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Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Injury Bug Ripping Through Giants

The Giants have lost the first two games of this important 4-game set with the Braves, and ballgames are not all this team has been losing. Over the last week or so, the Giants have watched nearly 1/2 of their lineup go down with some sort of injury, and it's landed their prize trade acquisition on the DL.

What has been discussed about as much as pertaining to the Giants over the last week is when the heck is Carlos Beltran going to get back into the lineup. What was supposed to be a minor tweak of his right hand has now turned into a 15-day DL stint, leaving the Giants without their 2nd best hitter until at least August 22nd (retroactive to Aug. 7th). Joining Beltran on the DL is top set-up man Sergio Romo, with right shoulder inflammation, and leadoff man Andres Torres (contusion) leaving the Giants paper thin in the outfield. Those three could also soon be joined by Jonathan Sanchez, who pulled a Barry Zito and sprained his left ankle coming in to field a bunt. That's four, very important pieces to this team that will not be able to help for a while, and it's caused Bruce Bochy to do some interesting things with the lineup. On Tuesday night, do to the lack of outfielder options, he put Aubrey Huff and Brandon Belt each in corner outfield spots flanking center fielder Cody Ross. Outfielders Aaron Rowand and Nate Schierholtz as well as 2nd baseman Jeff Keppinger are also banged up and weren't available Tuesday, though it's not likely they'll need DL stints. Even Pablo Sandoval was forced out of the game on Monday night because of a foot injury.

With the injury bug spreading through this team like a bad flu, it's very plausible Brian Sabean could feel obligated to go out and try and bring in help via the waiver wire. Three names that surfaced Tuesday as players who have either been put on or cleared waivers that I believe would be perfect additions to this team right now are a couple of A's, Coco Crisp and Rich Harden. With Torres now down with injury, and having a real off year in general, I think Sabean would be open to the idea of bringing in another center fielder/leadoff option. I don't want to say Crisp is in the league that Kenny Lofton was, but remember what a spark K-Lo brought to the Giants when they got him in that summer of '02? That's exactly what this lineup needs, a jump start at the top, something they haven't really had all year long. Torres has never gotten going, and it hurts because Keppinger was hitting well in the 2-spot. The other leadoff/center field candidate who doesn't intrigue me as much as Crisp but still would be an upgrade is the Mets' Angel Pagan. As far as Rich Harden is concerned, I think after watching Sanchez pitch the last few outings and now the injury pretty much proves they can't expect anything from him the rest of the way. With Zito shelved, that leaves a plethora of un-experienced minor leaguers as options for the 5th starters spot, and believe it or not, it's going to be a place that the Giants need a solid arm and Harden has looked strong since his return July 1st.

Note: Also unavailable in Wednesday's game was all-star closer Brian Wilson, who's suffering from an inflamed right arm and had it checked out by Dr. James Andrews. The check up revealed no damage and Bruce Bochy believes Wilson should be ready to go by the weekend, but you never like to see shoulder inflammation at this point in the season in your star closer. That's something that can stick with you the rest of the way and that's not what the Giants need. With top non-closing reliever Sergio Romo shelved for the next 2 weeks, the Giants absolutely need Wilson available so they're not so short handed. Until Willy's ready, I expect Santiago Cassilla or Ramon Ramirez would get the nod in a save situation.
The Giants Baseball Blog


  • At 4:19 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I am a healthcare advisor & there are plenty of legal nutritional supplements,herbs,etc that build a good foundation to prevent injuries or make them minimal.Also there are electro therapy devices that speed up healing by triple the normal time. I have used one & prevented surgical intervention.Most 'docs' use conventional therapies which include drugs,etc.,which create more downtime. These players are multimillion dollar investments.I would think they would be advised against eating junk foods that tears down the body & makes repair a long process.We take better care of our cars & get the performance.

  • At 1:43 AM, Anonymous Ernie Carue said…

    They need a catcher really bad I think too. What about Chris Ianetta from Colorado. You think there's any chance the Rockies would waive him and send him to SF? Is there any other catchers that could help? I hear The Reds won't trade Hernandez.

  • At 2:54 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Wonder if A's would do Manny Burris, Dan Runzler and Darren Ford for Coco Crisp and Rich Harden. Could work for both teams if you ask me.

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