Pros and Cons (From the First Week of Baseball)

I know it’s early and all lot of this is small sample size, but let’s take a look at the early happy things and early sad face things about the Giants this young baseball season.

PROS

Melkey Cabrera: I admit, I hated the trade when it happened, not because of trading Jonathan Sanchez, but because I thought the Giants could have gotten a lot more for him than a guy who I saw in Atlanta as mediocre at best, however I like what I see so far this season. He could easily slide back into mediocrity, but for now he’s one of the Giants most consistent hitters, and I approve of that.

Brandon Crawford: Huh? I know he’s not exactly setting the world on fire with his bat, but I’m really enjoying watching him play. He looks more relaxed than last season, I love his glove and I like what I see with him at the plate. Won’t be a great hitter, but I look forward to seeing his development more this year.

Homegrown talent: For too long the Giants homegrown talent has been all pitching, but a few times this year we’ve seen an infield of Pablo Sandoval, Manny Burris, Crawford and Brandon Belt, with Hector Sanchez in the game as well, all Giant draft picks. They all aren’t the hitting equivalent of Lincecum or Cain, but it’s nice to see that between these guys, and players like Gary Brown and Joe Panik in the minors, the hitting part of the Giants future is looking nice.

Pablo! Yes, he put on a little more weight, but he’s still hitting well and fielding well and is there a more fun Giant to watch? I don’t think so, and in addition to all of that, he’s our most consistent hitter! Yay!

Starting Pitching: Bad first starts, amazing second starts from Cain and Bumgarner, good two starts for Zito and a good start from Vogelsong. Now get your head in the game Timmy!

CONS

Angel Pagan: At least he’s healthy while Torres is on the DL, but the guy looks lost at the plate. Sure he’s fast and can play CF, but so can Gregor Blanco and that guy had an amazing spring.

Second Base: Freddy Sanchez on the DL, and is probably on his last legs, Manny Burris and Ryan Theriot are the other options and both don’t provide much to this club. Thankfully Joe Panik looks like our future second baseman, but he’s probably 2, more likely 3 years away, what do you do in the meantime?

Brian Wilson: Out for the season it looks like, and who knows if he’ll ever pitch for the Giants again. I love, LOVE Wilson, but his velocity is down, his strikeouts are down, he looks like he’s really struggling out there and now another arm injury. I hate to say it but his time might be coming to an end in the Black and Orange.

Tim Lincecum: I don’t think anything is wrong with him and I’m confident he’ll put it together, but he’s getting lots of money and is due for lots more in a few years. I really, REALLY hope this isn’t the beginning of a downward spiral into middle rotation status, but he needs to start showing some more velocity and control out there.

(-NW)

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Nick’s Picks

Just because I was wrong about Mike Fontenot being a lock for the Giants roster doesn’t mean I’m wrong here! Let’s start with my second favorite MLB League, the American league.

AL East

  1. Yankees
  2. Rays
  3. Blue Jays
  4. Red Sox
  5. Orioles

I think the Yankees win but not by much over the Rays. Tampa has better pitching and it’ll be interesting to see if the older Yankees can put enough hitting together to get the division. Ultimately I think the Rays win one of Wild Cards and the Yankees are bounced in the first round again. The Red Sox seem to have some trouble, and I really like what the Blue Jays are doing with some great young pitching. Honestly the Sox will probably finished 3rd and could very well win the WC as well, but I like my home country team so they go 3! O’s suck.

AL Central

  1. Tigers
  2. Indians
  3. White Sox
  4. Twins
  5. Royals

I think the Tigers run away with the division, but the rest is tough to predict. The Indians will keep improving, the White Sox will be about the same as last year I think, and the Twins can’t possibly be as bad as they were last season. Any of those 3 teams could switch positions, and all will miss the playoffs. The Royals are slowly getting better, but still a year or two away from contending in this division.

AL West

  1. Rangers
  2. Angels
  3. Mariners
  4. Athletics

The Angels got Pujols and CJ Wilson, but I think the Rangers will win their 3rd straight division title with the Angels winning the 2nd WC. It honestly could go either way, and Albert and Kendry Morales being a huge addition to the Angels team in terms of offense. But this team still has Tori Hunter, Vernon Wells and other not as powerful offensive options. The Rangers have Mike Napoli, Josh Hamilton, Nelson Cruz , Ian Kinsler etc.

