Marcus Trumaine Sanders
- Bats Right, Throws Right
- Height 6' 0", Weight 160 lb.
Marcus Sanders was considered a top prospect at age 19 yet never made it past A ball.
Sanders was picked by the San Francisco Giants as a draft-and-follow in the 17th round of the 2003 amateur draft, one pick before David Purcey. San Francisco signed him later and he debuted as a pro with the 2004 AZL Giants, hitting .292/.415/.431 with 54 runs, 35 walks and 28 steals (in 32 tries) in 55 games, though he fielded only .944 at 2B. He led the Arizona League in runs (4 ahead of Daniel Desouza), tied Irving Falú and Freddy Parejo for 6th in hits (61), led in steals (4 ahead of #2 Alexi Casilla), was 4th in walks, ranked 4th in OBP and led second basemen in errors (14). He failed to make the Arizona League All-Star team as Hernán Iribarren was picked at 2B after a .439/.490/.630 season. Baseball America ranked him as the AZL's #10 prospect, between Elvin Puello and Josh Johnson and as the fastest baserunner in the Giants system. Despite playing in a short-season league, he was third in the Giants chain in swipes behind Fred Lewis and Doug Clark.
Moving to shortstop in 2005, Marcus dazzled for the Augusta Greenjackets, producing at a .300/.407/.400 clip with 86 runs, 69 walks and 57 steals while only being nabbed 9 times. He reached base four times and scored twice in the South Atlantic League All-Star Game. He was picked for the 2005 Futures Game, but was kept out due to a shoulder injury, his place taken by Kevin Frandsen. Despite missing some time (he played 111 games), he was 4th in the SAL in runs (behind Tim Battle, Joe Koshansky and Andrew Pinckney), second in steals (trailing Carlos Gómez by 7 but being caught 17 fewer times), placing 4th in walks (after Roger Bernadina, David Cook and Sam Orr) and being 4th in OBP (behind Travis Denker, Brian Horwitz and Matt Young). He fielded .940 at his new position. He was named the SAL All-Star shortstop for his fine season. Among Giants farmhands, he tied Lewis for third in walks, led in steals (one ahead of Alex Requena) and was 4th in runs (behind Frandsen, Eddy Martinez-Esteve and Travis Ishikawa). He tied Fernando Perez for 5th in the affiliated minors in steals. Baseball America named him the SAL's #3 prospect (behind Scott Elbert and Neil Walker and ahead of Ryan Braun at #5 and Hunter Pence at #15), as the Giants' #2 prospect (behind only Matt Cain), as the #65 prospect in all of baseball, as the Giants' fastest baserunner and as the SAL's fastest baserunner, best baserunner and most exciting player.
Sanders fell fast in 2006. He battled injuries and poor production, hitting only .213/.302/.265 for the San Jose Giants and .121/.275/.152 in 10 games for the AZL Giants. He stole 28 bases in 33 tries, good for 6th in the Giants system. Back with Augusta in 2007, he returned to second base and batted .264/.372/.342 with 53 runs in 94 games and 29 swipes in 35 tries. He tied Tyler Graham for the sixth-most swipes by a Giants minor leaguer. No longer a prospect, San Francisco let him go. He signed with the independent New Jersey Jackals and produced at a .302/.385/.380 clip while going 17-for-19 in steals and scoring 58 times in 72 contests. He hit .296/.388/.375 with 23 steals in 31 tries, 51 walks and 74 runs in 93 games his second year with New Jersey. He led the Canadian-American Association in runs (3 ahead of Myron Leslie), tied Dominic Ramos for 4th in hits (108), was 4th in triples (5), tied Ryan Crespi for 4th in steals, ranked third in walks (behind Pete LaForest and Leslie) and was 4th in OBP (between LaForest and Carlos Sosa). Melvin Falu beat him out as the All-Star second baseman.
The Floridian ended his professional baseball career, having just turned 24 late in the 2009 season. He hit .279/.381/.366 in 489 minor league games, with 371 runs, 174 RBI, 271 walks and 182 steals in 216 tries.