The next name on the list of San Francisco Giants season reviews is corner infielder and designated hitter Pablo Sandoval.
33 games, 90 plate appearances, .220/.278/.268, .546 OPS, 1 home run, 6 RBI, 6 walks to 18 strikeouts
53 OPS+, 55 wRC+, -0.6 rWAR, -0.4 fWAR
Status throughout the season
Sandoval made the Opening Day roster. He was released on Sept. 10.
On the one hand, Sandoval struggled mightily in his last hurrah with the Giants. That should be sad, or at least a little bit bittersweet.
On the other hand, who cares? 2019 was supposed to be his final run with his beloved Giants, and his shockingly good performance made for a great story prior to suffering an injury that required Tommy John surgery. He wasn’t even supposed to play in 2020 until the end of the season, and even then it was supposed to be for team in the American League.
The fact that he was even on the Giants was wild enough as is. And then the season came and with it the worst and least appropriate attacks on his size that we’d seen in his career, followed by his entire family testing positive for the coronavirus and needing to make multiple trips to the emergency room.
If there was ever a time to judge Sandoval merely for his presence — his warm smile, his exceptional energy, his mentorship to the younger players, especially the ones from Latin America, his chemistry with teammates, his willingness to be a bench option — it was in 2020.
He didn’t play well. Perhaps he’s just not good, but it seems silly to rule out the injury and distractions from playing their part. And his final Giants tenure ended by being waived due to performance, which wasn’t what anyone hoped for.
But honestly, when you think of Pablo Sandoval, San Francisco Giant, will you even remember 2020? And if you do, won’t it be for the fact that he brought good energy in a year sorely lacking in it?
Role in 2021
Definitely smiling, maybe playing baseball, absolutely not for the Giants.
How would you grade Pablo Sandoval’s season?
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