NL East

  1. Marlins
  2. Phillies
  3. Braves
  4. Nationals
  5. Mets

It’s not that I think the Marlins are really good, although the additions of Jose Reyes, Heath Bell and Mark Buehrle certainly help, it’s that I don’t see Atlanta or Philly that good. Philly has their big 3 pitchers but not much else other than an aging lineup, the Braves can be so inconsistent and have little pitching or hitting depth.

NL Central

  1. Brewers
  2. Reds
  3. Cardinals
  4. Pirates
  5. Cubs
  6. Astros

I’m going against the trend and picking the Brewers to win the division with either St. Louis or Cincy to win a WC. The Brew Crew lost Prince, but added Aramis Ramirez (still a good power hitter), and better hitting shortstop and a potential big bat prospect at first in Mat Gamel. Other than that this is the same team as last year, I don’t see them losing the division. St. Louis is going to feel the lack of Big Albert in their lineup, and I don’t see how Berkman puts up the numbers he did last season again, plus no Chris Carpenter and who knows how their closer situation will be?

NL West

  1. Diamondbacks
  2. Giants
  3. Rockies
  4. Padres
  5. Dodgers

Dodgers are always last in my book. I’m worried about the Giants offense competing enough to win the title. The D-Backs looked really good last season to me and I don’t see them dropping off. The Giants will be good and win the other WC and make a good, solid run into the post season. I actually think this will be a competitive division that will be a lot of fun to watch.

World Series

  • Brewers vs. Rays…Brewers win.

(-NW)

Making the Cut

It’s baseball time boys and girls! Along with that joyous occasion comes a variety of exciting things to keep our attention! Fantasy baseball, the trade rumor mill, funny bloggers and roster speculation!

The standard MLB roster is 25 players, both pitchers and catchers, below is the list of Giants who’ll be a lock for the roster:

  • Pitchers: Tim Lincecum, Matt Cain, Madison Bumgarner, Ryan Vogelsong, Barry Zito, Brian Wilson, Sergio Romo, Santiago Castilla, Javy Lopez, Jeremy Affeldt, Guilleramo Mota.
  • Infield/Catcher: Aubrey Huff, Freddy Sanchez (possibly starts the year on the DL, which would free up a roster spot),Brandon Crawford, Pablo Sandoval, Buster Posey.
  • Outfield: Angel Pagan, Melky Cabrera, Nate Schierholtz, Gregor Blanco.

That’s 20 players, 19 if you put Freddy Sanchez on the DL, which is what I will be doing for the sake of this post. So what other 6 players make the cut?

First of all, one of those spots will go to a backup catcher, either Eli Whiteside or Chris Stewart. Honestly it doesn’t matter which one as they are fairly equal and up to the task, so that takes us down to 5 players. My guess is that they add 1 reliever and use the other 4 for IF/OF spots, mostly because Sanchez is hurt and Crawford is not exactly the best hitter in the world, I think Bochy will keep the middle of the IF rotating and getting other batters in play, especially in later innings and having that flexibility will be key. So with that said I don’t see how Mike Fontenot doesn’t make the Opening Day lineup. He can play SS, 2B and 3B and is an average hitter who has experience filling in last season, which leaves us with 4 spots. Doing the rest of the hitter spots, I can see Manny Burris starting the year in the big leagues as the starting 2B while Sanchez is out. He’s hitting great in Spring Training, .417 actually, which doesn’t mean anything in the regular season, but he’s out of Minor League options (meaning if he gets sent down to AAA he is put on waivers first and any team can claim him) and the Giants have said, and have shown in the past, that options are considered big time, plus the Giants have always have had lots of love for Burris. Down to 3!

I think Ryan Theriot is another close lock. He can play multiple infield positions, is cheap and has a good glove. Plus baseball fans love nicknames, and Ryan “The Riot” Theriot is one of the best! In all honesty though, the Theriot signing is one of my more favorite moves of the Giants this past offseason. He’s not an amazing player, and has never hit for power (17 total HR’s in 7 MLB seasons) put he’s an above average hitter (.282 lifetime BA with a .344 lifetime OBP) and a good glove, could go a long way to solidifying the middle. 2 left! I’m going to skip over to the bullpen, since the last position will be the big Belt debate that I want to give some focus to. The last bullpen spot will either got to Clay Hensley or Steve Edlefsen. Clay is a free agent signing with a 7 season career 3.96 ERA with 329 K’s, and a 1.35 WHIP, not lights out numbers by any stretch, and last season he had a 5.19 ERA with 46 K’s, although that is one year removed from a 2.16 ERA and 77 K’s. Edlefsen debuted with the Giants last year and had a 0.96 ERA with 8K’s in 11 games, not exactly a large sample size. I could see Hensley making the roster out the gate, only to get released and replaced with Edlefsen, although Edlefsen has a 2.50 ERA in Spring, while Hensley is 4.50. Could go either way.

