I know that it has been only one day since the '09 season came to an end, but I still find it important to realize that the Marlins have to be active to have a World Series-caliber team for the '10 season.
Having that said the Marlins have many arbitration eligible players Jeremy Hermida, Cody Ross, and Josh Johnson to name a few. But the name that sticks out he most in that list is Second Baseman Dan Uggla. Dan Uggla, the fastest second baseman to get to 100 HR, had a very productive season Hitting 31 HR and knocking 90 RBI making him eligible to get a raise from $5 million to somewhere around $7 million.
Since the Florida Marlins are a team that have to make moves based on money, his raise will make it almost certain he will be dealt this offseason.
Teams in the past have shown great interest in him, including the San Francisco Giants and Minnesota Twins, making him ideal for a trade. His value to a team is great as he provides power and the ability to drive in runs.
Dan Uggla could even be part of a package involving arbitration-eligible Jeremy Hermida.
What should the Marlins get in return?
The Marlins should make it a priority to pursue starting pitching. What the Marlins lacked this season was a consistent starting rotation and to add consistency they should add a veteran pitcher who can eat up innings.
The Marlins should also pursue better bullpen help and hopefully acquire a closer with experience, since the marlins have had a hard time this season with closing out games.
Matt Lindstrom couldn't do the job, so they put setup man Leo Nunez to close, but he had little success blowing seven games.
Who will replace Uggla?
Dan Uggla could be replaced by Emilio Bonifacio since second base is his natural position. If Emilio Bonifacio replaces Dan Uggla this would probably help out Bonifacio's defense and maybe putting him in a comfort zone where he can possibly produce more offensively.
Chris Coghlan could also move to second base. To remind you, before being called up, Chris Coghlan played second base for almost all of his professional career before being moved to left field.
Both players seem to be the top two candidates for the second base position.
Should he stay or should he go?
Dan Uggla has been a offensive force for this Marlins team for the past three years and marlins fans should be grateful for his production for the fish. But he has become too pricey and the Marlins need to get quality pitching to at least have a run at the playoffs next year.
He has to go if the Marlins want to make changes and want to get to the playoffs. If Dan Uggla leaves he will be known as the greatest second base offensive producer in franchise history, and he will be missed.
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