Marlins Acquire Carlos Lee

The Marlins have played to a 38-42 record since changing their name and logo, moving to a new stadium and spending aggressively on free agents, but the slow start will not stop them from adding midseason reinforcements before this year's trade deadline. The Marlins have acquired Carlos Lee from the Astros for Matt Dominguez and Rob Rasmussen, the teams announced. The move should provide Miami with some much-needed offense at first base and add depth to the Astros' minor league system.

Carlos Lee - Astros (PW)

“Carlos has been an important part of our team and our community in Houston for almost six seasons and he will be missed,” GM Jeff Luhnow said. “We made this move with an eye towards the future, and are very excited about adding Dominguez and Rasmussen to our talent base. Both players have a bright future.”

Lee, 36, is earning $18.5MM in the final season of a six-year, $100MM contract. The Astros are covering all but the pro-rated minimum of Lee's salary, Juan C. Rodriguez of the Sun Sentinel reports (Twitter links). Though Lee didn't enjoy no-trade protection in the form of ten and five rights, his contract allowed him to block trades to 14 clubs. The Marlins weren't on Lee's 14-team no-trade list.

Lee has five homers and a .286/.336/.412 batting line in 274 plate appearances so far in 2012. He has slowed down in recent years, but his bat will still represent an upgrade over Gaby Sanchez's .194/.240/.283 batting line.

Dominguez, 22, has a reputation as a strong defensive third baseman, but he projects as a below-average hitter. The 2007 first round selection posted a .234/.291/.357 batting line at Triple-A this year and he has a .252/.321/.410 batting line in six minor league seasons. Dominguez, who appeared in 17 games on last year's Marlins team, ranked fourth on Baseball America's list of top Marlins prospects following the 2011 season.

Rasmussen, 23, entered the season as Miami's seventh-best prospect, according to Baseball America. The 5'9" left-hander has a 3.90 ERA with 7.7 K/9 and 3.7 BB/9 in 87 2/3 innings as a starter at Class A Jupiter this year. The Marlins selected him in the second round of the 2010 draft.'s Buster Olney first reported the deal. Photo courtesy of US Presswire.

82 Responses to Marlins Acquire Carlos Lee Leave a Reply

  1. Karkat 3 years ago

    So Lee didn’t want to go to the first-place Dodgers, but he’s all over the fourth place Marlins?

    EDIT: apparently the Marlins weren’t on the list. A previous MLBTR post made it sound like the opposite was true

    • dodgerskingsfan 3 years ago

      2nd place. we trail by 1/2 game

      • Karkat 3 years ago

        Not since the Giants lost today. In any event the Dodgers have been in a “playoff” basically all season, not so for Miami. It just strikes me as odd.

        •  he may not had a choice…. it was not a full no trade clause…. he could only block trades to certain teams….

    • BlueSkyLA 3 years ago

      Probably the Marlins were not on his trade block list. The Dodger yanked the plug on the deal when Lee wasn’t making up his mind. The Marlins clearly did not have to wait.

      • Karkat 3 years ago

        Maybe. The eariler post made it sound like Lee had to “agree” to go to Miami though.

        • BlueSkyLA 3 years ago

          I know, but that really makes no sense. Can’t imagine why he’d agree to Florida but not LA.

          • 55saveslives 3 years ago

             California tax is highest in US.  Florida has no statetax

          • I could be wrong, but isn’t that the reason Bobby Bonilla signed with the Marlins back in the day?

          • johnsilver 3 years ago

             Several, not just him and Bobby “Bo” with his contract getting money for like 20 years after he retired was protected by a LOT of it.

          • cubs223425 3 years ago

            Yahoo had an article probably a few months back about how athletes get hosed by taxation. Some guys end up filing up to 20 tax forms because they try to apply it to every state you work in.

          • thegrayrace 3 years ago

            Hosed? They play baseball for a living and even at league minimum they make more per year than the President of the United States. How unfortunate that they may need to hire an accountant to do their taxes for them…

          • Karkat 3 years ago

            Not like Carlos Lee is making 18 million dollars or anything.

          • BlueSkyLA 3 years ago

            Or because he couldn’t block this trade, as it turns out. Nice theories anyway.

          • jb226 3 years ago

            Why he couldn’t block the trade still seems to be an open question, though.  This marks his sixth year with Houston and his fourteenth in the Majors — in other words, why doesn’t he have the full no-trade protection of a player with 10-and-5 rights?  Or did he simply pre-agree to waive the protection to a certain list of teams?

          •  Close.  He “traded” his 10-5 rights in exchange for a full no trade clause during the first 4 years of the contract.  So he has a partial no-trade limited to 14 teams instead of the full 10-5 no trade rights.

          • jb226 3 years ago

            Makes sense I guess, though I’m not sure it was Lee’s greatest decision.  His contract would have been pretty hard to move and the Astros were competitive in his early years.

