Joe Longo told ESPN that his client's relationship with the Marlins is "irretrievably broken" and that it'd be in the best interest of both parties for the organization to trade him before spring training.
"They have a plan," Longo said. "I respect that plan, but that plan shouldn't include Christian at this point in his career. He's in the middle of the best years of his career, and having him be part of a 100-loss season is not really where [we] want to see him going."
The plan, which has been put into action by a new ownership group headlined by Derek Jeter, has been to trade away the team's best players in an attempt to shed salary and start a full rebuild. Miami has already traded away Dee Gordon (to the Mariners), Marcel Ozuna (Cardinals) and reigning NL MVP Giancarlo Stanton (Yankees) in moves that have been criticized as prioritizing fiscal balance over on-field performance.
That's left Yelich, 26, as perhaps the best player left on the Marlins roster. The centerfielder batted .282 with 18 homers and 81 RBIs in 2017 and is a career .290 hitter. He won the Gold Glove in 2014 and the Silver Slugger in 2016, and his contract makes him an attractive trade target—Yelich has four years left on a seven-year, $49.5 million deal he signed with Miami in 2015.
Yelich has expressed displeasure with the direction of the franchise, as has catcher J.T. Realmuto and new addition Starlin Castro, who came over from the Yankees in the Stanton deal.