Buster Posey Injury: 10 Options for San Francisco Giants to Cope

Pat MarrujoContributor IMay 30, 2011

Buster Posey Injury: 10 Options for San Francisco Giants to Cope

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    DENVER, CO - APRIL 19:  Buster Posey #28 of the San Francisco Giants takes an at bat against the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field on April 19, 2011 in Denver, Colorado.  (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)
    Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

    When they lost Pablo Sandoval to a wrist injury in early May, the San Francisco Giants lost a key piece of their offense. 

    With Buster Posey now likely out for the season, the Giants are left searching for answers.

    More than likely, the Giants will search for a replacement at catcher. However, they could just as easily just find a big bat to stick in the middle of the lineup.

    Here are 10 options the Giants could explore to replace Posey.

Start Eli Whiteside

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    PITTSBURGH - APRIL 28: Eli Whiteside #22 of the San Francisco Giants is congratulated by teammates in the dugout after scoring against the Pittsburgh Pirates during the game on April 28, 2011 at PNC Park in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Jared Wicke
    Jared Wickerham/Getty Images

    Eli Whiteside has been a solid backup for the Giants over the past three seasons.

    Unfortunately for the Giants, that is all he is. Whiteside has no business being an everyday starting catcher.

    He is currently batting just .176 with a single home run being his only RBI.

    Whiteside will more than likely be the immediate fix for the Giants, but do not expect him to be a long-term solution.

Start Chris Stewart

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    Chris Stewart is the only other catcher currently on the Giants' 40-man roster. 

    He is a player who has struggled to stay in the big leagues his whole career. Like Whiteside, he has what it takes to be a backup catcher—but not a starter. 

    I cannot imagine Stewart will be in the bigs all season. If the Giants pick up another catcher, Stewart will get a one-way ticket back to Fresno.

Trade for Jeff Mathis

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    ANAHEIM, CA - MAY 23:  Jeff Mathis #5 of the Los Angeles Angeles of Anaheim asks for the third base coach to make a call during the game against the Oakland Athletics at Angel Stadium on May 23, 2011 in Anaheim, California.  (Photo by Joe Scarnici/Getty I
    Joe Scarnici/Getty Images

    The Anaheim Angels currently have three catchers on their roster. Hank Conger looks to be their long-term future at the position, so Jeff Mathis could be worth trading.

    Mathis has been a starter in the past, but he has underperformed offensively. 

    However, Mathis has a great defensive track record. He has the reputation of working well with pitchers and being very reliable behind the dish.

Trade for Ryan Hanigan

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    PHOENIX, AZ - APRIL 08:  Catcher Ryan Hanigan #29 of the Cincinnati Reds in action during the Major League Baseball home opening game against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field on April 8, 2011 in Phoenix, Arizona. The Diamondbacks defeated the Reds
    Christian Petersen/Getty Images

    Ryan Hanigan is currently splitting time with Ramon Hernandez at catcher for the Cincinnati Reds. Both players have played well and are formidable MLB starters.

    Hernandez has had one of the best seasons of his career thus far. He is batting .307 with seven homers and 17 RBI in just 34 games.

    It is going to be tough for the Reds to keep numbers like that on the bench for too long. They may consider moving Hanigan for some pitching to help make a playoff push.

    Pitching is something the Giants have. 

    How much are the Giants willing to give up for a one-year starter like Hanigan, though?

Gamble on Tommy Joseph

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    SCOTTSDALE, AZ - FEBRUARY 23:  Tommy Joseph #81 of the San Francisco Giants poses for a portrait during media photo day at Scottsdale Stadium on February 23, 2011 in Scottsdale, Arizona.  (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
    Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

    This is probably the least likely of all the scenarios on this list.

    Tommy Joseph is the best catching prospect in the Giants' farm system and is their ninth best overall prospect, according to MLB.com.

    The 19-year-old catcher has battled inconsistency all season long. He is batting just .214 with four homers in San Jose, the Giants' Class-A minor league affiliate. 

    There really is no point bringing up Joseph yet. He will not be major league ready for a few more years.

Trade for Carlos Beltran

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    DENVER, CO - MAY 12:  Carlos Beltran #15 of the New York Mets watches his third home run of the game off of Matt Lindstrom of the Colorado Rockies in the ninth inning at Coors Field on May 12, 2011 in Denver, Colorado. Beltran had three homeruns and six R
    Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

    Carlos Beltran obviously would not replace Posey at catcher, but he would serve as a solution for the middle of the batting order.

    Beltran is the first of two Mets' sluggers featured on this list. He is not the hitter he once was, but Beltran can still contribute.

    He is currently batting .274 with eight homers and 28 RBI.

    The Giants are 29th in the league in scoring runs, so they could use all the offensive help they can get. Beltran would be a great option.

Trade for Jose Reyes

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    NEW YORK - MAY 21:  Jose Reyes #7 of the New York Mets celebrates after scoring on teammates Carlos Beltran #15 (not pictured) RBI single in the top of the fifth inning against the New York Yankees on May 21, 2011 at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx borough of
    Mike Stobe/Getty Images

    Trading for Jose Reyes would have the same significance as trading for Beltran. Reyes would help fill the offensive void left by Posey.

    Reyes is currently experiencing a career year for the Mets. He is batting .335 and has racked up 19 stolen bases.

    The problem with trading for Reyes is that the Giants would have to give up some big-time prospects for the shortstop.

    Plenty of other teams will be calling about Reyes as well. The price tag could be too high.

Trade for Ryan Doumit

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    DENVER, CO - MAY 01:  Catcher Ryan Doumit #41 of the Pittsburgh Pirates backs up the plate against the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field on May 1, 2011 in Denver, Colorado. The Pirates defeated the Rockies 8-4.  (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)
    Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

    Ironically enough, Ryan Doumit currently finds himself on the 15-day DL after a collision at home plate.

    Once Doumit is healthy, he could be a reasonable option for the Giants. The Pirates already have Chris Snyder, who is having a very good offensive year at catcher.

    I expect one of these two guys to be on the market soon. Both have had offensive success in the past, and neither are very old.

Trade for Ivan Rodriguez

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    WASHINGTON, DC - MAY 15:  Catcher Ivan Rodriguez #7 of the Washington Nationals in action against the Florida Marlins at Nationals Park on May 15, 2011 in Washington, DC.  (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
    Rob Carr/Getty Images

    This former MVP-winner and future Hall of Famer is currently stuck in Washington, playing for the lowly Nationals.

    This team is not going to be a contender any time soon, so they will probably trade "Pudge" sometime this season for prospects.

    Rodriguez is not the player he once was, but he is still a formidable catcher. He still has a cannon for an arm and has the potential to get big hits.

    In the past four seasons, Pudge has played for six teams. I feel Pudge would be happy to make that number seven if it meant being traded to the defending champs.

Sign Bengie Molina

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    SAN FRANCISCO - MAY 14:  Bengie Molina #1 of the San Francisco Giants bats against the Houston Astros at AT&T Park on May 14, 2010 in San Francisco, California.  (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
    Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

    It is hard to believe Bengie Molina is a free agent, but that might not be for too long.

    There has been plenty of buzz surrounding the possibility of the Giants signing Molina, who spent 3.5 seasons in San Francisco.

    Molina provides a good bat and reasonable defense. He has played for contenders before and is a proven player.

    The Giants are already familiar with Molina, so I feel this is the best option for the ball club. Sign him to a one-year deal and allow him to play out one more season in San Francisco.