          •  You refer to income taxes. Trust me Florida has plenty of “state taxes”

          •  ozzie Guillen?

          •  hispanic community most probably here in Miami we have every kind of hispanic colombian, cuban, dominican, puerto rican etc. While in L.A. from what I know is mostly Mexican.

          •  Panamanians?

  2. tmengd 3 years ago

      wow Dominguez and Rasmussen number 2 and 9 on Marlins Top 10 prospects

    • vtadave 3 years ago

      Dominguez is no longer even close to the Marlins #2 prospect – those would be Yelich and Fernandez.

      Guess it’s better than nothing, as Rasmussen could be serviceable.

      • johnsilver 3 years ago

         Yeah.. Florida pulled off a decent move here. neither is close to top 5.

        •  How is it a decent move?  Lee hits for very little power in minute maid.  You think he is going to find his stroke in Miami?  Rass is only 5’9 but throws 90-93 with a nice slider.  Dominguez has slipped, but he has still be viewed highly for the past few years.  He is only 22, he has time to figure it out.  Houston wasn’t going to get Yelich or Fernandez, so who else could they have rly gotten?

      • Dominguez is #2 for the Marlins according to, where he’s also listed as #74 overall

        •  Dominguez would have fared poorly in the new Marlins park where his low-avg-with-power game would not have worked well. In Houston, he has a real chance to be a starter.

        • vtadave 3 years ago

          It’s a very outdated list.

    • Bob9988 3 years ago

       Steal for the marlins.

      • Trout Almonte 3 years ago

        Ahh crap, since when did they change the meaning of for to from?

  3. Astros got the Marlins #2 prospect (Dominguez) and #9 (Rasmussen).
    Win-win trade

    • vtadave 3 years ago

      So who is Dominguez better than, Jose Fernandez or Christian Yelich?

      • Wes Whitenack 3 years ago

        That is’s pre season rankings. They probably still thought high on him, but now with his continued struggles in AAA, he’d probably barely near the top 10. But Rasmussen looks quite nice.

  4. There goes the ranches… 

  5.  they got a good return..glad the Dodgers didn’t give up that much

  6. Eduardo Medina 3 years ago

    BYE BYE Sanchez…

  7. johnsilver 3 years ago

    Wow.. The Fish pretty much gave up nothing and now “The Dobber” can go back to being the super utility guy he is best at. A steal and Houston seems to even be paying most of his $$$.

    • tmengd 3 years ago

       Houston wanted him gone, they have two guys in AAA with good numbers that play 1st and Lee was of no value to anyone.

      • johnsilver 3 years ago

         I am not hammering Houston over this and understand the deal had to be made.

        Houston got more back for Lee than Boston got for Youk.. They ended up with a retread IF (Lillibridge) and a SP who will be nothing more than depth at the AAA level (Stewart). IMO, Rasmussen *might* be able to help out in a couple of years, probably not as a SP, but as a reliever and Dominguez is still a work in progress. really doubt he will stick as a regular however.

        • Wes Whitenack 3 years ago

          Rasmussen looks okay but his walk rate is still high, and Dominguez could be an upgrade over Chris Johnson. Consider that he’s gone at the end of the season and how desperate Miami was for offense at 1st base, it’s a very fair deal.

          • johnsilver 3 years ago

             It just pretty much kills the hope that Sanchez will play a part in the future of the team. He was brutal for 3 months after 2 really solid seasons.

    • I’m not sure they gave up nothing.  Dominguez has been touted highly for quite a few years.  And they get a guy who BA thinks will be rdy to throw next year.  Granted Dominguez hasn’t figured out how to swing the hot bat yet, he is a major league rdy 3b at only 22-23 years old.  I think this is a steal for the Astros.

  8. Wes Whitenack 3 years ago

    California has high income taxes and didn’t want to got there, but Florida doesn’t have any (Texas has none as well).

    • johnsilver 3 years ago

       Many reasons for that.. Half the taxes (or less) on many goods.. Right to work state.. Cheaper to live in general.

      Some players in the past have used the state income tax (and other taxes) as a reason for signing in different locales. Texas is an example of another state players have chosen over higher taxed states.

      • mistgl 3 years ago

         Better than nothing package.

        Dominguez has Pedro Feliz written all over him. And the SP has better numbers than the guy the doggies were trying to pawn off on them.

        • drjayphd 3 years ago

          Better to have Feliz written all over you then to have fleas all over you, I suppose. Wonder if the latter was the case with the guy the Doggies were offering.

        • Yes, he’s also 23 in High-A where as Gould isn’t even 21 yet with better K numbers and a FIP of 3.46 in a hitter’s league compared to 3.64 for Rasmussen. Sure, he’s much better.

