Yesterday the Miami Marlins agreed to a trade that would send them Houston Astro Carlos Lee in return for two of their top prospects. The Marlins were in need of a first baseman but in my opinion Lee is hardly an upgrade. As of today he’s only accumulated .2 WAR through 277 plate appearances.
It’s no secret that the Marlins needed to find an upgrade at first base. They’ve had three players play the position so far this season, and the production has been brutal. Normally first base is a position where you can expect some power, but not in Miami. Logan Morrison, Greg Dobbs and Gaby Sanchez have combined for an average ISO OF .133. That number ranks 24th in all of baseball. League average ISO so far is .180. Their triple slash line at first baseball is also fairly disappointing. Through 81 games its .239/.296/.373. The league average line is .252/.327/.432. Clearly they aren’t getting on-base enough and are displaying below average power, like I mentioned before.
The Marlins are hoping that Carlos Lee is able to give them a solid bat while also playing first base. The problem is that Carlos Lee hasn’t been very productive during the 67 games that he’s played in. His .338 OBP will certainly be an improvement but his power has all but disappeared. In fact his .124 ISO is lower than what the first basemen that the Marlins put out on the field. He’s shown that he can be a decent glove at first. He currently has a -2 UZR but last year in 500+ innings he had a +2 UZR so I think it’s safe to say that he can be an average defender.
In return the Astros managed to get third baseman Matt Dominguez and pitcher Rob Rasmussen. Dominguez showed promise from 2008-2010 by showing above average to average power and an ability to get on-base. Since then he’s faced his struggles though. This year he’s reached a new low as a 22 year old in AAA. He has a sub-par slash line of .234/.291/.357. His .239 BABIP suggests that he could be in for some better fortunes in the future. 22 is still young for AAA so it’s still early to give up on him.
Rob Rasmussen is a 23 year old pitcher who’s currently in high A ball. He’s currently striking out 20% of all batters that he’s faced while walking 9.6%. He currently has a 3.46 FIP which is a little above average.
Overall I like what the Astros got in the deal. Neither may ever be a star but Dominguez could still be a serviceable player and they got rid of a player that has hardly contributed all year.