FanPost

Because It's Never Too Early: How's 2014 Looking?


I really have no idea why I'm doing this. Boredom, I guess. I mean, Sandoval just hit a two-run homer, so I'm not that bored, but it's sort of appropriate that the same guy who gave the Giants the lead is a free agent after next season. The 2014 roster as currently under contract:

SP1: Cain

SP2: Bumgarner

SP3-5: ???

C: Posey

1B: Belt

2B: Scutaro

SS: Crawford

3B: Sandoval

LF: Blanco

CF: Pagan

RF: ???

CL: Romo

SU: Casilla

SU: Affeldt

MR: Mijares

MR: Kontos

MR: ???

MR: ???

INF: Arias

INF: Noonan

OF: ???

OF: ???

C: Sanchez

That's...not too bad. Major needs in the rotation, but the rest of the roster is basically filled out. Right field is a concern, as is the bench and the back of the bullpen. Could be worse.

The Giants have $85 million committed to players under contract, three arbitration cases in Blanco, Arias, and Mijares (all bank-breakers of course) and pre-arb players in Belt, Crawford, Kontos, Noonan, and Sanchez. Those five add $2.5 million to the budget, and the whole arb class should be taken care of with another $7.5 million ($3 million for Blanco and Mijares, $1.5 million for Arias). That brings us a nice round $10 million to add for a final total of $95 million in 2014 with mostly superficial needs.

So let's take care of the easy stuff first. I'm going to promote Heath Hembree to the bullpen, partially because he's absolutely going to get a chance next year and partially because he'll probably get a chance this year. One MR spot filled at half a million. I'm giving the other one to either another prospect (Runzler? He's looked good so far in a whole 10 1/3 innings) or a Sabean dumpster dive, because duh. That'll be anywhere between half and three-quarters of a million dollars, so let's take the high end and add $1.25 million for a new total of $96.25 million and a full pen.

Backup OF spots are pretty similar. I don't think Torres sticks around for another year, and there is no question that one of the out-of-options Peguero and Kieschnick are going to get a backup gig. Half a million for one backup outfielder. I fully expect the other backup OF to come from the farm - one of the untaken Peguero/Kieschnick duo, Juan Perez, maybe even Gary Brown. But we'll give Savvy Sabez $2 million to work with in case he'd like another reunion; perhaps Jose Guillen could be coaxed out of retirement. Up to $98.75 million, bench is done, still have about $40 million to play with.

RF is tricky. On one hand, I believe the Giants are negotiating with Pence to keep him in SF at least another three years, probably four or five. But there are also three guys in Fresno ranging from Real Prospect to Wooden Puppet in Brown, Kieschnick, and Peguero who could all take that spot (I'll let you decide where each one falls). It's entirely possible any of those three is your Opening Day right fielder, especially if Pence walks. The free agent market is not encouraging - Jacoby Ellsbury is clearly the class, and he can't stay healthy, nor is he in the Giants' price range. Curtis Granderson is right there with Pence, having the disadvantages of age and injury history, but getting to smack 40 homers a year in Yankee Stadium. Those three outfielders are basically it, though, as after that you run into the fliers and minor league invites; Carlos Beltran might seriously be the fourth-best free agent outfielder, and Jeff Franceour is in the top ten. Scary. Calling a Pence extension at a $15 million average annual value. Now we've got $113.75 committed, which means $25 million for three starting pitchers.

I'm not sure if the farm is of any help here. Kickham and Heston both looked like innings-eating 4th or 5th starters after last year, but that was the Eastern League, and now they're getting PCL all over the place. Neither of them is having as bad a year as their ERAs would suggest, and honestly I don't think their FIPs are the real deal either, mostly because Kickham's 1.59 HR/9 is actually better than Heston's. As a fifth starter, the Giants could do worse, and I don't think they will. One of these two will make next year's rotation, and I think Heston's polish wins the day.

Spreading $24.5 million over two pitchers is much easier, especially when you consider Vogelsong's $6.5 million club option and even Zito's net $11 million option (his buyout was already assumed). A few months ago Vogelsong looked like a lock, and it's amazing what a few starts can do. Same goes for Zito. Things could look different very soon, but I'm going to pick up Vogelsong's option and decline Zito's, mostly because I think things will return to normal and the Enchiladas are a bargain. One pitcher for $18 million. Sheeeeet, yo, we could get an ACE.

But let's not. We've already committed long-term to three players, and I'd rather not make Josh Johnson, Matt Garza, or even Tim Lincecum a franchise player. The Giants will need more flexibility than that. So we go after the stealth sign: Colby Lewis. Lewis has been very good in his resurgence with the Rangers, coupling good strikeout rates with excellent control and a slight home run problem. I wonder if that would help going from the AL West to the NL West. He's coming off a major injury which cost him the second half of 2012, he's going to be 34, and his fastball has declined about 1 MPH since 2010. But that just makes him cheap - he should be good on a one year deal at about $8 million, with only a slight chance he forces something along the lines of 2/14-16. But even that I'm perfectly fine with - any guy who can put up sub-4 ERAs and FIPs in Arlington can be my third starter. One year, $8 million, and look at these huge piles of cash! What do we do with it all?

Come back to the man of the hour, Mr. Pablo Sandoval. The Giants probably don't want to commit to him long term, and they're probably right. He's scheduled to make $8.25 million in 2014 from a $17 million extension he signed covering his arbitration years. Let's re-structure that bad boy and offer him a new three year, $40 million contract that pays him $13, $13, $14 over 2014-2016. He is now completely set for life with $50 million in earnings, and he hits free agency at 30. If he doesn't want that deal, we can make "come-hither" gestures at Asdrubal Cabrera after 2015 and move him off SS where he so does not belong. Now we've committed $135 million to our 2014 roster - which means $5 million in wiggle room - and we're looking at:

SP1: Cain

SP2: Bumgarner

SP3: Lewis

SP4: Vogelsong

SP5: Heston (OMG FOUR RHP!)

C: Posey

1B: Belt

2B: Scutaro

SS: Crawford

3B: Sandoval

LF: Blanco

CF: Pagan

RF: Pence

CL: Romo

SU: Casilla

SU: Affeldt

MR: Mijares

MR: Kontos

MR: Hembree

MR: Runzler/FA

INF: Arias

INF: Noonan

OF: Peguero/Kieschnick

OF: Peguero/Kieschnick/Brown/Perez/FA

C: Sanchez

I like it.

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.

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join McCovey Chronicles

You must be a member of McCovey Chronicles to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at McCovey Chronicles. You should read them.

Join McCovey Chronicles

You must be a member of McCovey Chronicles to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at McCovey Chronicles. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9351_tracker