Blog Entry

A's trying to trade for Chone Figgins

Posted on: January 28, 2011 9:47 am
Edited on: January 28, 2011 1:58 pm
FigginsAll's quiet in baseball these days with arbitration the only story and a countdown to the beginning of spring training less than a month away.

However, if the A's get their way, there will be at least one more trade that gets the attention of the baseball world.

The San Jose Mercury News reveals that Oakland is trying to acquire third baseman Chone Figgins from the Mariners. With three years and $26 million left on his deal, the Mariners might be motivated to deal the 32-year-old for players that fit within their retooling phase. It is thought that Kevin Kouzmanoff and a pitcher would be headed to Seattle for Figgins if a trade is consummated.

Figgins had a poor debut in Seattle after years with the Angels, hitting just .259/.340/.306 although he did swipe 42 bases amid an attempt to shift to second base. With that experiment over, Figgins is slated to return to third, and the Mariners hope he can approximate his 2009 line of .298/.395/.393.

Oakland has been seeking a third baseman all winter. They chased Adrian Beltre for the second straight season and also flirted with Edwin Encarnacion, claiming him on waivers only to non-tender him. Clearly, they aren't sold on Kouz, who has a great glove but produced a .247/.283/.396 mark in his first season with Oakland, hitting 16 homers.

If the A's did acquire Figgins, he would become the perfect leadoff hitter for a club that would suddenly legitimately challenge the Rangers for superiority in the West. So far, Oakland has imported Josh Willingham, David DeJesus and Hideki Matsui to bolster the offense. However, all three are free agents next year and while the club remains at the Coliseum with no certain organizational future, it will be difficult to attract free agents to come -- or even for internal free agents to stay. GM Billy Beane has had to go the trade route in recent years to get his bats, so acquiring Figgins would add certainty to the offense over the next few years -- the club's already got plenty on its hands in filling holes after the year.

One such hole could be filled by Chris Carter, who is adamant the left-field job is his to lose -- even after Oakland acquired two left fielders in DeJesus and Willingham.

"I'm still thinking it's my job to lose, basically," Carter said. "It's a business. They want to win and make the team better. [Adding players] keeps it more competitive."

That's all well and good, but after Carter began his major league career with an 0-for-19 streak, his stock dipped in many people's eyes. He rebounded upon his September recall, but by then it was too late: he was ticketed for Triple-A again in 2010. The 24-year-old likely remains Oakland's left fielder or DH of the future, especially with the positions opening up after the year, but he'll have to serve as depth in 2011 for the A's. Even backup outfield is not an option as Ryan Sweeney and Conor Jackson have those spots locked down as well.

UPDATE: ESPN's Buster Olney says there could be a third team involved in the deal, with the Jays a possibility. If the Jays were able to snag Kouzmanoff, that would enable Jose Bautista to stay in right field.

-- Evan Brunell

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed.


Since: Jun 13, 2008
Posted on: January 29, 2011 1:16 pm

A's trying to trade for Chone Figgins

Whether Chone Figgins plays at Seattle,Oakland or goes back to Anahiem,I think he's miscast as a 2nd Baseman.I think last year,although I couldn't tell you how many errors he had or where he ranked in Fielding Pct.among 2B in either league but I firmly believe that he took his defense to the plate with him in 2010 which explains his down year.If he moves back to 3rd base I believe the offensive stats will rebound.I don't know if this is even the case but I really feel it's a case of takin your ABs on the field or in this case vice versa.Most guys who can play both sides of the infield turn out to be in some cases a 'utility infielder',but Figgins is too good offensively for that.He's a slap hitter so as long as he continues to use that approach I don't see all those 'acres' of foul territory to deal least offensively.If this deal does go through he'll really have to work on going back,as he did with the Angels as a 3rd baseman,however not with all that spacious land in foul territory that just goes on forever as it does in Oak.In any other Stadium besides Oakland the great majority of balls are out of play & strikes or holding the count full for another 2 strike pitch.

Since: Dec 19, 2010
Posted on: January 29, 2011 10:53 am

A's trying to trade for Chone Figgins

A lot is two words. This is a pet peeve of mine and i'm trying to educate CBS Sportsline users one post at a time. Matsui had 84 rbis and Willingham had 56. Matsui has 20hr power, but how will that translate in Oakland? Willingham has even less power than Matsui. Not really a fearsome middle of the order punch. DeJesus is a great 4th outfielder. Figgins, is still a Mariner. If the A's get him, tey will be slightly better than they are now. Figgins is a speedy singles hitter that may be on the downside of his career. The Rangers won the division last year without Cliff Lee. They traded for him in August and he was just a little above average with them. The Rangers should be fine. Their hitting is insane. They have at least three quality starters. They should be the favorites to win the West. Second place is up for grabs though. Last place belongs to the Mariners. If not for the Indians, Pirates and Royals the Mariners might be the worst team in the majors right now.

Since: Jul 13, 2010
Posted on: January 28, 2011 5:47 pm

A's trying to trade for Chone Figgins

Honestly i dont see why the rangers are the clear cut favortie to win the division. They lost there most important pitcher and gained another bat and thats suppose to make them better??? Their hitting was fine last year, they needed to get cliff lee back in the rotation for them to be on top of the al again. So i guess everyone expects cj wilson and colby lewis to have years like they had last year??? dont count on it rangers fans. and now that lee is gone who comes back into the rotation? Feldman?? hahahaha yea right. Oh yea thats right there gonna try Neftali feliz as a starter right?? But you guys just traded the only other guy with closing experience on the team in Francisco.

