Brandon Crawford Belongs In The #2 Spot In The Lineup

Posted on April 11th, 2014 by Robert in SF Giants Rumors

 

Credit: Steven Robles – SF Giants Rumors

Credit: Steven Robles – SF Giants Rumors

The San Francisco Giants are about to wrap up their opening series in Arizona, and so far, three different players have started the game batting second: Brandon BeltHunter Pence and Gregor Blanco.

We knew before the season started that Marco Scuatro was going to start the year on the DL, and while Arias was the heir apparent (not the case, anymore!) to take his place in the field, who was going to take his place in the line, wasn’t as clear. And that is why we’ve seen a revolving door so far. But the one person who SHOULD be in that number two spot in the lineup has yet to join the party.

Brandon Crawford belongs in the number two spot in the line, right behind Angel Pagan and right in front of Belt.

Sure, it’s only 20 games, but in 2013, Crawford had 89 plate appearances, good for 76 at-bats, in the two-hole. During that time, he posted a .276/.371/.408 line. He had a 13.1% K rate compared to a 10.5% BB rate and posted a 132 tOPS+ (compares a batter to his normal value, the higher over 100, the better)

In the 8th spot, Crawford came to plate 271 times, with 246 official at-bats. His line was .268/3.26/.407, he struck out 15.9% of the time and walked only 0.1% of the time. His tOPS+ came in at 117.

A lot of the difference can be explained simply by the fact that in the 8-spot, Crawford is batting in front of the pitcher. He has to be a little more aggressive because he knows he has the pitcher behind him. This leads to the higher strikeout rate and lower walk rate, and even helps explain the lower batting average; more aggressive swinging at pitches he might normally take leads to more weak contact/easy outs. This is reflected in his BABip – .303 batting second, .296 batting eighth.

We’ve seen that Crawford can be better than the .255 hitter with no power he was once projected as. But we’re not going to see just how much better until he gets regular playing time in the second spot. With Belt, Buster Posey and Pence following him, pitchers aren’t going to want to walk him. Crawford has a good enough eye – his 17.4 K% and 7.8 BB% in 2013 are both at or near the accepted “average” – that he can work some counts and wait for good strikes to hit.

Sure, he might not be the perennial .300 hitter that Scutaro is in the same spot, but he’s certainly got a lot still to show us. And we’re not going to see it while Crawford tries to protect himself in the 8th spot in the lineup.

Plus, if Crawford bats second, then the Brandon’s would bat back-to-back. And that would be awesome.

~Robert Barsanti

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SF Giants Rumors: Opening Series Has Come and Gone

Posted on April 4th, 2014 by admin in SF Giants Rumors

Photo Credit: Marko Realmonte

Photo Credit: Marko Realmonte

The Opening Series has come and gone, and the San Francisco Giants managed to take 3 out of the 4 games in Arizona. We’ve learned that the instant replay isn’t going as smooth as it should be. There have already been a couple blown calls in just the first couple days of this young season.​

I expected a good season from Brandon Belt, but this guy is starting off on fire. I’m talking full 5-alarm fire. I’m just hoping he can keep this going against the Los Angeles Dodgers. Barry Bonds did mention that Belt already has the power; it’s just getting the consistency down.

Speaking of a hot start, outfielder Angel Pagan is just as hot with the bat and glove. He’s made a few key defensive plays and leads the starting lineup with a .421 average and 6 RBI’s from the leadoff position. We all know Pagan is the spark plug to getting this Giants lineup rolling, let’s just hope it can be a healthy season for Pagan.

I must admit, I was excited to see Tim Hudson make his Giants debut on April 2nd, and he didn’t disappoint. Hudson is a flat out gamer, and proved it in his first start. Hudson went 7 2/3 innings and just allowing 3 hits and 0 runs. Hudson’s next start will be Tuesday at the Giants Home Opener against the Arizona Diamondbacks.

Don’t forget to visit our SF Giants Rumors Facebook page to share your thoughts on all the latest Giants News/Rumors!

~Steven Robles

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San Francisco Giants 2014 Opening Day Roster

Posted on March 31st, 2014 by admin in SF Giants Rumors

Today’s the day that all San Francisco Giants fans have been waiting for. It’s a fresh start, and a start of a new season. All of the roster questions have finally been taken care of. Infielder Marco Scutaro and reliever Jeremy Affeldt will start the season on the DL. Scutaro is retroactive to March 21, and Affeldt is retroactive to March 23.
 
2014 Opening Day Roster
 
Pitchers
 
Madison Bumgarner
Matt Cain
Santiago Casilla
Juan Gutierrez
Tim Hudson
David Huff
Tim Lincecum
Javier Lopez
Jean Machi
Yusmeiro Petit
Sergio Romo
Ryan Vogelsong
 
Catchers
 
Buster Posey
Hector Sanchez
 
Infielders
 
Ehire Adrianza
Joaquin Arias
Brandon Belt
Brandon Crawford
Brandon Hicks
Pablo Sandoval
 
Outfielders
 
Gregor Blanco
Michael Morse
Angel Pagan
Hunter Pence
Juan Perez
 
Don’t forget to visit our SF Giants Rumors Facebook page to share your thoughts on all the latest Giants News/Rumors!

