Oh yeah, it’s hot fucking stove season. The most interesting and most frighteningly plausible (given the franchise involved) blockbuster deal being bandied about would involve the Marlins trading away starter Jose Fernandez, an insanely talented 23-year-old under team control for the next three years.
For now, it’s just rumors—and more than that, rumors that haven’t been floated by the biggest or most trustworthy national reporters. But there’s a hell of a lot of smoke, and today that flared up into a little hot reporter-on-reporter action. It started with this, from USA Today’s Bob Nightengale:
Then, from Miami radio guy Andy Slater:
Thankfully, we can go right to Slater’s site and see what he’s reported about Fernandez in two separate stories published this week. The first, citing a report and a phone conversation with another radio guy, puts Fernandez on the trade block, and cites the Marlins’ impatience with Fernandez’s attitude.
SiriusXM’s Craig Mish sent out a tweet on Tuesday saying “growing sentiment around baseball and internally with the Marlins is Jose Fernandez will be traded this offseason.”
My sources within the organization told me on several occasions that Fernandez would eventually be dealt for certain reasons, but no timeline was provided. Mish’s report says it could be very soon.
As far as those reasons, I reported several last week on my weekday radio show on 940-AM WINZ and iHeartRadio.
I was told by multiple player sources that Fernandez wants out of Miami “ASAP”.
The Marlins also are not happy with Fernandez’s attitude, which may come as a shock to many. “Jose is a different person on and off camera,” one player source told me. “Jose talks to management like they are children,” he added.
The second focuses exclusively on the team’s reported problems with Fernandez.
As I reported last week and on Tuesday, the Marlins front office is not happy with Fernandez’s attitude. “Jose talks to management like they are children,” another player source told me. I’ve now learned, it goes beyond that.
On at least two occasions in the Marlins clubhouse this season, Fernandez approached Hill —- according to multiple player sources —- and openly said “when are you going to trade me?”
“There were times this season where, not all, but some players and coaches hoped Jose would go out on the mound and get shelled,” a player source told me. “We thought it would get him to be more humble.”
Slater appears to be parsing Nightengale’s tweet. While it’s technically true that Slater never reported specifically that Miami is “willing to trade Jose Fernandez because of perceived attitude issues,” he did report that the Marlins are willing to trade Fernandez, and are fed up with him over perceived attitude issues. Nightgale was just distilling Slater’s blog posts to the conclusion that any logical reader would take from them.
But Slater is adamant, apparently harping on Nightengale’s connecting of the two reports.
The meat of Slater’s beef is clearly Nightengale’s use of the word “because,” and...oh god, I’ve bored myself. Hopefully we will soon get a concrete report on Miami trying to trade away one of the best young pitchers in baseball, so we can go back to actual fun things like laughing at the Marlins.