Marlins Land Lee; Dominguez Dealt

On Wednesday, the Marlins executed a trade to bolster their lineup’s power. Miami traded two minor league prospects, including Matt Dominguez, to the Houston Astros in exchange for 36-year-old slugger Carlos Lee. Gaby Sanchez was optioned to triple-A after the trade was announced.

Lee is hitting .287 this year and has an OBP over .330. He should fit nicely into Miami’s everyday lineup at first base. During Gaby Sanchez’s first triple-A stint this season, Logan Morrison played regularly at first, but with Lee’s addition, LoMo will man left field. Morrison has heated up as of late. In his last ten games, he is hitting .313 and has homered three times.

Matt Dominguez was sent to Houston in the Independence Day deal along with Rob Rasmussen; both were in the minor leagues. Dominguez is a potent young third baseman who could flourish with enough playing time. As I have said before, the Marlins had nothing to give to him, and he would have received minimal time in the big leagues. The signing of Jose Reyes this offseason, which shifted Hanley Ramirez to third base, ultimately put to rest Dominguez’s aspirations of becoming Miami’s third baseman. But with ample playing time, Dominguez could develop into Houston’s everyday hot corner.

The move for Lee opens up even more trade options for the Fish. If Lee stays with the team for a few more years, he and Morrison could split time at first base and left field. This removes any openings for Gaby Sanchez, who could bring a decent return in a trade. When Lee leaves Miami, or retires, Morrison could become the full-time first baseman. In this situation, the Marlins would need to find another outfielder, something which has been apparent for a while, but has been worked around by the front office. And who knows, Miami could already have the guy for the job in Justin Ruggiano, who was a bright spot during the Marlins’ pitiful June.

Miami’s lineup for today’s finale in Milwaukee:

1) Reyes, SS

2) Ramirez, 3B

3) Lee, 1B

4) Morrison, LF

5) Ruggiano, RF

6) Infante, 2B

7) Cousins, CF

8) Buck, C

9) Buehrle, P

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