~Steven Robles

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SF Giants Rumors: Mark Teahen Released, No Pablo Sandoval Extension In Place, Marco Scutaro Opening Day

Posted on March 20th, 2014 by admin in SF Giants Rumors

 

Photo Credit: Mike Sandoval's Twitter Account (mikesandoval0807)

Photo Credit: Mike Sandoval’s Twitter Account (mikesandoval0807)

The San Francisco Giants have released infielder/outfielder Mark Teahen. When Teahen was signed, he wasn’t given an invite to Spring Training and wasn’t expected to compete for a spot on the Opening Day Roster.

With only 11 days left till Opening Day, it doesn’t look like the Giants and Pablo Sandoval are close to a contract extension. However, it really only takes one night to put a deal together. Outfielder Hunter Pence‘s $90 Million deal came together around 1 a.m. after the last Friday night game of the season in manager Bruce Bochy‘s office.

Infielder Marco Scutaro is hoping to be ready for Opening Day, and recently played in his first Cactus game. Scutaro went 1-for-2 with a double and scored a run. Bochy is hoping Scutaro can get around 35 at bats to get him ready for Opening Day.

Don’t forget to visit our SF Giants Rumors Facebook page to share your thoughts on all the latest Giants News/Rumors!

~Steven Robles

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Why Hunter Pence is worth $90 million

Posted on March 14th, 2014 by Randy in SF Giants Rumors

 

Credit: Matt Hubbard - @hubbard_photography

Credit: Matt Hubbard – @hubbard_photography

Last September the San Francisco Giants extended their right fielder Hunter Pence for five years and $90 million.  At first glance it seems like a fairly large overpay and yes, I believe the Giants overpaid to get Pence, but these days teams are having to pay top dollar to keep their potential free agents.  In my opinion, the biggest question isn’t necessarily if Pence is worth his entire $90 million contract, but how badly do the Giants need Pence on their team?  I believe he is a crucial part of this team.

Not only did Pence have a very solid offensive season in 2013, but he also played 162 games.  That is huge for a team with very little depth in the minor leagues.  The Giants had enough injury problems last year and having Pence play every single game was a huge boost.  He brings energy, power, and durability to a team and a lineup that needs it.

Now let’s get into the numbers. Pence hit a career-high 27 home runs last year while playing 81 of his games in one of the most pitcher-friendly parks in the majors.  He had an ISO of .200 and a .483 slugging percentage.  He led the Giants in home runs and was a legitimate power threat in one of the most power-lacking lineups in the game.

Much like Brandon Belt, Pence had a much better second half than he did first half.  In the first half he hit .262/.305/.455 with a 113 wRC+ and a .328 wOBA.  In the second half he put up some pretty impressive numbers, hitting .314/.387/.525 with a 160 wRC+ and a .390 wOBA.  Not only was his offense very good overall, but he also stole a career high 22 bases.

So overall Pence is probably not going to be worth that extreme amount of money throughout the length of the contract, considering he is entering his age 31 season and it wouldn’t be outlandish to think the he could see a decline in the next few years, but he is solid at every part of the game and is an essential part of a hopeful playoff contender.

Don’t forget to visit our SF Giants Rumors Facebook page to share your thoughts on all the latest Giants News/Rumors!

~Randy Boyles

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SF Giants Rumors: Barry Bonds Reports To Giants Camp

Posted on March 10th, 2014 by admin in SF Giants Rumors
Barry Bonds SF Giants CoachThe Home Run King Barry Bonds reported to the San Francisco Giants Spring Training camp today. This is the first time Bonds has put a Giants uniform on since his last game in 2007. He then sat down with the media for about thirty minutes to answer whatever questions they wanted to throw his way.
 
When asked how it felt to put the uniform back on, Bonds said “Feels really, really good.”
 
Bonds will be at camp for seven days to assist hitters, and let players pick his brain. When asked if he would like to eventually manage, Bonds said “I just want to see if I can get through these 7 days first.”
 
This isn’t Bonds first rodeo when it comes to working with big league hitters. He’s worked with Colorado Rockies‘ Dexter Fowler and Philadelphia Phillies slugger Ryan Howard.
 
When asked about working with Brandon Belt, Bonds said “I don’t know if I can create power in someone that already has it. Belt already has power. It’s how consistent can you make it.”
 
If you’re wondering who the best pitcher was that Bonds ever faced was, he said it was Greg Maddux. “He was the best I’ve ever seen, the best. Ever,” said Bonds.
 
Bonds was asked if he should be in the Hall of Fame, “Without a doubt,” said Bonds.
 
The living legend did say he has one regret when it comes to the media, “The only regret is I wish we all had a better relationship,” said Bonds.
 
Don’t forget to visit our SF Giants Rumors Facebook page to share your thoughts on all the latest Giants News/Rumors!
 
