Sports blogs the way they were meant to be

Sign In

I Have Made Up My Mind About The Giants' Final Roster Spots

Vote 0 Votes
That's it. Case closed. Scott Proctor might throw 20 more spring-training innings without a ball leaving the infield. Brock Bond might hit four walk-off grand slams and rescue a puppy. Francisco Peguero might go 20-for-30 or 0-for-30. Doesn't matter. Don't try to sway me about the final few spots on the Opening Day roster.

Bullpen: Chad Gaudin

Here's why: Early in the season, the often over-hyped "long man" is a very nice man to have. The Giants don't have a ton of off-days in April, with streaks of 10 and 9 games in a row. If a starter is knocked out early, you want a guy who can absorb three, four or five innings and save the bullpen. By all accounts, Gaudin is best suited for that role. If no starter exits early, it doesn't matter much who has the last seat in the bullpen.

Bonus roster spot to consider: If Mijares's cranky elbow puts him on the DL to start the year, it doesn't make sense to replace him with Dan Runzler, another lefty. (I'm assuming Runzler still has options. He's not on this list.) He'll be up soon enough. Instead, give Mijares' spot to Yusmeiro Petit, Scott Proctor or Ramon Ramirez, one of the guys who otherwise would be cut loose, and give them a little extra time to prove their worth. I'll do eenie-meenie-minie-moe and pick Ramirez, simply because he once wanted to beat up Shane Victorino. Without intimate knowledge of the soft tissues in his elbow and shoulder, I'd say Ramirez is as likely as any of them to have a surprisingly nice year.

The bullpen game is all about keeping as many guys as possible who deserve to stick around the organization. If they have options (Sandy Rosario?), send 'em to Fresno. If they don't but don't mind biding their time in Fresno (Petit?), great. It's not like Petit in the Fresno rotation or Proctor pitching every third day is going to block a key prospect.

Utility guys: Cole Gillespie, Kensuke Tanaka

Here's why: The argument against Frankie Pegs is laughably easy. Grant made it earlier today. He's not been a good minor-league player, so why should we believe that a few weeks of spring training have changed anything? Plus, he's got options, and the Giants should know how to use them: to send him back to Fresno to see if he can become a better baseball player. Sitting in a Mays Field dugout night after night, freezing his skinny ass off isn't going to help; four at-bats a night in Fresno will. Cole Gillespie might not be a power bat off the bench, but in the short term he's probably going to be better than Peguero. If he's not helping the Giants after a few weeks, no harm done.

As for my infield choice, I like the Brock Bond story. Who doesn't like an underdog with a concussion and a great eye at the plate? But he's waited this long, he can wait a little longer to make his major-league debut. He's got -- wait for it -- options. Same with Brett Pill. I'd like to see at least a couple months of total Triple-A destruction from his bat before I consider him a weapon off the big-league bench. Who else? Wilson Valdez. Um, yeah. So, Tanaka: There's no reason to lose him because Pill slugged 1.000 in the thin desert air. Tanaka might turn out to be a great find, no matter what the spring stats tell us. New country, weird food, young people who don't respect authority... there are a lot of distractions. A month in Arizona isn't going to settle this. Let's give Tanaka a chance. Plus, think of the jersey sales.


blog comments powered by Disqus

Search

Loading





Header photo courtesy of Flickr user eviltomthai under a Creative Commons license.