LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- With their objectives seemingly at odds, the Marlins and Giancarlo Stanton formally parted ways on Monday with the announcement that the reigning National League Most Valuable Player Award winner was dealt to the Yankees for Starlin Castro and two prospects.
The blockbuster trade, agreed upon on Saturday, became official on the first day of the Winter Meetings. Stanton, who paced the Majors with 59 home runs last season, will wear No. 27 for the Yankees, and the Marlins are no longer on the hook for the $295 million remaining on his contract. Miami also received right-hander Jorge Guzman, whose fastball routinely touches 100 mph, and infielder Jose Devers. The Marlins believe they are now better positioned to restructure from top to bottom.
• Michael Hill's press conference
"Giancarlo made it clear midway through 2017 that he did not want to be part of a rebuild," Marlins president of baseball operations Michael Hill said. "As a new ownership group came in, they were made aware of that, and we started the process of accommodating him."
The Marlins are under new ownership, and chief executive officer Derek Jeter said he had conversations with Stanton, including in person, before talks with the Yankees heated up late last week.
"One thing that I understand is you don't want to have someone that does not want to be with your organization," Jeter said during a conference call. "He signed his contract, a well-deserved contract, he had a no-trade clause in his contract. He earned it. He negotiated it. From that standpoint, it is what it is. So we met with him. We talked with him, we spoke with him of our plans going forward in the future, and he wanted to continue his career elsewhere."
As part of the transaction, if Stanton doesn't opt out after the 2020 season, the Marlins are responsible for $30 million of the remaining portion of his contract.
"It gives us some flexibility," Jeter said. "The blueprint of the organization is we have to increase our talent pool at the Minor League level. In order to be sustainable year in and year out, you have to have a pipeline of players that you're able to use at the Major League level. That's something we need to address as an organization. This allows us to add talent."
The Marlins continued their roster overhaul on Wednesday, trading All-Star left fielder Marcell Ozuna to the Cardinals, according to a source. Ideally, the club would like to retain center fielder Christian Yelich and catcher J.T. Realmuto. But that could change if the Marlins receive a tempting offer.
Riding a string of eight straight losing seasons, the Marlins made the uncomfortable decision to trade the franchise's all-time home run leader.
"What we're trying to do here is to build it the right way," Hill said. "You can't throw money at the situation that we're in right now. Obviously, we had a situation where we had the reigning National League MVP, we had a number of players that were productive, but we won 77 games."
Said Jeter: "The fan base has been through quite a bit. For us here, we haven't been winning. So if you haven't been winning, then it's time to make a change. In order to make a change, there's going to have to be some moves. There may be some unpopular decisions at times."
The front office will listen on all players.
"We will look at every opportunity to make this organization better," Jeter said. "That's the bottom line."
Castro, a four-time All-Star second baseman, batted .300 with 16 home runs and 63 RBIs. Signed through 2019, Castro could either stay and replace Gordon at second base or be traded.
Guzman, 21, was the Yankees' No. 9 prospect, according to MLBPipeline.com. He is now No. 3 on Miami's list. The right-hander posted a 5-3 record with one complete game and a 2.30 ERA in 66 2/3 innings over 13 starts at Class A Staten Island, with 88 strikeouts.
Devers, 18, hit .245 with nine doubles, three triples, one home run, 16 RBIs and 16 steals in his first season of professional baseball, split between the Dominican Summer League and Gulf Coast League Yankees.
"We're going to invest and build in this organization, the right way, so we can year in and year out be able to compete," Jeter said.