Archive for the SF Giants Rumors category.

Why The Giants Should Have Signed Corey Hart Over Michael Morse

Posted on December 19th, 2013 by admin in SF Giants Rumors

 

Image used under Creative Commons from Steve Paluch

Image used under Creative Commons from Steve Paluch

I wrote an article a couple months ago and mentioned that the San Francisco Giants signing Corey Hart would have been a bright move given he is coming off an injury and he has tremendous potential. Impact of this means the Giants get a good player for less money. The injury while major was not career threatening and every indication is that Hart will make a full recovery. He is currently 31 years old and the Seattle Mariners inked him to a one year contract for $6 million. The Giants recently signed Michael Morse to a one year contract for $6 million.

While both are capable of hitting 30 or more home runs, something the Giants can definitely use since their left fielders only hit 5 last season, and only one has shown he can play every day. If the Giants have any desire to improve on that home run total they should have signed someone who can play more than 80 games a season. That means Hart, not Morse.

Hart has been much more successful because he has managed to play, in nine years each Hart has played in 945 games and Morse has played in 573. Hart has twice as many career home runs and RBI’s in the same number of years playing (it should be noted that in Hart’s first year he played in only one game). Both are capable of giving Brandon Belt a rest at first base which is an upside and gives leeway in trading Brett Pill to an organization that can give him the break he deserves.

I guess for my money, I would have taken the chance on Hart over Morse especially even money.

 

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

~Chris Brown

 
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Why Signing Michael Morse Was A Good Signing

Posted on December 19th, 2013 by admin in SF Giants Rumors
Image used under Creative Commons from Keith Allison

Image used under Creative Commons from Keith Allison

Power is a good thing. In sports, it can be the best of things. In football you have powerful linemen mauling their opponents. In basketball you have a vicious slam dunk that can rattle the rim, and the other team’s psyche as well. Hockey, with a powerful slapshot, can send shivers up the spines of all who witness it. In baseball, there is the power hitter. Nothing captivates fans, and builds confidence like a monster home run to break open a game.

 

Welcome Michael Morse to the San Francisco Giants. They have looked for someone like you for a few years now. Actually, it really goes back to when Mr. Barry Lamar Bonds was consistently hitting splash balls in to McCovey Cove.

 

Now we know the Giants have won two World Series without a true, pro-typical power hitter, but that was then; and this is now. Pitching still wins championships, and hopefully the Giants stellar rotation and bullpen can again lead the way. But there is no denying the Giants were sorely in need of a force in the middle of their lineup.

 

Morse’s stats, from his last full regular season in 2011 for the Washington Nationals look like this: 146 games played, a .303 batting average, 31 home runs, and 95 runs batted in. 2012 and 2013 saw a drop off in games played and production for Morse, mostly due to injury, but the Giants are counting on a healthy Morse to again fill the left-field spot in the batting order with home run power.

It was essential for the Giants to get more power their lineup in 2014. Just looking at the teams in NL West, it’s obvious the Giants were behind the rest of the division in this all important aspect.

 

The Los Angeles Dodgers can trot out Yasiel PuigMatt KempHanley Ramirez, and Adrian Gonzalez each game. The Arizona Diamondbacks acquired slugger Mark Trumbo this offseason to go alongside Paul Bunyan (Paul Goldschmidt). The Colorado Rockies acquired former home run derby participant and all-star Justin Morneau this offseason to go with Troy Tulowitzki and Carlos GonzalezEven the San Diego Padres have decent power with Will Venable and Jedd Gyorko, who both hit over 20 home runs last year.

 

Adding Morse to the middle of the lineup will give the Giants a boost of right handed power hitting they were in search of. Now, looking at the power hitters in the batting order, the Giants will have Buster PoseyPablo Sandoval, Hunter Pence, and Morse to play long ball with.

 

Yes Morse may strike out a more than a few times. You can even make an argument that the Giants paid too much for an oft injured player looking to regain his form. But the rewards of adding Morse far outweigh the risks.

 

Power can do a lot for a lineup. It can be a fear factor that makes opposing pitchers aware of the long ball threat. Other hitters in the lineup benefit by seeing better pitches, and quite frankly, will be pitched to more because of Morse’s presence.

 

Let’s face it, hitting singles and doubles, and playing station to station baseball can be an effective, winning formula. But it lacks the sizzle that puts fans in the seats, and the allure to stay in their seats one more batter before going to get another tray of garlic fries.

 

Singles and doubles typically don’t make the other teams pitchers and managers worry very much when the on-deck hitter has three home runs, it’s late August, and the Giants have two men on base and are down by three in the bottom of the ninth inning.

 

The long ball cures a lot of ails, and hopefully the Giants have cracked the code for another year of success and a run at the World Series; and that could be because of the Morse code.

