Craig Mish Dishes on New Cardinal Austin Dean

photo: Austin Dean (Raj Mehta/Imagn)

National baseball host Craig Mish, who lives in South Florida and has special insight into the Miami Marlins, shares his thoughts on the newest St. Louis Cardinals outfielder.

Before we get into Mish’s insights, let’s get the basics of Tuesday’s trade out of the way first.

St. Louis Cardinals press release

The St.  Louis Cardinals announced today (Tuesday, January 14) that they have acquired right-handed hitting outfielder Austin Dean from the Miami Marlins in exchange for minor league outfielder Diowill Burgos.

Austin Dean

Dean, 26, has appeared in 98 career games with the Marlins, batting .223 with 10 HR’s and 35 RBI.  He slugged .404 with 14 doubles and six home runs among his 40 hits in 64 big league games last season, and in 73 games with triple-A New Orleans, batted .337 with a 1.036 OPS while hitting a career-high 18 home runs.

Dean, a native of Spring, Texas, was the Marlins 4th round selection in the 2012 amateur draft.  The 6-0, 212-pound Dean was named the Marlins Minor League Player of the Year in 2018 after batting .345 with 12 HR’s, 68 RBI and a .511 slugging pct. between New Orleans (AAA) and Jacksonville (AA).

Dean, who owns a career .286 batting mark with 65 HR and 377 RBI in 723 minor league games, was an All-Star in 2016 (Jacksonville-AA), 2015 (Jupiter-A) and 2014 (Greensboro-A).

Burgos, 18, was signed by the Cardinals as an international free agent in September of 2017 out of San Francisco de Macoris, Dominican Republic and appeared in 58 games last season between the Dominican Summer League and the Gulf Coast League.

Dean will be added to the Cardinals 40-man Major League roster which now stands at 39 players.

Brian Walton’s take

For the segment of Cardinals fans anxious for a Nolan Arenado trade, this announcement came out of left field. Less than a week after they traded away two 40-man outfielders – and in an off-season in which the Cards shed four 40-man flychasers overall – (Marcell Ozuna, Adolis Garcia, Jose Martinez and Randy Arozarena, not to mention a rumor that Dexter Fowler is being shopped, as well – they have now added one back.

For a number of reasons, this makes sense to me as a low-risk, low cost, high-upside deal.

From a roster perspective, Dean had been outrighted by the Marlins on the ninth (first reported by Mish). That means they had a week to trade, release or waive him.

Dean has been a top 30 Marlins prospect for several years and offers power, but also with good contact, walking at around a 10 percent rate while striking out in the 18 percent area in the minors.

This is a “fresh air” kind of trade, in which Dean gets a new start after eight years in the Miami system. It was a time during which he raked in the minors but struggled in the majors, before finishing 2019 strongly with the Marlins.

Dean has less than one year of MLB service time and two minor league option years remaining. That means there is no sense of urgency for him to make the majors or bust. As a 40-man roster player, he will report to St. Louis’ major league spring training camp and will join the competition for several open outfield spots.

Diowill Burgos

TCN subscribers can read much more about Burgos in my “Best of the Rest” Top Prospects article from last week. Based on an extraordinary second season in the DSL in 2019, the 18-year old outfielder was our DSL Red Player of the Year after earning DSL All-Star honors.

However, he did not continue at his torrid pace the final three weeks of the season when moving up to the Gulf Coast League. Burgos did not place on our overall 2020 Top 50 Prospect List, but was no. 44 in my personal ranking.

2020 Cardinals Prospects – Brian Walton’s Best of the Rest

Mish on Dean

OK, the part you have been waiting for. Host on the FNTSY Sports Network and of the Swings and Mishes podcast Craig Mish joined me after the trade was announced. South Florida-based Mish has special insight into the Marlins and shared his view of the newest Cardinal in this exclusive audio interview.

Craig Mish and Brian Walton  (Brian Walton/The Cardinal Nation)

We also talked a bit about another player who Mish knows well, free agent outfielder Marcell Ozuna

For more

To track the status of the Cardinals’ 40-man roster as well as all players in the system by position and level, check out the Roster Matrix, always free and updated here at The Cardinal Nation. Also included is every player transaction across the full organization all year long.

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