Yankees: Starling Marte update should make him NYY’s top priority

If only Starling Marte were a lefty, he’d be a slam-dunk absolutely perfect New York Yankees trade target.

As it stands, he’s only 95% perfect. Damn. Try again next year, we guess.

Marte was somewhat surprisingly acquired by the Miami Marlins at last year’s deadline when no one believed in their playoff chances and it was heavily rumored he’d wind up with the Yankees.

Defying the odds, Derek Jeter’s Marlins made the postseason on grit n’ grind, and though Marte actually struggled down the stretch (87 OPS+ in Miami), adding him was a show of belief in the roster.

It doesn’t seem to be a long-term fit between the two sides, though.

On Wednesday, all doubt was removed from the equation, as it became public knowledge that the two sides weren’t having any extension talks ahead of an all-important trade deadline for the floundering Marlins. The Yankees should be all over this.

Yankees Rumors: Starling Marte would be a perfect rental.

With the Yankees sitting somewhere in between contention and a teardown, with their 2022 future patently uncertain, they should definitely be targeting a rental if they’re unable to land the perfect candidate, whoever that may be.

Now, before we get too deep: yes, Marte would send the Yankees over the luxury tax threshold, unless they were able to overpay in prospects to make the Marlins eat the entirety of his contract. They’d probably have to do that.

At this point, though, center field and left have been black holes to the fullest extent. Adding a .341 hitter with a 178 OPS+ this season would completely change the roster’s complexion without complicating things for next season.

This is as straightforward as a trade can get: add an All-Star to fill one of your biggest holes, profit. Let him walk if it doesn’t work out.

Even a prospect “overpay” would be a relative bargain. The Marlins aren’t foolish. They’re an offensively-starved team that could use a few lottery tickets, like Kevin Alcantara or Trevor Hauver. They don’t really need high-end pitching; they’ll probably prefer to pluck a few of the Yankees’ budding international sluggers.

Over the course of the next few weeks, we’ll learn more about whether this Yankees lineup is a tweak away from dominance, or if the big hit will simply never come. When decision time arrives, Marte will be available. His future remains unknown.