The Marlins traded Mike Jacobs to the Royals over the winter and they will open up the first base job for competition. 25-year old righty swinging Gaby Sanchez appears to have his name written in pencil as the starter. He played in 5 games for the Marlins last season and he was 3 for 8 (.375 avg, 1.000 OPS) with 1 RBI. Sanchez also played in 133 games in AA-ball last year in which he was 150 for 478 (.314 avg, .917 OPS) with 70 run scored, 17 homers, 92 RBIs and 17 stolen bases. He’s also the best defensive player of the competitors for the first base job.
28-year old lefty swinging Dallas McPherson is a natural 3B but the Marlins might need him at 1B if Sanchez isn’t ready for the job. McPherson played in 11 games for the Marlins last season and he was 2 for 11 (.182 avg, .764 OPS) with 3 runs scored. He also played in 127 games in AAA-ball last season in which he was 123 for 448 (.275 avg, .997 OPS) with 94 runs scored, 42 homers and 98 RBIs. McPherson also whiffed 168 times last season against minor league pitchers so you have to temper your enthusiasm about him.
32-year old righty swinging Wes Helms could work his way into the picture if McPherson and Sanchez both fail. Helms played in 132 games for the Marlins last season in which he was 61 for 251 (.243 avg, .646 OPS) with 28 runs scored, 5 homers and 31 RBIs. Helms is not a great defensive 1B either as he made 2 errors in 42 games there last season.
PROJECTED GRADE FOR THE 2009 SEASON: D