25-year old righty swinging Donovan Solano is heading to spring training as the starting 2B, but his name is in the lineup in pencil. He will have to hold off challengers to keep the starting gig. Solano played in 93 games for the Marlins last year and he was 84 of 285 (.295 avg, .717 OPS) with 29 runs scored, 2 homers, 28 RBIs and 7 stolen bases. Solano also played in 36 games in AAA-ball for the Marlins last year and he was 37 of 141 (.262 avg, .653 OPS) with 14 runs scored, 0 homers, 14 RBIs and 4 stolen bases. Solano played in 58 games (56 starts) for the Marlins at 2B last year and he had 2 errors while showing slightly below average range. It will be interesting to see how Solano does with the bat in 2013, as nothing in his minor league career shows that his 2012 numbers could be something he can keep up. 35-year old switch-hitting Chone Figgins, 28-year old righty swinging Matt Downs and 34-year old righty swinging Nick Green will duke it out this spring for backup jobs. It’s even possible that one of them could challenge Solano for his starting gig. Figgins played in 66 games for the Mariners last year and he was 30 for 166 (.181 avg, .533 OPS) with 18 runs scored, 2 homers, 11 RBIs and 4 stolen bases. Figgins has now played in 1,244 games in his first 11 years in the majors and he is 1,285 of 4,641 (.277 avg, .713 OPS) with 700 runs scored, 35 homers, 402 RBIs and 337 stolen bases. Figgins is a natural 2B, but he didn’t get to play there for the Mariners last year. Matt Downs played in 91 games for the Astros last year and he was 36 of 178 (.202 avg, .623 OPS) with 15 runs scored, 8 homers, 16 RBIs and 2 stolen bases. Downs played in 3 games (2 starts) at 2B last year for the Astros and he didn’t make any errors while showing out of this world range. Downs has now played in 254 games in his first four years in the majors and he is 121 of 527 (.230 avg, .702 OPS) with 58 runs scored, 20 homers, 66 RBIs and 3 stolen bases. Nick Green played in 7 games for the Marlins last year and he was 4 for 23 (.174 avg, .513 OPS) with 1 run scored and 1 RBI. Green also played in 63 games in AAA-ball for the Marlins last year in which he was 73 of 212 (.344 avg, .996 OPS) with 44 runs scored, 12 homers, 47 RBIs and 2 stolen bases. Green played in 2 games (both starts) for the Marlins at 2B last year and he didn’t have any errors while showing horrible range. Green has now played in 400 games in his first 7 years in the majors and he is 241 of 1,023 (.236 avg, .650 OPS) with 143 runs scored, 16 homers, 97 RBIs and 6 stolen bases.
PROJECTED GRADE FOR THE SECOND BASEMEN IN 2013: C-