Does everyone remember when the Giants traded for Bill Mueller in September 2002? It was a cosmetic, almost PR move (as the trade occurred after August 31st, Mueller was ineligible for the Giants’ postseason roster) for a team that had some injuries and was still looking to make a strong push for the postseason. We know the season didn’t end well, but the Giants did accomplish their September goal by even making it to the postseason, but that was all in spite of Mueller, who played in only 8 games and hit .154. Of course, Mueller’s following three seasons with the Red Sox wound up being historic and, basically, the best years of his career, but the Giants will always have 1996-2000 and those 8 games in 2002...
I’m thinking of this because I can’t help but notice that the Giants are probably going to hold on to Andrew McCutchen for reasons and it’s highly unlikely another team would try to trade for him in September just to look good to the fans and shore up shallow depth over the final few weeks.
Although there’s a contingent of fans who would be happy to have him accept the $18+ million qualifying offer and another that want it extended because they think he’d turn down $18+ million for one season and the Giants would get a draft pick, there’s perhaps a greater contingent that acknowledges that getting back any sort of value — be it salary relief or a 27-year old Triple-A reliever who throws 90 mph — is more helpful to the Giants than getting nothing in return.
Another year of McCutchen wouldn’t be terrible, but it wouldn’t be great. It would tie up money that could be used better elsewhere (regardless of the Giants resetting their tax penalty) and it would prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that despite their self-owns/complaints to the contrary, they’re very much set in their ways.
One quick housekeeping note: beginning this Saturday, September 1st, we’re going to experiment with the standard GameThread by expanding the coverage to make it more like a Game Preview. This might mean you won’t see “Open GameThread” but something more like “Game Preview & Comments” or something to that effect. The post will have additional information and commentary beyond the lineups.
Also, beginning next week, we’re going to experiment with a more standardized Series Preview. We all miss Grant’s Hunter S. Thompson-esque previews and Kenny’s work was so great I felt it better to shift his talents to writing better articles about a variety of subjects and, so, it seems like the right time to go to a more straightforward and conventional format. I’ll still declare Pitchers & Hitters to Watch and make dumb predictions, but the preamble will include a lot more important information like team and individual stats, lineups, and probables.
And if you haven’t weighed in yet, please consider providing feedback for our revamp of the McCovey Chroncast. We know you have many podcast choices. How can we improve to make ours one of those?