Aside from the 2012 season, it has has been relatively quiet on the positive end of the spectrum for the Miami Marlins in the offseason, but it looks like things are changing slowly. The Marlins made a great move Tuesday, signing free agent catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia to a three-year, $21 million deal.
Saltalamacchia offers an immediate upgrade over Rob Brantly, who the Marlins were not too pleased with this season after struggling mightily. He also offers a better catching option than bringing back Jeff Mathis or pushing J.T. Realmuto to the majors.
Saltalamacchia is from Royal Palm Beach, FL and is family still lives there, which makes the transition to Miami even easier for him. He is bringing a ring to the Marlins, and could possibly add protection to players like Giancarlo Stanton and Logan Morrison in the lineup.
What is concerning though is how he will able to stay healthy through the majority of the season. He has played exactly 121 games in two straight seasons but before that, it was 61, 84 and 12 in sporadic backup roles with the Boston Red Sox and Texas Rangers. He had a rough postseason batting wise, but managed to drive in five RBIs. During the 2013 season, he batted .273/.338/.466 with 65 RBIs.
With numbers like those, he can certainly become a great factor in the lineup. However, he cannot succumb to the black hole in Miami. This Marlins team needs him and cannot afford another $20 million bust.