Stop me if you have heard this story before. The Miami Marlins, back when they were known as the Florida Marlins, had a superstar slugger with four years of team control remaining. The team traded a number of major league assets prior to the first of those four seasons, and the resulting backlash led to the slugger being disgruntled. A few years later, led by a monster first year of arbitration, the Marlins were forced, supposedly by economics, to trade the slugger for a major haul of top prospects.

Back then, that slugger's name was Miguel Cabrera, and the eventual result was what turned out to be one of the more lopsided trades in team and league history (though it was a fair trade at the time, and it should be judged that way). This time around, the Marlins appear to be on their way to an eerily similar situation with star slugger Giancarlo Stanton. Stanton has four seasons remaining of team control, and with the team's recent trades and Stanton's unhappy reaction, it seems highly unlikely that the team can sign him to a long-term deal.

As of right now, those situations look very similar, with both players heading into years in which the Marlins are expected to fail. What could happen in the future to swing this situation one way or another? Can the Marlins somehow convince Stanton to stay around, or is his departure an inevitability given the current state? Let us examine the Cabrera situation of the past to see if the future of Stanton's status will follow suit.

The 2006 Team

The one thing that swung the Marlins' way with regards to convincing Cabrera to stay with the team was that the 2006 Marlins actually played well. Much to the delight of many fans, myself included, the 2006 Marlins succeeded in a way no one could have expected. They were the first team to come from 20 games under .500 and play to an even record at some point in the same year. They ended the year a surprising 78-84, and things had to be looking up for the Marlins in 2007.

If the Marlins had the resources to pull off an extension for Cabrera, the 2006 season was the godsend year that they needed to help convince him. That season showed Cabrera that this Marlins core could compete and that he was not alone in attempting to carry a roster to victory. The Marlins boasted Hanley Ramirez, Dan Uggla, Josh Johnson, and a myriad of other relative success stories that year, as almost every prospect bounced the right way for the team. Were it so inclined, the front office could convince Cabrera that this is the sort of crew that could support him on the way to many years of success in south Florida.