Derek Jeter was noncommittal when asked about Giancarlo Stanton's future with the Miami Marlins on Tuesday, saying he doesn't like "the word 'teardown." Yet Jeter acknowledged that he will likely make "unpopular decisions" as part of the franchise's new ownership group.
Jeter and new controlling owner Bruce Sherman spoke publicly for the first time Tuesday about their group's $1.2 billion purchase of the Marlins. Their news conference came two days after the Marlins concluded their eighth consecutive losing season, the longest streak in the majors.
Jeter praised Stanton for his "unbelievable season" after the slugger led the majors with 59 home runs and 132 RBIs, but he was vague when discussing the All-Star outfielder's long-term future with the Marlins.
"I don't know [Stanton] well," Jeter said. "I haven't spoken to the players. I haven't spoken to him. Anything we're going to do moving forward with the organization, I will discuss with [team president Mike Hill]."
Stanton told FanRag Sports this past Friday that he does not want to be part of another rebuild with the Marlins, saying, "I've lost for seven years." But Jeter indicated Tuesday that the Marlins likely will head in that direction after missing the postseason for a 14th straight season.
"We do have to rebuild the organization," Jeter said. "It starts with player development and scouting. We will build it from top down and bottom up."
The status of Hill and manager Don Mattingly also have yet to be determined.
Stanton's 59 homers were the most by a single player in the majors since 2001. But he is three years into a 13-year contract, one that was seriously backloaded. He's still owed $285 million in that $325 million deal, and the Marlins lost money this season.
Stanton said Sunday he will have a simple approach when it's time to sit down with Jeter and the Marlins' new leadership.
"I'm going to see what they got, see what the plan is, and we'll brainstorm from there,'' he said.