 

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

 

~Amin Arikat

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SF Giants Rumors: Morse, Belt, Mulder, Carignan, Ishikawa, Etc.

Posted on December 18th, 2013 by admin in SF Giants Rumors
Image used under Creative Commons from MudflapDC

Image used under Creative Commons from MudflapDC

With the Michael Morse deal now official our left field position is set, and we all know he can play some first base as well. Manager Bruce Bochy has went on record saying Brandon Belt is the first baseman, and also his number three hitter in the lineup. However, he could envision Belt/Morse swapping positions if Morse legs are sore says Henry Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle (via Twitter).

 
Andrew Baggarly of CSNBayArea.com (via Twitter) says he was told that Morse will make $6 million with another $3 million possible in incentives based on plate appearances. If Morse can get back to his 2011 form (.303, 31 homers and 95 RBI), this deal will definitely be worth the $9 million (added incentives).
 
For those of you fans that were hoping for another big splash this offseason, it’s not going to happen. Alex Pavlovic of the San Jose Mercury News chimes in on the Giants budget (via Twitter), and reports that GM Brian Sabean said the Morse deal “puts us up against our number.”
 
In another Pavlovic tweet, he says the Giants checked in on pitcher Mark Mulder, but Mulder’s looking for a more than they could offer. He’s looking for a major league contract. I’m not sure Mulder’s going to get that anywhere since he’s been out of the game for a bit (last game was in 2008). However, I do wish him luck with his comeback!
 
Since we’re on former Oakland Athletics that are linked to the Giants, pitcher Andrew Carignan has tweeted that he’s coming back to the bay area and it’s not with the Athletics. He’s excited for his opportunity with the Giants, so it sounds like he’s signed a deal with the Giants. I’m not sure on the specifics as of yet…
 
Ex-Giant Travis Ishikawa has signed with the Pittsburgh Pirates. This is Ishikawa’s fifth team since the Giants says John Shea of the San Francisco Chronicle (via Twitter).
 
The San Jose Giants have extended their lease through the 2018 season to continue to play at Municipal Stadium. Nice to know we can still continue to go check out our farm system and top prospects as they make their way through San Jose.
 
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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More Insights On Outfielder Michael Morse

Posted on December 16th, 2013 by admin in SF Giants Rumors
Image used under Creative Commons from Keith Allison

Image used under Creative Commons from Keith Allison

As I’m sure you’ve heard, the San Francisco Giants signed outfielder Michael Morse to a one year, $6 million contract on Thursday. He was signed to man left field and most likely play every day if he’s healthy. The 31 year old is entering his tenth year as a major leaguer and is known for his serious power. Given the Giants lack of power, Morse could provide a boost to the Giants’ lineup. 

 
Although Morse has home run power, there are some concerns about Morse that raise some red flags. One thing is his injury history. He only played 88 games in 2013 due to a strained right quad and a fractured finger. He has only played one full season in the majors and that was 2011 when he played 146 games with the Washington Nationals. 2011 was the best year he has had in the major leagues. He had a slash line of .303/.360/.550 while hitting 31 home runs and compiling 95 RBIs. The more detailed stats also show just how good a year he had offensively. He had a 148 wRC+ and a .390 wOBA. His defense leaves a lot to be desired and his baserunning is not his strong suit either, having stolen only six bases in his career and being caught six times. Morse had a poor 2013 while playing for the Seattle Mariners and Baltimore Orioles and hit .215/.270/.381, which obviously leaves a lot to be desired. The Giants signed Morse to replace 29 year old weak-hitting outfielder Gregor Blanco. Blanco is pretty much the opposite of Morse. Blanco is fast, plays excellent defense, and has very little power. He has 66 stolen bases in his short career and 40 of them coming in the last two years with the Giants. The Giants acquired Blanco in 2012 and he has been the starting left fielder the previous two seasons. In 2013 Blanco had a slash line of .265/.341/.350. His OBP is solid, but that slugging percentage is woeful. Blanco compiled a respectable 2.8 fWAR last year and a 2.3 fWAR the year before. Morse had a 3.1 fWAR in his most productive year, 2011. To make a long story short, Morse needs to return to his 2011 form to be worth replacing Blanco as the Giants left fielder.
 
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: Michael Morse Is Your Newest Giant​

Posted on December 12th, 2013 by admin in SF Giants Rumors
Image used under Creative Commons from Keith Allison

Image used under Creative Commons from Keith Allison

While most of us on the West Coast were trying to talk ourselves into getting out of our warm comfy beds since it was a cold morning in the bay area; the San Francisco Giants were busy agreeing to terms with outfielder Michael Morse to fill their hole in left field. Word on the street is it’s a one-year deal ($5 million with incentives). This means outfielder Gregor Blanco is now the fourth outfielder. This isn’t a platoon position anymore. With that said, Blanco will still be used as a late inning defensive replacement if the Giants have a lead.

