Giancarlo Stanton isn’t looking to leave the Miami Marlins, but he has made it clear he wants the franchise to surround him with the talent and depth required to compete for a World Series championship.
“I want to win,” Stanton told the Los Angeles Times’ Bill Shaikin on Monday. “If we’re prepared to win, I want to stay.”
“We need to keep progressing,” added Stanton, who’s under the Marlins’ control through 2016. “No more backpedaling or revamping.”
Stanton, 24, is the face of the Marlins and will represent the National League in Monday’s Home Run Derby and Tuesday’s MLB All-Star Game, both of which will be played at Target Field in Minnesota.
Stanton has hit .295 with a league-leading 21 home runs, 63 RBI and a .395 on-base percentage in 94 games this season. However, his phenomenal first half of the 2014 season hasn’t been enough to put Miami in the NL playoff chase. The Marlins trail the Washington Nationals by 7.5 games in the NL East. They also are 7.5 games behind the Atlanta Braves for the second wild card playoff spot.
After winning the World Series in 2003, the Marlins have traded away many of their best young players in what has become one of the longest rebuilds in baseball. The list of star players traded away includes Miguel Cabrera, Josh Beckett, Hanley Ramirez and Jose Reyes, among others.
Stanton and elite starting pitcher Jose Fernandez are two fantastic franchise cornerstones for Miami to build around, but it will need to make drastic roster improvements in the near future to become a World Series contender before the slugger is eligible for free agency in a few years.
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