First, a quick update: I’m no longer anticipating the Dodgers to sign Shohei Ohtani and trade for Giancarlo Stanton. I’m anticipating them trading for Stanton and the Padres to sign Ohtani. This has been your Best or Worst Offseason Ever update.
However, we have a development. According to Alex Pavlovic, the Giants are sending their heavy hitters to meet with Shohei Ohtani.
The Giants sent the majority of their front office, including Larry Baer, Brian Sabean, Bobby Evans and Jeremy Shelley. Bruce Bochy was also sent to the meeting, and a source said the Giants called Buster Posey in to help with the recruiting.
On one hand, you would expect this. There has never been a free agent with more leverage than Ohtani, and it’s not like Bobby Evans or Bruce Bochy could blow the meeting off because they had a haircut appointment. On the other hand, it lets us in on the Giants’ sense of urgency. They’re one of the seven finalists for Ohtani. They can’t screw this up.
Sending Buster Posey is a great way to remind Ohtani that the Giants employ Buster Posey, really. I mean, what are the Padres going to do in their meeting?
“Uhhhhhh, hey, man. Would be rad if you were a Padre and stuff. When we swing by the East Coast, I’ll show you where the best places are to get a classic East Coast burrito.”
Instead, the Giants will send Posey, who would be the player working most closely with Ohtani, a Gold Glove finalist who routinely steals more strikes for his pitchers than almost anyone in baseball. Sure, the Dodgers could send Clayton Kershaw, but there is a distinct advantage in working with an MVP catcher instead of Austin Barnes, and Posey would be there to remind Ohtani.
There’s also a distinct advantage in winning more baseball games and not losing every game in which you allow two or more runs, but now you’re nitpicking. Posey wouldn’t remind him of that part, at least.
Does it mean anything that the Giants got one of the first meetings? I have no idea. Could be that he thinks he knows that they’re his preferred team, so he wants to give them the first shot. Could be that another team is his preference, and he’ll save them for last and give the other six teams a shot. Or his representatives aren’t really thinking too much about the order, and they’re just scheduling things based on logistics and availability.
Probably that last one, I’m guessing.
I hate this.
I love this.
The Giants, as of December 4, 2017, still have a chance to get both Giancarlo Stanton and Shohei Ohtani. They’ll have been the only team to meet with both, and REALLY, I’D JUST LIKE SOME RESOLUTION, HERE. When it comes to Ohtani, they’re meeting early, and Buster Posey will be involved.
SHOHEI OHTANI: [whispers to interpreter]
INTERPRETER: Mr. Ohtani has seen a documentary in which Mr. Posey delivers babies. Would this be a service that Mr. Posey could offer up in the event that Mr. Ohtani has a family one day?
BRIAN SABEAN: Actually, that’s a c
BUSTER POSEY: Yes. Yes, I can. I will also steal a baby from the hospital for you right now if that’s what you want.
OHTANI: [smiles, clearly impressed]
Here’s hoping ...