Thursday, August 5, 2010

Pressure On Giants To Make A Move?

Sure, the Giants have won 21 of 27 games or something like that. But there may be one story that overshadows that at this time in the season.

Two big moves went down the other day, and they didn't even involve the Giants. At least at this point.

The Washington Nationals placed "country strong" Adam Dunn on waivers the other day. Then the KC Royals designated Jose Guillen for assignment this afternoon.

Both players have been discussed in the Giants organization within the last year, and both players are prime for the picking now that they are technically on the market and on the Giants' immediate radar.

Already, we have heard hints of the Giants "discussing" the option of acquiring Guillen.

And just the other day we heard Dunn's options for a trade could be down to the Rockies or Giants. So if GM Brian Sabean wasn't stressed and tired after the trade deadline, you better believe he will be after this hooplah is over with.

The chances of acquiring Adam Dunn are far less likely than the Giants acquiring Jose Guillen. Dunn is front page news, and the Nationals are going to want to front page talent in return for him. For the record, Jonathan Sanchez is not front page talent. It would seem like the Nationals would want Madison Bumgarner and maybe more for Dunn's services. I doubt that will sit well the Giants' front office.

As for Guillen, he is on the move. The Royals quit on him and his struggles in the past weeks. Good for the Royals to move out such a big name as him and focus more on their younger players they have coming up.

Guillen is batting .255 with 16 HR's and 62 RBI's this season.

The Giants have several options here. Either wait and see how the market reacts to Guillen, or pursue him like he will actually make a difference. The Royals are desperate to get rid of him, possibly by any means necessary. This means if they cannot find a suitor for him, you may see him signing with a contender on his own.

My advice, Guillen is struggling, and I hope that the pressure on Sabean to get a bat and get a bat now doesn't affect his thought-pattern on this player who is clearly overpaid and not producing like his paycheck says he should.

Back to Dunn. The asking price may be too high for the Giants, but it won't hurt to try. Honestly, I just want the Giants to show a little interest in him, maybe throw Jonathan Sanchez out there. And if it doesn't work out, it's totally understandable because Dunn was far out of their price range to begin with.

What I don't want the Giants to do is panic and give up good young players because of the pressure to get a bat. The Giants are cruising right now. Don't fix something that didn't need to be fixed in the first place.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

No Bat, No Big

Sure, it would have been nice to get a solid big bat in the heart of the line-up, but was it really going to change the make-up of this team?

Jose Guillen would have been nice. Maybe even an Adam Dunn if we're really getting silly. And where were the Giants on Ryan Ludwick? The Padres and Dodgers made their teams better (on paper), but there was no counter-punch from the boys in SF. Why not?

Let's be reasonable here. AT&T Park is no place a big bat wants to go if they want to continue being a "big bat." So we knew it wasn't going to be any game-changer. But even I expected the Giants to make some kind of offensive move. Turns out the only offensive move was shipping their best offensive player in their farm system elsewhere (John Bowker).

This is not to say the Giants didn't do a good job in getting what they needed to get. They needed a left-handed reliever and they got him in Javier Lopez. So you won't be seeing Jonathan Sanchez in the 8th inning anymore. Both Lopez and Ramon Ramirez, legitimate reliever acquired by the Giants from the Red Sox, are going to play big parts for the Giants in the stretch run.

What does that mean for the rest of the Giants bullpen? It means they can stop using tools like Santiago Casilla and Denny Bautista, who are either on point or obviously off. The Giants don't need that, they can't afford that. Not with the Padres playing genuine baseball and making trades to back it up.

Don't panic. Deep down we knew Corey Hart or Prince Fielder wouldn't be entering the Bay. No that we wanted them (which we did). The Giants are hitting well right now, why break that mojo up? There was no need for a big-time trade for a slugger. The fact that Pat Burrell and Pablo Sandoval haven't been hitting is the reason why the Giants were looking elsewhere for a bat in the first place. If Burrell or Sandoval start hitting (preferably Burrell AND Sandoval start hitting), then there's your bat you were looking to trade for. It was there the whole time.

