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Injury Concerns Make Marlins a Risky Bet

The Marlins, along with a handful of other teams, can confidently say they have the potential to have the league’s top pitcher and hitter on their roster. Most of these teams are legit contenders, but where do the Marlins stand? As far as oddsmakers are concerned, the Marlins, who finished third in the National League East last season, are on the outside looking in as they currently sit with the 23rd best odds in Major League Baseball to win the World Series.

At +5000 to win the World Series, and +2500 to win the NL Pennant, you should probably look for better ways to spend your money, as this team isn’t deep enough to compete in October. However, their +600 price to win the NL East is worth a look.

If the Marlins need inspiration, they can look no further than their division counterpart New York Mets. The Mets finished third in the NL East in 2014, only to win the division last season with a 90-win season that they rode all the way to the World Series. It’s definitely not a rare feat for a team to move from third to first in a division, as it’s happened 21 times over the last 20 seasons, meaning it happens about once a year on average.

Also worth your consideration is the OVER on their win total prop of 79.5. Sure, the Marlins haven’t topped that number since 2010 and have only averaged 70 wins per season since 2011, but with Jose Fernandez and Giancarlo Stanton leading the way, and 38 combined games against the Braves and Phillies, topping that total seems realistic.

Miami’s biggest issue last season was injuries. Not just normal injuries though, injuries to the two players who matter most. After signing an absurd 13-year, $325 million contract, Stanton played in just 74 games — think the Marlins regret that deal yet? As for Fernandez, he started just 11 games, and could face an innings limit this season. The players actually didn’t even play in a single game together last season, as Stanton got injured just as Fernandez was getting healthy.

The silver lining for the Marlins is that both Stanton and Fernandez were fantastic when they were on the field in 2015. Had Fernandez completed 33 starts at the pace he set in his 11 starts, he would have finished with 237 K’s and 18 wins. With the numbers Stanton was putting up, he was on pace for 59 home runs and 146 RBI’s over 162 games — now that’s production worthy of the big money!

The Marlins had a lot of things work against them last season, and will need a lot of things to work in their favor if they hope to succeed in 2016. Forecasts for a lot of teams this season end with the generic “if they can stay healthy” analysis, but for a team that’s fairly shallow after a few stars, the Marlins won’t stand a chance if Stanton and/or Fernandez are forced to miss significant time again this season.

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2016 Miami Marlins Futures Odds
World Series+5000
National League Pennant+2500
National League East+600
Win Totals79.5

Odds as of April 1 at Bovada