Throughout the week, legendary MLB writer Bob Nightengale of USA Today has reported on a handful of shakeups in the Giants coaching staff and front office. On Wednesday, Nightengale broke some more news that could prove to be especially significant, telling Gary & Larry that the Giants are not only the leaders in the sweepstakes to acquire Marlins slugger Giancarlo Stanton, but that either he or Diamondbacks outfielder J.D. Martinez will be on the team ‘for sure’ in 2018.
“Yeah I still believe they are, and I’d be shocked if they don’t have Stanton or J.D. Martinez playing for them next year,” Nightengale said when asked if the Giants are still the frontrunners to acquire Stanton. “It’s going to be one of those guys for sure. You know they’ve got plenty of money, they don’t have prospects. Obviously if you sign Martinez, it doesn’t cost you any prospects, and same with Stanton. The Marlins want to dump his salary so bad, you’ve just got to eat most of it. Not $285 million worth, but $200 or $225 worth and then give them some fringe prospects, because they just don’t have those top top quality prospects.”
The new Miami Marlins ownership group headed by Derek Jeter is looking to offload Stanton’s massive contract, which is guaranteed through 2027, and is worth $285 million. All things being equal, Nightengale said that Stanton’s preferred destination would be with his hometown Dodgers, but that the club has no interest in taking on that kind of salary. Nightengale believes the Giants do even though it would push them into the luxury tax, and that makes them easily his most likely destination.
“The Dodgers have no interest. They are trying to cut payroll and everything else. He’s not going to the Dodgers, there’s no chance of that happening, so I think it’s either San Francisco, St. Louis or Philadelphia, and San Francisco is easily his first choice.”
Listen to the full interview below. To hear Nightengale’s comments on Stanton, skip to the 3:50 mark.