Coghlan a Fish out of water

The 2009 National League Rookie of the Year has been demoted. The Florida Marlins optioned starting center fielder Chris Coghlan to Triple-A on Friday afternoon.

This year, the Marlins moved him to center field after dealing Cameron Maybin to the Padres in the offseason. Although Coghlan has played well defensively, he has not been able to get his bat going. Coghlan’s OPS has dropped from .850 his rookie year to .718 last year to .664 this year. He was hitting .230 with five home runs and seven stolen bases but had been caught six times. He had a .296 on-base percentage at the time of his demotion.

These type of personnel decisions by general managers are extremely difficult. I’ll never forget optioning Bret Boone to the minor leagues in 1997. This is a player who had hit 12-15 home runs every season from 1993-1996, but in 1997 for whatever reason, he could never get it going.

Boone was one of the best defensive and offensive second basemen in the National League, and we all knew that he would turn his season around. However, we made the decision to option him Triple-A. Here's why:

  1. The team wasn’t winning. Bret wasn’t producing.

  2. Wake-up call to the player that being on the major league team is never a given; you have to earn it.