Florida / Miami Marlins All-Time Top 40 Players: Part 2

BRONX, NY - OCTOBER 18: Starting pitcher Brad Penny #31 of the Florida Marlins throws against the New York Yankees during game one of the Major League Baseball World Series October 18, 2003 at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx, New York. (Photo by Brian Bahr/Getty Images)
BRONX, NY - OCTOBER 18: Starting pitcher Brad Penny #31 of the Florida Marlins throws against the New York Yankees during game one of the Major League Baseball World Series October 18, 2003 at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx, New York. (Photo by Brian Bahr/Getty Images) /
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MIAMI, FL – JUNE 12: Martin Prado #14 of the Miami Marlins singles in the second inning against the St. Louis Cardinals at Marlins Park on June 12, 2019 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Eric Espada/Getty Images) /

33. Martin Prado (6.5)

Martin Prado completed his fifth and final season with the Marlins in 2019, with a WAR level well below replacement level for the first time in his major league career.

Prado initially joined the Marlins from the New York Yankees after the 2014 postseason, along with David Phelps for Garrett Jones, Nathan Eovaldi, and Domingo German. He had previously played a season-and-a-half with the Arizona Diamondbacks after spending his first seven major league seasons with the Atlanta Braves. He made the all-star team for the only time in his career with the Braves in 2010.

When Prado joined the Marlins, he was already 31-years-old, but Miami was trusting him to produce. Miami owed him five years and $62 million, of which the Yankees picked up $6 million.

Prado’s first season in Miami was his best since 2012, as evidenced by his 3.3 WAR for the year.  He appeared in 129 games, hitting .288/.338/.394, with nine round-trippers and a team-third 63 RBI. He also had yet to lose a step defensively, saving nine defensive runs above average in 1034 innings at the hot corner. Prado also played 11 games at second base.

2016 would be even better for the Venezuelan native, the last time the Marlins were really in contention for most of the season. He posted a 3.9 WAR, the third highest figure of his career, while hitting .305/.359/.417. He clubbed eight homers with a team-third 75 RBI, and continued to hold down third base. Defensively, he took a step back, but was still considered league average by coming out even on DRS.

After that, Prado spent his next two seasons struggling to stay healthy, and only appeared in a combined 91 contests between 2017 and 2018. He was still above replacement level in each of the two seasons despite his limited playing time, but only half a win, combined.

In 2019, Prado returned to appear in 104 games, but he wasn’t quite carrying the same lumber as he had in seasons’ past. He slashed just .233/.265/.294 and finished up at -1.3 WAR. Despite his offensive struggles, Prado continued to man third base at right around league average.

Following the 2019 season, Prado was granted free agency. It’s unclear where he’ll end up, but if I was on the Marlins ownership committee, I’d float the idea of keeping him on in a coaching role.

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