After the fire sale in Miami there was outrage around the league. From the fans who had to endure starting over AGAIN. From GMs who thought, if they were going to dump salaries why didn't I get a phone call? From MLB who didn't like the message this sent to both players and fans. It also caused some issues with the players that were left behind. Giancarlo Stanton expressed his displeasure on twitter, and who can blame him? He went from a team a few pieces away from being a legit threat in the NL East, to a cellar dwelling team full of prospects and a couple guys just waiting for their turn to pack and head to the airport.
The problems with this situation abound. Not only did he just turn 23 this month and not eligible for arbitration until 2014, but he is a superstar in the making and the team can argue that they want to build around him and not deal him anywhere. Pretty much every team in baseball has called to see what they could offer in order to land Stanton, and rightly so, in 373 games, he already has 93 HR, a .350 OBP, an all-star bid and has gotten votes for MVP in his last two seasons. That means that MIA can ask for the moon, and more than one team will start building a really tall ladder.
In the Orioles case, there is pretty much no way a trade for Stanton goes down that doesn't include Dylan Bundy. Since there is no high salary to lend negative value for Stanton you are looking at trading a guy with a ML track record, that has excelled at that level and has less than 2 years of service time. That is going to cost a small fortune. MIA will be looking for a package of young, controllable talent and the Orioles are near the driver's seat in that they have the top SP prospect in all of baseball. From this point it comes down to Stanton is proven in the ML and Bundy is still a prospect who may never pan out at the ML level, so many people would make any deal of that sort without blinking. A package featuring Bundy, Schoop and Delmonico may get the Marlins attention, but it may also strip the team of the very little bit of prospects that they have. They may be able to build a package without giving up Bundy that features Manny Machado going home to MIA, but that would also strip the team almost bare. Gausman isn't eligible to be traded until this summer, unless it is as a PTBNL, and after the names I've already mentioned you aren't talking very highly regarded prospects around baseball.
While Stanton is exactly the kind of bat the middle of this lineup desperately needs, the question would need to be made, do you play him in LF which is fairly spacious in Camden Yards? Do you move him to 1B and hope that he can play the position well enough? Do you move Markakis to LF and play Stanton in RF? All of these scenarios are trivial to the issue of what needs to be given up in order to get him on the team. Do you trade away a prospect that hasn't proven anything in the major leagues? Even if that prospect could be on the level of Strasburg, Kershaw or Verlander? It's not an easy decision, but then again there aren't many players in MLB that this conversation would even happen for, Stanton just happens to be on that short list. I'm sure people will say even if Bundy does achieve his potential, that's a max of about 35 games per year, where Stanton could contribute to 162. You could also say that Bundy would have a lot more control over what happens in the games he does play in. It's a debate that happens over and over in baseball circles, one that I'm not sure there is a clear answer for.