There had been small rumblings of “Chone Figgins to the Reds” rumors in the past. Well, look for those to potentially intensify since the Mariners have designated Figgins for assignment as reported by Greg Johns who covers the Mariners for MLB.com. The M’s have a 10-day window in which they can trade, release or simply outright Figgins or he will become a free agent. The trade route appears to have been exhausted as Johns notes in his article.
I’m growing nervous. You know it will happen. The “Figgins to the Reds” rumors? You just know they will.
That isn’t the only thing. This hit my Twitter timeline as well…
I sincerely hope Nightengale is not referring to the Reds as one of those “contenders”.
It is true that the Reds have a need on the bench. Figgins can multiple defensive positions. The issue with Figgins since he went to Seattle has been the utter abandonment of any offensive skill from his game. He exhibited virtually none while a member of the Mariners.
Scan this table, then look at the last two lines.
|LAA (8 yrs)||936||4075||3585||596||1045||148||53||31||341||280||96||412||613||.291||.363||.388||.751|
|SEA (3 yrs)||308||1209||1056||104||240||37||5||4||61||57||22||114||204||.227||.302||.283||.585|
Hard to believe that the same guy that had a 7.5 WAR in 2009 produced a -1.2 WAR just last season. Talk about regressing.
Figgins owns career splits that show he had previously been effective as a lead-off hitter. He posted a triple slash of .286/.363/.378. This past season provided more difficulty in that spot. Figgins was used in the lead-off spot for 108 of his 194 plate appearances. His slash was a measly .189/.250/.305, and his triple slash for the entire 2012 season was .181/.262/.271.
2013 was to be an important year for Figgins as a member of the Mariners. He was to
steal make $8MM. If he were to have accumulated 600 plate appearances, a vesting option of $9MM for the 2014 season would have kicked in. The M’s simply could not take that chance, not that he would have gotten it. As Mariners GM Jack Zduriencik noted, Figgins became expendable. Some M’s fans have felt that way about Figgins for the past two seasons…at least.
When the Mariners signed Figgins to a four-year, $36MM deal (along with the previously mentioned vesting option), I thought the signing was a little screwy. Figgins was known more as a lead-off guy and they already had one: Ichiro Suzuki. Figgins was moved down the the #2 spot for most of his first season in Seattle. That didn’t produce the expected results either as Figgins could only fanshion a triple slash of .259/.340/.306. The OBP was solid in 2010, but the decline was in the making and Figgins could never climb out of the chasm which has now been created.
The ol’ “change of scenery could help him” comment has made it’s way into the Twitterverse. And so has “please, no”. Acutally, one tweet I read said “Please God, no”.
So has “He would add to the bench”. Again, no.
“He’d be cheap.” I know he will be, but, no.
Look. Zduriencik said he called around to try and trade Figgins and no one really seemed interested. At $8MM, who would? With the lack of production by Figgins over the last two seasons, who would even consider giving up their lowest prospect in a deal and assume that salary? Um, no one. Well, unless the Mariners were willing to eat a substantial portion of the salary. Even then the list would be short.
Figgins will surely pass through all the hoops and become a free agent. He will be cheap. The change of scenery has worked on numerous other players in the past as exhibited just last season by Ryan Ludwick. He’s looking for another chance. I understand all of that. Every bit of it.
And for the last time, no. You wanted Valdez and Cairo gone due to poor offensive seasons, but it’s okay to bring in an equally inefficient offensive player?