The rangers pitching is going to be the downfall of the team. and thats exactly why i like the a's to win the division this year if they get figgins. With figgins and dejesus at the top of their lineup thats gonna be a good duo getting on base and i think they will get on base alot. Then they will have willingham and matsui(who had more then 100rbis last season) and can both hit Homeruns bringing figgins and dejesus home. the Athletics are much better then they were last year and the A's also had alot of injuries last year. Now with better lineup they can go to the top. because they already have BY FAR the best pitchign in the West and i mean both their rotation and their bullpen.

This is how i see the standings ending up. I think it will be a close race between the Athletic and the angels with the athletics just edging out the angels. Then the rangers will be behind them. and the mariners will be so far behind everyone in the league LOL...This is just my opinion though...

Since: Sep 11, 2006
Posted on: January 28, 2011 4:32 pm

A's trying to trade for Chone Figgins

ya, right!!!  Angels will be lucky to have a better record then Seattle

Since: Aug 16, 2006
Posted on: January 28, 2011 2:30 pm

A's trying to trade for Chone Figgins

One thing people need to understand about the Angels is the fact that they lost their BEST hitter in Kendry Morales for the season to a freak injury.  thats like taking Hamilton out of the Rangers lineup and expecting them to not skip a beat.  Also, EVERY key contributing player for the Halos for the past 3 or 4 years had a DOWN year.  Not one player on Offense had a good season last year it was like the whole squad was in a funk at the same time.  With Abreu, Hunter, Wells, and Morales in the heart of our lineup... and either Aybar or someone else embracing the leadoff role thats a solid lineup (not dominant like Texas, but solid)  Now the Halos rotation looks very good, Weaver, Haren, Santana, Piniero, Kazmir (with the one true question mark being Kaz, if he can somehow get back into form he will round out that rotation perfectly, if not they have two very strong young arms to put into the 5th slot) They acquired two VERY strong bullpen additions is Scott Downs and Takahashi to pair with Jepsen (future closer IMO) Rodney, Bulger, Rodriguez and a youngster thats throwing 100+ mph (Jordan Walden)   Also on the back-burner they have the #1 prospect in all of baseball in Mike Trout who could possibly see a September call up depending on how he does early on in the minors this year, oh and one of the Best skippers in the MLB in Mike Scioscia to put it all together..  So if most of these players on Offense have at least above average bounce back seasons, I dont see how the A's are the clear competition for Texas this year.  Oakland will make it a tighter race than in years past, but im one of the people that believe last year was an abberation for The Angels and that they will challenge Texas for the Crown with Oakland coming in third when its all over.

Since: Aug 20, 2006
Posted on: January 28, 2011 2:07 pm

A's trying to trade for Chone Figgins

Big deal go A`s who suddenly have $ to spend...gee funny how the small market money ball cheap skate works when revenue sharing comes in huh? Anywho the putrid Seattle M`s and their foolish GM "trader" Jack Zduriencik would probably trade Figgy for a pack of gum and Ken Griffey Jr rookie card he`s so stupid.  Hrad to believe he traded Cliff Lee for Justin Smoak. The AL West is a dog pile & the M`s are buried at the bottom.  Sure hope Zduriencik is around to trade off King Felix. Just think can have Jobba/Montero and any other minor leaguers you want!  

Since: Sep 30, 2007
Posted on: January 28, 2011 12:38 pm

A's trying to trade for Chone Figgins

The A's finished in seconed place last year and had more injuries then the other teams. If you pick them last shows that you dont know crap about baseball. Your just a homer. enjoy paying millions more for your players and getting less wins. Just think you could still bring Vlad back!(Lucky)

Since: Mar 25, 2008
Posted on: January 28, 2011 12:19 pm

A's trying to trade for Chone Figgins

The A's have plenty to offer in a trade. They have multiple relievers and outfielders to shed.

Obviously "moneyball" is changing. The A's are realizing that they can find more long-term success replicating what the Angels have done for the past decade: get on base, get aggressive on the base paths, and win games behind strong pitching. 

Will the Rangers' success last year hold up in the coming years? Their talent is obvious, but do they have the top-to-bottom pitching to sustain their progress? I'm not so sure. Is the organization even sold on Ron Washington going forward? Not sure about that either.

Conversely, can the rest of the AL West depend on the Angels underachieving again? Doubtful. 

This feels like a three-horse race in 2011, similar to the NL West in 2010. 

Since: Jan 27, 2011
Posted on: January 28, 2011 11:38 am

A's trying to trade for Chone Figgins

The A's need Figgins, but the M's need him more.  Seattle's Infield right now looks like a Double-A team without Figgins in the middle of it.  Kouzmanoff is a nice third basemen but he is a role player.  Unless Seattle gets a good young pitcher in return (Gio Gonzalez) this would do more harm than good to the worst team in the AL West. 

Since: Dec 19, 2010
Posted on: January 28, 2011 11:04 am

A's trying to trade for Chone Figgins

The A's have added a lot of mediocre hitters. They are still a light hitting team with some great starting pitching. If they get Figgins that will help, but on paper they are still behind the rangers. The Rangers won the division last year without Cliff Lee. He came over in August and posted okay numbers as a ranger. The Rangers are still the class of the division. The A's may be able to finish in 2nd, but i wouldn't count out the angels. they have three quality starters and a healthy Kendry Morales. The Mariners are pathetic. Ichiro and King Felix deserve better. Mariners will be lucky to win 70 games this year. So basically my point is that the A's are a second place team. My other point is that the words "A lot" are separate words.

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or