The Marlins are hoping to find a trade partner for catcher Jorge Alfaro before tomorrow evening’s non-tender deadline, reports Craig Mish of SportsGrid (on Twitter). The Padres are among the teams expressing interest in the 28-year-old backstop, reports Jon Morosi of MLB.com (via Twitter).
That Alfaro is on the trade block is hardly a shock. He’s long been mentioned as a potential non-tender candidate, and Miami landed Jacob Stallings from the Pirates this afternoon to supplant him behind the dish. It’d register as a surprise if Alfaro were still on the Marlins’ roster 24 hours from now, as he seems likely to be non-tendered if not traded.
With Alfaro likely to otherwise be cut loose for nothing, it makes sense for general manager Kim Ng and her staff to see if they can bring back anything of value. The right-handed hitting backstop is a former top prospect who has flashed an intriguing blend of power and arm strength at times, but his combination of huge strikeout totals and well below-average walk rates have yet kept him from settling in as an above-average regular.
As Morosi notes, Padres president of baseball operations A.J. Preller was a key figure in the Rangers’ scouting department when Texas signed Alfaro as an amateur out of Colombia back in 2010. Preller has shown an affinity for bringing in former Rangers, but Alfaro would be a bit of a curious fit on paper. San Diego already has a capable #1 catcher in Austin Nola, and Víctor Caratini is on hand as a serviceable back-up. Top prospect Luis Campusano, meanwhile, has already appeared in the majors and is coming off a strong season with Triple-A El Paso.
Were the Padres or anyone else to swing a trade for Alfaro, they’d be able to control him through the end of 2023 via arbitration. MLBTR contributor Matt Swartz projects him to bring in a 2022 salary in the $2.7MM range if tendered a contract.