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Free Agent Fantasy Impact: Chone Figgins

At 31 years old, Chone Figgins is one of the better free agents available this offseason, coming off a great season for the Angels. In his 2009 campaign, the speedy Figgins stole 42 bases in 59 tries, while hitting .298/.395/.393. He scored 114 runs as the Angels leadoff man, adding in 5 homers and 54 RBI of his own.

Figgins value in recent years has come from his second base and outfield eligibility, but by playing only 2 games at second and 1 in the outfield during the 2009 season, that aspect of his fantasy game is gone. He will simply be a third baseman in your fantasy leagues next year, making his value drop quite a bit. As a second baseman, the stolen bases and average that Figgins provides were perfect, but stolen bases and no power is not what you should be looking for at third base.

Due to his defense, speed, and on-base ability, Figgins will get many offers this offseason, and will have quite a few teams to choose from. The Cubs could come after Figgins hard, and ask him to play second base for them next year. The White Sox are rumored to be interested in Figgins being their left fielder, but they don’t have the money to meet his asking price. If he wants to stay at third base, the Cardinals could be interested, and he could always stay with the Angels. If the Phillies decide to go with Figgins over Adrian Beltre and Pedro Feliz, his value would skyrocket due to the huge amount of talent that would be hitting behind him.

If he leaves the Angels, Kendry Morales and Torii Hunter‘s RBI opportunities will go down, with Erick Aybar or Bobby Abreu likely taking over the leadoff duties. Replacing him would not be easy, with Beltre possibly staying in the AL West.

Figgins’ best value would be with the Cubs or White Sox, because moving him away from third base would allow owners to better utilize his skill set at a position where it is a better fit. However, the Phillies are still a great spot for Figgy to end up, but you’ll have to find power in more unconventional ways then before. He will give you steals and a decent average wherever he goes, with his value increasing dramatically in OBP leagues.