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Phillies reportedly interested in Starling Marte

Starling Marte is expected to be traded. (John Jones/Icon Sportswire)

The Philadelphia Phillies took three of four games from the Miami Marlins this past weekend, potentially solidifying themselves as buyers and their division rivals as sellers.

With that in mind, the Phillies reportedly have interest in one of the Marlins free agents to be — center fielder Starling Marte — according to Jon Heyman of Audacy Sports. Heyman notes that in addition to the Phillies, the New York Yankees and Houston Astros have also “checked in” on the 32-year-old.

Marte, a former All-Star, is slashing .284/.385/.442 with seven home runs, 22 RBIs and a 2.8 fWAR. He’s also having his best defensive season in years, with three defensive runs saved in 480 1/3 innings in center field. Odúbel Herrera and Travis Jankowski have certainly been improvements over the black hole that was center field in the first month of the season, but Marte would represent a clear upgrade.

It would be interesting to know if the Phillies would be trading for Marte viewing him as a rental, or someone they’d like to extend past the 2021 season. The two-time Gold Glove Award winner and the Marlins ended extension talks recently, per Craig Mish of SportsGrid. Heyman noted that Marte recently declined an extension offer in excess of three years and $30 million.

The Phillies have now won four consecutive series, and at 47-45 are just two games back of the New York Mets in the National League East. Center field appears to be a position that president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski and the Phillies are targeting an upgrade at, as they were also connected to Byron Buxton of the Minnesota Twins last week.


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