THE San Francisco Giants Blog

Questions, Questions….

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on January 24, 2018

I’m gonna let Daniel write the thread today. And I’m going to answer these questions with my answers as well as all of yours. We’ll see how that goes over in ‘Shoptaw country. Anyway, if you have any thoughts about these questions please respond below. I have the responses from the guys who already responded in the previous thread.

Daniel Shoptaw

Jan 20 (4 days ago)

Craig,
    All right, I’ve got the questions figured out!  I’m also going to do things a little different this year, as I said.  Instead of doing one a day, I’ll do two (an AL and an NL) and that means I can start it later, which is important in this offseason, I think.  The Giants will be going up on March 16, so if you can have them back to me by March 10, that’d be great.  Feel free to wait until spring training starts to get to these and I will be sure to send a reminder a week or so before the deadline.  Thanks again!
  1. What are your thoughts on the offseason?  Did the club improve over the winter?

  2. Is there any concern that the Giants’ window might be closing soon?

  3. What’s one thing people may overlook (either positively or negatively) about this team?

  4. Who is the one key player, the guy that must have a good year for the Giants to do well?

  5. What’s your projection for 2018?  Where does the team wind up overall?

  6. What’s one question I should have asked and what’s the answer to it?

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46 Responses

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  1. gianthead said, on January 24, 2018 at 6:56 am

    As I have said since the Giancarlo and Ohtani situations crumbled, I think management’s focus has been focused immediately on making sure fans keep attending and the moves made accomplishes that.

    It gives fans the feeling of a competitive team being on the field. I think mgmt also sees a very un-competitive NL this seasonn with the Rockies and Dbacks likely regressing to their norms of mayne being .500 teams. Leaves the Cards as the primary competition for the top Wild Card spot and I don’t buy the Mets as a wild card team.

    The bullpen I believe is the key to this team being either .500 or 88-90 win team. Huge frickin question marks with Melancon and Will Smith. I think we get good enough pitching at the back end of our rotation bit could still see a journeyman coming in to compete for the 5th spot.

    Offensively, Buster has to prove he can turn on some pitches and needs to hit 25 plus homers. If McCutch, Longoria, Posey, Belt and potentially Crawford all have 20 plus homers, that will change the potential punch of the lineup. Crawford may end up being the one bat that we have to have plus production to make the team an actual offensive threat this year.

    Lots of question marks but with the team holding onto most of their upper tier prospects, they may have the flexibility to add a bat or a starter or bullpen help before the trade deadline.

    • gianthead said, on January 24, 2018 at 6:58 am

      And last time I checked…2018 is an even year…

    • Flavor said, on January 24, 2018 at 7:44 am

      i agree with a lot of this but it’s a pipe dream to think Buster is going to hit 25 home runs. Even with the juiced ball he’s only hit 26 in the last two complete seasons.

  2. willedav said, on January 24, 2018 at 7:49 am

    #1–satisfied with offensive upgrade, tho missed out on adding relievers, where there has already been much activity.
    #2–window still has couple years for C and IF, OF still a concern. Good Drafts/getting more out of farm a must.
    #3–vet leadership of 30-ish group should be a positive. Cutch playing for a contract could work out very well.
    #4–Cueto. He’s opted in, SF owes him a lot of money, needs to be more ace like and healthy going forward.
    #5– no less than .500 BUT mgmt. needs to be aware and proactive on shortcomings that show up
    #6–fear of exceeding lux tax. Giants might need to go over it, especially to add pitching. They have tons of money and aren’t likely to attract any of big names next year anyway. So spend what you have to this year.

  3. YogiBarrister (@Yogi47951368) said, on January 24, 2018 at 7:51 am

    What are your thoughts on the offseason? Did the club improve over the winter?

    As good as it gets. I played a mental game with myself. If the Giants could clone players, who and how many would they need to pass the Dodgers: Here’s my list: Trout, Arenado, Harper, Scherzer, Miller…the first two or three would get it done IMO.

    Is there any concern that the Giants’ window might be closing soon?

    Yeah, but only literally. (to be honest, I reject the question) If winning the World Series is the only acceptable measure of success, then Giants fans have a 96.66 chance of being disappointed. Being from a cold, Northeast climate, baseball is more about the weather than final scores. Spring begins with the hope my little league game doesn’t get rained or snowed out. April to Memorial Day is hoping I get laid, my favorite team has a good start. One of these is more important than the other, depending on how old you are. June & July? Joy, excitement, graduation, swimming in the lake, golf & tennis during the day, evenings listening to the game on the radio or at a bar watching it with friends. The Warriors win. August? Negativity sometimes creeps in. Summer will end soon, the Giants are floundering, or they’re winning and I’m worried they might blow their lead. September? Back to school or work, love my job and my co-workers, the call-ups are looking good, there’s a pennant race, it’s coming down to the wire…October? Indian Summer, if the Giants aren’t in it, let’s see how Jimmy G does today. The leaves are turning, days are getting shorter, I shut the windows.

