The Giants traded for Marlon Byrd on Thursday. Think it's meaningless? Think this can't be the boost the Giants need? Well, yeah. Probably. BUT IT MIGHT MAKE A DIFFERENCE. At least one August move in the last decade won the Giants a World Series. And because it won them a World Series, they didn't panic and pay $142 million for Carl Crawford. And because they didn't do that, they won two more World Series.
August moves are serious business.
With that in mind, here's a quick, accurate ranking of the Giants' moves in August over the last 10 years. Travis Denker was involved.
10. Aug. 13, 2010
Traded Kevin Pucetas for Jose Guillen
Man. Oh, man.
Guillen was terrible. He couldn't do anything but hit for power. Think of Byrd right now, and take away exactly one leg. Now spin him around. That's Jose Guillen. If Byrd wants, he'll be on a major league roster on Opening Day next year. Guillen was not.
There was a game -- maybe his first or second, dunno -- in which Guillen hit a ball into triples alley. The camera cut to him lumbering around first, and it's when everyone realized that he ran like he was giving Bengie Molina a piggyback ride. It was awful.
Then there was this:
The reason he was off the postseason roster? A performance-enhancing drug investigation. That investigation is why the Giants won the World Series.
PED panic took an all-time Giants great and his records from us ... but then he saved us, don't you see? He saved us!
9. Aug. 5, 2012
Signed Xavier Nady
Nice try! Also, nope. And then the Giants won the World Series, regardless.
Do you remember him being on a postseason roster?
You do not.
The Giants went down 0-2 after that game. Seems bad.
8. Aug. 30, 2005
Traded Deivi Cruz for Ben Cox
Cruz used to be "the one who got away" for the Giants, who lost him in the Rule 5 Draft. That's weird. Even weirder is that he was good enough for the Giants (and he was!) that another team traded for him. Cox never made the majors, but it was a good try.
7. Aug. 30, 2005
Traded Jason Christiansen for Ronnie Ray, Dusty Bergman
Manager: So, I have some news ...
Ronnie Ray: Yeah?
Manager: But first I need to ask you some questions.
Ray: Okay, shoot.
Manager: Are you Ronnie Ray?
Manager: Are you Slim Wray?
Manager: Are you Fay Wray?
Ray: who wants to know
Manager: /claps hands
Manager: You've been traded to the Giants.
6. Aug. 27, 2005
Traded Michael Tucker for Kelvin Pichardo
Pichardo had a good arm! It would have been awesome to watch him dominate the Phillies in 2010. Alas, his arm went kerblam, as they do. He was pitching in the Venezuelan League last year, but the arm gave out again. He's still under 30. Best of luck.
5. Aug. 9, 2007
Traded Mark Sweeney for Travis Denker
Unless it was Mike Sweeney. Still can't get that right.
This was the last trade with the Dodgers, and the first with them since Candy Maldonado for Alex Trevino. Denker had flashy Cal League stats, and he even hit a dinger for the Giants! He was a part of the bloody Frandsen/Burriss/Velez wars, in which no one was a winner.
4. Aug. 6, 2012
Claimed Jose Mijares off waivers from Royals
Well, we'll always have that. He was eminently qualified to deny that he dealt it, at least.
But Mijares had his moments! He had a 2.55 ERA for the Giants (2.19 FIP, four shutdowns, two meltdowns, 0.38 WPA, 0.19 Clutch, stop picking on me for using ERA for relievers, it's just really easy) in 2012. And even though he was annihilated in the NLDS, he pitched 2⅓ innings between the NLCS and World Series. None of his appearances meant a danged thing, but it's the thought that counts.
He has a ring, you know.
3. Aug. 31, 2009
Signed Brad Penny as a free agent
LIKE A BRAD PENNY, HE KEEPS COMING BACK.
This was the first time, though. And he was awesome. There was a bidding war after the season, and the Cardinals won. Seriously, a bidding war for Brad Penny. The Giants didn't win the bidding war, and then they won the World Series because of it.
Reminder to check out Penny's minor league stats from when he was 20 again.
2. Aug. 11, 2010
Traded Evan Crawford for Mike Fontenot
I divorced my first wife for choosing Jeff Keppinger in the Fontenot/Keppinger wars. Well, technically I've never been divorced, but you don't know that I wouldn't have gone that far.
Fontenot was solid for the Giants in 2010, and he was solid for them in 2011. He was never a player worth, you know, having an opinion on, but we had them anyway. People keep saying he never got into the World Series that year. But that's wrong.
Oh, he was there.
1. Aug. 22, 2010
Selected Cody Ross off waivers from Marlins
Happy (almost) anniversary! Five years ago, the Giants made a move that won the World Series. It sent the Phillies careening off into the sun, which allowed the Giants to acquire Hunter Pence, which led to them winning two more World Series. This move is everything.
This move was inspired.
I have no idea why Ross wasn't the immediate starter, considering he was clearly better than Jose Guillen, but it all worked out. It all worked out!
I made that for Phillies fans, and it all worked out.
Will the Giants acquire their next championship hero in August? Probably! I mean, I don't see any reason why it wouldn't work every single time.