FanPost

How Far Away For Competing In 2009 Are We?

It seems to me that most here have already written off 2009 and want Giants Management to do the same.  But is this the correct view of what it would take to compete in 2009 or is it just an emotional reaction to how bad the Giants have been since the last time we truely competed in 2004?

Let's look at the different elements of our beloved Giants and see whch ones are ready to compete now and which ones need  upgrades.  To me this really isn't very hard.  The Starting Pitching Is clearly ready to compete now.  The Outfield could compete now if none of the bats had to hit 4 or 5.  The Catching  could compete now if the bat was used hitting 6th, 7th, or 8th  instead of cleanup.  It is only the Infield and the Bullpen that are currently not ready to compete.

How far away are the Bullpen and the Infield? 

To me the bullpen is close.  Sabean has talked about adding an experienced arm or two in the offseason to close the gap.  I think this would be a misuse of our trading chips and/or free agent dollars.  We need to give our young arms the opportunity to fill these roles.  Out of Sadler, Hinshaw, Romo, and Matoes I think we should be able to find an 8th inning guy to pair with Wilson to close out the games.  I am fine with keeping Walker and Taschner in reduced roles  as a righty/lefty pair in middle relief before the 8th.  I think our current bullpen just needs more experience and will become a competative bullpen during the 2009 season.

Clearly the Inflied is where we come up short and today we are not even close.  We need to find two bats that can legitimately hit 4th and 5th and man the corner infield spots with at least league average defense.  We need to find two gloves that can man the middle infield spots with defense that is as much above average as their offense is below average.  When we solve this infield puzzle is when we are ready to compete.

So is it possible and reasonable to try and sovle this infield puzzle this offseason so that we can compete in 2009?  In my judgement it is.  We have pitchers and outfielders to trade.  If the salary budget for 2009 returns to $90M we have $30M in free agent dollars to spend.  Why can't we fill these 4 holes with players that allow us to compete in 2009 with these resources to aquire them?

This FanPost is reader-generated, and it does not necessarily reflect the views of McCovey Chronicles. If the author uses filler to achieve the minimum word requirement, a moderator may edit the FanPost for his or her own amusement.

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