MLB Trade Rumors: Jonathan Sanchez and 5 Sell-High Options for SF Giants

Barrett HansenAnalyst IIJune 22, 2011

MLB Trade Rumors: Jonathan Sanchez and 5 Sell-High Options for SF Giants

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    Players like Jonathan Sanchez could very easily be right around their highest possible trade value.

    Even if he can still be useful to the Giants down the road, if the market rates Sanchez more valuable than the Giants think he is, San Francisco owes it to itself to cash in.

    Here are the top five sell-high candidates on the San Francisco Giants.

Miguel Tejada

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    Miguel Tejada has gotten a hit in 11 of his past 14 starts.

    The 37-year-old infielder has, in all likelihood, reached the highest trade value he'll get all season.

    It almost doesn't matter what the team gets back for Miggy. They just have to move him and his semi-thawed bat out of town before it freezes over again.

Ryan Vogelsong

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    There are few stories around the league more compelling than Ryan Vogelsong's.

    A clear favorite for the Comeback Player of the Year Award, Vogelsong has been the rock of the Giants rotation since his April call-up. He has gone 4-1 with a 1.92 ERA and 1.13 WHIP in his 12 starts.

    At 33 years of age, Vogelsong is not a long-term solution for the Giants. San Francisco may be able to retain his services relatively cheaply for a couple more years, but there's no guarantee he keeps up his production.

    In the meantime, the Giants will have six starters upon the imminent return of Barry Zito. Dealing Vogelsong would open up a roster spot and possibly net some decent prospects from a pitching-starved team looking to make a playoff run.

Javier Lopez

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    Javier Lopez was a huge contributor in the San Francisco Giants postseason run last fall.

    The lefty specialist posted a 1.42 ERA and 0.68 WHIP with 16 strikeouts to only two walks in 19 innings for San Francisco last season. Overall, he has a 2.17 ERA in a Giants uniform.

    However, Lopez has a 4.06 ERA and 1.42 WHIP for his career, numbers that should temper San Francisco's expectation of the 33-year-old southpaw.

    Lopez isn't about to fall off a cliff any time soon—he just has pitched far above his career norms for a year-and-a-half and is, therefore, a typical sell-high candidate. If there isn't a market for a lefty specialist this year, the Giants should just hold him.

    But San Francisco should not hesitate to pull the trigger if they get a great offer for Lopez.

Nate Schierholtz

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    It may be news to some that Nate Schierholtz is currently batting only .256.

    Schierholtz has provided clutch hit after clutch hit in 2011, earning him 14 starts in 18 games so far in June. 

    But he seems incapable of squaring up the ball any time before the seventh inning. He has an OPS of only .703 and has not homered since his two-run, eighth-inning blast against the A's on May 22nd.

    Schierholtz's numbers should not be surprising, as they are right in line with his career averages. After five years in the big leagues, Schierholtz has shown no signs that he can consistently hit for average or power. 

    Nate the Great's late-game heroics have earned him a reputation around the league and are partially masking his mediocre numbers. San Francisco could get a good deal from a team in need of a platoon outfielder that is particularly enticed by Schierholtz's defense.

Jonathan Sanchez

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    Jonathan Sanchez remains as enigmatic as ever in 2011, artfully balancing brilliance and ineffectiveness.

    San Francisco's No. 2 starter perpetually seems poised to finally break out, always one step away from becoming a dominant force in the National League.

    Unsurprisingly, Sanchez is struggling yet again with command in 2011. He has walked a major-league high 53 batters in 15 starts and is showing no signs of corralling the wildness that has plagued him his whole career.

    Sanchez is still on the right side of 30 and continues to ooze ace potential. But he has consistently failed to convert that potential into success.

    The Giants need to deal one of their starters. They have six good ones and seriously are lacking in hitting at both the major-league level and in the high minor-league levels.

    It would be in San Francisco's best interests to deal Sanchez, who commands better market value than Zito or Vogelsong, and get some hitting in return.