…. and the bad.
The Giants just finished a 3-3 road trip, not too shabby considering the two teams they faced. But considering that they allowed only 9 runs in the six games against two of the most potent offense in baseball –at home, no less– and they lost two games in the standings, there’s not much to celebrate.
Once again, the pitching staff held a powerful offense to one run through nine innings, and once again, a mediocre pitcher turned into Sandy Koufax against the flailing SF offense. What a shame.
UPDATE: In light of Uribe’s breakout game yesterday, I thought I’d take a look at what he’s done since the All Star break, it was less than two weeks later that Brian Sabean wasted minor league pitcher Tim Alderson acquiring a broken-down ex-batting champ:
J. Uribe 126 at-bats, 32 hits, 6 doubles, 3 triple, 8 home runs 12 walks .254/.310/.540 .850 OPS
Sanchez 99 at-bats, 24 hits, 2 double, 1 home run 3 walks .242/.262/.293 .555 OPS
60 of those at bats were here. For those of you who would argue that Sanchez has been injured, well, duh. That’s one of the two reasons we shouldn’t have traded for him. The other is that Uribe was already contributing as much as we could possibly have expected to get from Sanchez. We should’ve been making a trade for a real hitter. And this was so obvious that even a carpenter, sitting in front of his computer for a couple of hours a week, saw it coming like Nostradaumus:
…. Sanchez, 31 years old, is a career .300 hitter, but he’s never walked more than 32 times in a season, his career high in home runs is 11, and his career OBP is just .336. He’s ranked fifth among NL second basemen in just about every category, which is to say, we traded our top draft pick from 2007 for a league average second baseman. For an easy comparison, let’s look at Juan Uribe.
J. Uribe 72 G 222 AB 17 2B 4 HR 21 RBI 10 BB 47 SO .284/.313/.432 .745 OPS
Sanchez 86 G 355 AB 28 2B 6 HR 34 RBI 20 BB 60 SO .296/.334/.442 .776 OPS
I can’t for the life of me imagine how that kind of minimal upgrade would be worth one of the top forty prospects in all of baseball. Trading Alderson is fine, but WE NEEDED HOME RUNS AND WALKS!!!! Instead, we get two more 30-year old guys who are league average hitters. Can you see? This is systemic, because Brain Sabean does not know how to evaluate hitters, player value, or how to build a team.
The Giants have scored 9, 1, 3, 3, 1, 4, 0, 9, 5, 2, 0, 4, 5, 4, and 2 runs –52 total– in their last fifteen games, going 9-6 while scoring just over 3 runs per game. Of those 6 losses, two were 2-1, two were shutout losses, and one was 4-2. In fact, since the All Star break, the Giants have scored two runs or less 23 times in 60 games. Read that sentence twice.
The addition of a real hitter would have made an impact, more than likely a huge impact in that depressing fact. Adam Dunn, for instance, has 51 hits, 10 doubles, 12 home runs, 34 walks, and a 1.047 OPS since the break. Even Sandoval can’t match that production.
Instead, we got Freddie Sanchez, who has hit exactly one home run in the last three months, and as of right now, has hardly been able to walk, let alone hit; and Ryan Garko, who’s barely matched the level of production Travis Ishikawa was bringing to the table when he was acquired.