The Gaby Sanchez Trade From a Marlins Perspective

Sam Evans writes for Fish Stripes, a Miami Marlins site on the SB Nation network. Sam covers the Marlins prospects for Fish Stripes, and was kind enough to send over his thoughts on the Gaby Sanchez trade, with a look at the struggles from Sanchez this year, as well as more information on minor league reliever Kyle Kaminska. To see my analysis on Gorkys Hernandez, who went to Miami in the trade, check out Sam’s article.

By Sam Evans

On Tuesday, the Pirates traded Gorkys Hernandez to Miami for Gaby Sanchez and Kyle Kaminska. Sanchez, a twenty-eight year old right-handed first baseman, had two years of above-average production for the Marlins in 2010 and 2011. However, in 2012, Sanchez has posted a career-low BB% (6.1) and is striking out at an unusually high rate compared to his career average. When he has hit the ball, he hasn’t hit it very far. His line-drive percentage is also at a career-low (13.5%). Sanchez has spent the past few weeks in Triple-A New Orleans, where it appears he has started to figure some things out. Sanchez probably isn’t the long-term solution for Pittsburgh, but he could form a nice platoon with Garrett Jones.

Kyle Kaminska, a twenty-three year old minor-league reliever, has posted great strikeout and walk rates at every step of his minor-league journey. A former Michigan commit, Kaminska projects to be a solid middle reliever. The Marlins have a surplus of long relievers, so Kaminska hasn’t had a chance to reach the majors. With Pittsburgh, he might see more time in the majors. Time will tell, but it looks like Pittsburgh got the best side of this deal.

Kyle Kaminska

The Marlins snagged him in the 25th round of the 2007 draft, and gave him over $100K in order to keep him from attending Michigan. Kaminska’s fastball sits around 88-89 MPH. He’s actually pretty good facing left-handed hitters, even better than facing righties. He has always had great strikeout/walk rates in the minors. Even though he started something like twenty-five games in Greensboro a few year back, he’s never going to be an average major league starter. Kaminska doesn’t have the stuff to be a closer or setup man, the velocity is not there, and he pitches to contact without a true “out pitch”. However, he could turn into a decent long reliever who could give Pittsburgh two solid innings out of the pen. He was not ranked in my midseason top twenty Marlins’ prospects.

Gaby Sanchez

Sanchez is not the same player he was last year or the year before. The ball doesn’t jump off his bat the way it used to. In fifty-nine MLB games this year, Sanchez only had twenty line drives. There is a slight possibility that he could be battling an injury, but he doesn’t appear to be hurt.However, there is room for optimism thanks to his improved strikeout and walk rates in Triple-A. I’m not sure how his relationship with Ozzie Guillen was, but after the whole Castro, Cuba thing, Sanchez got some criticism from Cubans for defending Ozzie. Sanchez is never going to be an above-average first baseman overall, but he could hold down the position for Pittsburgh until they find a better option. If he platoons with Jones at first, Pittsburgh could see him produce more. I think a change of scenery will be really beneficial for him.

Tim Williams

Author: Tim Williams

Tim is the owner and editor in chief of Pirates Prospects. He started the site in January 2009, and turned it into his full time job during the 2011 season. Prior to starting Pirates Prospects, Tim worked with AccuScore.com, providing MLB, NHL, and NFL coverage to various national media outlets, including ESPN Insider, USA Today, Yahoo Sports, and the Wall Street Journal. He also writes the annual Prospect Guide, which is sold through the site. Tim lives in Bradenton, where he provides live coverage all year of Spring Training, mini camp, instructs, the Bradenton Marauders, and the GCL Pirates.

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  • Lee Young

    This article makes me hate the deal even more…for the # 33 pick, we get a washed up 1bman and maybe a Daniel McCutcheon/Chris Resop?

    Color me unimpressed.

    • Lee Young

      “Sanchez is not the same player he was last year or the year before. The
      ball doesn’t jump off his bat the way it used to. In fifty-nine MLB
      games this year, Sanchez only had twenty line drives.”

      Oh boy….Andy Laroche redux.

      • joegoodman29

        Love the people who want to dump this trade already. We gave up Gorkys (bench OF at best in the majors- plus he’s got no bat at all, especially with Snider coming over) and the #33 pick will be pushed back further when you place all the picks that teams are reimbursed when they lose players via free agents. #33 ends up being probably high 50’s or 60 something. We still keep the pick we burn on Appel plus whatever we get this year. Sanchez was solid up until this year. I’ll take a guy that bats .270 and 20 HR to platoon with our other guy that is essentially the same but with a lower average and higher K rate. I’m not saying get on the bandwagon but its not like Derek Bell or Matt Morris. Plus we have his rights for another year. Who else we have in system at 1st? I’d be more disappointed in MeGeehee for Qualls, a guy who on waivers a couple months ago.

        • piratemike

          I think the McGehee deal was just a good will gesture to the Yanks for the Burnett trade. They may return it in the future.

          • joegoodman29

            Though I truly dislike the Yanks they have given us decent trades in the past and often for players who didn’t work out with them. Marte helped them in the B.P. in their last W.S. victory but other than that ? Blah. They gave us Ohlendorf (contributed enough to get a raise!) Dan McCutchen and Starling. I still wouldve rather have had Phil Coke instead of D Cutch

            • http://www.piratesprospects.com Tim Williams

              I think you mean Tabata, not Starling.

              Also, the deal was a choice between Coke and George Kontos, or Jeff Karstens and Daniel McCutchen. Considering how good Karstens has been, I’m fine with the route they went.

        • Lee Young

          joe…first of all, I am glad to hear that you ‘love me’….lol

          I don’t think the #33 is going to end up THAT low….not as many comp picks this year.

          Second, if Gaby hits .270, yeah, it’s a great deal. But aren’t you kind of living in the past? Didn’t you read the article? “59 games, only TWENTY line drives?”. Uh….he hit .202 and got DEMOTED to AAA!

          If you want to live in the past, fine….I’ll sell you some Kodak stock. Casey McGeehee had 2 good years with Milwaukee. We got Chad Qualls for him. Severe overpay for Gaby.

          Me, I’d rather take a chance on that lotto pick. Barrett Barnes, Vic Black, et al, were comp picks.

  • piratemike

    I didn’t like any of the deals that NH pulled off this year.
    But after cooling down a bit I guess he did what he could do without wrecking the minor league system. I don’t know I wasn’t inside the Pirate office.
    In reality all we got was two reclaimation projects a not too good minor leaguer relief pitcher and a washed up one and a LH starter who isn’t much better then Correia.
    If Snider fullfills his promise and Sanchez gives us close to what he was it will be a good deal if Wandy pitches really well it will be an excellent haul.
    Whatever happens it will be a good year for me if they get those 23 more wins.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=72405411 Ian Rothermund

      Why does everyone hate on Wandy? Look at the numbers instead of talking out of your rectum. Is he a star? Hell no, but is he a solid #3 guy that’s an obvious step above the likes of Corriea? Most definitely.

      In regards to the other trades, it seems as though the only real question about Snider is if you can keep him healthy. With Sanchez, yeah, that’s a question mark right there. However it’s not as if they gave up much for him and he’s not far removed from success at the major league level.

      I love these trades. We gave from the areas of depth, added to the weak points

      • Lee Young

        Ian…Wandy has a 5.48 ERA (42 runs in 69 inn) in his last 12 starts. He started off 2012 great, but he has sucked since May. That’s why I didn’t want him in the first place. He is fading badly in the twilight of his career imho.

        Also, you shouldn’t tell people they’re talking out of their rectum when they disagree with your opinion. It makesyou sound like a twelve yr old!