Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Bay Area Rundown: San Francisco Giants, Carlos Beltran, Alex Smith, Frank Gore Making Headlines

Did the last 24 hours just blow your mind? The Bay Area was on fire with rumors, hold-outs, signings and more rumors on a wild Wednesday in the sports world.

It all started late Tuesday night with the announcement that the San Francisco 49ers had re-signed QB Alex Smith in a one-year deal for $5 million.

For those waking up to eggs and bacon the next morning, how about eggs and Carlos Beltran?

The Beltran rumors were electric Wednesday morning and continued into the afternoon.

By 2 p.m., there was a tentative agreement between the Giants and Mets to exchange Beltran for San Francisco's top pitching prospect Zack Wheeler.

Beltran will be in Philadelphia for the Giants/Phillies series by Wednesday night.

However, not all the news was pleasant on Wednesday.

49ers' workhorse running back Frank Gore is reportedly going to hold out when training camp starts. Gore is in the last year of his deal paying him $2.9 million next season.

Compare that to Smith's contract signed Tuesday ($5 million), and I would be a little disgruntled, as well.

Quick thoughts on Wednesday's happenings:

---Alex Smith was the only option at quarterback for the 49ers, who expressed interest in QB Matt Hasselbeck and bowed out of the race for both Donovan McNabb and Kevin Kolb quite early.

Smith is there to fill the gap for a year while they work in rookie Colin Kaepernick. Nothing more, and nothing less.

---Carlos Beltran is the biggest pick-up of the 2011 MLB Trade Deadline, and he will produce and help this ball club immediately by just his presence in the lineup.

By the way, if the numerous reports are true and the teams did just exchange Beltran for prospect Zack Wheeler, as well as the Mets sending cash the Giants' way, then GM Brian Sabean really pulled one over on New York.

My impressions, paired with reports, were that Wheeler will be nothing more than a second or third pitcher in an MLB rotation when he hits the big leagues.

---The Frank Gore situation is simple: Pay the guy the money.

This next season, he is the offense. Only paying him $2.9 million with the type of workload he inhales every Sunday is outrageous.

The 49ers are at Gore's every need on this one. Pay him.

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