The Giants are the surprise team of the NL, leading in the wild card race (as of July 10, +3 Milwaukee, +1 Colorado, +3 Fla. Their starting pitching has been very good, relief pitching good, and hitting piss poor. If not for BENGIE MOLINA being an early season RBI machine, and PABLO SANDOVAL (ALL-STAR!!) being the second coming of Kirby Puckett, they’d be in bigger trouble with probably the worst first base production ever. For some reason the Giants don’t play NATE SCHIERHOLTZ (.294) every day, and finally figured out that JUAN URIBE (.300) is a better second baseman than any of their prospects—but still there is no power on this team.
IF THE GIANTS ADD A HITTER WHO HAS SOME POP THEY CAN WIN THE WILD CARD—WITHOUT ONE THEY WILL RAPIDLY FADE WITH ALL THEIR PITCHERS UNDER PRESSURE KNOWNING THEY CAN’T GIVE UP MORE THAN 3 RUNS A GAME.
Meanwhile the Indians are in the cellar (-13) and there was a rumor that VICTOR MARTINEZ (c/1b, b-12/78, .298-14) was on the bloc. This switch hitting rbi machine would be perfect for the Giants.
Trying to offer up a basket of promising prospects for him, I’d send JONATHAN SANCHEZ (b-11/82, 2-8, 5.30), the pitcher with loads of stuff but hasn’t figured how to pitch with a runner on base to the Indians, along with outfielder FREDDIE LEWIS (b-12/80, .245-4), infielder EMMANUEL BURRISS (b-1/85, .238-0) , and high prospect CONNOR GILLASPIE (b-7/87, A .276-2). Apart from Martinez I'd ask for JOSH BARFIELD (b-12/82, AAA .230-0) who hasn’t worked out for the Indians.
In any event I wish the Giants could make this trade. Ironically, a few days after I thought of it JOHATHAN SANCHEZ pitched a no hitter. Timing is everything in life, but it is still a deal I’d make.
Go Giants—but we need a .300-30 hr guy to get into the playoffs.
7/17-1st game after all-star break-Giants with all world Tim Linceumn (10-2 2.33) facing the last place Pirates (38-50). The Giants offense led by firstbaseman Rich Aurila (.212-2 hrs) gets 1 run (on a throwing error) in 14 innings and lose.
7/18-Much maligned Zito only gives up a couple of runs...and Giants offense gets shut down by a pitcher with a 4.29 era and they get shutout and lose 0-2.
7/20-Tommy Hansen with 25k's this year gets 11 against the Giants.
In the Five Games after the all star break--Giants 1-4 and have hit ZERO home runs-fall OUT of wild card lead as Colorado shoots by..
7/30-GOOD JOB BRIAN SABIAN
The Giants didn't get one great power hitter (w high average) but they got two solid professional hitters to replace their two biggest weaknesses--and only gave up one high prospect.
Ryan Garko has a good average, and mediocre power--he's not a "dream" first baseman, but wouldn't be the nightmare that has been there all season. Basically a "B-" player replacing the group of "D's" that were there.
This was then coupled with acquiring Freddie Sanchez, former batting champ, to play second base. When I saw Sanchez he seemed like he took a lot of pitches, and was the second coming of Eddie Stankey. But he has little speed (no stolen bases the last few years) and I was surprised to see his low walk totals. But he is a "B+" player replacing a group of rotating "D+" players.
With two hitters that will not make easy outs, the other hitters in the lineup will benefit as the opposing pitchers wouldn't have to just focus on 3-4 hitters in the lineup, and just bounce curvevballs for swinging strikes when the Giants first and secondbasemen are up.
(PS A Month Later) ALL YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THE GIANTS SEASON---GIANTS PLAY 3 IN PHILADELPHIA BANDBOX AGAINST THE BEST HITTING CLUB IN THE NL. IN 3 GAMES THEIR PITCHING GIVES UP A TOTAL OF THREE RUNS. The Giants LOSE 2 of the 3 games.
(PS PS Two Months Later, after it looks like Giants will pull to within 3 of Colorado with 10 to play, and with a one run lead on the Cubs, with two outs and two strikes, the Cubs hit a 2 run homer. Could blame it on the Giant's reliever, but real blame has to go to the Giants hitters--with any attack they should have had a 5 run lead and would not be in another tight ballgame where the pitching has to be near perfect. Clearly Vic Martinez and another bat was desperately needed. As very good columnist Bruce Jenkins wrote:
Outside of Bowker, whose double and homer provided the San Francisco runs, this was another brutal night in the batter's box. The spectators knew it, too. These are fans numbed by months of the harmless popup, the ludicrous whiff and the six-hop dribbler. If people were expecting a buzz as the Giants launched the season's final homestand, they got more of a hum, turned way down low.
At one point in the fifth inning, a Giants runner on third with just one out, a couple of lower deck fans stood up and began gesturing wildly for the rest of the folks to rise. Not a soul responded. The man was left stranded. Sort of like the season - or so it appeared.