Fred Lewis Decision Coming Soon

8:16pm: Henry Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle (via Twitter) predicts that Lewis will still be with the Giants this weekend.  Schulman is hearing that there is little or no trade interest in the market for the outfielder.

8:24am: Giants outfielder Fred Lewis will be activated or traded by the weekend, reports Andrew Baggarly of the San Jose Mercury News.  Lewis is in Triple A rehabbing a sore rib cage, but his assignment won't last past Thursday.  Lewis is out of options, so the Giants can't keep him in the minors.

Baggarly notes that the Giants' roster is stocked with six outfielders, implying that a trade is more likely than a call-up.  He says that while the Padres and Athletics have expressed past interest in Lewis, the Blue Jays may be "the most likely destination."  New GM Alex Anthopoulos is familiar with the Giants, already having claimed Brian Bocock and traded for Merkin Valdez in his six months on the job.  Bocock was claimed again by the Phillies.

Lewis, 29, has a .277/.355/.420 career line, with a walk rate over 10%.  He's played all three outfield positions in the Majors, but mostly left field.  Three years ago Baseball America called him "the best all-around athlete in the system," a player with star-level raw skills.  BA questioned his outfield routes, though Lewis' left field defense comes out strong in terms of UZR/150.  Baggarly noted that Lewis has been getting some recent starts in center, so perhaps that's not a lost cause.  Obviously Lewis' bat plays better there if he can hold his own defensively.


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37 Comments on "Fred Lewis Decision Coming Soon"


5 years 3 months ago

Couldn’t argue with a lot of teams taking on Lewis. The royals would have been an ideal situation had they not signed Ankiel and Pods and were to let go of Guillen. Maybe the Marlins as Maybin insurance, Angels as an extra outfielder, and the Blue Jays would also be a fit.

5 years 3 months ago

I see the Padres as the best fit. They have a lot of fringe outfielders…

Grab some pine, meat.
5 years 3 months ago

Well then Lewis should fit in nicely seeing as how he’s a “fringe” outfielder.

5 years 3 months ago

I guess. .355 career OB’s don’t grow on trees though.

The combination of Gwynn, S. Hairston, and Venable is hardly an OB threat.

Will_Clarks_Gauchos
5 years 3 months ago

Hairston and Venable are definitely better than Lewis.

5 years 3 months ago

That’s debatable. Hairston has shown flashes of “goodness,” but he does own a career .305 OB. Venable has Lewis beat on youth, but he’s hardly an exciting player.

Will_Clarks_Gauchos
5 years 3 months ago

You’re right, it is debatable. But at least Hairston’s known quantity is better than that of Lewis. And I kind of like Venable, I’ve seen him hit some pretty good shots against the Giants.

5 years 3 months ago

While I know what you mean by Hairston’s “known quantity,” the reality of the matter is that his inevitable injury wipes away any “potential” he has as a hitter. Plus, regardless of his pop, he doesn’t quite get on-base enough to compensate for the 20 HRs he can supposedly hit.

Venable is the better debate. Since he is younger, he has more wiggle room in terms of negative scrutiny. He has shown some pop, but even in the minors, his OB skills are a bit eclectic.

The Padres could actually use a better centerfielder, so with Lewis’ limited play in center, his appeal is not as great as I originally thought it could be for the Padres.

Will_Clarks_Gauchos
5 years 3 months ago

Lewis missed a lot of last season with a bunion. Case closed.

5 years 3 months ago

Let’s re-open the case. Hairston has spent a significant amount of time on the DL over the course of his career. His ability to get injured has far outweighed his other supposed abilities.

Will_Clarks_Gauchos
5 years 3 months ago

Hairston has played in 50 more games than Lewis in an extra two years. In looking at both of their stats, I may start to think like you and take Lewis. I guess I was just one of those knee jerk Giant fan Lewis haters.

Hairston .252/.305/.454
Lewis .277/.355/.420

Grab some pine, meat.
5 years 3 months ago

I’m tired of everyone coddling this guy, it’s not knee jerk hatred coming from giants fans, its a few years of built up disdain. There has got to be a reason why he’s not on the starting roster amongst a bunch of other outfield hopefuls (It wasn’t just one of his injuries). While the stats speak for themselves, so can be said about his actual in game performance. His OB might be good, too bad it happens when no ones on, whats his OBP with runners on? All I can say is what percent or stat represents a choke at the plate or in the field? Thats all lewis is. He’s a streaky choke. He may be decent at getting on base occasionally but hes terrible at driving runs in.

Furthermore, I can only attest for the days I saw him play, but even if he was amazing on the few days I was busy, then he still sucks in my book. He was an image of everything that was wrong with the giants, no patience, injury prone, and NOT GOOD IN THE FIELD. The plays he botched always seemed to be big ones. Its not like hes dropping a pop out when we’re ahead, its when we’re tied up and they have 2 in scoring position. He’s an athlete but not a baseball player, bottom line.

