Usually at this point in the season, a team with that record and that far behind in the division is considered a seller as the trade deadline approaches.
But the Marlins have shown they are buyers, not sellers, with the acquisition of Carlos Lee from the Houston Astros for minor league third baseman Matt Dominguez and left-handed pitcher Rob Rasmussen. From Juan C. Rodriguez of the Sun Sentinel:
"Houston manager Brad Mills removed Lee in the seventh inning of a 6-4 loss to the Pittsburgh Pirates on Wednesday. Lee's locker was already empty by the time the clubhouse opened after the game," the AP reports.
The move, in my opinion, is great for both teams.
For the Astros, it gives them two decent prospects for the future, and it also gives them something back for Lee.
For the Marlins, it gives them a first baseman who is hitting .286, as opposed to Gaby Sanchez's .194, and someone they can easily insert into the middle of their lineup.
But, the one thing this trade shows is that Miami is not ready to concede the 2012 season and that the management still feel likes the squad is playoff-worthy.
While it's not likely the Marlins will win the East, considering only the Phillies are below them in the standings, there's enough time for them to take one of the two wild-card spots. And, if you're not a believer, all you have to do is look at last year's wild-card runs by the Rays and Cardinals.
Think of it this way: Once Emilio Bonifacio returns from the disabled list, the top half of the lineup will consist of Jose Reyes, Bonifacio, Hanley Ramirez, Giancarlo Stanton and Lee. Now that's a lineup that can do some damage at the plate and on the basepaths.
So even though the Marlins are nine games out, they're showing they're still a team to be reckoned with.
Now, the only question is, can they put it together after the All-Star break?