The 2010 Giants won the World Series with the help of Andres Torres, nondescript minor league free agent. The 2012 Giants won the World Series with the help of Gregor Blanco, nondescript minor league free agent. The 2014 Giants won the World Series with the help of Travis Ishikawa, hilarious minor league free agent, as well as Blanco. The Giants have made two moves with an eye on 2016, signing former top shortstop prospect Carlos Triunfel and left-handed reliever Braulio Lara.
Maybe the parade should go down the Embarcadero next time, so everyone gets a view of the bridge. They can have the rally at AT&T Park. Triunfel could speak for a full 15 minutes if he wants.
Okay, that might be slightly premature, considering that Triunfel has spent the last three years in the hitter-happy Pacific Coast League, posting mediocre-to-poor stats. Baseball America had him in their list of top-100 prospects before the 2008 and 2009 seasons, when he was a toolsy teenager, but he moved from a 21-year-old with youth on his side in Triple-A, to a grizzled veteran who couldn't break through to the majors. He had his worst professional season in 2014, hitting just .223/.256/.330, but he did it in the Dodgers' system, so it wasn't all bad. He'll be 25 next year, so as far as toolsy fliers go, it's probably a better gamble than the one taken on two-time champion Joaquin Arias.
Lara is a 25-year-old lefty who has had consistent problems with walks, and he's never had the strikeout numbers to make up for it. He's switched to relief over the last two seasons, so maybe there was an uptick in his raw stuff that intrigues the Giants. Jeremy Affeldt used to be a wild lefty without great strikeout numbers, he said, grasping at straws.
Baseball America's Matt Eddy was the one who reported the moves, and he also mentioned that old friend Guillermo Quiroz is coming back, as well as Javier Herrera, who was injured for the Grizzlies most of last year.
The interesting one is Triunfel, though. The Mariners held onto him at the expense of Chris Tillman and/or Adam Jones, possibly, so you know he must be good! He's older than Giancarlo Stanton, but still an interesting player to stash in Sacramento and watch closely. Check out Old Town, Carlos! It's a lot of fun.