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Nothing official as I post this, but let's just assume all these professional baseball writers are hearing the right information: Pablo Sandoval is going to be a Red Sox. Sock. Stocking.

So Big. So Red.

We all haz a sad, sure, but I'm going to make many of you throw rotten vegetables by saying this: The Giants didn't want to win this bidding war.

Remove the 2012 and 2014 postseasons from the emotional and statistical equation, and what you have is an undisciplined hitter with waning power, a switch hitter whose work from the right side has declined to the point of atrocious.

He's a very good fielder when he stays in shape. Will 100 million new American dollars make him more or less committed to fitness? I'll let you opine.

He was always destined to go to the American League with its DH option, and we've let ourselves hope otherwise because THREE WORLD SERIES and VERLANDER WOW and BLOWING BUBBLES and when he's good, he's very very good, and unfortunately, the Giants don't have any third base heir-apparents, and the free-agent alternatives are downright Headleyish (speaking of physically limited guys with waning power).

But 2015 isn't about directly replacing Pablo Sandoval, unless there are rabbits yet to be pulled from hats, aka the Giants know something about Adam Duvall that they're not sharing.

Frankly, given Pablo's slightly-above average offense the past two regular seasons, the main job is finding someone who doesn't stick his glove up his nose every time the ball comes his way. Replace the defense, and the Pablo-is-missing offense can be spread around: A big hitter in left field, for example, plus a full year of (knock on wood) Brandon Belt and Angel P-p-p... OK, stop laughing.

I'm not saying Pablo was a drag. He was an above-average hitter, a very above average defender at times, and a magical seller of synthetic headgear materials. I'm not saying he'll be easy to replace.

But in losing Pablo, and thus losing some offense, what if the Giants also gain better pitching -- as rumors like this point to? I'm not advocating for Jon Lester, per se; but the Giants know pitching better than any team. What if the Giants took the Pablo money, shoved it across the table at Dick Tidrow and his minions, and said, Maximize it, Dick. Make us once again the pitchin'est ballclub in the land.

That gives me a good feeling. That, plus a left fielder who hits lefties well and a glove-first third baseman? Even better, if Yasmany Tomas can play a decent third, as Felipe Alou was rumored to tell the Giants, he could be an option with Joaquin Arias his late-inning replacement. I could live with that sketch on the back of my post-Panda napkin for the moment. 


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