Monday, November 7, 2011

Sanchez Out / Melky In

So SF just reported the trade of Jonathan Sanchez for Melky Cabrera. All my hard work in the previous posts went for naught. The Giants also threw in minor league pitcher Ryan Verdugo.

Melky "Leche" Cabrera is 27 years old. That's a good thing. You can view his stats here. This is what this tells me:

1) The Giants have given up on Andres Torres and are do not intend to make more than a cursory pass at Carlos Beltran. Probably not even that.
2) The Giants have given up on Jonathan Sanchez. Too bad, for those of you who might mention that we would not have to see him (as a Giant) in the post season again, I would remind you that the Giants would not have been in the 2010 postseason without his efforts.
3) Maybe that means they will explore a shortstop, ignoring the excellent glove work of Brandon Crawford. Mabye not.
4) Ladies and Gentlemen, your starting pitcher, Barry Zito.

Last year Leche hit .305, which is significantly better than his 2010 season with Atlanta, in which he hit .255 (a post-rookie season low). His OBP is not too impressive, .331 lifetime and .339 last year. He also can steal bases, 20 last year, although he was caught stealing 10 times. Last year he also had career highs in doubles and home runs. Lets hope he is maturing with some power. He will undoubtedly be playing center field and batting lead off.

The first time he does something good, the headlines will be "Dulce de Leche." I should have been in advertising.


Ron said...

One of the great things about being completely clueless, uninformed nimrods, is that we can all look at some piece of data, read the tea leaves, & come up with totally different conclusions. For example, as my previous post indicates, my reaction to the Cabrera trade as it relates to the Carlos Beltran re-signing possibilities is different than Zo's:

'- Melky did play CF nearly all year. So, I would say that this possibly means "Goodbye, Andres Torres", or, at least, "Goodbye as an everyday player, Andres Torres". It also probably means "Goodbye, Cody Ross". I doubt that it means anything about our intentions re Carlos Beltran. So, I hope & expect our outfield corps next year to consist of Beltran, Melky, & Schierholtz, backed up by Belt & Torres. That would be pretty damn good.'

In fact, back in early October, Beltran said that, while he was evaluating his own situation, he was looking for the Giants to make moves indicating that they intended to strengthen the offense. In their own humble little incremental sort of way, I think that this move was, in part, intended by the Giants to say to Carlos "look, we are doing something."

The other thing about Melky Cabrera that does give me some hope that his 2011 year was not a one-time anomaly is his relatively youthful age. When I first heard about the deal, I thought 'wow, that guy's been around for years'. It turns that, while he has been around for awhile, playing in the post-season for 2 different organizations, he is only 27 years old. Maybe, he's just a solid player coming into his own.

His projected salary (a solid everyday player for the same price as an every-other-day left-handed specialist pitcher) is certainly do-able.

I think that I could get used to the Giants having 2 somewhat powerful extra-base machine switch-hitting outfielders simultaneously. I am excited about that - sign Carlos!

Oh, and don't let signing Carlos interfere with securing Cain & Lincecum long-term! Do all of these things!!!!!

M.C. O'Connor said...

I did not expect this! I like JS and will miss him. His K-stuff is soooooo good I can put up with the rest. BUT I like MC, too. I think he will deliver for the Giants. I was surprised when the Braves got him from NYY and he bombed. He's talented. Maybe it was just a maturity thing. I hope they can find a way to get Torres back as the 5th OF for those late-inning moves and an occasional start. I hate to give up pitching for hitting but I think this looks like a decent deal for the club.

nomisnala said...

The problem I have with this deal is that now the giants need to do something to get a fifth starter. Which one does not fit in, A. Lincecum B. Cain C. Bumgarner D. Vogelsong E. Zito. Looks like we are in for a guaranteed loss every fifth day, Zito or Surkamp. I hope Cabrera works out, but he does not impress me. I think there were outfielders we could get as good as or better than melky, without giving up one of our starters.

M.C. O'Connor said...

Lefty Malo has a good take on the trade.

Zo said...

Well, Zito, Surkamp, Sanchez. We either juggle three pitchers to get an acceptable starter or juggle two pitchers to get an acceptable starter. It seems about the same to me. Of course, Sanchez COULD be absolutely brilliant. Just not, apparently, often enough, at least not for us.

Brother Bob said...

The Giants had to wait until I wasn't looking to trade my boy away. I've been out of town and incommunicado since Sunday morning. (How did the Niners do Sunday?)
So JSanchez will pitch for the Kansas Frickin City Royals. Jeez I always pictured him in a Mets uniform. He's been the subject of trade talk before and after his memorable no-hitter, an event which threw perception of this young man's ability out of whack, to some extent.
Melky, I don't know anything about him, naturally. Another switch-hitter? Don't we already have a lot of those?

M.C. O'Connor said...

I think the likelihood of the Giants signing Beltran is very low. He would have to offer some kind of discount and I just don't see him doing that when plenty of teams will throw money at him. If Brandon Belt is part of the future--and I hope he is--then Beltran is not (in the team's view) necessary. Belt, Cabrera, and Schierholtz can do the job in the OF. Cabrera is a place-holder for Gary Brown, and if the Giants sign him after he's a free agent it will be to play LF when Belt moves to 1B in 2013. The team will need 4th and 5th OFs, and it would not surprise me if they offered Torres a way back to the team in that role.

JSanchez was a high price to pay for Melky, but the Giants must think he's shown his peak or would not have traded him. It's sad, he was part of the original 'core' that brought the team to glory. If you believe that JS is another late-bloomer like Cliff Lee or Randy Johnson, then the Giants made a huge mistake. It is certainly possible that his best is yet to come, but that's the risk in any trade. (If you hate Brian Sabean and think he's an idiot, then all the trades he makes are bad, regardless of the outcome.)

The Giant spent money on LOOGYs and have Barry Zito and Aaron Rowand still on the books for $42M. Ramirez and Casilla will likely get arb raises, as will Sandoval, Nate, Lincecum, and Vogelsong. I think we should prepare ourselves for the shopping spree to be over. The rest of the off-season will be Buster-talk and spare parts. (Did you know this is Sabes' first-ever November trade?)

Zo said...

From Tim Dierker of MLB Trade Rumors on Oct. 11: "I think Torres at a projected $2.5MM is a candidate to be non-tendered." I have to agree. I think the Giants will non-tender Torres and then try to offer him less money. He may take it, he may try his luck elsewhere. If Beltran is pursued, what about Belt? Seen this? It says that the Giants may not have a "shortstop problem" from any perspective.