Ok, well, at least Giancarlo Stanton is not going to the Dodgers =)
This is a good news, bad news situation for the Giants, and allows for a part 2 to yesterday’s post.
The good news is that Stanton is not going to LA, and, in fact, is leaving the National League all together. Meanwhile the Yankees are creating a juggernaut similar to the one they had in the early to mid-2000’s (a version of Yankees juggernaut that never won a World Series, for the record).
The bad news is that Giants did not get Stanton, and in addition, the stakes for the 2018 offseason just got a bit higher. The Dodgers and the Cubs now become the early leaders for Bryce Harper and Manny Machado.
It is the official position of this website that the Giants should be ALL IN on Manny Machado from this day forth. While Bryce Harper is the only left-handed hitter in the game who would not be intimidated by playing at AT&T, Machado makes more sense for a couple of reasons:
- He plays a position of greater need, 3B. We are living in a golden age of third basemen, and somehow the Giants have completely whiffed here. I would argue, positionally, Machado would be more valuable. Plus, he hits right-handed and balances their Panik/Crawford middle infield.
- He will be expensive, but not as expensive as Harper.
- He has a personality. So does Harper. Both are fiery guys who have rubbed opposing players (and their own teammates) the wrong way. I am totally ok with this. The Giants, long known for a great clubhouse culture, need someone to bring the life and energy and edge back.
- He is Latino. San Francisco is one of the most diverse areas in the entire world, and the Giants have a proliferation of guys from Georgia and North Carolina. How do the Giants not have a star level player from outside the US? (My apologies to Johnny Cueto and Pablo Sandoval who are past their star primes at this point). This is the franchise of Willie Mays, Millie McCovey, Orlando Cepeda, Juan Marichal, Kevin Mitchel, Barry Bonds, Dusty Baker, Ellis Burks, the Alous, Omar Vizquel, and so many others, but that stream has dried up recently. Bring me Jackie Bradley Jr and Manny Machado!
I laid out some ideas yesterday that could help improve the team in 2018 and open up the possibility of a run at Harper/Machado next winter, but I want to add one more.
I would love to be surprised. The Giants, especially since 1997 under Brian Sabean, have been known to surprise. The big moment was trading Matt Williams for Jeff Kent. But there have been other surprising moves, trades for guys who we weren’t super excited about but ended up being awesome. A couple of my favorites: Javy Lopes, Freddy Sanchez, and Angel Pagan.
The Giants have unearthed endless gems in many different ways, from Cody Ross to Connor Gillespe, from Jason Schmidt to Ryan Vogelsong.
I’m excited for the new gems. Who might they be?
One final thought. If you are afraid of the Yankees right now there’s good reason to feel that way. But, I would point out that they did this before and the A-Rod era produced one title, and it’s arguable how important A-Rod was to that team.
The Yankees went and spent a ton of money before 2009 and that produced a title, but then the Giants and Cardinals started their runs. The Giants took down the unbeatable Phillies and Rangers and Reds and Nationals and Cardinals and Tigers and Royals. Every era has had some incredible teams.
This era has some really incredible teams, probably some of the best in the last 20 years. The Dodgers, Cubs, Yankees, Astros, Nationals, and Indians are all stacked. The Rockies, Red Sox, Diamondbacks, Cardinals, and Angels are very good too. Look out for the Mariners and the Twins and probably a few other teams that come out of nowhere to be good.
Things look very bleak for the Giants right now. They did 10 years ago too, and we all know how that turned out.