Sanchez and Didi Gregorius.
The Yankees were expected to look into major moves this winter after falling just one game shy of the World Series in 2017, though few expected a move of this magnitude with the team considered a frontrunner to land pending free agent Bryce Harper next winter. The deal for Stanton, who is owed $295 million over the next nine seasons, likely takes the club out of the running for Harper (and Manny Machado) a year from now, opening up the field for both players when they hit the market next fall.
New York was originally considered the frontrunner to sign Japanese star Shohei Ohtani, but the 23-year-old did not grant the club an in-person visit and ended up signing with the Angels. New York quickly pivoted to Stanton, who was readily available after rejecting deals to the Giants and Cardinals despite new team CEO Derek Jeter’s serious attempts to strike a deal.
Stanton, 28, owns a career .268/.360/.554 line with 267 homers in eight seasons with Miami since making his major-league debut in 2010. He’s a four-time All-Star who owns two Silver Slugger awards and won his first NL MVP this past year.
The primary value in the return for the Marlins is salary relief, though Castro and the two minor-leaguers should not be overlooked. Miami may reportedly look to flip Castro, an All-Star in 2017, though the club could theoretically hold onto him after shipping Dee Gordon to the Mariners earlier in the week.
Castro, who turns 28 in March, hit .300/.338/.454 with 16 homers for the Yankees last season and is owed about $23.75 million over the next two years before a $16 million club option kicks in for 2020. He was expendable due to top prospect Gleyber Torres’ ability to shift into second base alongside Gregorius next season, if healthy.
Guzman, 21, is a 6-foot-2 righty who was originally sent to the Yankees as part of the Brian McCann trade last November. He’s ranked as the ninth-best prospect in the team’s system (per MLB Pipeline) after posting a 2.30 ERA in 13 starts for Lo-A Staten Island in 2017.
Devers, the cousin of Red Sox rookie Rafael Devers, is an 18-year-old infielder out of the Dominican Republic. He hit .245/.336/.342 with 16 steals in 53 rookie-level games in his first year of pro ball.
Guzman is likely to be one of the top prospects in Miami’s system, though not much is known about Devers. New Marlins executive Gary Denbo recently joined Miami after running the Yankees’ minor leagues for years, so he’s obviously very familiar with the lower levels of the organization.