After attending my daughter's soccer game yesterday, I learned that the Marlins had traded away one-time uber-prospect Cameron Maybin to the Padres. I was very surprised when I saw the news and my first thought was who will play centerfield for the Marlins. I have a feeling they will be dealing Dan Uggla since their long-term contract negotiations have fallen apart, and possibly getting a centerfielder in return.
My second thought was why would the Padres deal for another outfielder, but I guess they wanted someone who can play CF everyday, rather than a platoon. Here is what MLB.com's Corey Brock wrote about the deal with some quotes from Padres GM Jed Hoyer:
Is Maybin ready to be that kind of player? He'll certainly get a chance to play every day, Hoyer said. He'll start in center field -- Maybin is out of Minor League options -- with Ludwick in left field and Will Venable in right field.
"We want him to come in here and feel secure he's going to play center field for us," Hoyer said. "I'm confident of where he's going to play in the field. He has the skill set, he has power and can steal bases.
"His career path was unusual. He was up in the big leagues at 20, part of a major trade. I think he's a guy who didn't have a normal path. We think letting him play every day here will help him realize his potential."
The sentence in bold is my doing, as I am a Maybin owner in the UBA league, and thought he might steal more bases with the Padres in 2011, as long as he gets on base. Here are his stats for 2010:
Majors-.234-.302-.364 with 8 HRs, 28 RBIs, 9 SBs, 92-24 K/BB rate in 291 ABs
Minors-.340-.415-.525 with 5 HRs, 25 RBIs, 5 SBs, 25-15 K/BB rate in 141 ABs
He certainly needs to work on his plate discipline, but he is still very young, as he is just 23 years old. He was definitely rushed to the majors after joining the Marlins a few years ago.
I think the fact that he will be playing everyday for Bud Black in San Diego, we could see Maybin steal 20+ bases in 2011 with 12-15 HRs. Actually, Maybin could approach 30 SBs should he improve his contact rate and reduce his K%, as he struck out in 31% of his at bats in 2010.
For the Marlins, it appears they will be looking for a new centerfielder via trade or free agency, but get two decent relievers in Ryan Webb and Edward Mujica. Webb has the stuff to close as early as 2011. Leo Nunez will have some competition for the closer spot in spring training, it appears.