It's funny that with all the talk about how old the Giants are this year -- and how much I worried about it myself -- one of the biggest problems on the team so far has been that their younger players have disappointed. (Insert your own small sample size disclaimer here).
Bonds is limping around and strggling to find his stroke. Durham's lost all traces of his once impressive speed. Finley's looking old in CF. Benitez is hurt and has lost his fastball. Schmidt has lost his fastball and command. Yet the veterans are producing everything the Giants are getting to start the year. Alou is the only real power threat, Winn and Vizquel have ignited what little offense they've had, and even Bonds is still an OBP machine and playing almost everyday.
The younger players have been far less effective. Other than a couple of memorable highlights, Niekro has struggled. Lowry got hurt after an inning. Cain has been cuffed around. In the bullpen, disappointing young relievers are almost too numerous to name. Taschner, Accardo, Correia, Walker and Munter are all under 30 and all have had ugly moments and ERAs.
The only really reliable relievers so far have been old men Worrell and Kline, and the best starters have been Wright and Morris. Granted, Hennessey looked good in his lone start, and Durham and Matheny haven't exactly been lighting it up. But Feliz is still youngish, and the lineup also got a badly needed boost when Sweeney replaced Niekro.
Personally, I hope that the young guys can get better as the season goes on and they gain experience. I like what I see in too many of them to get too disappointed yet. And hopefully the old guys can stay healthy and Bonds finds his groove. But I wonder about Sabean, and his quick trigger finger, always more willing to err toward the safe vets. I wonder how long he'll let young guys pile up high ERAs before he does something rash. That makes me afraid. Very afraid.