Finally the last roster spot. Who should this go to? Brandon Belt. The boy needs to play, is having a good Spring and has done everything he can do in the minors. I would put him at first and use Huff in the OF with the occasional spell at 1B and pinch-hitting. Who will probably end up getting this spot? Brett Pill. He can play 1B, 2B, probably fill in at 3B if needed and can play either corner OF spot. Versatility. Plus Bochy isn’t going to bench Huff, not unless he really really struggles this season, in which case Belt will probably get his chance, unless Bochy decides to move Posey over to 1B and call up Hector Sanchez to catch. Honestly though Pill isn’t the worst choice, he had a very nice end of last season and is having a solid spring. My biggest frustration isn’t with him, it’s with the lack of Belt playing.

The Giants have had awful luck recently with hitting prospects, pitching not so much, hitting? Yes. Travis Ishakawa, Todd Linden, Dan Ortmeier, Lance Niekro, John Bowker, none of them panned out. Posey did, but Bengie Molina had to be traded to make room for him. Belt looks like another one, yes he strikes out a lot, but he needs repetition to get that right. I’d much rather have Belt at AAA getting playing time than grabbing pine in San Francisco, but at some point he needs a consistent chance.

(-NW)

Melky?

So I’ll be honest, I originally planned on writing this post a few days ago when the Giants/Royals trade occurred and my response was how awful a trade it was. I hated it, thought it was a stereotypical stupid Sabean trade and that was that. However as the days have passed and I’ve had time to process my feelings have changed, not a lot mind you, but some. I still don’t like the trade overall but I don’t think it’s quite as bad as I thought at first.

First of all we have Melky, as average of a ballplayer as you can get. I had a friend ask me if anyone who starts for the Yankees could truly be considered average, and the answer is yes and his name was Melky Cabrera. His stats through 5 seasons and a little over 2100 at bats as a Yankee were 90 doubles, 12 triples, 36 HR’s, 228 RBI, 44 Stolen bases, 171 walks, 246 K’s and a .269/.331/.335 line, in other words, nothing exciting or outstanding at all. Add to that a terrible season in Atlanta and a career year in KC where he hit half of the amount of HR’s he hit in his whole 5 seasons in New York and I’m not excited, at least not for the price it cost, and there is the real issue with this trade. Melky is a fine addition to the Giants and a much better option than someone like Coco Crisp or David DeJesus, but for what the Giants gave up, we should have gotten more.

Now before anyone says it, yes, Jonathan Sanchez is no more than an above average pitcher, a good 3rd or 4th starter option for almost any team in the league. His career stats in 6 seasons with the Giants are a 38-46 record with a 4.26 ERA and 376 walks. However he also has 736 strikeouts and he’s a lefty, which by nature means he has more value than an identical righty. Do I think it was a good idea to trade Sanchez? I do, in fact I said so in a post shortly after the regular season ended, and trading him for a bat brings more value than DFA’ing him or trading him for another arm, but Jonathan Sanchez is still a valuable pitcher who should have brought more value in than an average outfielder that management doesn’t yet know how to fit in the lineup. Now I know real life baseball is not like a video game where you can propose any trade and it works out for your team 99% of the time, and if this is what the market thought Sanchez was worth, than that is what he’s worth, but it’s hard for me to see how this pitcher wouldn’t be more coveted in a league where pitching is valued so much. I didn’t expect to get an all-star for Sanchez, but it feels like Sabean took the first offer given to him rather than wait for the market to develop (the Red Sox, for instance, didn’t even know he was on the market).

Will Melky help the Giants next year? I hope so, but it’s not like he’s a power hitter. We need to resign Beltran and get another veteran infielder and maybe a 5th starter, but a solid bat HAS to be our priority this offseason, and Melky just isn’t that.

(-NW)

Looking Ahead (Pt. 1)

What, you think just because the defending World Champion (and they still are!) Giants are done for the season we have nothing more to say? WRONG! Let’s look at how next year’s team is shaping up.