    What’s one thing people may overlook (either positively or negatively) about this team?

    Bobby Evans is doing an outstanding job, is better than Sabean, who was also great. The knock on Brian was that other GMs didn’t like dealing with him. With all the emphasis on the luxury tax, making trades and drafting is the way forward. Free agent signings should be modest.

    Who is the one key player, the guy that must have a good year for the Giants to do well?

    Oh boy! I so want to cheat on this because the obvious answer is everybody. If I could choose one player to revert to form or have his best season, I’d go with Cueto.

    What’s your projection for 2018? Where does the team wind up overall?

    Without a penalty for being wrong, the Giants are going to kick the Dodgers asses.

    What’s one question I should have asked and what’s the answer to it?

    What minor league player will have the greatest impact? A) Rule 5 acquisition, Julian Fernandez. The fans will sing Wild Thing when he enters the game.

  4. James said, on January 24, 2018 at 8:20 am

    Last year in some post or another, I cited Smarge as the key player for getting to the playoffs, with the expectation that Bumgarner and Cueto would be solid. This year, it’s the number 2 instead of the 3 to reach 500.

    The performance of the bench is not exactly overlooked, but its impact on W-L was under appreciated last year.

    79-83

    Will the hitters be blamed less when they lose more 6-4 instead 6-1 games this year? No.

  5. unca_chuck said, on January 24, 2018 at 8:41 am

    What if it was 4-2 in the 8th inning, James?

    Evans is better than Sabean? Please.

    1. The club did some fair things. They did turn over the OF so I’m happy about that. JD is still available, though. If we somehow got him, it would make this team a lot better . . . I mean, if you are going stop-gap, go stop-gap hard.

    2. The window may already be closed. If the top 3 pitchers don’t pitch well, we aren’t reaching .500. The team needs a lot to go right to be a WC contender.

    3. The whiskey bar next to the garden in the bleachers? The pen and its importance to the overall success of the team? They built the championship teams on the back of the rock-solid pen. They need to take care of that.

    4. They need more than one guy to bounce back. Bummie, Pence, Crawford, Cueto, Samarj, and Belt, (and the pen collectively) need to have better years. That being said, IF Bummie and Cueto pitch like they can, then it is incumbent on Samarj to hold up his end.

    5. 82-80 if they do something to the bullpen. If not, 75-87.

    6. When and how can the Giants fix their bullpen?

  6. James said, on January 24, 2018 at 8:56 am

    “What if it was 4-2 in the 8th inning, James?” That’s one scenario to consider, Chuck, especially at ATT. The bullpen blows the lead in the 7th or 8th, or a starter gives up 4 or 5 runs early, and then a couple of players don’t get hits late with runners on. 7-6 comebacks are still generally harder to come by than 4-3 or 5-4 wins.

  7. snarkk said, on January 24, 2018 at 9:21 am

    Buster could hit 25 Dingers. It’s possible. Over the next 3 seasons…

  8. xoot said, on January 24, 2018 at 9:38 am

    1. Yes, the club improved over the winter–Bumgarner, Cueto and Melancon got healthy, and Longoria and McCutchen add great defense and, aging though they are, add offense to a team that really needed it.

    2. My concern is that the Giants’ window began closing in 2016 and may be on its way to slamming shut this year.

    3. People tend to overlook the loss of Latin American players from the 25. The successful 2012 and 2014 teams (especially if you include Romo in that group) had very different clubhouse cultures.

    4. Posey has to remain healthy and strong throughout the season and take advantage of the new protection around him in the LU.

    5. This year projection seems impossible. How much of the cause of last year’s debacle remains at the core? I don’t know.

    6. Bonus question–can the Giants adjust to the new juiced ball the way other teams have? I doubt it. I hope mlb has re-engineered the ball this offseason to remove some of the excess juice.

  9. Macdog said, on January 24, 2018 at 9:39 am

    From Pav: Chris Heston is back with the Giants on a minor league deal.

  10. zumiee said, on January 24, 2018 at 10:25 am

    The baseball magazines have arrived, but my enthusiasm for them is tempered a bit by the fact that so many free agents are still unsigned. The magazines have more than expected information gaps this year.
    For what it’s worth, Street and Smith pick the Yankees and Nats in the World Series, and Lindy’s picks the Yankees and Dodgers.
    Neither pick the Giants to make the playoffs, yet this is before the Giants got McCutchen and Jackson. How would the magazines see it now?
    There’s still lots of great reading in the magazines, and I will always get them. They’re the beginning of baseball season to me.

  11. zumiee said, on January 24, 2018 at 10:28 am

    MLB Network gave the Giants some love yesterday regarding the acquisitions. Some of the pundits believe the Giants have a chance now to eek into a Wild Card spot.

  12. zumiee said, on January 24, 2018 at 10:33 am

    The Lakers held on to defeat the Celtics last night, but the Lakers had to survive their own atrocious free throw shooting. The worst free throw shooting NBA team I’ve ever seen.

