Team stability a priority for Stanton before extension
Marlins slugger will wait to talk multiyear deal, wants to see continuity
MIAMI -- Signing a $6.5 million contract for 2014 gave Giancarlo Stanton some financial and personal security. But before the 24-year-old slugger considers a multiyear deal with the Marlins, he wants to see a more defined organizational continuity.
"I want some team security as well," Staton told MLB.com on Monday night. "I'm very pleased with how things panned out for me. But I would like to see it grow. I have my security, somewhat now. I'd like to see a team full of that, which we are going in the right direction."
Stanton arrived in South Florida a few days ago, and on Monday night, he was one of the guest coaches during an RBI youth game at Marlins Park. The event is part of the team's Ayudan caravan week, where players are making various visits throughout South Florida.
One of the faces of the franchise, Stanton's long-term future with the Marlins remains unclear because he doesn't have a multiyear contract. An encouraging first step was taken when the club and Stanton's agent, Joel Wolfe, came to terms recently on his 2014 contract. The deal avoided an arbitration hearing, and both sides came away pleased.
Stanton becomes eligible for free agency after the 2016 season. He said Monday that he does not anticipate any talks regarding an extension until after the season.
"I don't think I'd like during the season to have to play and deal with that," he said.
Miami officials have repeatedly said publicly they would like to sign Stanton to a multiyear deal. But the two sides agreed early in the offseason to hammer out a contract for 2014 and then wait and see.
Stanton clearly wants to see results.
"In order for the team to have security, that doesn't happen in two seconds," he said. "That happens over a season or over two seasons. You show me that, and we can get something going."
Stanton's skepticism is understood. Since breaking into the big leagues in the middle of 2010, he has played for five managers and had five hitting coaches.
In 2012, the Marlins made a major financial commitment in preparation for moving into Marlins Park. Ozzie Guillen was hired to manage, and the team signed high-priced free agents like Jose Reyes, Mark Buehrle and Heath Bell.
But after the team disappointed in the first half, Hanley Ramirez, Anibal Sanchez, Omar Infante, Randy Choate, Gaby Sanchez and Edward Mujica were traded in July. After the team finished last in the National League East, Bell, Buehrle, Reyes, Josh Johnson, John Buck and Emilio Bonifacio were dealt. And Guillen was replaced by Mike Redmond.
With a youthful roster, the Marlins finished 62-100 in 2013.
The organization has made a number of significant moves this offseason, including signing Jarrod Saltalamacchia, Rafael Furcal, Garrett Jones and Casey McGehee.
Stanton is pleased with the new direction. He also understands the fans' frustrations over the team's history of sweeping moves.
"I feel as a fan, I would want that team security, as well," he said.
Stanton is coming off a down year by his standards, batting .249 with 24 homers and 62 RBIs.
So rather than make big predictions for himself or the team, he wants to see action.
"This is going to be one of those years where we don't need to say much," Stanton said. "We don't need to say, 'This is the year,' or 'This is that.' Do it. I've said that the past year and a half or so. This is the time. There is no more that we can say. Pretty soon, it's going to be us crying wolf. We need to come out and do it, and put it together. Be quiet about our business, and do what needs to be done. There is no more, 'Hey, we're going to do this,' and we don't show up. We just need to do it."