Figgins’ fall from grace is not all that uncommon in professional sports. Every couple of years, you see a player have a great couple of years before the talent well dries up. Figgins signed a huge contract after the 2009 season with the Seattle Mariners, but was eventually released by the club in 2012. The former All-Star then attempted to make a comeback with the Miami Marlins, but was cut weeks before the start of the regular season.
After being cut by the Marlins, Figgins took the season off to regroup and hone his skills in hope of a return to prominence in the 2014 season. Figgins was granted the chance to return to the big leagues by the Dodgers and has since underperformed in Spring Training. It’s a bit disheartening to see a once-great player like Figgins struggle, but it’s a part of the game.
Even with Figgins’ struggles this spring, he still has a great shot at making the big league club and becoming a solid contributor for the Dodgers.
Figgins’ ability to play nearly every defensive position works greatly in his favor. Dodger manager Don Mattingly loves utility players, and Figgins flexibility is something that will put him above guys like Justin Turner, Alex Guerrero and Dee Gordon in the hunt for a roster spot.
Also in Figgins’ favor is his ability to get on base. While Figgins hasn’t exactly been lighting up the hits column, he leads the club in walks this spring, which is nothing to cough at. The Dodgers will need as many men on base as possible to be successful this year.
Will Figgins find the same stroke that made him one of the best hitters in the league only few years ago? Probably not, but he still has a lot of tools that make him a player of great value for the Dodgers this year.