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Monday, July 08, 2013

Giants Have Decisions to Make Before Deadline

Two weeks ago as they were treading above .500, it made sense for the Giants to look for outside help in effort to give them that boost that Marco Scutaro and Hunter Pence provided last summer. However, as we inch closer to the deadline, and the Giants sinking further below .500 by the day, they may ultimately decide to go another route.

Now, there's still a few weeks of baseball left to be played before the July 31st deadline, and although the Giants are 7 games below .500, they're only 6.5 games back of the first place D-Backs and we haven't yet hit the all-star break. That 6.5 game deficit is hardly a huge hurtle with 3 months left in the season, but this team has steadily declined over the last month and it appears like the two teams that scare me in this division, LA and Arizona, are on the up. The surging Dodgers just dealt for Ricky Nolasco, and if that team continues to gel together and play like they have the last couple weeks, then they could end up running away with this division. If they get Kemp on track and can stay healthy, I think they're in for a big second half. The first place D-Backs who are in first place without getting a whole lot from their pitching staff, and some of their key players off to slow starts. Right now, the Giants are behind those two teams talent wise, and they'd need a big turnaround from Pablo Sandoval, someone to step up in the leadoff spot, and a few additions to their staff and/or lineup in order to catch up with those two teams.

At this point, I don't expect the Giants to try and counter the Dodgers' addition of Ricky Nolasco quite yet. If they head into the all-star break 10 games back, then it would be hard to justify trading away from their shallow farm system in order to try and make a run cause they have too many needs. Offensively, the top of the order, which was so strong during last year's tittle run, has become a major weakness. Nobody has sufficiently filled Angel Pagan's spot atop the lineup, and Pablo Sandoval is in one of his worst slumps of his professional career and is providing nothing in the 3-hole. It's been so bad for Panda that there have been rumblings of possibly sending him down to Fresno to maybe lose a few pounds and re-discover his strike zone. He's always been a notorious hacker, but he's never struck out with the frequency he has in this recent slump and he's making way too many easy outs. Whether it's sending him to Fresno for 10 days, or giving Tony Abreu some at-bats at third while Pablo gets his head together, they have to mix up that top of the order. Due to lack of options, I'd keep rolling with Blanco in the leadoff, but I'd try Brandon Crawford two and maybe move Scutaro into the 3-spot. Buster Posey has been heating up a bit, but without anyone getting on base in front of him, he's not getting many opportunities to drive in runs.

On a positive note, it looks like the Giants may be gaining at least some stability in the bullpen. Sandy Rosario has really stepped things up and has shown he can pitch in late innings, and Jake Dunning has been excellent since his blunder vs. the Marlins on a few weeks back with 8 straight scoreless outings. Hopefully Santiago Casilla gets back sooner than later and can bump George Kontos back to Fresno and then they should be OK in the pen. Not to say they can't use another late-innings guy who can shut down the 8th inning, but they're definitely not reeling there like they were for most of June.
The Giants Baseball Blog


  • At 12:57 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I don't think the Giants are behind AZ talent wise, but they are just playing terrible and are really missing Pagan.

    I would love to see them send fat Panda to the minors to give him an ego check like he had in 2010.

  • At 4:34 PM, Anonymous WhosOnFirst? said…

    Dude, I'm getting a strong Matt Garza vibe, and I like it. Hopefully the price isn't too high but I think he could be a real difference maker to the pitching staff.

  • At 1:25 AM, Anonymous hitnrun said…

    Trevor, I sure wish that Sabean and the Giants had listened to us pleading to get a bat for left field at the start of the year. Now they are really paying for it with Pence, Sandoval, Belt, Blanco and Crawford all slumping badly, and the offense is worse than the pitching. Blanco and Torres are backup players only and they are a lot like Eli Whiteside in 2011. The more they play, the worse they look. Sure I admit that the Dodgers and Snakes probably have better talent than the Giants right now, what scares me is what Sabean said in Kawakami's article about not wanting to mortgage his farm system with trades for a "bad penny" year. The GM is already conceding the year before the AS break? What message does this send the players (and the fans) when management is not willing to try and improve while there is still half a season? With that attitude, he might as well start selling the farm now,good thing the stadium is sold out. Sorry about that, season ticket holders.

  • At 7:47 AM, Anonymous Talking Giants Baseball said…

    It's not the Giants MO to panic and make a deal early. The current group will have to see where they are at in two weeks. If the Giants can hold their ground, they will be in it to win--and be buyers.

  • At 3:42 AM, Blogger In Game Training said…

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