Gainesville- Former Florida Gators shortstop Cole Figueroa has signed a major league contract with the Miami Marlins.
Miami is the third organization that Figueroa has been a member of in 2016. During the offseason, he signed a minor league contract with the Pittsburgh Pirates. Figueroa made the Pirates opening day roster thanks to a .260 batting average in 57 plate appearances during spring training. However, Pittsburgh designated him for assignment on June 24 after his batting average dipped to .154. The Dodgers claimed Figueroa off waivers and optioned him to triple-A Oklahoma City. Figueroa elected for free agency upon being designated for assignment on July 11.
Figueroa was a stand out shortstop at Lincoln High School in Tallahassee, resulting in being drafted by the Toronto Blue Jays in the ninth round of the 2006 draft. Figueroa, however, chose to play at the University of Florida instead.
While at Florida, Figueroa was named a freshman All-American by multiple publications. In 2008, Figueroa was named a Golden Spikes Award finalist after leading the Gators in average, home runs, RBI, slugging percentage, and on-base percentage.
Figueroa was selected in the sixth round of the 2008 MLB draft by the San Diego Padres. Figueroa has played in the Majors with the Tampa Bay Rays, the New York Yankees, and the Pittsburgh Pirates, but has also been a member of the Padres and the Dodgers organizations. He is the owner of a career .208 batting average with nine RBI in eighty-four career plate appearances.
Figueroa’s father, Bien Figueroa played for the St. Louis Cardinals in 1992, and managed several minor league teams.