After an incredibly disappointing postseason, Alex Rodriguez seems to be headed out of town.
Sources close to both organizations confirm the Yankees would pay all – or virtually all – of the $114,000,000 Rodriguez is owed in a contract that runs through the rest of this season and the next five.
The enormous contract is the biggest thing that would prevent the third baseman from leaving town, but that does not become a problem if the Yankees are willing to absorb that hit.
Rodriguez has fallen out of favor with the organization after an embarrassing performance in the postseason. He hit 3-of-23 in seven games with 12 strikeouts. Additionally, the three-time MVP was benched for a few games as manager Joe Girardi tried to jump-start the lineup.
As a result, New York was swept in the ALCS by the Detroit Tigers.
A-Rod was not the only player on the team to falter throughout the playoffs. Robinson Cano and Curtis Granderson combined for only six hits in 65 at-bats for an .092 batting average. However, the veteran star has become the the poster boy for a miserable couple of weeks.
The team now believes that getting rid of the troubled player will help fans forget about the dismal performance as it attempts to regroup in 2013.
One team that will be waiting with open arms is the Miami Marlins. The organization attempted to make a big wave in South Beach last offseason by signing Jose Reyes, Heath Bell and Mark Buehrle to break in a brand new stadium.
Unfortunately, a 69-93 record and last place finish did not bring fans into the stadium.
However, Alex Rodriguez is exactly the type of player that will raise tickets sales regardless of performance.
Wallace Matthews and Andrew Marchand of ESPN.com reported that a discussion of this nature has already occurred between Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria and Yankees President Randy Levine.
According to the source, Loria said in his conversation about A-Rod with Levine, "Alex is Mr. Miami; it would be great if he played here for us."
To which Levine is said to have replied, "You can have him."
A second source with knowledge of Rodriguez's thinking said the likely only place Rodriguez eventually would accept a trade to is Miami.
The Marlins only sold 73.2 percent of potential tickets this season in the first year with a new ballpark, a mark ranked only No. 13 in the majors. Then again, the franchise filled only 44.8 percent of the stadium in 2003 when it won the World Series.
Will Alex Rodriguez be traded this winter?
Winning and losing is not as important in the area as simply drawing a crowd. That is why it does not matter that Rodriguez has not hit .300 since 2008 and only totaled 18 home runs during the 2012 regular season.
Miami needs someone who can bring excitement to the club. Jose Reyes partly does that, but not as much as local stars like Reggie Bush, Dwyane Wade and LeBron James. Additionally, there is plenty else to do in South Beach besides watch sports.
Rodriguez would be the perfect addition. He was born and raised in Miami and is one of the best hitters in the history of baseball. As long as money is not the issue, this almost makes too much sense.
The amount of money paid by the Yankees will go a long way in determining the type of player expected in return. If the team is left with most of the bill, it better get a good prospect.
In the trade, New York would probably ask for an MLB-ready third basemen. Eric Chavez is unlikely to physically last an entire season as a starter and Jayson Nix is not quite starter material.
One young man to keep an eye on is Donovan Solano. The 24-year-old played primarily second base for the Marlins this season but also showed he can play third in 10 games at the position. Solano batted .295 in 93 games and showed the speed and aggressiveness that the veteran team has been missing over the past couple of years.
Yankees general manager Brian Cashman has denied that there has been any discussion, according to Bryan Hoch of MLB.com. However, he might not have a choice.
There is little chance Rodriguez becomes an impact player in the middle of a championship lineup for the next five years. If there is a chance they can get rid of him before his contract ends and possibly get someone in return, this would make competitive sense.
While it seems crazy for any team to simply absorb a large portion of over $100 million, New York has the resources to do it. The move works on the field and helps restore the team's image among the fans.
Altogether it is a perfect trade for both sides involved.