The Marlins are signing veteran outfielder Corey Dickerson to a two-year contract, as MLB Network’s Jon Heyman reported Saturday. The deal will pay Dickerson a total of $17.5 million, per MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand:
Marlins are finalizing deal with Corey Dickerson. 2 years.— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) December 28, 2019
Corey Dickerson and the Marlins are finalizing a two-year deal worth $17.5 million, per source. Pending physical. @JonHeyman had him going to the Marlins 1st.— Mark Feinsand (@Feinsand) December 28, 2019
There’s a real argument to be made that Dickerson, an All-Star in 2017, has been one of the majors’ most consistent hitters over the last half-decade. While splitting time between the Rockies, Rays, Pirates, and Phillies, the 30-year-old outfielder has posted a career .286/.328/.504 slash line over seven seasons while logging an above-average OPS+ in the last six of those seasons, with five of those six being 18 points above league average or better. He hit .304/.341/.565 with 12 homers between Pittsburgh and Philadelphia in 2019.
You may be asking yourself: “If Dickerson has been such a consistently great hitter, then why has he played on four teams in seven seasons?” That would be because of his defense, which has generally been pretty bad with the exception of a bizarre outlier season in 2018 where he posted 16 defensive runs saved and won a Gold Glove in left field. While battling a shoulder injury in 2019, Dickerson had -6 defensive runs — one off his career worst of -7 — and it’s safe to say that even if he’s at full health, no team should be expecting him to repeat his Gold Glove-winning performance. But while there’s a surplus of good outfielders around the majors right now, thus reducing Dickerson’s value even though he’s a very good hitter, it’s not like he’s Manny Ramirez-level bad in left field, and a team can certainly win with him as part of the lineup.
Dickerson is the latest intriguing addition during what has been a relatively exciting offseason for the Marlins. They acquired infielder Jonathan Villar, who is coming off a 4.0-bWAR season in 2019, from the Orioles at the non-tender deadline, and on the same day they claimed first baseman Jesús Aguilar — who is just one year removed from a 35-homer, .890-OPS All-Star season with the Brewers — off waivers from the Rays. When you consider that the Marlins already have several younger players — Brian Anderson, Harold Ramirez, Sandy Alcántara, and Caleb Smith among them — who have proven themselves as solid major-league contributors, a few more like Sixto Sanchez, Jesus Sanchez, and Jazz Chisholm who could arrive on the scene as soon as 2020, and now a few veterans to lead the pack, it’s quite possible that the Marlins will actually be semi-competitive for the first time since Bruce Sherman and Derek Jeter gained control of the organization.