The Giants addressed the need that was going to affect them the most down the stretch. A continuous savage starting rotation now paired with a stable bullpen is just what the Giants needed. And the bats will follow their lead.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Giants Try To Stay Hot In Chavez Ravine

The Giants bring their hot 2nd-half start to Chavez Ravine this week. Probably one of the more important series thus far this season.

The Dodgers are coming off being swept in St. Louis, while the Giants are coming off taking 3 of 4 from the NY Mets. Seems like the perfect time for the Giants, right? Not quite, remember the last series against the Dodgers...

The Giants have not faired well against the NL West, and this is the perfect test for this team that has gotten off to a hot 2nd-half start, both with their pitching and their hitting. And they will take the heart of that into LA this week. Bumgarner, Lincecum, Zito sounds like the perfect rotation against the hated Dodgers.

This is a pivotal series for both teams. The Dodgers are treading water fast, and the Giants are making their move in the division, although they lost a 1/2 game in the division in that Mets series despite taking 3 of 4. How that happened, I have no idea.

But expect that. The Padres are for real and are not going down without a fight. Expect no different from the Rockies as well. No Tulowitzki, no problem.

The test this week for the Giants, beat an NL West team, and let's go from there, because so far that is a rarity.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Warriors Trade Randolph's Potential For Proven Lee

Go figure the Golden State Warriors would find their way into the joke that was the Lebron James Decision 2010.

You just knew it. 10 seconds after the "much anticipated" suckfest that Lebron threw for himself was over (22 minutes in), the Warriors inked a controversial-for-some deal that sent a whole bunch of Warriors over to New York in exchange for big-man David Lee.

David Lee, the only true big-man in the pandemonium that was NBA Free Agency 2010, was persued by several teams, but the Knicks could not pass on the suckers from Golden State's juicy offer.

The Warriors agreed to send Azubuike, Turiaf, and Randolph to the Knicks.

I thought it would have been a little over the top to send Randolph for Lee, but that's just me.

First of all, someone stop the Warrior's front office from making any moves until the real front office steps in. They're just there for the time being. And when I mean the real front office I mean the one that will be replacing the old one when a new owner is put in place. Meanwhile, Larry Riley and Co. need not hurt this team and fan base any more than the past 2 decades have shown.

But every blind squirrel finds a nut, right? In the midst of the Warriors front office flinging around money and players, they may have struck something nice in this deal.

David Lee is a great player, an easy 20 points and 10 rebounds type of guy every night. This is the guy that the Warriors have needed and wanted over the past years. He is not a problem. The problem is did they give up too much for him?

Not sure if I care about Turiaf and Azubuike too much, but Randolph is the key player in this trade. The Knicks suckered the Warriors because I'm not sure if I was the GM of Golden State I would be able to send someone with potential star power and freakish athletic ability in exchange for a white guy.

But I like it. Maybe just my opinion but I was never sold on Anthony Randolph. He seemed immature and way over his head going up against the more premiere players on the opposing teams. It also takes a level head to play in this league and I did not think Randolph had one. Do I think he could be something someday in the NBA? Sure, if he is coached properly. In Golden State, that wasn't going to happen. So as a Warriors fan, if I know it wasn't going to happen here and was going to wait and wait for something magical to happen to him, maybe it's time to let the kid sprout elsewhere.

Think of it this way. Randolph is almost 22. Lee is 27. In 5 years will Anthony Randolph be putting up 20 and 10 like Lee? My answer, it's a little iffy, but probably not. Lee is an All-Star, that's proven. Randolph has a way to go. I'm not willing to wait around and find out if he is or not.

But hang on a sec. This still doesn't make the Warriors a contender. As of now, Monte, Curry, and Lee is a good core, but not a contending one. The only thing that has changed is that David Lee will now be the leading scorer and rebounder for a team that will be drafting in the Lottery once again in 2011. Let's not get ahead of ourselves. We'll do that when a real front office is in place.