The Giants and Braves waited for more than four hours today through a driving rainstorm to get in their ballgame, but they did it. The rain let up about 5:00 p.m., and they went for it, soggy outfield and all.
Today’s game was scheduled to be the Braves’ last of their one and only appearance at AT&T Park this year, and if the game had been postponed, the Braves would have had to return on August 26, meaning that they would have had to play 34 days in a row between August 13 and September 15. In other words, the Braves would likely have agreed to play the game today even if the outfield was a foot underwater.
Tim Lincecum did his part, working fast and shutting the Braves down. The final score was 6-3 played in two hours and 20 minutes, which is fast nowadays for a game of this score. You can bet that the pitchers who the only players afield who were warm and they worked fast to stay that way.
Meanwhile down on the farm, Buster Posey and Freddie Lewis are giving the Giants some tough decisions right away. Posey is nine for his first 18 with a triple and a homerun, and Lewis is five for his first ten with a double, triple, homerun and five walks.
Actually, I see Posey as the lesser problem at the moment. The Giants are clearly going to start Bengie Molina and Aubrey Huff at catcher and 1B for the time being, so there’s no where for Posey to play, even if he’s ready. He’ll be better served playing in Fresno every day for another month or two before the Giants either have an opening or create an opening, aside from the whole issue of pushing back his arbitration eligibility or free agency back by a year.
I, for one, won’t be screaming injustice if the Giants keep Buster in the minors long enough to keep him an extra year before arbitration or free agency. The Giants gave him a $6.2 million signing bonus. Buster shouldn’t be going to bed hungry any time soon.
The situation with Freddie Lewis is more ticklish. He’s out of options and is playing in Fresno as part of a “rehabilitation assignment.” I can’t see the Giants keeping him there for more than another five to ten games (the Grizzlies have played four so far) before somebody cries foul.
Freddie is obviously ready to go, but the Giants don’t have a roster space for him. Most likely, they will have to designate him for assignment sometime in the next week or ten days, and then try to arrange a trade with any of the teams that claim him when he goes through waivers.
Obviously, Freddie doesn’t hurt himself by playing well at Fresno. The better he plays, the more likely that somebody else will claim him as soon as he hits the waiver wire. The only way I can see him staying a Giants is if one of their major league outfielders gets hurt in the next five to ten days.