We’ve heard all winter that the Fish wish to add more pop to their corner outfield mix. Kemp definitely has a history of swinging a big stick. He’ll be looking to make a comeback at 35 years of age on the heels of an injury marred 2019 season.
Kemp has had peaks and valleys at the plate throughout his career, though he was at least an average hitter at his low points. He carries a lifetime .285/.337/.485 batting line with 281 home runs through nearly seven thousand trips to the plate at the game’s highest level.
That career output is good for a 121 wRC+ — just a shade less than the 122 wRC+ he produced through 506 plate appearances in a surprise return to the Dodgers in 2018. Kemp ended up moving to the Reds via trade in the offseason, but never got off the ground in Cincinnati.
Kemp ended up appearing in only twenty MLB contests in 2019, a career-low for a player who debuted in 2006. He produced only a .200/.210/.283 slash in his 62 plate appearances with the Reds, striking out 19 times while drawing just a single walk. Kemp was dumped after he suffered a broken rib, an injury that lingered and cut short a brief attempt at getting things going at Triple-A with the Mets.
Even if Kemp is able to rebound at the plate, he’s not going to offer much in the field. But the Marlins will see how he looks in camp and go from there. Odds are Kemp won’t be tasked with an everyday role even if he’s in good form. The impact on the team’s other reputed offseason pursuits remains to be seen, but it seems fair to presume the signing won’t take the club out of the rest of the corner outfield market entirely.