Carlos Beltran automatically propels the Giants as the favorites to win it all again. Some people like the trade, while others dislike it due to Beltran's past injuries and age.
I would argue that Carlos Beltran is the perfect fit for the Giants in 2011. After losing Buster Posey for the season, the Giants needed a guy who can hit home runs and drive in runs.
Carlos Beltran is that guy. He walks onto the Giants and leads the team in R (61), H (102), 2B (30), HR (15), RBI (66) and BB (60). Beltran joins the Giants and instantly makes the offense better.
Beltran is also solid in the field, although he boots Nate Schierholtz out of right. Schierholtz will likely move over to left, as he was the Giants best hitting and fielding outfielder prior to the Beltran trade.
The Giants are a team that revolves around pitching, which is from head to toe the best in the bigs.
Once Jonathan Sanchez returns to the team in place of Barry Zito, the Giants will have the best 5 man starting rotation in the MLB.
The pitching staff already ranks in the top two in the bigs in a majority of categories such as ERA, quality starts, WHIP and BAA.
The Giants relievers are the best in the bigs, hands down. Brian Wilson leads the league with 32 saves, not to mention that both Santiago Casilla and Sergio Romo both have sub-par 2.00 ERA.
With the Giants division being so weak, they should be able to get into the playoffs somewhat easily. Arizona has a very strong team, but are clearly second best to the Giants.
Last year the Giants came out of nowhere, this year will not be the same. Everyone now realizes how dominant the Giants' pitching is.
With Carlos Beltran in the Giants lineup to go along with Pablo Sandoval, Aubrey Huff, Nate Schierholtz and Jeff Keppinger, this team will do big things in 2011.
If the Giants indeed are able to repeat this season, next season will look bright as well.
Carlos Beltran, Cody Ross, Mark DeRosa, Pat Burrell and Miguel Tejada are all older players that will be coming off the books for the Giants in 2012.
Carlos Beltran may not return, but Buster Posey should be healthy by the start of the 2012 season. Posey would be a great replacement for Beltran next season, as Beltran has seemingly filled in for Posey in 2011.
The starting pitching won't be a worry. Tim Lincecum, Matt Cain, Madison Bumgarner and Jonathan Sanchez will all be locked up for next season.
How far will the Giants go in 2011?
Pitching will not be the question for the Giants going forward. The obvious concern will be the offense.
Giants Pablo Sandoval, Nate Schierholtz, Brandon Belt, Buster Posey and Aubrey Huff will all be a major portion of the offense in 2012.
Aubrey Huff more than likely won't make it past 2012, but there are a slew of offensive options for the Giants.
Hector Sanchez seems to be the catcher of the future, which could mean that Buster Posey could move over to second.
Brandon Crawford is arguably the shortstop of the future, although his offense will need to improve. There is no doubting how solid his defense is.
The Giants have a great amount of young, solid talent. The sky is the limit for this group, and a dynasty is very possible after winning the World Series in 2010. Winning the 2011 World Series will not be easy, but this 2011 team is better than the team in 2010.