The idea of a reunion between the Marlins and Mike Lowell has been in the air since the Miami Herald reported the team sent scouts to watch the 36-year-old's Grapefruit League debut on March 15. This morning, Jorge Ebro at the Nuevo Herald (link in Spanish) provided a more specific picture of the team's interest level and what situations could bring Lowell back to Florida after talking with a source inside the organization.
"We've talked about that subject, and everyone within the organization is aware of the significance of bringing back Lowell from all points of view," explains Ebro's source. He adds that much remains "unclear" about Lowell for the team's scouts, particularly the status of his hip and "the lateral movement that made him one of the best defenders of his time." Reports on Lowell's mobility haven't been glowing, and he started the spring at first base for the first time since he was in the Yankees minor league system. But even with the potential of changing positions on occasion, Lowell's role would likely be much clearer outside of Boston, where he is currently either the first option off of the Red Sox's bench, especially in the case of another slow start by David Ortiz, or a $12MM odd man out in the race for starts at the infield corners and DH.
If Lowell were to join the Marlins, the source says, he would fill the same corner-to-corner role currently held by Jorge Cantu: a potential starter at third base who occasionally spells the starting first baseman. That starter increasingly looks like Gaby Sanchez, who has hit .387 this spring and looked "more relaxed" at the plate and in the field, according the source. "But having a veteran like Lowell in the bank never hurts," he adds. "It's a long season, injuries happen. If the price is good, a return by Lowell would not be unreasonable." As Ebro notes, the Marlins' idea of a good price—or that of the Twins, or White Sox, or whatever team looks seriously at Lowell—would likely include the Red Sox picking up most of the cost.