The Arizona Diamondbacks are coming off of a miserable 2021 season in which they lost 110 games.
The organization hasn’t made the playoffs since 2016, and fans are getting restless.
But even though things have been rough for the Diamondbacks lately, they’ve gotten to experience the growth of Ketel Marte right before their eyes.
Marte, who’s 28 years old, is one of the most underrated players in baseball.
It’s easy for a player to fly under the radar when his team is rarely relevant in the playoff race, and that’s exactly what has been happening with Marte in recent years.
MLB fans shouldn’t let that trend continue.
Folks should buy stock in Marte before it’s too late.
What To Know About Marte
Marte spent his first two MLB seasons with the Seattle Mariners before being traded to Arizona.
His time with the Mariners was largely underwhelming, but everything changed for him when he put on a Diamondbacks uniform.
He has five seasons under his belt with Arizona, so we have a pretty big sample size to evaluate.
But let’s save the suspense: He has been fantastic.
Oh hey, Ketel Marte! 💣 pic.twitter.com/r1sfHG2lMG
— Bally Sports Arizona (@BALLYSPORTSAZ) September 15, 2021
Across 505 total games as a member of the Diamondbacks, he owns a .295 batting average, .853 OPS, and 122 OPS+.
Over that same sample, he’s averaging 22 home runs, 37 doubles, and eight triples per 162 games.
He’s also averaging a bWAR of 4.9 per 650 plate appearances.
That’s elite production.
In 2019, we saw flashes of MVP potential from him.
The one-time All-Star slashed .329/.389/.592 that year with a 149 OPS+, 32 home runs, 36 doubles, and nine triples.
He racked up a bWAR of 6.9 in the process — a good chunk of which came from his solid defense — and he finished fourth in the NL MVP race.
🚨GRAND SLAM 🚨
Ketel Marte gets the Grand Slam to put the D-Backs up 12-1 over the Red Sox (yes you read that right).
— FOX Sports: MLB (@MLBONFOX) April 6, 2019
Since 2019, injury issues have plagued him at times, as he has missed 87 games over each of the past two seasons.
But when he’s on the field, he’s a force to be reckoned with.
Could Marte Be On The Move Soon?
What does Marte’s future hold?
It’s tough to say.
He’s technically only under contract for one more season, but his deal has very affordable club options for 2023 and 2024.
Does Arizona think it can contend within that window of time?
Or could a trade be in the works at some point soon?
The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal recently reported that the Miami Marlins have expressed interest in Marte.
This is just speculation, but the Marlins probably aren’t the only ones who would love to acquire Marte’s services.
Any team would be better with this guy in the everyday lineup.
But according to Rosenthal, MLB fans shouldn’t expect the Diamondbacks to ship Marte away unless they get an offer they can’t refuse.
“They would need a monster package to move Marte,” Rosenthal wrote.
For now, any MLB fans hoping to potentially see Marte in a different uniform in the near future (i.e. 2022) are going to have to wait, as MLB is currently in a lockout.
But once the lockout ends and things pick up again, it’ll be worth keeping an eye on whether or not Marte’s name gets mentioned in any more rumors.