5 years 3 months ago

I guess. .355 career OB’s don’t grow on trees though.

The combination of Gwynn, S. Hairston, and Venable is hardly an OB threat.

55saveslives
5 years 3 months ago

Fred and his stong glove and horrible judgement of fly balls….Have fun elsewhere Fred!

5 years 3 months ago

Mets could use him, I suppose?

5 years 3 months ago

Don’t see the fit. He’s not really an upgrade over Pagan.

5 years 3 months ago

Don’t see the fit. He’s not really an upgrade over Pagan.

5 years 3 months ago

I’d rather have him playing LF and batting leadoff than Melky Cabrera. At least Lewis has shown the ability to post an above-average OBP and the ability to swipe a few bags.

Lincecum_Says_GSP
5 years 3 months ago

I think a change of scenary is just what Lewis needs. His glove was actually quite good when he came up but seemed to fold under the pressure of being annointed the next Bonds after he replaced Barry in LF last year. Lewis has the power enough to belt 25+, especially away from AT&T and has the speed and decent enough OBP to lead off for a bunch of teams.

5 years 3 months ago

Lewis doesn’t have the power to hit 25HR. His SLG and IsoSLG are actually higher at home than they are on the road. Lewis isn’t a power threat, what we’ve seen from him so far is what we’ll get.

Lincecum_Says_GSP
5 years 3 months ago

Let me rephrase that… Lewis has the physical ability to hit 25+ especially if he plays in a home park thats a band box. You can analyze the stats as much as you want but Lewis has hit MANY bombs in AT&T that would have been out in most other parks that ended up as long outs or doubles in AT&T. Also Lewis was never properly groomed one way or another because when he came through our system, the entire system was in disarray… mark my word if Lewis finds himself in a hitters park he’ll hit 25+.

5 years 3 months ago

I will analyze stats because I’m right. Lewis has average power, which translates to about 15HR over the course of 600PA. His speed off the bat is average. His “true distance” is average. He’s 29 so its not like he’s going to experience a big jump in power.

Its not a knock on Lewis, but he’s not a power hitter.

5 years 3 months ago

Lewis hitting 25 HR’s?? Not going to happen

5 years 3 months ago

Reading that “the most likely destination” is Toronto is exciting. I hope AA gets it done. If it were to go through, it would seem that either Travis Snider or Jose Bautista would become the fourth outfielder, although Bautista is hitting well and Snider needs everyday playing time. Hmmmm… I don’t see Lewis as a fourth outfielder for the Jays…

5 years 3 months ago

Not sure if that was sarcastic, but I hope for Bautista and Snider’s sake that the Blue Jays don’t acquire Lewis. Bautista, like Lewis, is a player that deserves playing time, so the fact he’s finally getting it this season is a good thing. As for Snider, he’s going to be a future slugger in the MLB, and while he’s currently struggling a bit out of the gate, the acquisition of Fred Lewis will only hinder his ability to see major league pitching.

5 years 3 months ago

Not sure if that was sarcastic, but I hope for Bautista and Snider’s sake that the Blue Jays don’t acquire Lewis. Bautista, like Lewis, is a player that deserves playing time, so the fact he’s finally getting it this season is a good thing. As for Snider, he’s going to be a future slugger in the MLB, and while he’s currently struggling a bit out of the gate, the acquisition of Fred Lewis will only hinder his ability to see major league pitching.

Jason_F
5 years 3 months ago

Fred Lewis is the one player that makes me question UZR. The guy looks like he is playing left field wearing roller skates. I rooted for him for several years, but he folds under pressure. He appears to have the tools to be an all-around player, then he disappoints you. It really is unfortunate and I hope he has success wherever he ends up.

Jason_F
5 years 3 months ago

Fred Lewis is the one player that makes me question UZR. The guy looks like he is playing left field wearing roller skates. I rooted for him for several years, but he folds under pressure. He appears to have the tools to be an all-around player, then he disappoints you. It really is unfortunate and I hope he has success wherever he ends up.

Will_Clarks_Gauchos
5 years 3 months ago

Fred Lewis is a good 4th outfield/reclaimation project for the right team. He is a gifted athlete, but not ball player. Think Michael Jordan, in the sense that great athleticism doesn’t equal baseball success.