Catcher: Buster Posey will be back from his self-imposed exile next season so this is a set position. As far as backups go, keep Hector Sanchez in AAA for another year and use Eli Whiteside or Chris Stewart. Both work fine in that role.

First Base: Here’s an interesting situation. Brandon Belt has apparently been moved to Left Field full time-ish while Brett Pill is going bonkers and Aubrey Huff has one more year on his contract. So what do you do? I would go with Pill as your starter and see if he can handle a full season, and use Huff off the bench to give Pill a break or to take over if Pill falls apart.

Second Base: Freddy Sanchez is supposed to be ready by Spring Training so there you go. However I really like how Jeff Keppinger played since he acquired him and hope he can stay around as a utility guy, or even the starting SS.

Third Base: Pablo.

Shortstop: With the hole of suck known as Orlando Cabrera and Miguel Tejada gone this is one of the Giants biggest positional holes. As far as minor leaguers go we don’t have much, which is why I think you’ll either see some combo of Brandon Crawford and Jeff Keppinger, or the Giants go after a free agent. Although I expect them to check in on Jose Reyes, he’s really not a realistic option. Jimmy Rollins seems like a much better, and cheaper option for San Fran, but he’s asking for 5 years and I would hesitate to offer anything more than 3. Crawford showed a very good glove and Keppinger is a better offensive player, so unless the Giants do something surprising, this could be our situation next season.

Right Field: I honestly hope the Giants make a run at Carlos Beltran, but I’m seriously doubting he’ll be asking anything reasonable, especially since he’s a Boras client. In that case I think the Giants use Nate Schierholtz again as their starting RF and maybe/hopefully bring back Cody Ross at an affordable rate, especially since they don’t have anyone that close to ready in minors for next year. Nate did pretty well this season though, and his arm is killer, so it wouldn’t be a bad option.

Center Field: Torres is your option here, if only to see whether it was this season that was an aberration or if it was last season. Other than him who do you have? Justin Christian?

Left Field: Brandon Belt. At least it gives him consistent playing time.

Starting Pitching: Ah this is where it gets interesting. Lincecum, Cain and Bumgarner are sure bets, as probably is Vogelsong (is he a free agent? I don’t know), but what to do with Zito and Sanchez? I honestly have no clue what to do with Zito, I would release him, but that’s a LOT of money being left on the table. If he was ok with it I would throw him in the bullpen (he can’t be worse than Runzler this season) and maybe use him as a 6th/spot starter. Jonathan Sanchez I would trade and the reason behind this is that the Giants still have next to nothing in terms of batting. Posey, Sandoval and hopefully Belt and Pill, which would be great if they worked out, if not, we’re going to have another season where the playoffs are out of reach. Maybe they can score a shortstop (The Marlins seem really really down on Hanley Ramirez, and yes I know that is super unlikely.) or another outfielder or SOMEBODY who can be a consistent hitter. Replace him in the lineup with Eric Surkamp and go from there. If he falls off a cliff then just call up Zach Wheeler. Wait a minute…

Bullpen: Wilson, Romo, Castilla and Ramirez need to stay along with Lopez. KEEP LOPEZ! Throw in Edelfson and maybe Zito or someone else and we’re fine. It’s a very solid bullpen the way it is.

Bench: Keppinger, Darren Ford for your 5th OF/Pinch running expert, maybe Manny Burris or Connor Gillespie for the infield.

Free Agents: Prince Fielder, Albert Pujols and Jose Reyes will not happen. Sorry. Jimmy Rollins? Maybe. C.C. Sabathia? I really hope so, but no way. You know who I would like to see? Michael Cuddyer of the Twins. Plays 1B, 2B, 3B and OF and is a 20-25 HR a year hitter, around 70-80ish RBI’s and is a career .272 hitter, but that includes two bad years in 2003 and 2008. Not a bad option and he would look good in Orange and Black.

(-NW)

What Really Happened at the Game Monday Night

My lovely wife and I were able to attend the Braves/Giants game on the 16th, and I decided to record the events of the evening and post them here in a live journal format. Enjoy!

5:15 PM: My wife and I arrive at Turner Field. If you’ve never been it’s a lovely stadium and some really cool things in it. Like a gluten-free food stand for my celiac affected wife. Big points Turner Field. Big points.

6:15: After watching the Giants batting practice and being unable to get any autographs, photographs or promises of a first-born child named after me, Kristen and I head up to get some grub and enjoy our seats.

