The San Francisco Giants appear to be the leader in the derby to acquire Giancarlo Stanton after meeting with the Miami Marlins slugger's representatives, but the St. Louis Cardinals may be next in line.
A trade framework was a logical precondition for the Marlins to grant the Giants and Cardinals permission to speak with Stanton. MLB.com's Mark Feinsand also reported that, while there has been plenty of momentum toward a trade this week, it wasn't expected to happen Sunday. So the matter is in Stanton's court, and maybe the Dodgers' - and there's no deadline.
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The Dodgers' president of baseball operations, Andrew Friedman, is monitoring the Stanton talks with other teams and is aware that an opportunity might emerge over time, according to ESPN. The Marlins are said to have interest in second baseman Joe Panik, who won't be a free agent until 2021. Flaherty is rated as St. Louis' No. 3 prospect, and Alcantara is ninth. But he's taken a deliberate approach in considering his options, in part because he wanted to make sure the Dodgers - his preferred destination - have every opportunity to get involved.
Buster Olney of ESPN added, "Friends of Stanton say that in his flawless world, he'd get to play for the Los Angeles Dodgers". That deal would be contingent on the Giants paying at least $250 million of the remaining $295 million on Stanton's deal. He'd need to approve any deal because of his full no-trade clause.
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The Dodgers have been somewhat hesitant on Stanton due to their desire not to exceed the $197 million luxury tax threshold or add another nine-figure contract to the books beyond Clayton Kershaw's.
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