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Marlins snatch Diamondbacks outfielder Starling Marte right before trade deadline expires

The Miami Marlins have swooped in to snag Arizona Diamondbacks outfielder Starling Marte right before the end of the trade deadline, according to Jon Heyman of MLB Network. The Diamondbacks will receive pitchers Caleb Smith, Humberto Mejia, and a smaller piece in return.

The Diamondbacks signaled they would not be picking up Marte’s $12.5 million option for 2021, making him prime for a move before the 4 p.m. deadline.

Starling Marte is hitting a cool .311 with two home runs and 14 RBI on the season through 138 plate appearances. The Marlins (14-15) are in need of a bat to keep them in contention in the National League East, sitting right behind the Atlanta Braves (19-14).

The Marlins have been a spectacular 13-7 on the road but only 1-8 at home, largely due to the interruption due to the coronavirus cases that flooded the club early in the season.

The Diamondbacks (14-21), who are last in the NL West, are selling as much as they can midway through this 60-game regular season, looking to the future with prospects of making the playoffs already plenty grim. Only minutes after sending Starling Marte to Miami, the Diamondbacks dealt relief pitcher Andrew Chafin to the Chicago Cubs, unloading even more salary in exchange for future promise.

Furthermore, Diamondbacks closer Archie Bradley is heading to the Cincinnati Reds.

Miami also shipped out infielder Jonathan Villar to the Toronto Blue Jays, according to ESPN’s Jeff Passan — trading speed for power and a proven arm in the outfield.