Just writing in to express my genuine excitement about a Giants position player that: a) came up through our farm system, and b) is 23 years old.
Emmanuel Burriss is all guts and flash, and he's already achieved second-favorite-player status with me (see Lincecum, Tim).
And as he's now starting on a regular basis, I think it's officially time for Burriss jerseys to start selling in waves around the Bay Area. Talk about a player you can build a team (and a marketing strategy) around.
For a taste of what I'm referring to, here's a recap of five thrilling Emmanuel Burriss plays from last night's win over the Padres
1. Decently hit line drive between first and second base. Burriss (playing second) takes two quick steps to his left and makes a full-extension diving catch with his head angled at the right-field corner.
2. Lays down a bunt down the third-base line on the first pitch he sees from 2007 Cy Young winner Jake Peavy for the Giants' first hit. Bunt is so good that the third baseman eats the ball.
3. On the next pitch of the game, Barry Zito lays down a good bunt towards the third baseman. Seeing that no one is covering third, Burriss (without hesitation) blazes around second base and goes for third.
Padres second baseman Tadahito Iguchi makes an incredible throw back to third to hit the third baseman just as he arrives back at the base. Burriss is out by a foot. It's an aggressive, heads-up play against Peavy though, and I think he would've made it four out of five times.
4. In the eighth, Burriss puts down a drag bunt between the pitcher and the first baseman. The ball gets by the pitcher, and is played by the charging Iguchi, who barehands the ball and tosses to first. Burriss slides headfirst into the bag. He's called out, but it's a bang-bang play that could've gone either way.
5. With two outs in the top of the ninth, and the Giants leading 1-0, Burriss comes to the plate with Rich Aurillia on second base. He singles to left to give the Giants a much-needed insurance run. They win 2-0.
Not bad for a 23-year old kid getting his first real shot on a team that badly needs young, exciting position players to build around.