The first wild card game will be played tonight, which makes today the official start of playoff season. Sure, the Giants are (checks standings) not a playoff team this year, but there are plenty of ex-Giants whose new teams have made it to October.
Which ex-Giants? I’m glad you asked, convenient plot device! Why don’t we go team by team to find out which former Giants are still playing?
Note: I didn’t bother with the coaching staffs. You know that Dave Roberts, Dave Martinez, and non-Dave Bob Melvin were all Giants at one point, so why should I both reiterating it? I shouldn’t. So I won’t.
Nationals — Hunter Strickland and Gerardo Parra
Strickland started out the year with the Nationals, made his way to Washington, and hilariously gave up a long homer to Bryce Harper:
Death, taxes, and Bryce Harper taking Hunter Strickland so dang deep pic.twitter.com/mjIjtfoTzO— Curtis Rogers (@AKidFromKent) September 25, 2019
Since getting traded to the Nationals, Strickland has been bad, with a 5.14 ERA (and a 6.31 FIP, so don’t think it’s bad luck). It is the dingerball that’s gotten him, but because just about everyone in his team’s bullpen has been similarly awful or worse, he’ll be on Washington’s postseason roster.
Parra, meanwhile, has been something of a find for the Nationals after playing his way out of San Francisco. He’s only hitting .250/.300/.447 for Washington, but with his defense, that’s a major league-quality player, not what we saw in San Francisco at the beginning of the year.
Brewers — Drew Pomeranz and Ray Black
Pomeranz has been fantastic since going over to Milwaukee. Black, who will not be on the roster for at least the wild card game and presumably the whole postseason, has been less fantastic, though he’s under team control for a long time and he still has that great fastball.
Combined, they are certainly worth Mauricio Dubon, and Giantsland remains thrilled with the trade.
Braves — Mark Melancon and Adam Duvall (and Matt Joyce, if you want to count him)
Considering how strong his performance has been since the calendar flipped to August, the Braves are happy to pay Mark Melancon’s salary. The Giants are also happy for the Braves to pay Mark Melancon’s salary. The fact that they got a prospect — Tristan Beck — back in the deal makes it all the sweeter. But Melancon has been great for Atlanta, and we’re all looking forward to the Braves inexplicably leaving him in the bullpen in a big moment in the NLDS, as is now Braves tradition.
As for Adam Duvall, well, let’s just admit that it wouldn’t have worked with the Giants. His career has been up and down since being traded to Cincinnati, but in San Francisco, considering the way iffy young players were treated for years, it would have been all down. It’s better this way, at least for Duvall.
Joyce was a Giant for about five minutes in Spring Training this year, got traded to the Braves for cash, and has spent the season doing a very nice job as a pinch hitter.
Cardinals — No one, though Travis Ishikawa hit a big home run off Michael Wacha one time, if that counts to you.
Seriously, feel free to count it. You’ll be fine.
Dodgers — None, as is right and good.
YOU: But what about Dave Rob-
ME: NOT BOTHERING WITH THE COACHING STAFFS. SEE NOTE AT TOP OF ARTICLE.
A’s — Yusmeiro Petit
Petit pitched 83 innings this season with a 2.71 ERA. I hope he keeps pitching until he’s 80. He can do it.
Rays — Matt Duffy!
It took Duffy a while to come back from injury this year, and when he did, in 169 PAs he slashed .252/.343/.327 for a wRC+ of 88. This batting line, which would have fit right in with the Giants, was a beautiful tribute to his former team, and we thank him for the honor.
Yankees — Cory Gearrin, and if you want to count someone who was with the Giants, but only in Spring Training this year, Cameron Maybin
The Yankees picked Gearrin up off waivers from Seattle in late August, and he’s thrown 14 innings with a 4.50 ERA for New York. On the year, he’s been a reliever bursting with cromulence, to the tune of a 4.07 ERA and 4.26 FIP, thoroughly average numbers in 2019.
Maybin, like Matt Joyce, was one of the approximately seventeen billion outfielders the Giants cycled through in Spring Training. He hit .285/.364/.494 for the Yankees, because of course he did, because everything they touch turns to gold.
Twins — Sergio Romo! Ehire Adrianza! Sure, he’s not going to pitch again this season, but he still counts: Sam Dyson!
Aw, hell yeah. This has got to be the sentimental favorite for Giants fans, no matter what Brady says. You’ve got a legit #ForeverGiant in Sergio Romo. You’ve got a rando middle infielder who’s turned out to be a nice player in Ehire Adrianza. You’ve got Sam Dyson, who was fun in San Francisco and has a silly cat and who the Twins are a little bit ticked off they traded for, considering his injury. I want them all to get rings. Every last one of them.
I know they won’t, because they’ll be swept by the Yankees in the first round, but a boy can dream.
Astros — No one who was on the major league team, though Joe Biagini was a Giants farmhand for a while.
Of course the Astros, the paragon of major league teams who are always ahead of the curve, aren’t going to pick up anyone sullied with the taint of the Giants. They’re too focused on what they have to do: building a superteam that with mercilessly annihilate everyone in their path. There’s just no room for Drew Stubbs in that calculation. Sad, but true.