      • Crucisnh 3 years ago

        It’s also tough to go from a no state income tax state to one with (supposedly) the highest state income tax.  That’s quite a bite out of his paycheck.  I can see why he’d favor going to another low tax state.

  9. Sean Murphy 3 years ago

    Didn’t see that coming.

  10. laxtonto 3 years ago

    So they got an all glove 3B and a small LHP that is in A+

    • tmengd 3 years ago

       I think Rasmussen is at AA right? He also has pretty decent numbers for the competition he has had to face.

  11. john12121212 3 years ago

    5HR??? Yikes. Bad trade.

  12. Reynoza 3 years ago

    Nice trade for the Astros..

    • laxtonto 3 years ago

       didnt get a huge return, with the Marlins having arguably the worst minor leagues in baseball right now, but any return for Carlos Lee is a huge plus. Curious what this means for Chris Johnson..

      • Wes Whitenack 3 years ago

        They probably try to move Johnson. Dominguez, even with a sub par bat, would bring a great glove to the hot corner.

        • melonis_rex 3 years ago

          If the Padres don’t trade Headley, Johnson’s the best 3B available at the deadline and its not even close.

          a trade makes a lot of sense.

      • Reynoza 3 years ago

         Even if the Marlins send a pair of bats and a dozen of baseballs it would be fine anyways..

  13. WrigleyTerror37 3 years ago

    this came out of Left Field…. and moved to 1B xD

  14. Josh Conn 3 years ago

     If I remember correctly, Lee had every West Coast team on his no-trade list, although I don’t remember the reason why.  He was just taking up space in Houston as far as the Astros were concerned, so getting any sort of prospects for him is a win.

  15. tmengd 3 years ago

    I wonder now if Chris Johnson could be traded to the Dodgers or someone now. They have Dominguez now and Wallace can play third(and first) They could also bring up Mike Hessman to play first and use Wallace or Parades at 3rd.

    • Dylan 3 years ago

      They have a DH next year.

      • tmengd 3 years ago

         no they don’t Singleton will not be ready to start the year. They do have F Martinez, but who knows on him. Luhnow said himself Mike Hessman would be an attractive option as the DH.

        •  He was saying that they’ll have the DH next year, not that Singleton will be the DH next year. 

    •  I think Johnson could shift to DH next year.  Dominguez will go to third

      • Trout Almonte 3 years ago

        Johnson can’t even hit his weight as DH (pun intended)

  16. richardb21 3 years ago

    Luhnow is amazing for finding 2 trades for Lee in a week. About time they gave Wallace a shot. Should not have sent him down the first time.

  17. tmengd 3 years ago

    Mike Hessman is not in okc lineup today and Wallace is. I wonder if the 34 year old who is destroying the baseball got the call up

    • Tired_OF_FakeRumors 3 years ago

      Hessman is horrible or at leat he was with the mets. Hopefully he can be successful with the astros.  

      • tmengd 3 years ago

         he is actually hitting well for the astros .274 average .336 on base .621 slugging .957 obs 26 hr in 243 at bats. Strikeout is not good, but tons of power

    • I cant see any reason why they would pull Hessman up over Wallace.  Wallace is outhitting him and still has a chance to turn into something

  18. Tired_OF_FakeRumors 3 years ago

    So Carlos lee have 5 home runs this years, those 5 home runs have been at their ballpark and all of them have been pulled. So yeah he will help the marlins offensively especially in that little ballpark in miami. PFFFFFFF!!!! Loria making stupd moves

    •  I was wondering about that when the Dodgers wanted him.  I guess Coletti and Loria are looking at his average more than his power(or lack therof).

    • jigokusabre 3 years ago

       Marlins park is a gap hitters heaven, and really any 1B would be better than Gaby Sanchez at this point.

  19. CommissionerBart 3 years ago

    Too little, too late to help da Fishies.  Throwing Ozzie overboard, on the other hand, might have at least helped ’em finish more respectably this year and contend next year.  Such a shame that all that money was spent on the stadium and in rebuilding the roster and they wasted it by hiring Oz rather than someone with leadership, composure, and good judgment.

  20. Paul H. 3 years ago

    Should’ve gone to the Dodgers Carlos, this is what you get.

  21. Rabbitov 3 years ago

    What a bizarre move. 

  22. mexicanlover 3 years ago

    I heard that if Lee didnt agree with the dodger trade that they would trade him to a team that was farther down in the standings to kind of teach him a lesson. 

  23. Phillies_Aces35 3 years ago

    4th place in the NL East isn’t really being in 4th place. That said, I’m also quite surprised. I’d rather play for LA. The Marlins are a very streaky team and they’re a hot streak away from potentially a Wild Card spot.

  24. vtadave 3 years ago

    That’s a clown comment bro.

    Lee didn’t have a choice here.  With the Dodgers, he did.

  25.  I forgot all about the Guillen/Lee reunion…

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