Uggla and Damon Are NOT the Answers to the Giants' Playoff Hopes

Kevin O'BrienCorrespondent IDecember 16, 2009

PHOENIX - JULY 10:  Dan Uggla #6 of the Florida Marlins warms up before the major league baseball game against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field on July 10, 2009 in Phoenix, Arizona. The Diamondbacks defeated the Marlins 8-0. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Dan Uggla and Johnny Damon .

They do not make sense in Black and Orange, right?

After all,  the Giants currently have Freddy Sanchez at second base. In fact, he's implanted there, without compromise. The Giants traded their second-best pitching prospect, Tim Alderson, for him at the trade deadline last season, and they signed him to a two-year, $6 million per year deal early this offseason. It was the first real deal GM Brian Sabean did after he was re-signed as general manager for the Giants.

Uggla is a second baseman. I can't see him as a type that can move anywhere else. He's doesn't have the range or fielding ability to play shortstop (though anyone at this point would be an upgrade over Edgar Renteria), and I can't seem him being an upgrade at third base over Pablo Sandoval (though everybody, except me of course, thinks moving him to first is the answer).

Sure, there is a lot to like about Uggla if you are fan of the Orange and Black. He hits home runs (in a pitcher's park like Dolphins Stadium mind you) and he does have a decent on-base percentage (.354 last year) despite his high strikeout numbers (150 whiffs last year). Those two positives of Uggla, though, are two things that nobody else in the Giants lineup can do except Pablo Sandoval, so it is easy to see why some Giants fans would be tempted by Sabean acquiring Uggla from the Marlins.

However, Uggla doesn't fit on this Giants squad. He would be a guy without a position, which is never good, especially when you have somebody who has played second base with the regularity that Uggla has.

And yet, according to Jayson Stark , the Giants seem to have interest in acquiring the Marlins slugger.


And if that isn't enough, there seems to be some increasing opinion on the web (on Giants blog El Lefty Malo ) that Johnny Damon wouldn't be such a bad idea as the Giants' left fielder.

I know Eugenio Velez probably isn't the answer for the Giants in left field (he was a product of a hot two weeks and that's it). I know that Andres Torres isn't a very attractive option either. I know Fred Lewis has burned so many bridges with his high strikeout numbers and bad fielding that Giants fans would riot and start the next San Francisco fire if he started on Opening Day.

However, the fact of the matter is this—AT&T is NOT a home run hitter's park, and Yankees Stadium IS.

That should be enough for Sabean to steer away from Damon despite his gaudy numbers (24 home runs, 82 RBI).

If Damon is signed by the Giants for 2010, Giants faithful should be prepared to experience an "Edgar Renteria-esque" season from the former Yankee outfielder.

The Giants shouldn't stay completely pat this offseason. I agree that Nick Johnson would not a bad signing, and I think the case is aptly made in this article .

However, Sabean should not be swinging for the fences with these two guys. They just reek of Renteria, Dave Roberts, Steve Finley and Ryan Klesko. I want the Giants to win next year, and I think with the right player(s), they are more than capable of doing so.

But anyone thinking that Damon or Uggla is going to be that missing piece for this San Francisco Giants squad has to be out of their mind.

(Unless of course, getting Uggla requires getting rid of Conor Gillaspie, which the McCovey Chronicles doesn't think is such a bad idea. You know what? I agree with them! Just by looking at his stats , maybe an Uggla for Gillaspie swap wouldn't be such a bad thing. Only that though. Nothing else. Like I said before, neither guy alone will take the Giants to the playoffs.)