The news on Freddy Sanchez isn't good. In addition to a dislocated shoulder, Sanchez has a damaged labrum and a stretched capsule, and he's going to forego surgery for now. Surgery means the end of his season. Waiting and resting at least gives him a chance at returning. Baggs makes us all feel better by dropping a Marcus Sanders comparison on the situation.
The worst part is that Jonathan Sanchez's shoulder capsule is filled with earthy, melancholic humours, which would probably be released with a little stretching, and that's why his control is even more off this season. What a shame.
So now the Giants are looking at the following lineup:
C - (Worst hitting catcher in the league)
1B - (Worst hitting first baseman in the league)
2B - (Worst hitting second baseman in the league)
SS - (Worst hitting shortstop in the league, tied with anyone the Reds or Pirates are putting out there)
3B - Pablo!
LF - (Worst hitting in league when Rowand starts, a little below-average when Ross starts)
CF - Torres!
RF - (Solidly below average with Schierholtz, a little below-average when Ross starts)
If you think that's hyperbole or melodramatic whining, please let me know which position I whiffed on. Huff might rebound, or Belt could start when he comes back, but that's about the only concession I'll make. On the days the Giants start Rowand, there's a good chance that the Giants' lineup will include four of the worst hitters in baseball for their position. It's impressive.
Don't take this as a slam against the Giants' front office. Tejada was the only void they actively brought in this offseason, and Rowand's continued play is purely on Bochy. If you unload a can of health-b-gone on any major league lineup, you'll start seeing some awful permutations.
So, trades. It wasn't much of a choice when it was just a void at catcher -- there's just not a lot out there. The Braves aren't going to give up David Ross, and it sounds like the Nationals were asking for more than a meatball sub for Pudge Rodriguez, which is far too much.
Second base is just as barren. Look at the teams who are out of contention or will be soon: not a decent option among them. If the Giants eat tens of millions of dollars, maybe they could talk the Orioles out of Brian Roberts (erf) or the Blue Jays out of Aaron Hill (ugh). The options are almost all sub-Fontenot.
Well, except for Matt Downs. He'd be a pretty sweet upgrade. I'll just let that sink in for a bit.
I'm going through every roster right now, and I don't see a fit. Are the Reds looking to make room for Devin Mesoraco, and if so, would they just, like, give us Ramon Hernandez? Would the Angels entertain offers for Howie Kendrick? Apart from wild scenarios like that, I'm not seeing how the Giants get better.
The Giants will certainly make a trade or two. And that scares me. They need better players, so in a perfect world they should trade, but I'm not seeing a way to upgrade from "worst" to anything other than "maybe second-worst." Apart from Jose Reyes, I'm not even seeing a way to blow up the farm in an irresponsible way for a good catcher or middle infielder.
I think this is the team. Belt will come back. Pablo's on his way. But this is probably the team. Maybe a couple of names will change -- Pudge for Eli, or something -- but the production will remain the same. It's 2009 all over again.
Depressing? A little. But, heck, they came pretty close in 2009. Beats having this lineup and a crap staff.