I keep writing these things with the secret hope that the more I badmouth someone, the quicker he’ll turn things around and make me eat my words. But, it’s readily apparent that no matter how much shit I talk, I’ll never have to eat this crow.
Figgins sucks. Let’s just get that out of the way. He is TERRIBLE. The only redeeming quality he has is that he’s a threat to steal bases; but of course, that would require him to actually GET ON BASE. But, he can’t. He can’t get hits, he no longer gets walks, and his defense makes me long for the days of Russ Davis. These are the reasons we brought him in; these are the reasons we’re paying him $9 million over four years.
For as bad as he was in the first half last year, he’s worse across the board in the first half of this year. And we have no reason to expect even the modest turnaround he had in the second half of last year will replicate itself. At this point, he’s a bench player, getting spot starts whenever 35 year old Adam Kennedy needs a day off.
There’s a growing chorus of fans out there screaming at the top of their lungs, “WHY DON’T WE RELEASE THIS WORTHLESS PILE OF CRAP?” I think many of us know exactly why the team can’t do that: he’s signed for two more seasons and he’s making the aforementioned $9 million per year. Also, we don’t have any hotshot third base prospects knocking down the door of the Major Leagues. The best we can do is give an aging journeyman the job in the interim (an aging journeyman whose natural position isn’t even third base).
Even though I know why we can’t just DFA him out of spite, at this point nothing would make me happier. When I don’t find myself actively enraged whenever I see him fail at the game of baseball, I’m simply resigned to the fact that he’s GOING to go 0 for 4 with at least one error every game he starts. Anything more (or less) is a plus.
Still, if he keeps this up, I don’t know what else the Mariners can do! Fake an injury, put him on the DL for the rest of the season? Keep him buried on the bench? What then? Insert him back into the starting lineup next spring? If he’s worthless now, I don’t see what a year’s worth of aging is going to accomplish. A year’s worth of snarky commentary from the media and blogger types. A year’s worth of venomous booing from the fans. You have to think, if he doesn’t turn it around this year, and if he goes into next season in the same funk, the team will HAVE to make a move. Right? I mean, he HAS to be a sunk cost at that point!
Well, I don’t know about you, but I don’t really want to wait around and find out. He’s done. Just bite the bullet and release him. No one is ever going to trade for his services; he’s not going to come back and stick it to us. Just get rid of him!