Miami Marlins 2017 Fantasy Recap
There’s two ways you could look back that Miami Marlins’ year in 2017. There’s the fact that they missed the postseason for the 14th year in a row, and the team looks to be in something of financial trouble after losing money this year. You could also look at the fact that the Marlins about 10 games back of the final wild card spot in the National League, and had a second-place finish in the National League East division.
As far as Miami’s offense, it really begins and ends with superstar right fielder Giancarlo Stanton. The slugger led the majors with 59 home runs this season, the most by a big leaguer since 2001. Stanton spent the final three games chasing the ultimately elusive No. 60, his quest ending with a ninth-inning strikeout in Sunday’s finale. Fantasy baseball aficionados long wondered what Stanton was capable of if he stayed healthy, and this season, they got their answer: 59 homers, 129 RBI and 121 runs with a .280/.376/.636 slash line.
The 61 home run mark long held by former New York Yankees great Roger Maris was once the defining line for historic home run totals, until the late 1990’s. However, everyone who has since eclipsed that mark has a big asterisk next to their name, thanks to the all the Performance Enhancing Drug (PED) use that plagued the game. So, Stanton’s 59 home runs means much more, juxtaposed against that historical context.
In any other situation, left field Marcell Ozuna would be getting much more publicity for putting up the numbers that he did in 2017; but, unfortunately, his numbers get overlooked because of Stanton’s production. Ozuna finished the season going red hot at the plate, with a.458/.527/.708 slash line and three home runs in his last 48 at-bats. He finished the season with 37 home runs an 124 RBI; he was one of only four players in the National League with more than 35 home runs and 120 RBI this year.
On the mound, right-hander Jose Urena emerged as the ace of the Marlins pitching staff in 2017, and projects to be a serviceable fantasy asset in the majority of fantasy settings again in 2018. The 26-year-old posted a respectable a 3.82 ERA, 1.27 WHIP and 6.0 K/9 through 169.2 innings this season, and while his strikeout numbers underwhelm, he owns a mid-90s fastball and the supporting pitches to improve in the category.
Right-handed pitcher Dan Straily is another starter that the Marlins will rely on in 2018. The 28-year-old finished with 10 wins this season, and a 4.26 ERA in the process; it was only because of a rough final outing of the year in which he lasted just three innings but gave up four runs in that time frame that his ERA climbed above the low four’s. He will carry a 170:60 K:BB ratio across 181.2 innings of work he led the team in strikeouts thrown this year as he heads into next year.