Chone Figgins has found himself in a very unfamiliar spot heading into 2013. Figgins recently signed a one-year minor league contract, which includes an invitation to spring training, with the Miami Marlins. While it’s actually a decent signing for the Marlins, could it have any implications on our 2013 fantasy baseball season?
Figgins comes to Miami with experience playing third base, second base and the outfield. In 2012, he played mostly left field, although he played some third base and the other outfield positions as well. At worst, the Marlins should see him as a super-utility player, filling in at rotating positions day after day, much like they did with Emilio Bonifacio and Alfredo Amezaga in the past.
Figgins hasn’t put together a full season of production since the first year of his four-year deal with the Seattle Mariners, which was back in 2010. That year, he posted the worst full-season stats of his career, hitting .259/.340/.306 with one home run, 35 RBI, 62 runs and 42 stolen bases.
Two years, 147 games (played 81 and 66 games respectively in ’11 and ’12) and $18.5 later, Figgins finds himself bought out of that four-year, $35M+ contract, with just a chance to make Miami’s major league squad. The Mariners paid Figgins $8M this off-season to end their relationship, which is not exactly reassuring for his fantasy value.
Figgins hasn’t been fantasy relevant for the last two seasons. Can he do anything for a Miami team, desperate for talent?
While the answer certainly isn’t a resounding “yes,” with this Marlin squad, it’s also certainly not a resounding “no” either.
Figgins making the Marlins team out of spring training, and joining their 25-man roster for opening day does make sense. I don’t see him supplanting Juan Pierre, Placido Polanco, Justin Ruggiano or Donovan Solano for their starting positions. However, I do see him semi-excelling in a super utility role. If he can show he still has something left in the tank, an opportunity may arise for him to takeover a starting role from any of what will likely be a plethora of struggling Marlins.
If Figgins wants to continue his career as a baseball player, he’s picked the best scenario to give himself a chance to be showcased.
At this point, Figgins can’t be considered fantasy-relevant at all. However, feel free to check in on him throughout spring training and the first half of the year. He’s a former All-Star with 337 career stolen bases. At one point, he was a real strong fantasy option. There are worse options to have on your watch list.
For fans in Miami, keep an eye on Figgins’ batting average throughout the year and hope local bars offer similar promotions to Norm’s Eatery and Ale House in Seattle.
Follow Jeff on Twitter: @Jewish_Jeff