It took Miami Marlins third baseman Ed Lucas nine years to get to the Majors and when he did, he made the most of it. Lucas played more than half the season stealing the starting position away from teammate Placido Polanco when Polanco was struggling and battling injuries. Lucas was the best story coming out of the organization that did not involve Jose Fernandez.
The 31-year-old played 94 games, making his first appearance against the Tampa Bay Rays May 30. It only took three games before Lucas made an impact on the team. Against the New York Mets June 2, Lucas was 4-for-4 with a double, two RBI, a walk and two runs scored. It was one of his best games of the season.
Lucas finished the year batting .256/.311/.336 with four home runs and 28 RBI, including 14 doubles and 43 runs scored. Among batters, Lucas had the second best Wins Above Replacement (1.5), second to outfielder Giancarlo Stanton. The Marlins needed Lucas’ punch that he packed at the bottom of the lineup.
His fielding could use a little work though. He has the ability to play all positions, but at his primary position, third base, Lucas committed six errors in 154 chances. His range factor was just 2.76 and it is something manager Mike Redmond is going to have to work with him during the offseason and spring training.
Lucas has the ability to make the major-league roster next season and start and it could be good for the Marlins to let him do just that.