The World Champion Giants conclude our Offseason In Review series.
Major League Signings
- Aubrey Huff, 1B/RF: two years, $22MM. Includes $10MM club option for 2013 with a $2MM buyout.
- Miguel Tejada, SS: one year, $6.5MM.
- Pat Burrell, LF: one year, $1MM.
- Total spend: $29.5MM.
- Simon Mercedes, Adalberto Mejia
Notable Minor League Signings
- Freddy Sanchez, 2B: one year, $6MM.
Trades and Claims: None
Brian Sabean, the longest-tenured GM in the game, bought himself some offseason leeway by winning the World Series. It's harder to question the guy who put together the team that won it all, but I'll give it a shot.
In Sabean's defense, the Dodgers seemingly offered Huff something close to the two-year, $22MM deal he ultimately signed. That doesn't make it a good signing though. This was a risky move, with concerns about Huff's defense and uncertainty trying to project his next two seasons. There's also the presence of top prospect Brandon Belt, who might be able to approximate Huff's offensive production at four percent of his salary. The Braves took a different approach, installing Freddie Freeman at first base and ignoring the free agent market.
The Dodgers did steal away Uribe, though I don't blame Sabean for not offering that magnitude of a contract. Sabean had to put someone at shortstop, though, so he signed Tejada for $6.5MM. I would have estimated a contract about half that size for Tejada. Pursuing J.J. Hardy would have been preferable, but failing that I can understand adding a stopgap - just not a $6.5MM one. Hopefully the Giants will be in the mix for Jose Reyes this summer, as he'd represent a significant upgrade.
It's hard not to like the Burrell signing, as the veteran signed for a million bucks despite being the only free agent left fielder to hit 20 home runs. This was similar to the Kerry Wood deal, where a player dictated his team by taking a pay cut. The Sanchez extension, on the other hand, was acceptable but didn't represent a bargain.
Sabean's offseason was very quiet otherwise; I think he was the only GM not to make a trade or claim. The Giants did have quite a few arbitration cases, and I can't fault them for tendering contracts to everyone but Ray. Cody Ross was a borderline case, but the decision had to be made before Burrell was signed or Mark DeRosa's health was fully assessed. If DeRosa bounces back to his 2007-08 levels for a few months, Sabean might be able to shed his salary midseason and gain extra payroll flexibility.
The Giants' offense should be a little better this year, and they've got the same excellent rotation. That doesn't necessarily put them in the playoffs again, so hopefully Sabean will be active this summer in seeking an upgrade at shortstop.
Photo courtesy of Icon SMI.
No love lost. No love found.
maybe the world champs can loan the doggies a couple of bucks.
God, you’re amazing..
Can we give this man a standing O? Please?
You earned it.
Yeah some people think they are so clever when in actuality, they come across as ass-hats.
Gotta love brand new commenters!
Like the kind of person who uses the term “ass-hat”? or “actuality”?
Yeah…admittedly I got chuckle out that, too. “Ass-Hat” has seemingly evolved into one of those insults that proves to be less offensive and more just flat-out comical in nature. It’s a beautiful thing when executed properly.
Remember though, the Giants offseason also consisted of getting Sandoval back to form and the Giants have Posey and Bumgarner for an entire season. Sabean gets a B in my opinion for minimizing losses and money spent while rewarding Huff and bringing back Ross. Giants are now one of the deepest teams in the bigs, with enough crowding that they can afford to send Belt down to work on a few minor issues.
I don’t see how Sabean gets any credit for Sandoval getting back to form(hopefully) but yeah, he didn’t do anything bad this offseason.
Sure, Sabean gets credit for Sandoval. Well-documented that he made it clear to Pablo end of last year to get in shape or he was headed to Fresno.
Yeah that must have been a real tough one for Sabean.
“Hey fat ass – ditch the Taco Bell and drop 50 or you’re toast”.
it must have been hard not giving zito an extension
The World Champs are confident and have taken a great step resiging Burrell and Huff. Go Giants!
Hardy > Tejada, no argument there, but JJ’s also missed 108 gms the last 2yrs. Even in Tejada’s old age, he’s combined to miss just 10 gms over that same span. This would seem to be an important piece of data for sake of value comparison.
Hardy makes just under 6mil this yr, compared to Tejada’s 6.5mil. Plus, the O’s had a give up a couple of Minor League pieces (not all much, granted) while Tejada came via Free Agency w/out having to relinquish any compensation Draft Picks, etc.
Again, in a perfect world (ie. w/out risk of health) I’d do back-flips to exchange Tejada for Hardy…but it’s hard to give your team value if you’re stuck on the DL.
That being said, I’d love to see the G’s pursue another piece at SS if they prove themselves to be contenders by the trade deadline. Tejada would actually be quite good as a Utility guy off the bench.
There will be some SS options on the trade market, but I wouldn’t bet on Reyes coming to SF. Who are the Giants gonna give back to the Mets to get him? Every half-decent prospect they have left at this point would maybe be enough
Offensively I also don’t think Hardy will ever be the same offensively from his Brewer days. The power has just declined.