Aug 26, 2013; Seattle, WA, USA; Texas Rangers right fielder Jeff Baker (15) hits a single against the Seattle Mariners during the 4th inning at Safeco Field. Mandatory Credit: Steven Bisig-USA TODAY Sports
With many teams pursuing Jeff Baker, it was reasonable to think that the Marlins were a long shot to sign the versatile player. After all, most players aren’t knocking down the door to play for Jeffrey Loria and the Marlins. So imagine our surprise today to find out that Baker has signed a deal with the Marlins for 2 years. Juan Rodriguez from the Sun-Sentinel had the first report.
Just to eliminate confusion, he did clarify whom he was talking about a few minutes later.
This signing is significant for the Marlins for a couple of reasons. The first is that Baker hits left-handed pitching extremely well, the exact opposite of newly acquired Garrett Jones. This makes him the perfect complement to a platoon situation with Jones at first base. This also decreases the likelihood that Ty Wigginton will make the opening day roster, but will likely get some play during spring training prior to being either released or assigned to triple A.
Also on the bubble will be Ed Lucas. Lucas and Baker are redundant players. Miami will likely keep Gregg Dobbs, whom Loria loves beyond all rationale on the roster as a pinch hitter and backup third baseman. Dobbs has the fortune of hitting left-handed, which will help Miami. This means the right-handed hitting Ed Lucas may be returning to triple A New Orleans at the end of spring training.
This is an interesting signing due to the addition of more platoon players. Miami will likely be employing more platoon players than any other team in the league, largely out of financial necessity.
What do you think about the signing? Do you think Baker will help the Marlins? Let us know in the comments below!