 
Andrew Baggarly of CSNBayArea.com says the Giants had to pledge Morse an everyday role to sign him. Morse had other teams interested and had a higher offer on the table from the Houston Astros, so I’m sure he wasn’t interested in a platoon role. 
 
“Big, big thunder,” An AL scout texted me shortly after the deal was announced. “Between he and Pence, (batting practice) will be an electric show.”
 
Morse will likely be in the five or six spot in the Giants batting order to start the season. After that, it all depends on how he’s swinging the bat. In 2011, Morse hit 31 homers with a .303 average, while driving in 95 runs for the Washington Nationals. In five career games at AT&T Park, Morse is hitting .316 with 1 homer and 4 RBI. Now tell me your thoughts on Morse as the Giants new left fielder in 2014?
 
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: Price, De Aza, Trumbo, Sandoval, Gaudin, Zito and Morales

Posted on December 11th, 2013 by admin in SF Giants Rumors
Photo Courtesy of Steven Robles

Photo Courtesy of Steven Robles

Buster Olney of ESPN.com says (via Twitter) the San Francisco Giants did check in on the David Price sweepstakes, but they haven’t discussed any possible trade scenarios with the Tampa Bay Rays as of yet.

 
The Giants have checked in with the Chicago White Sox about outfielder Alejandro De Aza says John Shea of the San Francisco Chronicle (via Twitter). De Aza could be moved since the White Sox acquired outfielder Adam Eaton.
 
In another Shea tweet, Shea said when the Giants called the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim about Mark Trumbo, the Angels wanted major league ready starting pitchers, and the Giants don’t have a surplus of starting arms.
 
Pictures on Instagram and Twitter keep surfacing of a thinner Pablo Sandoval. He’s been doing a lot of conditioning this offseason. Chris Haft of MLB.com reports (via Twitter) that GM Brian Sabean said he’d consider a springtime contract extension for Sandoval if he reports to spring training in shape.
 
Long man/spot starter Chad Gaudin isn’t likely to return to the Giants tweets John Shea.
 
Agent Scott Boras says Barry Zito wants to pitch in 2014, and he won’t look for a team till after January 1st. Boras also tells Shea that the Giants need a bat to keep up with the Los Angeles Dodgers. He suggested moving Brandon Belt to left field. Shea says that’s because Boras is selling Kendrys Morales as a possible first baseman (Twitter links).
 
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 Left Field Situation

Posted on December 11th, 2013 by admin in SF Giants Rumors
BrianSabeanAs we’re in the midst of the Winter Meetings, the San Francisco Giants will look to fill the gaping hole they have in left field.
 
With a weak free agent class and the lack of depth within the Giants minor league system, Brian Sabean will need to be creative if he wants to fill the Giants weakest position. I see the Giants looking for a veteran power hitter who can add some pop to the middle of the lineup, not break the bank and not cost the Giants one of their top prospects.
 
One player who fits the criteria is Josh Willingham of the Minnesota Twins. Though Willingham had an off year in 2013 for the Twins, he hit 35 home runs and had 110 RBI’s in 2012. He has a history as a good power hitter with a better than average on base percentage. Willingham is not a great defensive player but the Giants will not be able to find a player who can both hit for power and play good defense without parting ways with a top prospect or an everyday player. The Twins are rebuilding and may let Willingham go for cheap (Joe Panik?) with the Giants taking over his 7 million dollars a year salary.
 
If the Giants want a top level outfielder like a Matt Kemp or Giancarlo Stanton, they’ll have to offer one of their top prospects (Kyle Crick for example) and I don’t see Sabean doing this after losing Zack Wheeler to the New York Mets in the Carlos Beltran deal. Either way, if the Giants want to keep up with the Los Angeles Dodgers, Sabean will need to add a left fielder who can fit in with Bruce Bochy‘s managerial style. Giants fans, knowing that the Giants most likely will not trade a top prospect or over pay for a free agent, who do you think they should trade for or sign as a free agent to play left field?
 
Don’t forget to visit our SF Giants Rumors Facebook page to share your thoughts on all the latest Giants News/Rumors!
 
~Angel Viera
Twitter: @SportsBarAngel
 
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Why Signing Tim Hudson Is A Good Great Signing

Posted on December 6th, 2013 by admin in SF Giants Rumors

TimHudsonThis article may be a little late, but it’s still relevant (at least in this writer’s opinion) because signing Tim Hudson was an absolutely, positively GREAT signing.

Why was it so absolutely positively great? Because it means the San Francisco Giants have accepted their current position as a #2 or #3 (depending on what you think of the Arizona Diamondbacks – personally, I don’t think much) finisher in the National League West.

