Miami Marlins

How do Marlins players deal with trade rumors? By tuning out Twitter.

Miami Marlins starting pitcher Dan Straily (58) faces San Diego Padres center fielder Travis Jankowski (16) during the first inning of the game at Marlins Park in Miami on Saturday, June 9, 2018.
Miami Marlins starting pitcher Dan Straily (58) faces San Diego Padres center fielder Travis Jankowski (16) during the first inning of the game at Marlins Park in Miami on Saturday, June 9, 2018. snavarro@miamiherald.com

Dan Straily disabled his Twitter account about a month and a half ago.

The reason? Straily wanted to avoid the distraction of seeing his name in trade rumors.

“This game’s hard enough,” Straily said. “I’m interested, but I don’t need distractions messing it up.”

Straily is among a handful of Marlins whose names are frequently mentioned in speculation leading up to Tuesday’s non-waiver trade deadline. The others include relievers Brad Ziegler, Kyle Barraclough, Adam Conley, and Drew Steckenrider.

Between social media and the clubhouse televisions that are usually turned to MLB Network, ignoring the rumors is a nearly impossible challenge.

But Straily, who has been traded four times since 2014, said he tries.

So does Ziegler, who has been involved in two trade-deadline deals.

“The first five, six seven years of my career, I locked into it,” Ziegler said. “I was on Twitter all day looking at all the rumors coming through, especially on the 30th and 31st [of July].”

But Ziegler said he pays less attention to the rumors nowadays.

“As I’ve gotten older, I’m like there’s so much of this and I have no control over any of it,” he said. “I decided to stay away from it as much as possible. I’m not getting on Twitter very much.”

Barraclough said he doesn’t spend much time on Twitter but occasionally hears from friends and family when they see his name mentioned in trade rumors.

The Marlins acquired Barraclough, then a minor-league prospect, in a 2015 trade-deadline deal with the Cardinals for Steve Cishek. But Barraclough said the trade came out of the blue, with no prior notice.

“This is obviously the first time I’ve been through it,” Barraclough said of his name getting tossed around.

POTENTIAL DEAL

One prospect whom the Marlins might find intriguing should they decide to deal one of their bullpen arms is Cuban-born pitcher Yadier Alvarez, a hard-throwing 22-year-old in the Dodgers’ farm system.

The Marlins reportedly had a scout on hand to see Alvarez pitch last week, and the Dodgers are among the contending teams that are presumed to be interested in a trio of controllable relievers: Barraclough, Conley, and Steckenrider.

The Marlins’ current level of interest in Alvarez is uncertain. But they’ve had interest in Alvarez in the past when pondering trades.

It’s easy to see where Alvarez, who is presently assigned to Double A, would be a potential fit for Miami, either as a future starter or reliever.

He’s Cuban, and the Marlins are gearing up their marketing efforts to engage Miami’s Hispanic community. He’s athletic and throws a high-90s fastball. And he’s presently rated by MLB Pipeline as the Dodgers’ No. 10 prospect, though his stock has fallen from his No. 1 perch since the Dodgers first signed him for a $16 million bonus in 2015.

“Few pitchers can match Alvarez’s combination of athleticism and arm speed,” wrote MLB Pipeline.

Scouting reports indicate his curve ball and change-up need polish, and his high walk rate is an obvious concern.

It will almost certainly take more than Alvarez to pry one of the three coveted relievers away from the Marlins. But Alvarez could headline a package of prospects if the Marlins pull the trigger on such a move.

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