I’m not big on intradivison trades, so I hope that he does end up with the BJs. But for Christ’s sake, when was the last time a player was mentioned, and there weren’t 36 posts saying the Mets are a good fit?

ugen64
5 years 3 months ago

Delmon Lewis is a reclamation project. Elijah Dukes is a reclamation project. I don’t classify Fred Lewis, a player with an above average OBP and (according to the statistics) above average defense, a reclamation project. The guy has an 805 OPS against right-handers – in comparison, Brett Gardner has a 689 OPS against right-handers; Felix Pie 747; Jacoby Ellsbury 768, Carl Crawford 804. So from a pure hitting standpoint, would hold his own against 4 of the 5 starting left fielders (against right-handed pitching) in the AL East, which I picked at random because it’s the division I’m most familiar with… that’s not a reclamation project.

5 years 3 months ago

He would not hold his own, cannot believe you are utilizing just one stat to make that argument. Schulman, beat writer for the SF Chronicle, phrased it best in this article — http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/blogs/giants/detail?blogid=22&entry_id=60414

ugen64
5 years 3 months ago

OK, so Lewis has problems with the outside part of the plate. Well, guess what? Ellsbury can’t hit for power. Pie routinely swings at pitches in the dirt and pitches over his head, not to mention he is a terrible baserunner. Gardner is simply an unpolished hitter. The only thing that I can definitively say in favor of Gardner, Ellsbury and Crawford is that they steal a lot of bases, which is definitely a big positiive, and the main reason that Crawford (at least) is a significantly better player than Lewis. But in terms of hitting against right-handed pitching? I still maintain my point.

OK, so I only used 1 statistic (technically a combination of 2 statistics). What else do you want me to do? Do you want me to use wOBA? Lewis: .343. Ellsbury: .350. Pie: .307. Crawford: .344. Gardner: .320. I’d classify that as “holding his own”. Not only that, Lewis has a higher BB% than not just these three players, but also Adam Lind too. I don’t care if he gets those walks because he sucks at hitting outside pitches, or because he has a better batting eye than Albert Pujols – the fact is, he takes those walks, he gets on base, and ultimately that’s what matters. You score runs by getting players on base. Yeah, he’s no Ryan Braun; I think it’s pretty obvious that he’s not actually as valuable as Crawford or even Ellsbury. But he would make a solid roleplayer for pretty much every ballclub that doesn’t have a Braun out in LF.

5 years 3 months ago

Ehhhhh, I can appreciate your analysis, but Lewis isn’t the sort of hitter you want parked in left field. In a perfect world, you want someone like, well, Ryan Braun, in each of your corner outfield spots; speed is better left to CF and the middle infield. So unless you can get that power somewhere else (third base, center field, behind the plate), Lewis is better off learning to play somewhere other than left. I don’t see him as a good fit in right, but he’s been taking starts in CF for his rehab assignment, so we’ll see.

I won’t deny the usefulness of getting on base and not making outs, but if you’re only counting on Lewis for walks, where do you put him in a lineup? His speed says 1 or 2, but he’s not going to be one of your best hitters, which moves the focus to the bottom of the order. You don’t want a guy who’s just going to walk sitting in front of your pitcher, and on an AL club you generally don’t want your left fielder hitting 9th, so maybe you can do your best LaRussa impression and bat the pitcher 8th with Lewis behind, in which case you pretty much have Juan Pierre on the Dodger last season before Manny got the 50-game shove.

I think Lewis has some good ability, but he’s not the battle-ready product that clubs want him to be right now. He needs a better hitting coach, and someone who can teach him to be a better outfielder, preferably in center field. Sure, he’s “above average” by UZR’s standards, but given his speed and athletic ability it’s no secret that he should be much better. I want him to be good for the Giants, but I think we won’t see his potential here… and he’s not getting any younger. It’s kind of now or never for Lewis.

rottengazebo
5 years 3 months ago

Tigers should get him. I know they have Damon, Magglio, and Jackson. He bats left handed and has speed. With the possibility of Damon, Ordonez, and Guillen leaving, I’d give him a chance to be the every day left fielder in 2011.

5 years 3 months ago

Having Lewis on the bench would be an ok decision, but having him start, on a team like the Tigers, is a bit questionable. You’d only understand it if you actually watched him play as horribly as he does. But who knows, he might actually get better.

blackandorangepride
5 years 3 months ago

all I can think of when it comes to Lewis was the 2008 season and he was expected to be this all around good player and he disappointed big time all he did was strikeout time after time after time he was expected to take the cleanup hitter role from bengie and he couldn’t get 10 homeruns he struck out more than 100 times that year and last year even though he wasn’t a starter he still struck out 84 that was more than Molina and Sandoval. I don’t know where he’ll end up but I wish him luck.

WillieMaysField
5 years 3 months ago

I’m no Lewis supporter but he does have a career .355 OBP with runners on base, .363 OBP with RISP, and .349 OBP while leading off. So the stats show he’s not as bad as lot of Giants fans portray. Still he’s fell out of favor with Bochy after a horrible June last year and never regained any playing time. A change of scenery would be good for his career.