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The Marlins are looking to put Adeiny Hechavarria at short, Yunel Escobar at third base

Nov 15, 2012, 4:35 PM EDT

Minnesota Twins v Toronto Blue Jays Getty Images

An important part of that big trade with the Blue Jays for the Marlins was to get themselves a shortstop to replace Jose Reyes. But it’s not gonna be the guy who played most of the time at shortstop for the Blue Jays:

The Marlins also appear to be leaning toward playing [Adeiny] Hechavarria at shortstop and moving Escobar, a career shortstop, to third base. The infielders from Cuba are very good defensively. Hechavarria is a 23-year-old who appeared in 41 games for Toronto last year.

“There is a shortstop who could become one of the great Cuban signs of all time,” Samson said during his radio interview. “A perennial All-Star, supposedly. But he has to do it.”

Hechavarria, who will be 24 in April,  played in 41 games for Toronto during his rookie season. He hit .254/.280/.365. He has hit .272/.314/.381 in 1548 minor league plate appearances.  He has the glove, arm and range to be a strong major league defensive shortstop, but the plate discipline, she is poor.

With young pitching, though, you figure that the Marlins are way better off with a solid glove guy at short than Escobar who, while good, just turned 30, will likely decline in that department over time and is probably not a bad bet to make the not-uncommon move from short to third.

  1. Old Gator - Nov 15, 2012 at 4:36 PM

    The Feesh, Craig, the Feesh. Don’t type so fast. And be sure to read your email.

    • El Bravo - Nov 15, 2012 at 4:40 PM

      Get a room you! I keeeed! Gator, how are you? Are you part of Selig’s review team covering this pending trade? What say you?

      • Old Gator - Nov 15, 2012 at 4:45 PM

        I’m feeling a bit like I just ate a bucket of blue claws infested with Pfiesteria. Otherwise, I’m not too bad. Bud Light hasn’t called yet – whatever else my manifold charms may be, enough of a diplomat to sit on one of his blue ribbon panels I prolly ain’t.

      • natstowngreg - Nov 15, 2012 at 5:17 PM

        Too bad Bart Giamatti isn’t Commissioner. You guys could have fascinating (though perhaps, unintelligible to the rest of us fans) discussions of the metaphysics of salary-dumping.

      • Old Gator - Nov 15, 2012 at 6:05 PM

        You should read Giamatti’s Take Time for Paradise – a group of belletristic essays on baseball and other sports, and of the place of sports in American culture. It’s a small book, but worth its weight in platinum.

  2. proudlycanadian - Nov 15, 2012 at 4:47 PM

    Actually Craig, Hechavarria hit very well in September. When he was first called up, he was a tad lost. He had figured things out when he was recalled.

    So when are you going to revamp your headline? Both Gator and I got a chuckle out of your first attempt.

    • proudlycanadian - Nov 15, 2012 at 4:49 PM

      Thanks for the revision!

  3. cur68 - Nov 15, 2012 at 4:58 PM

    Hechavarria is pretty damn good with that glove, no doubt about it. His transition from AAA to MLB wasn’t uneventful at the plate but by the time he was recalled, he’d settled down and showed he had some game with his bat, too. Of all the players dealt, he’s the one I consider the best player going to the Feesh. Good luck kid. You got the makings.

    • paperlions - Nov 15, 2012 at 5:18 PM

      Meh, he’s never gonna hit. He’s gonna have a BABIP driven contributions, few walks, little power, and average contact rates. If the glove is elite, the bat will play…but there isn’t any evidence that he’ll become anything approaching league average with it (even for SS).

      • cur68 - Nov 15, 2012 at 6:21 PM

        You could be right. I hope you are wrong. I think I’ve seen enough evidence to think you might be wrong. In fact, I can recall one of your epically miscalled predictions about a nearly similar kind of guy: The also Cuban National Yoenis Cespedis being terrible. I suppose I could look back and dredge up your actual words but I have a pretty good sense of you. You don’t obfuscate and you’ll recall your predictions. Hechavarria and Cespedis were moulded by Cuban baseball. Both showing adaptability, coachability, and pretty good defence. I like my chances of being right.

      • paperlions - Nov 15, 2012 at 6:57 PM

        There was much much less data to use for Cespedes. For Hech, there are years of unimpressive MiLB stats. I hope I’m wrong too, hope the kid is great, I have nothing against him….but the data and the scouts suggest that the bat will suck and that the glove will make up for it.

  4. mydadyourmom - Nov 15, 2012 at 5:02 PM

    Hech will hit in the bigs. I have no doubt.

  5. drunkenhooliganism - Nov 15, 2012 at 5:08 PM

    Getting the better glovemen on the field is just the type of thinking that will take the Marlins from a 34-win team to a 35-win team.

    • proudlycanadian - Nov 15, 2012 at 5:19 PM

      I am willing to take the over 35 in a bet.

  6. Old Gator - Nov 15, 2012 at 6:07 PM

    I’m just relieved that the Feesh aren’t planning on going out and finding a real third baseman after all. Seven years of tradition of playing everyone but a third baseman at third base would have been trashed.

    • scratchnsniffnblog - Nov 15, 2012 at 6:40 PM

      In their defense, how do you really replace Mike Lowell?

      • Old Gator - Nov 15, 2012 at 11:21 PM

        You could start by not trading him in the first place. But, this is Scrooge McLoria we’re talking about. The Chihuahua coined the term “market correction” to excuse dumping Lowell, much as, say, Ron Ziegler coined the term “inoperative” when his misrepresentations about Watergate were exposed. It’s all in the proud tradition of fecalspeak.

  7. Bruce Knutson - Nov 15, 2012 at 6:12 PM

    Before everyone writes this trade off as horrible for the fish, they shed a lot of contracts they were not going to win with and got some exciting prospects too.

  8. jaysjunkie - Nov 15, 2012 at 6:14 PM

    Hechavarria is the one guy in the trade I have the most reservations about losing. Agreed, proudlycanadian, it was awfully painful watching him at the plate during his first time up, but he looked immensely better the second time ’round.

    I’d love to know how Escobar feels about a possible move to 3B. I seem to recall that when Hechavarria was called up, there was talk in the media that no way would Escobar ever be happy with maybe going to 2B to accommodate having Hechavarria at his natural SS position. Hard to believe, I know, as Yunel is the model of an unselfish ballplayer.

  9. Carl Hancock - Nov 15, 2012 at 7:32 PM

    “Supposedly.” LOL Even Samson knows how stupid he sounds and isn’t even trying to hide it.

  10. plmathfoto - Nov 15, 2012 at 8:38 PM

    Maybe their next move will be to hire Omar Minaya, then hoard every latin player they can find like he did with the Mets, looks like they’re at least half way there, obviously still trying to act like all the cubans will come out to their stadium, but they’ll never support a losing team down here.

    • Old Gator - Nov 15, 2012 at 11:22 PM

      They don’t need Minaya. They already have Teflon Larry. Why take on a general manager who gets blamed for everything when you already have one who seems to get away with anything?

  11. joerymi - Nov 16, 2012 at 12:10 AM

    Since the players strike, only the Yankees have more World Series titles.

    Maybe THEY aren’t the crazy ones.

  12. bluburt - Nov 16, 2012 at 11:54 AM

    There is a team in Miami…?

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