Winter Meetings, Day I: Is it over yet?

Double-pronged comment starter: What do you think the Giants will do at the Winter Meetings that began today, and what would you like them to do?

I think the Giants will sign Jermaine Dye to a two-year deal for $18M. I think this because the crow with the scythe in my nightmares writes it in blood every night before I wake up. That’s science. Look in your heart. You know it’s true. He’ll be like Moises Alou, but without the blazing speed and ability to hit well. Dye, that is, not the crow.

I expect the Giants to sign a catcher who hits, runs, and fields like Bengie Molina for 20% of the price of the real thing, and they won’t expect the new guy to hit cleanup. It sounds like running in place, but it’s kind of an improvement, especially when Buster Posey hits .400/.500/.600 in the spring to win the job outright. Spring stats are usually the best way to tell if a hitter’s ready, but only if there aren’t any tea leaves or star charts around, so the Giants have the right idea. Don’t just give a hitter the job; make him earn it against guys from A-ball who are going to be sent to the minor league complex the following day.

What I’d like them to do is another story. My affinity for Nick Johnson is well documented, and Brian Sabean told the Chronicle that the Giants would rather keep Pablo Sandoval at third and acquire a first baseman, but I’m wondering if the heavy interest in Johnson will price him out of a sensible contract. If the price is reasonable enough, though, it would be nice to have a .400 OBP in the lineup.

But I’m starting to get a little crazy. I’ve been freebasing MLB Trade Rumors – I mean, I can quit any time I want – and I’m getting a little twitchy. Mainlining Curtis Granderson rumors is a good way to end up in cardiac arrest, but the rush isn't even describable. Granderson is:

  • going to be 29 on Opening Day
  • coming off a little bit of a down year, but that’s probably because his BABIP was at a career low, so he’s undervalued just a bit
  • locked up for the next three years for a combined $24M, and there’s a $13M club option for 2013
  • a good defensive center fielder
  • a 20- or 30-home run hitter who will probably get 6,203 triples in his first season in San Francisco
  • going to be pretty danged expensive to acquire

I just can’t help myself, though. Obviously, Posey stays. But I’d trade anyone else in the farm for Granderson. That most definitely includes Madison Bumgarner, and I don’t think the Tigers would even start talks without him. And I know how crazy that sounds. While I would have been the guy advocating a Foppert-for-Guerrero swap in ’01, I also would have traded Cain for Vernon Wells in ’04. So I know there is enormous potential for a team to look incredibly stupid on this one.

But could you imagine Granderson patrolling center for his peak? Oooh, ooh, and then the Giants trade Aaron Rowand for Milton Bradley. Oooh, ooh, and then John Bowker starts and hits like the projection systems say he can. Oooh, ooh, and then the Giants sign Nick Johnson. Ooooh, and then the Cardinals make an administrative error that gives Albert Pujols to the Giants for a signed Luis Pujols jersey. Oooh, ooh, and then…

I’m sorry you had to see that. Rosterbation can drive a man insane. I’m not totally serious about Granderson, but if the Tigers would take Bumgarner, a #5-#10 prospect, and one of the quasi-interesting twenty-something outfielders, I’d at least listen. And that’s probably too much to give up for a player who only had a 100 OPS+ last year. But I’d at least kick tires with due diligence when the time comes.

Open What You Expect and Want the Giants to Do Thread.

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