In an interesting turn of events, the Marlins are apparently attempting to resign the recently non-tendered infielder/outfielder Chris Coghlan. We found this out from Clark Spencer, a Marlins beat writer for the Miami Herald through Twitter today.
#Marlins president of baseball operations Michael Hill said team is still trying to re-sign Chris Coghlan, who was non-tendered Monday
— clarkspencer (@clarkspencer) December 4, 2013
I have to admit, this is a bit of a head scratcher. Just two days ago, the Marlins held all the leverage in contract negotiations with the former NL Rookie of the Year. By electing to tender Coghlan, the Marlins would have been the only team able to negotiate with him, with a worst case scenario of a stalemate resulting in an arbitration hearing.
While it is true that an arbitration hearing can be somewhat unpredictable, We have seen players with similar statistics to Coghlan earning less than 1 million dollars for a year. By allowing Coghlan to listen to other offers, they create an atmosphere of a possible bidding war which could result in a contract that more than doubles Coghlan’s arbitration value.
Granted this bidding war could potentially cost the Marlins an extra million dollars, not exactly breaking the bank (although the Marlins are notorious penny pinchers), but if they are serious about Coghlan, the main question is why take the risk? Do they expect to be able to sign Coghlan to a contract worth $500,000? That is unlikely for a utility player who can play any position in the field, and has hit .321 in his past, even if he is 4 seasons removed from that year.
All of this may simply be posturing from Mike Hill. Maybe he wants to drive the price up for Coghlan as a personal favor. That is really the only angle that I can see that makes sense.
I was disappointed to see Coghlan go. To me, at worst he filled a role similar to Juan Pierre on the Marlins last year. He could be a pinch hitter, sub in the outfield and provide some speed on the base paths. If he is able to regain his hitting stroke and stay on the field, he is potentially the best third baseman that the Marlins currently have. He could give them a better option at the leadoff position and generate some runs.
What do you think about Coghlan? Are you hopeful the Marlins are able to sign him back or are you glad to see him go? Let us know in the comments below.