It is a good sign for any team when a young player is starting to improve on the field, and it is especially good for the Miami Marlins to see a lot of improvement from shortstop Adeiny Hechavarria. Hechavarria got off to a hot start with the Toronto Blue Jays, but really fizzled out in his first year with the Marlins. However, in 2014, Hechavarria has really turned it around.
Through 79 games this season, Hechavarria is batting .276/.302/.341 in his second full year as Marlins shortstop. His OPS has also improved from .565 in 2013 to .644 this year.
The only thing that has really changed for Hechavarria is the amount of time he has spent in the No. 8 spot of the batting order. Last season, he only played 17 games in the eighth spot, while this season he has played 42 games in the eight-hole, hitting .262/.298/.356 with 11 RBIs.
However, his defense is subpar. His dWAR is -0.1 by Baseball Reference’s standards, and he is committing a lot of errors. This year, he has committed eight errors in 79 games after committing 15 in 2013, which was ranked third most among NL shortstops last season. His range factor is also down from 4.15 to 4.07 this season.
If Hechavarria can continue hitting well and improve on his defense, he would prove his real value. For now, Hechavarria is the main shortstop and it does not look like he will have any competition within the system for another couple of years.