We're about two months removed from the Giants winning the World Series in an even year, and I'm already so danged sick of the "even year" concept. It's a coincidence, dang it. A stupid, fluky coincidence. It means as much as the Giants winning the World Series in years in which they were swept by the Dodgers at AT&T Park during the regular season -- it's something to be amused with, not something to bring up every five seconds.
I can be convinced, though. If the odd years really do have freaky, evil powers, there will be an obvious display for us. There will be a wink from the universe, a secret code to let us know this whole thing is real. Consider:
- The Giants are looking for a left fielder, preferably someone who hits right-handed, to pair with Gregor Blanco.
- This left fielder is likely to come from the trade market, by Brian Sabean's admission
- The Giants don't have the bestest trade chips in the baseball world, so they're probably going to look for outfielders with warts
Oh, there's an outfielder with warts out there. He's overpaid for the next
two year s (edit: I thought the Red Sox did the contract-after-the-Series-win thing, because that's what I'm used to) so the Giants could have him if they just took on the salary. More likely, they'd ask the other team to pick up some of the salary and give away a prospect or two to make it work. He fits the above criteria perfectly, too.
If there really is a stupid even/odd year thing that exists, then you will know when the Giants trade for Shane Victorino.
I've alluded to it in the past, usually in a jocular fashion, but I'm doubling down and half-guaranteeing it. When it happens, you'll know that it's all real, and that Victorino will hit .210 in 300 injury-riddled at-bats, as the Giants death-spiral out of contention in June. The odd year will be real, and Victorino will be all four horsemen.
The worst part about it is that it makes sense. That's how these odd-year things always start. "Oh, if Huff can just have one more year like 2010" or "Carlos Beltran is the best hitter on the market, so the Giants should get him" or "Andres Torres coming back is a great idea." It always starts reasonable. Then there's an odd knife in your back and everything is ruined.
You know what other Giants-hating villain made sense from a baseball perspective?
Probably should have made a warning for that, but you get the idea. Hey, he was an innings-eater. He filled a need in the Giants' rotation. He was affordable. He made sense. Then, after winning Pitcher of the Month in May, he was dreadful. Do you know what his ERA was the month after the award? 6.66.
You pretend that's just a coincidence, you go right ahead.
Victorino isn't quite Hershiser on the hate-scale, but he's at least up there with Steve Finley. Victorino sure is right-handed, though. He can play defense well, especially in a corner. He shouldn't cost a lot of prospects, even with the Red Sox eating a large portion of the contract. He has power and speed when he's going right. The Red Sox have about eight outfielders fighting for playing time, and Victorino has been especially vocal about seeing himself as one of the starters.
If you were to create a perfect outfielder for the Giants, combining circumstances, talent, availability, and cost, that player would look a lot like Victorino. Maybe without the buggy eyes and the soulless, open mouth. But he checks a lot of boxes on the Giants' list.
He would fail, of course. He would do poorly, and the Giants would be stuck with him for 2016, too. He makes baseball sense, but those odd-year moves usually do. "Hey, Miguel Tejada seems like a fine stopgap at shortstop," et cetera.
This is not a request that the Giants trade for Shane Victorino. This is a cynical prediction from someone who has no right to be cynical. When it happens, though, know that the universe is trying to tell you something.
Look forward to 2016!
I'll take it.