Miami Herald

Feedback on Marlins’ Arraez trade, Chisholm playing CF

- BY BARRY JACKSON bjackson@miamiheral­ Barry Jackson: 305-376-3491, @flasportsb­uzz

National reaction, from a Marlins perspectiv­e, was generally favorable on the acquisitio­n of Luis Arraez, who will play a lot of second base this season, though some thought Miami might have overpaid a bit.

Miami traded Pablo Lopez, No. 5 prospect Jose Salas (an infielder) and outfielder Byron Chourio

to Minnesota. The teams had been talking since early December, and the Marlins were initially reluctant to give up Salas before finally relenting.

“I really like this deal for the Marlins,” said former Colorado Rockies general manager Dan O’Dowd,

now with MLB Network. “It’s hard to get pitching.

It’s the shortest supply commodity in the game.

But this is a very unique talent in Arraez.”

MLB evaluators grade players’ tools on a scale from 2 to 8, with eight being the best.

“There are very few 8 hitters in the game and Arraez is one,” O’Dowd said. “We just don’t see that any more in our game. He doesn’t walk much. But he never strikes out at all. He really, really hits good pitching on a consistent basis.

“And though pitcher Pablo Lopez has upside, if you look at his year last year, it was a good year, but from June on it wasn’t that good of a year. The Marlins did really, really well here.”

And O’Dowd points out that Arraez is under team control for three years. Lopez, conversely, can become a free agent after two years.

MLB Network analyst and former big-league pitcher Ron Darling said of Arraez: “These guys are so invaluable. He’s a perfect bat for any lineup. I think he’s really going to produce for the Miami team.”

Former All-Star closer

Brad Lidge raised eyebrows when he said of Arraez on Sirius XM: “I’m not saying he’s Rod Carew, but he’s not way off [from] Rod Carew.”

Carew, an 18-time AllStar and first ballot Hall of Famer, was a career .328 hitter with a .393 on-base average.

Arraez is at .314 (second highest in MLB since 2019) and .374 on-base in his career (13th highest since 2019).

Last season, he led baseball in batting average with two strikes (.282), led the AL in average with runners in scoring position (.366) and was 10 for 14 with a runner on third and less than two outs.

The feedback on Miami’s

● defense and Jazz Chisholm Jr.’s move from shortstop to center field was far less positive.

Former Marlins center fielder Cameron Maybin, now an MLB Network analyst, said: “Hate this move! Let him play short. Then they always want to say, ‘Oh, he’s just such a unique athlete.’ We know what that means!”

But O’Dowd said: “I think Jazz Chisholm can play center field. He’s got great instincts for the game, tremendous athleticis­m. It should translate well out there. Not crazy about their infield defense at all. Limited range guys.”

That infield now includes Arraez at second base, Joey Wendle at shortstop and

Jean Segura at third.

“Wendle will catch the ball; not much of an extended range guy,” O’Dowd said. “Not sure about Segura at third and Arraez struggled when he played second base for the Twins. Don’t think they helped themselves defensivel­y.”

Darling’s take: “Even though they moved the fences in Miami, it’s cavernous [in that ballpark] to cover all that ground. Wendle is a supreme defensive player but he’s more versatile. I don’t see him playing shortstop all season long.”

Former Nationals GM

Jim Bowden, who hosts a show on Sirius XM, said: Chisholm is “a special athlete and should be able to make the transition like

Eric Davis did back in the day with the Reds.”

Chisholm, meanwhile,

is embracing the move to center.

In a text exchange with Herald correspond­ent

Craig Mish, Chisholm said he told the Marlins that if they didn’t acquire a center fielder he would “Go out, play the position and win a Gold Glove.”

Chisholm likely won’t play for Great Britain in March’s World Baseball Classic. He needs to spend time in Jupiter learning center field.

Manager Skip Schumaker’s

● reaction, with Bowden on Sirius XM: “We’re really excited [about Arraez]. A guy that won the batting title, puts the ball in play, elite contact skills.

“High-character guy. I talked to some guys in Minnesota and they rave about his work ethic and what kind of kid he is. We needed somebody at the top of the order and couldn’t think of a better guy than Arraez.”

He most often batted leadoff last season and was .299 in that spot. He hit .391 in 81 plate appearance­s hitting second.


The Los Angeles Clippers ● reportedly have interest in Heat point guard

Kyle Lowry if they can’t get Utah’s Mike Conley. Miami likes Washington’s

Kyle Kuzma, but the Wizards don’t want to trade him after dealing Rui Hachimura to the Lakers.

After adding Iowa cornerback

● Terry Roberts, UM hosted Ole Miss starting safety Tysheem Johnson on a visit on Tuesday.

... UM offensive coordinato­r

Josh Gattis reportedly is looking for another job; a source said he hasn’t been discourage­d from doing so.

He still could return in the same job or with a demotion.

Former NFL QB Rich ●

Gannon, now working for The 33rd Team website, on

Tua Tagovailoa: “He sometimes predetermi­nes where he is going with the ball. All three of those intercepti­ons against Green Bay came in zone coverage.You have to process when it is zone.”

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