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Sunday, June 19, 2011

Giants Brass in a Tough Spot with Offense

Swept by the A’s in Oakland.  Good pitching with little to no run support.  Can’t say we haven’t seen this before.  At some point, you had to expect the magic to fall off a bit.  You can’t just keep losing players at the rate the Giants have and expect things to be the same.  Remember, without Posey and Sanchez, no way do we win the World Series.  However, you also don’t expect to see an entire offense just fall apart at the same time.  Nobody is stepping up at the plate for this squad.  Nobody.  I think I read a tweet from Andrew Baggarly saying the Giants were 0-19 with runners in scoring position against the A’s, and are 0-26 including the final game (a loss) in Arizona. 

I would like to think that Pablo will get his bat established soon, but that’s not a given.  I’d also like to think that Andres Torres would start hitting soon.  Once again, though, not a given.  Torres was not a career journeyman minor leaguer for nothing.  I don’t think we’ll see Aubrey Huff’s batting average over .260 this year (hopefully he proves me wrong on that one), and I don’t think anybody can accurately predict what the Giants’ catching situation will look like in a month or two.  What I do know is this:  the fan base is getting impatient, as is Bruce Bochy.  No matter how solid the pitching staff is, you just can’t sustain a first–place run with this type of offensive struggles.  To me, this Giants season just proves how difficult it is to repeat as champions in baseball.  With such a long season, there are so many twists and turns that can derail a team’s chances.  I’m not saying that I give up on this team, just that the chances of repeating are looking very tough.  Even with a healthy squad, they will still be very tough odds.
I’ve been thinking about all of the recent cries for change from the Giants fanhood, and I cannot help but ask myself, what would I do if I were in charge of this team? 
And to be quite honest, I don’t know that I would do things all that differently.  I may be completely wrong on this, but it seems that some people are looking for a miraculous turnaround with this offense right now.  I just don’t see that happening.  If we tried to make a trade, who would we even trade for?  There are no elite bats on the market right now, save Jose Reyes, and I can’t think of a realistic scenario where we could trade for him and actually resign him.  To me, he’s not even an option at this point.
So if Reyes is out of the picture, then who would we trade for?  And who would we give up?  Personally, the only player I want to see shipped over is a corner outfielder or infielder in his mid-20’s, in the prime of his career.  Unfortunately, teams don’t give up players like that anymore.  Not without a hefty asking price.  Is that too picky of me to say?  Possibly.  But I’m concerned about the long-term future of this team, which I feel is very bright.  I don’t want another old veteran brought in to platoon with Aaron Rowand and Pat Burrell.  I’m also not going to give up a Zach Wheeler, Brandon Belt, or Gary Brown, which are probably the first names that other teams will bring up in trade talks.  I know that prospects are never a sure thing, but for now, this organization looks like it has some very good players coming through the system, and I’d like to see them get a chance with us.  We’ve already built a tremendous homegrown pitching staff, and I feel that we can do the same with the offense as well.

So, if a trade is unlikely, then what is a GM to do?  If it’s me, I’m waiting this team out.  I’m sticking with the players we’ve got until they prove they can’t get it done any longer.  If a usable catcher happens to pop up somewhere along the line, and we can get him for next to nothing, I’m going for it.  Otherwise, this team is what it is right now.  We hope for some of the bats to get going, at least enough to get us 4 or 5 runs.  That’s all we need to win, sometimes less.  If Bochy has to keep mixing and matching to find the right group of hitters, so be it.  But I’m leaning on the youngsters if we fall out of contention.  I read a post from “Dr. B.” over at “When the Giants Come to Town” today, and he said he’d like to see an offensive infusion of younger players once Belt returns from his injury.  I wouldn’t mind that either.  But at this point in the season, we’d have to fall off a lot more before we see something like that happen. 

I think this team may still be solid enough to squeak out the division.  I don’t see a wildcard happening for anyone in the west this season.  But we’re going to need more production from the bats (and no more injuries!).  That’s all there is to it.  Frankly, I hope people don’t really think Pat Burrell would have led us to a series win this weekend.  I know he was probably the right choice to DH, but he also can’t hit his way out of a paper bag right now. 

We’ll see what Sabean chooses to do (or not do) in the days to follow.  For now, though, we wait.  And hey, at least we’re still 7 games over .500 right?    



  1. Hey, nice blog.

    Watching the Giants-Pads game this afternoon and cringing every time Emmanuel Burriss came up, I got to thinking: The Padres look like they are anxious to go into sell mode. What about a trade for O-Dog to play 2B for the rest of the season? I don't think they would have to give up a top prospect and he'd look a lot more appealing in the 2 hole of the lineup than Burriss.

  2. At least he would steal some bags right? And maybe he could hit for some pop too. Manny can't seem to do much at the dish right now. I do like his defense though.