Was Acquiring Jarred Cosart A Smart Move For The Marlins?

Did Miami Make The Right Decision Trading For Cosart?


After Jarred Cosart struggled in his debut with the Marlins last night, I dont think it is wrong to question whether or not this was a smart move for the team going forward.

Cosart allowed four earned runs on on four hits, two walks and three strikeouts over 5 1/3 innings in a 5-2 loss to the Reds last night, making that his fourth straight start dating back to his time in Houston that he has allowed at least four runs. In fact, he has an ugly 7.76 ERA since July 1 and he wasn’t exactly acquired cheaply by Miami.

I’m not going to be Mr. negative here though, as even though Cosart has struggled as of late he did pitch to a 2.70 ERA in his twelve starts prior (between April 23 and June 26.)

The Marlins sent third baseman Colin Moran, outfielder Jake Marisnick, pitcher Francis Martes, and their 2015 draft compensation pick to Houston and received Cosart, shortstop Enrique Hernandez and outfielder Austin Wates.

It appears to be a good move on the surface for Miami, as they are acquiring a young arm who has pitched quite well in his time at the major league level. The 24-year-old has a 4.41 ERA through 116 1/3 innings wih the Astros to go along with 5.8 K/9, 3.9 BB/9, and a 56.5% groundball rate.

Miami also added some other useful pieces in the trade, as Hernandez reached the big leagues this year at just 22 years of age and owns an impressive .284/.348/.420 slash line through 89 plate appearances, and Wates, 25, owns a .303/.381/.415 career triple-slash in the minors, including 31 stolen bases this year in his first extended action at the Triple-A level.

Hernandez brings even more upside than he has shown at the big league level, though, as he had slashed .336/.379/.503 in the upper minors to start the season.

The Marlins didn’t get these three players cheaply, though, as Moran was the 6th overall pick in last year’s draft and one of the bright young players on the fast-track to the big leagues. Interestingly enough, he was actually seriously being considered by Houston to be taken first overall in last year’s draft.

Marisnick, 23, has struggled in limited time with the Marlins over the last two seasons (.183/.231/.248 line in 169 total plate appearances) but the right-handed hitting outfielder has a .277/.326/.434 line in 377 Triple-A plate appearances this season.

And then there is the compensation pick, which will come in the first available slot and could carry a lot of value for the Astros as well. It’s impossible to tell if the player they draft will make an impact at the major league level, but it is still a very high-upside situation for the Astros.

The final piece in the trade, Martes, is only 18 years old but has thrown 29 innings with a 4.97 ERA at the Rookie level this year.

A look ahead:

Even if Cosart doesn’t help the Marlins make the playoffs this season, he gives them a controllable young arm that will allow them to field a competitive team again next season.

He will slot in the starting rotation alongside Jose Fernandez, Henderson Alvarez and Nathan Eovaldi with the fifth spot being occupied by any of the following pitchers: Jacob Turner, Anthony DeSclafani, Brad Hand, Andrew Heaney and Tom Koehler.

Here’s Marlins president of baseball operations Mike Hill‘s thoughts on acquiring Cosart and Hernandez, courtesy of MLB.com:

Matt Stein is a season-credentialed media member covering the Tampa Bay Rays and Tampa Bay Buccaneers, also assisting with coverage of USF Athletics. He attended the University of Tampa and graduated with a Bachelor's of Science in Sport Management.