We stopped beating this particular drum for the Los Angeles Dodgers last year because, well, the price seemed astronomical.
From everything we heard, the sometimes-foolhardy Colorado Rockies would be shooting for the moon in trade talks for this inspiring target, and if that was the case, wouldn’t they double or triple an already-wild asking price if it was the Dodgers who came calling?
After all, Nolan Arenado was the ideal superstar trade candidate between these two teams. If that didn’t happen, it’s easy to envision nothing happening.
Well, look no further than CBS Sports’ MLB division for a sneak peak at another potential trade they’d like to see when the lockout ends: Germán Márquez.
CBS’ Mike Axisa cites Márquez as a perfect fit for the Dodgers because he’s a perfect fit for, well, anyone, but this trade proposal starts from a place of acknowledging that there’s a massive hole in the middle of LA’s rotation at the moment. Without Clayton Kershaw, there’s a gap at No. 3 — and that’s a scenario where both Andrew Heaney and Tony Gonsolin are penciled into action.
Could this Dodgers and Rockies trade get Germán Márquez to LA?
According to Axisa, we were right. This deal didn’t get any cheaper during the downtime.
With option years baked in, whoever trades for Márquez will have him through 2024 at a total cost of $42.6 million. To get a deal done, Axisa doesn’t beat around the bush, starting the trade proposal with Diego Cartaya, LA’s projectable, 20-year-old catcher who’s quickly risen through the ranks of their top prospects to No. 1.
Dealing Cartaya just a few months after shedding Keibert Ruiz specifically because Ruiz was closer to the bigs and Cartaya could continue to develop behind Will Smith would be a tough pill to swallow. It would also, essentially, be an admission that LA planned to extend Smith as part of their future without keeping a failsafe in the farm system.
That’s also, of course, not where the package would end; Axisa recommends the Dodgers add fellow top prospects OF Andy Pages and RHP Andre Jackson as well.
Márquez, just 26 years old, is an elite young pitcher haunted by the Coors Monster; he posted a 4.40 ERA in 2021, his first All-Star campaign, but was still worth 3.3 WAR and struck out 176 men in 180 innings.
He’s never quite reached the heights of his age-23 season back in 2018, though, when he whiffed 230 in 196 innings and posted a 125 ERA+. Last season? 108.
But then … there’s this. It’s almost impossible for a Rockies pitcher to be average this often, let alone above it.
It wouldn’t take much mathematics to see how Márquez could possibly be unlocked moving to Dodger Stadium, and he’s controlled for three years with his prime on the horizon.
That being said … Cartaya plus for a divisional trade? 18 games against Cartaya per year while thinning out your catching depth to zero?
It’s a steep price to pay for a mid-rotation addition, no matter how tempting.