San Francisco Giants' Pablo Sandoval Can't Do It By Himself
However, if you're Giants GM Brian Sabean, you are currently shedding no ray of light on that happening. Actually, he is doing the exact opposite.
While taking in various reports from the San Francisco Chronicle and San Jose Mercury News , it is clear that Sabean is up to his normal self, not wanting to pay established young veterans who have proven to be productive performers and not wanting to re-sign his team's free-agents who are coming off solid seasons; yup that sounds like the typical Brian Sabean.
The same old Sabean who signed Armando Benitez, Dave Roberts, Barry Zito, Aaron Rowand, and Edgar Renteria to big contracts, doesn't want to sign either Matt Holliday or Jason Bay because doing so would cost the Giants their first round draft pick.
Unfortunately for Giants fans, their GM doesn't realize that business transactions have trade-offs and as the saying goes "you have to give to get" especially in the world of sports.
Now regardless of the fact that the Giants may not be able to compete financially with the rest of Bay and Holliday's potential suitors, the Giants should without a doubt be looking to ink one of these hitters.
San Francisco needs an impact hitter and unlike the aforementioned signings of guys like Rowand, Renteria and Roberts, both Bay and Holliday are still big time performers.
The writing was on the wall for guys like Renteria and Zito, who were clearly declining in their performance before coming to San Francisco, which is the main reason fans complain about their acquisitions.
However, if either Bay or Holliday were to struggle with San Francisco, fans wouldn't blame Sabean for bringing them to the team. Both these guys are premier hitters in this league and have shown no signs of slowing down.
The Giants need an impact player to insert into their lineup and going after a player like Bay should be given a certain amount of value.
Free agency as the Giants well know is essentially an auction when it comes to big time players. Therefore a team with more money will probably be willing to outbid the Giants in the long run.
But that doesn't mean San Francisco shouldn't put up an offer. Reports are that Bay has rejected $60 million offers to stay in Boston.
Two years ago, the Giants paid Rowand $60 million. Bay, however, is a much more of an impact hitter the Giants need. Perhaps offering a $65-75 million deal would make Bay inclined to give San Francisco a thought.
Considering he used to play with current Giants second baseman Freddy Sanchez while in Pittsburgh, Bay might enjoy a return to the National League and a change of time zone.
Unfortunately, according to the Andrew Baggarly's column in the Mercury News , the Giants have claimed they aren't going after any free-agents that would cost them their first round draft choice.
San Francisco s starved for an impact hitter, yet has a GM that won't bother trying to sign one because of the cost of losing a draft pick?
What is this nonsense? The Giants already have one of the top minor league systems in all of baseball with prospects galore.
Wouldn't one late first round draft pick be worth it if you could have Jason Bay hitting in the middle of your lineup?
Currently, the Giants have one impact hitter in their entire lineup with 23-year-old Pablo Sandoval.
And although mega-prospect Buster Posey and infielder Juan Uribe could provide Sandoval with some extra pop in the order, neither one appears likely to be in the Giants' opening day lineup next season.
According to Giants executives, catcher Posey isn't ready for the full-time job and may begin the year back at Triple-A Fresno. Plus, infielder Uribe rejected the Giants latest offer to remain in San Francisco.
Posey who projects to be a solid 15-20 homer guy with a high average and high on-base percentage may truly not be ready for the full-time job. And if the Giants don't want him to be the everyday catcher next season, then re-signing Bengie Molina should be more of a priority.
If Molina wants a two-year deal with an option for a third then give it too him. No other free-agent catcher out there can match Molina's production who spent most of the last two years as San Francisco's cleanup hitter.
Therefore, whenever Posey is ready, let him take over Molina's spot.
But playing a major portion of the year without Posey or Molina as the starting catcher will only be a set-back to the Giants' offense.
Furthermore, if the Giants can't come up with an offer that reaches Uribe's demands then they are nearly slapping their fanbase in the face.
Without Uribe last season the Giants would probably have been dead last in every offensive category instead of amongst the worst.
While receiving just 398 at-bats last year Uribe hit 16 homers and drove in 55 RBI. The Giants are in desperate need of run-producers but they seem to be letting one of their best from last season walk away.
The Giants need offense but yet they seem to want neither their proven performers from last season back nor do they want to let their top prospect take over.
Furthermore they don't want to pay for the top free-agents because of the cost of losing a draft pick.
So in order to compensate for not wanting to do those things, the Giants are going to pursue second-rate players who will the provide second-rate production and San Francisco will once again miss out on the postseason.
Jermaine Dye? Nick Swisher? Xavier Nady? Adrian Beltre?
The second-rate free-agents are not going to be the impact hitter the Giants need in their lineup. Dye is getting old quick and as Giants Featured Columnist Danny Penza points out in his latest article Dye's offensive production wouldn't outweigh his deficiencies in the field.
These "second-tier" free-agents are not the answer.
Too bad they are exactly Brian Sabean's type.
However if the Giants want to win, they need to refrain from making another mistake like a Zito, Rowand, Renteria signing and make an impactful one or at-least retain their proven producers like Molina and Uribe.
Sandoval can't carry the offense by himself; he's going to need some help.
But if Sabean continues to sign second-tier options that aren't difference makers, 2010 will be the seventh year in a row without postseason baseball in San Francisco.
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