~Steven Robles
 
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SF Giants Rumors: Guillermo Mota Retires, Brandon Crawford Reaches Agreement With Giants

Posted on March 4th, 2014 by admin in SF Giants Rumors
Credit: Steven Robles – SF Giants Rumors

Credit: Steven Robles – SF Giants Rumors

We’ve learned over the weekend that reliever Guillermo Mota has retired after 14 years of service in Major League Baseball. Mota spent three of those years with the San Francisco Giants (2010-2012). His three year tenure with the Giants resulted in two World Series Championships (2010 & 2012). Prior to the Giants, Mota played with the Montreal ExposLos Angeles DodgersFlorida MarlinsCleveland IndiansNew York Mets and the Milwaukee Brewers. Mota retires with a 39-45 career record and a 3.94 ERA.

 
Henry Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle reports (via Twitter) that the Giants and shortstop Brandon Crawford reached an agreement on a one-year, $560,000 contract in his final pre-arbitration year.
 
Don’t forget to visit our SF Giants Rumors Facebook page to share your thoughts on all the latest Giants News/Rumors!
 
~Steven Robles
 
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SF Giants Rumors: Michael Morse Power, Pablo Sandoval Contract, Hunter Pence Contract, Etc

Posted on February 27th, 2014 by admin in SF Giants Rumors
Credit: Steven Robles - SF Giants Rumors

Credit: Steven Robles – SF Giants Rumors

The baseball season is finally back, at least from a Spring Training standpoint. Yesterday, the San Francisco Giants took the field against Josh Reddick and the Oakland Athletics.

 
I’m sure you’re wondering why Reddick’s name has already been mentioned? Well… it’s because he robbed outfielder Michael Morse of a home run, not once, but twice! In Morse’s first two at bats as a Giant, he hit two home run balls to right field and they were both tracked and robbed by Reddick. If you haven’t had a chance to see them, you should go to our SF Giants Rumors Facebook page. You’ll be able to find the video there.
 
Alex Pavlovic of the San Jose Mercury News reports (via Twitter) that Giants CEO Larry Baer said there’s been no discussions yet with infielder Pablo Sandoval, but ownership is open minded about an extension. They will not set a deadline to work out a deal.
 
Henry Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle shares some insights from a state-of-the-team talk that Baer had with reporters. The Giants are still against the Athletics moving to the Santa Clara County. The Giants would be willing to cooperate with the Athletics if they built a ballpark in their own territory. They’re even willing to let the Athletics play some games at AT&T Park while their stadium is getting built.
 
Baer also told reporters how the Hunter Pence $90 million deal came together. It came together around 1 a.m. in Bruce Bochy‘s office right after the final Friday night game of the season.
 
“We just handed him $90 million and he gets on a scooter. We said, ‘Hunter, there’s something called Uber. Can we get you a car to go up the Embarcadero? He said, ‘No, I’m good to go.’”
 
~Steven Robles
 
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SF Giants Rumors: SF Giants 2014 Opening Day Starter Is…

Posted on February 25th, 2014 by admin in SF Giants Rumors
GiantsBumgarnerWith the start of the 2014 season just a little over a month away, manager Bruce Bochy has announced his starting rotation. Madison Bumgarner has been named the San Francisco Giants Opening Day starter. Bumgarner will be followed by Matt CainTim HudsonTim Lincecum and Ryan Vogelsong. The rotation isn’t set in stone, as the two Tim’s could flip-flop in the rotation before the season starts.
 
The 24 year-old, will be making his first career Opening Day start. The previous five Giants Opening Day pitchers were Cain (2013) and Lincecum (9-12). Hudson also has a three Opening Day starts under his belt as well, most recent being last year (2013) for the Atlanta Braves.
 
Don’t forget to visit our SF Giants Rumors Facebook page to share your thoughts on all the latest Giants News/Rumors!
 
~Steven Robles
 
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SF Giants Rumors: Barry Bonds Giants Instructor, Giants Sign Tyler Colvin

Posted on February 22nd, 2014 by admin in SF Giants Rumors

Barry-Bonds-FlagThe Home Run King Barry Bonds is going to be in Scottsdale March 9-17 as an instructor for the San Francisco Giants. Bonds have never officially retired, but I would say showing up as a special instructor means you’re not going to get penciled in the Spring Training lineup. With that said, you sure are missed Barry!

 
The 49 year-old Bonds last played in September 2007. That year Bonds hit .276 with 28 homers in 126 games for the Giants.
 
Today the Giants signed outfielder Tyler Colvin to minor league deal. He’ll be at big league camp, and will be battling for the 5th outfield spot with Juan Perez.
 
Colvin had a deal in place with the Baltimore Orioles, but the Orioles backed out when they seen Colvin’s physical as it revealed that he still had back issues. The Orioles then pulled their major league offer off the table and offered Colvin a minor league deal. Colvin opted to elect for free agency instead of signing a minor league deal with the Orioles.
 
Colvin, 28, has proven that he has some home run pop. Colvin hit 18 homers in 2012 with the Colorado Rockies and 20 for the Chicago Cubs in 2010.
 
Don’t forget to visit our SF Giants Rumors Facebook page to share your thoughts on all the latest Giants News/Rumors!

 

~Steven Robles
 

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