Bloggers Bay Area Sports Guy, Crazy Crabbers, Giants Nirvana and SF Giants Rumors were invited to Media Day at AT&T Park. They were able to have a 25 minute interview with Bruce Bochy and Brian Sabean. They are posting exclusive stuff from the day on their sites, so go check them out. Bleacher Report was their interviewing players as well. I don't have a clue as to why that is. So sad. I'm glad Grant didn't go because I don't trust the Giants intentions. I feel like this may have been a way to soften online criticism of the team and organization. We've seen this kind of stuff with the beat reporters.
Thanks to Bay Area Sports Guy for the video:
Here's the summary:
- Bochy says "rarely" does Sabean ever go on the internet.
- Bochy called Freddy and Posey the "two hole and four hole" hitters respectively for next season.
- Bochy says the added "athleticism" of Pagan and Cabrera will "put a little more pressure on the other clubs and make it a little easier to manufacture runs".
- Bochy says he believes Zito is "going to do a nice job" in the 5th spot next season.
- Bochys says he's been reluctant to answer questions regarding Pagan and Cabrera because he hasn't had a proper talk with them over their roles with the team for next season.
- Bochy is hoping Freddy will be able to play a 145 games next season.
- In response to a question about whether the Giants high ranking defense the past few season was by design, Sabean says some of it is and some of it is because of "luck". He notes that the Giants lacked range in the infield in 2010 but the pitching was geared towards fly balls, pop-ups and strikeouts, and late inning defensive replacements were often used.
- Asked about the concern of having a "pitching first" philosophy that entails signing starting pitchers into their 30's, Sabean says he believes Timmy and Matt have been "protected" by being used "very carefully", "judiciously", and not overworked to the point of being "abused". He brings up the Verducci Effect and how he believes it fails to take into account the "human side of things", like who the manager or pitching coach was, or the strength and mechanics of the pitcher, or the strength of the bullpen. He also says the Giants otation schedule is rarely adjusted which provides the starters with regular rest. Bochy adds that Dave Righetti recognizes when a pitcher is changing his delivery early in a game. He says that at times the pitchers may have been "babied too much" and not allowed to build arm strength resulting in injuries. Bochy says he believes you "need to trust your eyes" when it comes to the amount of pitches the starters throw each game. The pitchers have "gotten used to the load" of pitches they've been throwing each season. He points out that Bumgarner "get's better" the more he throws.
- Sabean says the Giants probably "couldn't pay [Jonathan]Sanchez six million in arbitration", and "hoped to use him as a trade chip".
- Sabean says "people forget Wilson crashed and burned" when discussing why Lopez and Affeldt were both re-signed .
- Bochy indicates that Romo and Lopez are his first choices to fill the closer role if Wilson goes down with injury.
- Sabean says he was worried that he wouldn't have been able to re-sign or replace Lopez and Affeldt if they had reached free-agency. He says the cost to re-sign them was "maybe a little more of a price point than we
- Sabean says the Giants "would like to extend" Wilson and "we think this guy is gonna pitch a lot of
baseball as a closer". He doesn't see anybody potentially ready to over the job. Heath Hembree is unproven as
he hasn't pitched above AA. Sabean says that he and Bochy have the view that closers are "different animals"
and "not everyone can close, contrary to popular belief".
- In response to a question about whether shortstop free-agents like Jimmy Rollins and Rafael Furcal were considered, Sabean says he preferred "giving Crawford a chance" instead of "overpaying" for someone. He says Crawford "was really rushed" last season but "he'll be much more comfortable this year". He says "we all want Crawford to be the (starting)shortstop no matter what kind of spring he has" and the Ryan Theriot signing has no effect on that plan. Bochy wants him to know that and will talk to him about it so that he can be "relaxed out there and not feel any added pressure".
- Brian Sabean appeared to not know anything about the trade deal involving Jeff Keppinger reported by Andrew Baggarly.
- Sabean says the comments made by Lincecum's agent and others about the offense being a factor in him "entertaining" a long term deal with the team is untrue.
- Sabean says the "budget can hold both Lincecum and Cain and trying to get more offense in here".
- Sabean says the Giants believe Pablo, Posey, and Belt can "principally be the middle of the order for a while" regardless of free-agents. He also says that "Crawford's going to become a better hitter".
- Sabean says Belt was "put into a buzz saw last year" "under duress". Belt "wasn't ready to be that consistent in helping the lineup". "It really might not depend on what kind of spring he has at all as much as what the team looks like, could look like, with him as the first baseman". Sabean says Belt's best position is first base and playing it next season may help him "relax and take on more as a hitter". Belt "has a chance" to make the 25 man roster and make the team "better". Sabean thinks Belt will be "given every opportunity to make the team".
- Sabean says Bochy is more "resourceful" than other managers, stays "very prepared", and keeps every player involved and in a position to contribute. Sabean seemed to dodge questions at times and somewhat go off topic.