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Saturday, December 24, 2011

Schulman: Giants: The winter of our disconnect

Coherentism rocks! Sabean’s team-building philosophy rolls!

I’m bringing up ancient history because it is very relevant this morning in illustrating Sabean’s team-building philosophy.

Sabean always has believed that it makes little sense to have one or two big players if the supporting cast is weak. He would rather own a room full of toys than one Xbox 360. He was ripped for that philosophy in 1996, ripped for it again after the 2003 season when he didn’t make a move for Vlad Guerrero and is being ripped for it today. But he is not budging.

...Two months later, we know it’s not going to be this way. If the Giants’ heavy lifting is over, Cabrera and Angel Pagan will have been the primary additions for 2012. I must admit I think folks are underestimating Cabrera’s potential impact. The guy did come to bat 706 times for Kansas City last year and hit .305/.340/.470 with 18 home runs from the second spot in the order and playing 81 home games in a pitchers’ park. An outlier year? Kind of hard to say that when the guy is supposed to be 27 years old.

To compete for another division title, the Giants are banking on a healthy Buster Posey and Freddy Sanchez, a fitter and more determined Huff in another contract year, Panda being Panda, a few more hits from Brandon Crawford, the potential emergence of Brandon Belt, better defense and athleticism, and the usual strong pitching staff, which largely remained intact.

Repoz Posted: December 24, 2011 at 12:40 PM | 7 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: business, giants, media

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   1. Flynn Posted: December 24, 2011 at 01:04 PM (#4022955)
So it'll be another sub-600 run team and 85 wins.

Right.
   2. Jim Wisinski Posted: December 24, 2011 at 02:55 PM (#4022969)
There are reasons that despite having Barry Bonds for over a decade the Giants only made the playoffs four times.
   3. Bhaakon Posted: December 24, 2011 at 05:37 PM (#4023041)
Sabean always has believed that it makes little sense to have one or two big players if the supporting cast is weak. He would rather own a room full of toys than one Xbox 360. He was ripped for that philosophy in 1996, ripped for it again after the 2003 season when he didn’t make a move for Vlad Guerrero and is being ripped for it today. But he is not budging.


Then why are they supposedly trying to make Cain and Lincecum very, very rich men? That sounds like a stars and scrubs approach to me, at least as far as spending goes.

The giants problem isn't that the ownership is cheap, 130M is a very respectable payroll and in line with their market size. It's not a matter of philosophy, because the Giants have shown virtually the full gamut of team-building strategies in Sabean's tenure (pretty much anything that doesn't involve statistical analysis has been tried by this team since 1997). It's a matter of having to carry 40M in sunk costs because the team doesn't know how to spend the money it has.
   4. tshipman Posted: December 24, 2011 at 05:55 PM (#4023048)
I want the Giants to be in on any Hanley Ramirez trades, but otherwise I think Sabes had a decent offseason.

Who are they going to spend money on? Fielder? Pujols? They don't have the money for Pujols and Fielder isn't worth it, imo.

Beltran? Probably not a great fit for the Giants given the defense in Center.
   5. Mefisto Posted: December 24, 2011 at 05:56 PM (#4023049)
Counting on Huff to regain form is inconsistent with counting on Belt to "emerge". There isn't room for both things to happen.
   6. Flynn Posted: December 24, 2011 at 06:52 PM (#4023070)
Meh, the Giants are a little cheap. They have a great chance to win another pennant or World Series (not like the Giants have had a lot of those in their history in SF), and they have clearly put a cap on $130 million as a payroll. Now that is not cheap in the whole, but the opportunity is going to be gone or badly shrunken by the time the bad contracts they are waiting for to end have ended.

They also sold out a season and get great TV and radio ratings on stations they partially own. They could probably afford another $20 million the payroll with no hassle.
   7. Walt Davis Posted: December 24, 2011 at 08:05 PM (#4023110)
Wow, $42 M on Zito, Rowand and Huff. Contracts that were scoffed at from day one.

I, however, will not scoff now. Oh no. If I scoff, Huff will put up a 160 OPS+.

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