6:45: While we watched the grounds crew water the infield I couldn’t help but think that they would be touching more infield territory than the Giants hitters would be.

6:50: The Tomahawk Girls shoot t-shirts into the stands. I wonder how many grown men will fall over themselves to get one. I put the over/under at 12 and I’m picking over.

6:57: Ceremonial first pitch. How do I get to do one of these?

7:04: My wife claps for the Braves players as they take the field. I remind her she’s decked out in Giants gear. I move 3 seats away.

7:07: The Braves PA guy keeps referring to this as the epic rematch from last year’s NLDS. Frankly I’ll be ok losing the rematch since, you know, we won the World Series. I mean seriously dude, are these 2 series even comparable?

7:11: First pitch. Aaron Rowand already struck out twice.

7:12: Cody Ross grounds out. This bodes well. Or not.

7:14: Jeff Keppinger breaks up Tim Hudsons no-hitter. Go Giants!

7:22: Bases are loaded with Brandon Belt coming up. My hopes are beyond high.

7:23: Belt flys out. Hopes crushed.

7:25: Pablo goes down after fouling a ball off of his foot. He’s replaced by Mike Fotenot. I can smell the runs!!!!

7:28: Madison Bumgarner loses his no hitter. To a Home Run. To Brian McCann on his first at bat back from injury. Goodie.

7:46: Orlando Cabrera is way too short. There should be 2 outs right now if this dude even was just wearing heels.

7:52: Saw a “Your beard is weird” sign. These people are so uneducated. How can they not appreciate its awesomeness? Side note: My wife is wearing a Fear the Beard shirt. She looks more beautiful than the day I married her.

8:10: Looks like another Giants inning of futility until Michael Bourn channels his inner Jose Canseco and bounces a ball off of his head.

8:34: Jeff Keppinger decides he’s had enough guff and makes Braves first baseman Freddie Freeman pay for standing in front of First Base as he legs out a base hit. Gamer.

8:36: Note: Mike Fontenot does not bat like Pablo.

8:51: Big Nate shows us what scoring looks like! GO GIANTS!

8:59: My good friend Devin texts me to go streaking on the field. I consider it.

9:03: Orlando Cabrera decides he prefers the ball to not stay in his glove, and would rather see Braves on the bases as opposed to getting out of the inning. Interesting strategy.

9:09: Dan Uggla makes one of the best plays I’ve ever seen a Second Baseman make. He was practically parallel to the ground throwing a ball to first. Even I have to applaud that play.

9:12: Cody Ross is out. Again. But the bigger news this time is Michael Bourn remembered this was baseball, not soccer, and he used his hands instead of his head to catch the ball.

9:22: Correction! Mike Fontenot DOES hit like Pablo! HR baby!

9:37: Top of the 9th, Giants up by 2, so why am I having panic attacks rather than trust the defending World Champions to hold a lead?

9:45: The Legendary Brian Wilson takes the mound. Children around the world rejoice, yet not the fans in Atlanta curiously enough. This is confusing to me, are there actually people who dislike Brian Wilson? How do you dislike the guy? He reeks of awesomeness. Then I realize this is not hate-booing. That is, not booing because you despise a player, like what I do when Shane Victorino comes to bat. He’s not ARod, or Barry Bonds or any other player that fans genuinely HATE. He’s probably the most charismatic and awesome character baseball has seen in decades. So he isn’t booed out of hate, but because it’s fun for the opposing team to boo him because of who he is. This makes me feel better, but still hoping he shuts down the Braves, just for giggles.

9:46: Why does Cabrera suck so much? Did he have his fielding ability genetically removed before this game? Holy cow.

10:02 PM: Giants lose on a full count, 2 out, bases loaded base hit. You’ve GOT to be kidding me. Even when we have an offense, it doesn’t matter. Honestly the blame rests with Cabrera, if he realizes the ball is in his glove with that first batter, then you have the pitchers spot coming up with 1 out, and that changes the ball game. Either that or it was a fake Brian Wilson on the mound tonight. Imposter! Still a highly enjoyable experience, and we’re still the World Champions, so I’ll take that.

(-NW)

All In

(-SB) It is pretty much a done deal at this point: Carlos Beltran will be a Giant. There is a lot to say and process, and not nearly enough time, so I highly recommend reading this. I 99% agree with the author.

