Extension Candidate: Mike Stanton

Icon_6715668With offense on the decline around the league, power is at a premium these days. Few players have more of it than Mike Stanton, the Marlins' 22-year-old wunderkind. Since making his Major League debut on June 8th of 2010, his 56 homers are the sixth most in baseball behind Jose Bautista (79), Albert Pujols (65), Mark Teixeira (64), Curtis Granderson (62), and Prince Fielder (61). That's elite company, especially for someone so young.

The Marlins went on a spending spree this offseason, importing Ozzie Guillen, Jose Reyes, Carlos Zambrano, Heath Bell, and Mark Buehrle, but perhaps their wisest signing could be locking Stanton into a long-term deal. There's certainly no rush since he won't be arbitration-eligible until after 2013 or a free agent until after 2016, but power pays in arbitration and Stanton could get expensive in a hurry. Look no further than Fielder, who turned his impressive power output into $33.5MM during his three arbitration years. It would have been more if he hadn't given up his first two arbitration years as part of a two-year, $18MM contract.

A number of young outfielders have signed long-term contracts in recent years and can serve as reference points for a Stanton extension. Justin Upton signed away his three arbitration years for $20.75MM, Carlos Gonzalez for $23.5MM, and Jay Bruce for $22.5MM. Upton, CarGo, and Bruce also gave up their first two years of free agency for an average of $13.3MM per season. Those same five years of Stanton's career figure to cost the Fish upwards of $50MM.

For what it's worth, the Marlins signed Hanley Ramirez to a six-year contract prior to the 2009 season, which would have been his first as an arbitration-eligible player. They secured his three arbitration years for $23.5MM and then three additional free agent years for an average of $15.5MM annually. Ramirez did have a Rookie of the Year award and two top-11 finishes in the NL MVP voting at that point, so Stanton would figure to come slightly cheaper, assuming they act now.

A new era of Marlins' baseball begins next season with a new name, a new stadium, and several new high-profile players. Getting Stanton — one of their core homegrown players and a .261/.344/.525 career hitter — under contract long-term would be an excellent finish to a productive and franchise-altering offseason.

Photo courtesy of Icon SMI.

19 Responses to Extension Candidate: Mike Stanton Leave a Reply

  1. ARod's Ring 3 years ago

    *2 days Later* “Marlins Agree to sign Mike Stanton to a 6 year deal.”

  2. EdinsonPickle 3 years ago

    I’ve seen few players who can hit the ball as hard as Stanton. He hits missiles that look like they came off the barrel of a metal bat. If the Marlins don’t lock this guy up at some point, there is something seriously wrong with them.

    • chrisn313 3 years ago

      He is one of my favorite players, and IMO underrated as a rising star. If his eye continues developing like it did last year he will be an absolute force. Love watching him throw lasers and hit missiles.

      • FS54 3 years ago

        I don’t believe he is underrated. He is respected everywhere despite his age and lack of experience.

  3. If I were the Marlins I would sign Mike to a 10 yr 180 million dollar deal right now because fact of the matter his stock will only continue to rise the longer they wait.

  4. MetsMagic 3 years ago

    I like this kid a lot and frankly having him in-division scares the crap out of me for years to come. He has as much raw power as anyone and I don’t think I’ve seen anyone hit a ball harder since the Big Hurt, Frank Thomas. It shouldn’t be too hard for him to cut down on the K’s and I can see him smashing 40+ homeruns and having a .900+ OPS year in and year out.

    He’s practically the posterchild of high ceiling draft picks. He broke out in 2008 and shot up on prospect lists rapidly. He serves as a good example for rebuilding teams to always take the highest upside in the draft and not the most likely to make the bigs. 

  5. Mikeschoolerforever 3 years ago

    Yankee fans will start to complain why the Marlins won’t trade him to them cause he will look so good in pinstripes and the marlins will never win.

    • They haven’t yet?

    • rsanchez1 3 years ago

      Just like Oakland fans complained why the Marlins wouldn’t give up Stanton for Gio.

      No, wait, for a team that’s perenially in rebuild mode, that’s the least of Oakland fans’ concerns.

      • johnsilver 3 years ago

        “Just like Oakland fans complained why the Marlins wouldn’t give up Stanton for Gio.”

        More like Beane thinking he could get Stanton and then settling for what he did.. One has to wonder what goes through his head sometimes.. He seems brilliant, then like loses it..

  6. rsanchez1 3 years ago

    YES! Lock him up NOW. Stanton WILL get too expensive if they wait.

    Well, I guess you never know about too expensive, given how loose the Marlins’ pockets were this offseason, but I as a fan would prefer to have Stanton play at Miami for a while. 

  7. tigers22 3 years ago

    I’m a diehard Tigers fan… but Mikey Stanton is my favorite player in the MLB not on the Tigers.  

    Kinda like Miggy was when he played for the Marlins.  We’ll take Stanton now too, please.  (wishful thinking, not meant to be serious). 

  8. FowlofCanada 3 years ago

    He’s going to need one of those giant novelty pens to sign his contract.

  9. Lunchbox45 3 years ago

    2007 was a pretty weak draft, even the first round had a lot of flops.. And marlins swooped in and take him 76th…


  10. I can understand why the Marlins may be a bit hesitant—two words: Chris Coghlan.

    • JackPackage 3 years ago

      What so they would be hesitant to sign Mike Stanton because an entirely unrelated, young player succumbed to a completely freak (and slightly hilarious) accident?

  11. rsanchez1 3 years ago

    Funny, nobody is watching your palm.

  12. fishfan4life 3 years ago

    You called him Jose Bautista 2.0. And if anyone knows anything about Jose Bautista, it’s that he sucked for a while before becoming an elite player. That’s all Larry was talking about.

  13. redsx968 3 years ago

    5 million from each of the last 10 years deferred over 60 years. 

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