Giancarlo Stanton's sensational season has overshadowed the murky future of the Miami Marlins - the debt-riddled franchise set to be sold to a group helmed by Derek Jeter and Bruce Sherman - but the 27-year-old reportedly won't sit idly by if his team's new owners opt for a full-on rebuild.
Having never made the playoffs - or even played on a winning team - in eight seasons with the Marlins, Stanton is ready to go if the Marlins' new baseball operations department decides to dismantle the current roster and plan for the future, according to Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports.
"I don't want to rebuild," Stanton said Friday following his club's 6-5 victory over the Atlanta Braves. "I've lost for seven years."
It's unlikely, though, that the losing stops anytime soon. Saddled with $400 million in debt, the Marlins' new owners probably aren't inclined to dish out big money on marquee free agents in the near future, and the financial quagmire they inherited may necessitate a rebuild, frankly, as Sherman and his partners can alleviate their financial burden by unloading some future liabilities.
"I'm sick of the negativity," Stanton admitted. "Anything positive I've done, there's still negativity. I'm doing this … but the owner’s doing that. I'm doing this, but the team's doing that."
If the Marlins opt for that route, Stanton - who has yet to meet with Jeter and Sherman - has no immediate recourse other than requesting a trade (he can't opt out of his 13-year, $325-million contract until after the 2020 campaign). There will be plenty of suitors, no doubt, should the time come, as a host of teams reportedly expressed interest in Stanton both before and after this year's non-waiver trade deadline, including the New York Yankees, San Francisco Giants, and Philadelphia Phillies.
To his credit, Stanton has done wonders for his trade value this year. Heading into the penultimate game of the season, the four-time All-Star leads the majors with 59 homers - he's the first player to hit that many since 2001 - and boasts a career-best 7.0 WAR and 1.014 OPS (167 OPS+) in 157 contests.