One issue that immediately pops up is the outfield logjam the Giants have. This may be curtains for Burrell. Some interesting moves still yet to happen with the roster.

Here’s the lineup I’d love to see the Giants use the rest of the way (with modifications obviously based on matchups):

  • CF Torres (Ross)
  • 1B Belt
  • LF Beltran
  • 3B Sandoval
  • RF Schierholtz
  • 2B Keppinger (Fontenot)
  • SS Crawford (Tejada if they have to)
  • C Whiteside (Stewart)
Last, here’s an article we were going to run today by Nick comparing Upton and Beltran:
——————-

Note: It now appears that the Giants have traded Zach Wheeler and cash for Carlos Beltran, so this article is a bit late, but my point remains the same.

The trade deadline is usually one of the most exciting, and most overhyped, parts of the baseball season. Fans are always following mlbtraderumors.com or the ESPN insider page for any minute details involving their team and whether they are buyers, sellers or completely blowing up the team for prospects. This frenzy of knowledge also affects fans of the defending World Series Champions. (Note: The San Francisco Giants are the current World Champions.) This year the trade rumors with the Giants have been all about finding a bat, any bat, even a little leaguer who is able to hit a change-up down the middle. The Giants even called me to see if I wanted to be the new starting Left Fielder, although sadly I had to decline. The Giants currently have one hitter (ONE!) hitting over .300, and that’s new acquisition Jeff Keppinger at 2B. Pablo is hitting well, but honestly that’s about all we have at the moment and somehow the Giants remain in first. Obviously the need for a bat is huge and the two names the Giants have been tied to in the last few weeks are Mets OF Carlos Beltran, and Tampa Bay OF BJ Upton. Both have pluses, both have minuses, so which one would be a better fit?

Beltran: With Beltran you have an experienced hitter who, at one point in his career, was considered one of the best players in all of baseball. This season he’s currently hitting .289/.391/.513 with an OPS of .901 along with 15 HR’s and 66 RBI, not an amazing season but a solid one, however the amazing part is with those exact stats, Beltran would be first in HR’s (Huff and Pablo would be tied for second with 9 (!)), first in RBI, beating Huff who has 47 (!) and his 61 runs scored would beat out Andres Torres for the team lead, Torres having scored 39 times. Seriously, how are we in first place again? As far as defense goes, Beltran has a WAR of 3.6 (yes I hate sabermetrics, but for the benefit of this discussion, and for those of you who enjoy those stats, I’m throwing it in here). It’s not a great WAR, but a good one and it’s better than Pat Burrell (1.0), Andres Torres (1.1), Aaron Rowand (1.1), Cody Ross (0.9) and Nate Schierholtz (1.3), essentially making him our best hitter and our best fielder in one fell swoop. Downside? His speed (he had 42 SB’s not that long ago) is essentially gone, he’s a free agent after this season, and we’ll probably be unlikely/unable to sign him long-term, and he’s been injury prone since he went to the Mets, although maybe the holy waters of McCovey Cove will heal him of all ills.

Upton: BJ is a much more interesting choice, not as good or as famous as his brother Justin over in Arizona, BJ is currently hitting .227/.307/.395 with an OPS of .702. His power numbers look better with 15 HR’s and 53 RBI with 23 SB’s. So he has speed and about the same power as Beltran, along with 47 runs scored. The interesting thing about Upton is he’ll be under team control longer, and is considered the better defender, along with a much larger upside than Beltran. Lots of scouts feel that BJ needs to get free from Tampa, have a fresh start and the promise that he showed early in his career (such as 2007 where he hit .300 with 24 HR’s and 82 RBI.) Plus the appeal of holding onto him for a few years instead of Beltran just being a rental player makes you like him a bit more. Unfortunately his downside is his performance as a whole and his cost would probably be higher than Beltran, especially since reports now indicate the Mets have lowered their initial asking price for Carlos.

As far as compensation goes you’d have to think that the Mets are asking for Zach Wheeler or Gary Brown, two prospects I really wouldn’t want to trade at all. The Rays are probably asking the same, and maybe someone like Jonathan Sanchez or Thomas Neal, another Giants OF prospect. Honestly I started writing this article thinking BJ Upton would be a better solution, and for some teams, like the Braves or even the Brewers, he probably would be, but for a team like the Giants who need offense and need it now, the numbers don’t lie, Carlos Beltran is the way to go. I just hope it’s not for Brown or Wheeler.

(-NW)