Whoa! A Giants fan and writer who is accepting #2 before Spring Training even starts? Listen, I would love to be wrong, and maybe the even-year thing will prove to be true.  If that’s the case, fantastic. If not, there’s always next year. And that year…that is the year we should be excited about.

Hudson buys the Giants two things: time and experience.

Time is important because your 2014 Giants are in-between new talent. This team has looked almost exactly the same for 2 years now (2012, 2013), going on 3 (2014). But when you looked ahead, you see a whole new generation of Giants, specifically pitchers, coming through those doors and onto the field by the bay. They just need to find a way to stay steady, try and win a few more games than last year, and then, in 2015 and 2016, start to make some real changes. Hudson (and even Tim Lincecum and now Ryan Vogelsong) do just that. They’re gap-fillers. Plugging the holes until this new wave of pitchers comes through. Buying time for one to two more years.

In addition to buying time until the new guys show up, Hudson provides a TON of veteran experience. 15 seasons, over 2800 innings, NL and AL, 3-time All Star, 3.44 career ERA, the list goes on and on. Who better to welcome the next wave of Giants pitchers than a guy like Hudson? An experienced vet who is a known “clubhouse guy” to help teach and break the rookies into the majors. It’s a win-win.

So let the haters hate and the naysayers naysay. Everyone who wanted Masahiro Tanaka (he may not even play MLB now) or another high-priced, flashy starter (although personally I’d love to see Ubaldo Jiminez in a Giants uniform), don’t you worry. Sit tight for one more, maybe two years, and then you’ll have a starting staff filled with young flashy arms at mere fractions of the cost.

And you know what? After we’ve accepted #2 or #3 for another year or two, we’ll have that staff of cheap arms and the Giants can go out and spend whatever they want on that power-hitting left fielder we’ve been craving since Barry Bonds waved goodbye.

 

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

 

~Robert Barsanti

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SF Giants Rumors: Vogelsong, Tanaka, Sabean, Choo, Beltran, Etc.

Posted on December 5th, 2013 by admin in SF Giants Rumors
Credit: Justeen Ferguson

Credit: Justeen Ferguson

Starting pitcher Ryan Vogelsong passed his physical yesterday, so his one-year, $5 million deal is now official. The San Francisco Giants rotation now seems to be set as GM Brian Sabean has said Vogelsong will not need to compete for a rotation spot. He’s got the fifth spot on locked down. I would say that this means the Giants are surely out on Japanese pitcher Masahiro Tanaka. I guess that’s a good thing since the Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles might refuse to make Tanaka available through the proposed posting system.

 
John Shea of the San Francisco Chronicle shares some insights that he gathered from a conference call with Sabean. You know that deep dark hole in left field? Well, it doesn’t seem like it will be filled anytime soon.
 
“We’re open-minded, but I’m not optimistic it’s going to be a big piece or anything earth-shattering,” said Sabean.
 
They’ve ruled out outfielders Shin-Soo Choo and Carlos Beltran since they’ve spent substantially on their own free agents this offseason.
 
Hunter Pence (5 yrs, $90 million)
Tim Lincecum (2 yrs, $35 million)
Javier Lopez (3 yrs, $13 million)
Ryan Vogelsong (1 yr, $5 million/plus incentives)
 
Free Agent Signing
Tim Hudson (2 yrs, $23 million)
 
Sabean also closed the door on moving Brandon Belt to left field. That’s a good call, because Belt could be a future Gold Glove winner at first base. Let’s hope 2014 is the year he brings that hardware home!
 
“He’s not going to play another position other than first base,” said Sabean.
 
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: Vogelsong Deal, Monell Trade, Breaking News – Giants Prospects In Car Crash

Posted on December 3rd, 2013 by admin in SF Giants Rumors
Photo Courtesy of Steven Robles

Photo Courtesy of Steven Robles

The starting rotation for the San Francisco Giants seems to be set as the Giants have agreed to terms with pitcher Ryan Vogelsong on a one-year deal. Vogelsong will be the fifth starter in the rotation. Vogelsong’s physical is scheduled for Wednesday.

 
The Giants have traded minor league catcher Johnny Monell to the Baltimore Orioles for cash.
 
The Giants have tendered contracts to Gregor BlancoBrandon BeltJoaquin AriasYusmeiro Petit and Tony Abreu. The G-men have non-tendered pitcher Sandy Rosario.
 
Sorry I had to cut the top three topics short, because of the breaking news…
 
Breaking News
 
We’ve learned this morning that there were some Giants minor leaguers hurt in an automobile accident this morning in Arizona. Eleven prospects were in the van when it crashed. Four people have been taken to the hospital with injuries and it’s reported that one of them is in critical condition. No names have been released at this point. Our thoughts and prayers are with everyone involved in the crash!
 
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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