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Report: Stanton may be dealt before Meetings

Giants appear to be front-runner, but Cards and Dodgers remain in mix
MLB.com @JoeFrisaro

MIAMI -- A conclusion to the Giancarlo Stanton sweepstakes could come by the end of the week or before the Winter Meetings begin on Monday at Lake Buena Vista, Fla., according to a report.

The Giants remain a front-runner for the Marlins' four-time All-Star right fielder, but the Dodgers also remain in the mix, per a report from Alex Pavlovic of NBC Sports Bay Area.

MIAMI -- A conclusion to the Giancarlo Stanton sweepstakes could come by the end of the week or before the Winter Meetings begin on Monday at Lake Buena Vista, Fla., according to a report.

The Giants remain a front-runner for the Marlins' four-time All-Star right fielder, but the Dodgers also remain in the mix, per a report from Alex Pavlovic of NBC Sports Bay Area.

Hot Stove Tracker

As of late Wednesday afternoon, according to a source, the Dodgers and Marlins have not had serious trade discussions for Stanton. Stanton, along with agent Joel Wolfe, last week met with officials from the Giants and Cardinals in Los Angeles.

However, with wildfires destroying homes this week in Southern California, where Stanton lives in the offseason, it's conceivable that concerns beyond baseball could affect those involved in the decision and delay the process.

Video: Players tempt to recruit Stanton using Twitter

Giants general manager Bobby Evans on Wednesday discussed some of the details during an interview on San Francisco's flagship station, KNBR.

"We were very impressed with him," Evans said of Stanton. "He's passionate about winning, he's passionate about the game and really presented himself extremely well. He had a lot of questions for us and I thought our meeting went well. But again, it's a tough decision for him. He may take a lot of time before he's ready to make that call."

Stanton captured the attention of the baseball and sports world with his Major League-leading 59 home runs. But the 28-year-old is on the trade market as Miami is in the process of redirecting under new ownership.

Derek Jeter, the Marlins' new chief executive officer, briefly addressed Stanton's situation on Tuesday night during the Marlins Hot Stove radio show on WINZ and streaming on marlins.com.

Jeter understands the high interest in Stanton trade talks.

Video: Rosenthal on latest Stanton trade rumors

"It's understandable," Jeter said. "He's arguably the best player in the game. He just won the MVP award. He had one of the greatest seasons that I've seen a player have in the last 20-plus years."

For the Marlins, the cost to retain Stanton is high with his salary increasing to $25 million in 2018, and $295 million on the remaining 10 years of his contract.

Stanton's deal includes a full no-trade clause and an opt-out provision after the 2020 season.

Evans said the Giants aren't rushing Stanton into making a decision.

"Well, I think the one thing is he's sensitive to that," Evans said. "He understands that wherever he goes, whether it's here or somewhere else or he stays in Miami, ultimately, he wants to give the front office of those teams, including ours, a chance to do other things, with him or without him. So he's sensitive to that. But, no, we haven't put a clock on him at all."

The Giants and Cardinals have been the most aggressive in pursuit of Stanton, but the Dodgers could be lurking to step forward.

Video: Morosi on Cardinals, Giants making run at Stanton

Stanton is from Sherman Oaks, Calif., and he grew up watching games at Dodger Stadium. Although he has never said publicly he wished to play in Los Angeles, it is widely believed to be his first choice.

At his meeting with the Giants, Stanton did not indicate that playing for the Dodgers was his priority.

"No, he was very professional in our meeting," Evans said. "Just really focused on what our opportunity looked like, not trying to compare our situation to others, really just trying to understand the landscape and the sense of timing on our end. And again, his focus right now is trying to weigh all the different opportunities, as well as the factors that involve some very personal things as well as professional."

A second-round pick of the Marlins in 2007, Stanton broke into the big leagues at age 20 on June 8, 2010. He paced the NL in home runs with 37 in '14, but really stepped up in '17, becoming the first National League MVP Award winner in Marlins history.

If dealt, Stanton would be the first player since Alex Rodriguez went from the Rangers to the Yankees in 2004 to be dealt immediately after winning a Most Valuable Player Award.

"He's expressed his admiration for the organization," Evans said. "Obviously, since he came into the league, he watched us win in 2010, '12 and '14 and [make] the playoffs in '16. He wants that playoff opportunity. He wants that championship. He wants an opportunity to win.

"He ultimately is going to make a decision that maybe -- there are a lot of different elements to this -- and certainly winning is one of them. But he has a close fan base or friends in Miami. He obviously has ties to family in L.A., and those are other factors as well. He did tell us, of course, that he loves AT&T Park. In fact, one of the most attractive parts about AT&T Park is our fans, he did mention that, making AT&T one of his favorite places to play on the road."

Joe Frisaro has covered the Marlins for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @JoeFrisaro and listen to his podcast.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Miami Marlins, Giancarlo Stanton