  13. zumiee said, on January 24, 2018 at 12:43 pm

    60th year anniversary of the Giants coming to SF will surely present marketing/promotion ideas to Baer and crew.

    • zumiee said, on January 24, 2018 at 1:37 pm

      Ah, I see the Giants have announced the promotional give-aways:
      “Highlights include Opening Day Calendar presented by AT&T (Apr. 3); Opening Night Fireworks presented by Altec Lansing (Apr. 6); 60th Anniversary Willie Mays Bobblehead presented by AT&T (Apr. 7); Giants/Dodgers Collectors Rivalry Pin presented by Bank of America (Apr. 8); 60th Anniversary Two Flaps Down Hat presented by River Rock Casino (Apr. 27); Brandon Crawford Gold Glove Gnome presented by AAA (Apr. 28); Giants Corduroy Cap presented by Dignity Health (May 19); 60th Anniversary Expandable Backpack presented by See’s Candies (May 20); Retro Fanny Pack (June 2); 60th Anniversary Willie McCovey Bobblehead (June 3); Fireworks Night presented by Snapple (June 22); Expressions of Madison Bumgarner T-Shirt (June 23); 60th Anniversary Mt. Crushmore Statue (June 24); Crazy Crab Scarf presented by Good Neighbor Pharmacy (July 7); Camo Cap (July 8); 60th Anniversary Blanket (July 14); Giants Battle of the Bay Snowglobe (July 15); Color Changing Mug (July 28); HELLO KITTY® Cap (July 29); Giants By the Numbers Book presented by Cost Plus World Market (Aug 12); Buster Hugs Bobblehead (Aug. 25); Grocery Tote presented by MLB Network (Aug. 26); Buster Posey Socks (Sept. 2); Alaska Airlines 2-for-1 Flight Voucher (Sept. 15); STAR WARS® Day Cap presented by SmartWater (Sept. 1)”

      • xoot said, on January 24, 2018 at 1:50 pm

        That April 7 Saturday vs. the bums looks good.

      • wilcojoe said, on January 24, 2018 at 2:13 pm

        I notice the Bumgarner promo is pre-trade deadline. Hmmm. Just kidding. Maybe.

  14. xoot said, on January 24, 2018 at 2:36 pm

    good article from Baggarly today on the HOF–Bonds, Mays McCovey Cepeda discussion, and then his own ballot this year, concluding:

    “Until someone can calculate Joy Created Over Replacement Player, I’ll continue to study and use all means at my disposal when I fill out my ballot. And I’ll continue to believe that Omar Vizquel is a Hall of Famer.”

    Yeah.

  15. unca_chuck said, on January 24, 2018 at 3:18 pm

    Omar was a true throwback to the days of slick-fielding SS’s like Davey Concepcion, Gary Templeton and (urk) Ozzie Smith. Loved Vizquel’s few years here as a Giant.

  16. djloo27 said, on January 24, 2018 at 4:28 pm

    Is question 2 a joke?

    • Flavor said, on January 24, 2018 at 4:37 pm

      lol. That’s why you’re the king

  17. Flavor said, on January 24, 2018 at 4:47 pm

  18. zumiee said, on January 24, 2018 at 4:53 pm

    Jones, Guerrero, Thome, and Hoffman make it in.
    Bonds and Clemens both at about 57%. Trending slowly upward. Peter Gammons voted for Bonds this time, which shows a little softening of the old guard.

    • wilcojoe said, on January 24, 2018 at 5:08 pm

      I feel about 99% certain they get in on their last year of eligibility. Not a year sooner.

  19. zumiee said, on January 24, 2018 at 5:00 pm

    If the Giants’ window is closing, they gotta smash right through that window this season.

    • djloo27 said, on January 24, 2018 at 5:16 pm

      Love how he gets right up and keeps going.
      Doesn’t look back or collect himself.
      Just a minor interruption of his mission.
      Ain’t nothin’ gonna break my stride…

      • zumiee said, on January 24, 2018 at 5:25 pm

        It’s like he’s finishing with “I meant to do that.”

      • djloo27 said, on January 24, 2018 at 5:53 pm

        He actually might have…

  20. Flavor said, on January 24, 2018 at 5:22 pm

    the hall of fame is stupid. I read shit like this and I just want to murder people.

  21. zumiee said, on January 24, 2018 at 5:31 pm

    Giants fans have fond memories of Vlad Guerrero’s 2010 World Series. 1 for 14, .071.

    • djloo27 said, on January 24, 2018 at 5:35 pm

      …and his stellar defense at ATT…

    • Macdog said, on January 24, 2018 at 6:43 pm

      And a 1-pitch AB vs. Wilson for out #26 in Game 5.

  22. zumiee said, on January 24, 2018 at 5:33 pm

    Giants fans have fond memories of Rolen’s 2012 playoffs vs. the Giants. .250, 0 HR, 1 RBI.

  23. snarkk said, on January 24, 2018 at 7:32 pm

    Can any of these BBWWAAABB whatever writers swear an oath that they KNOW for a stone cold fact that the 4 dudes they voted into the HOF today never never never ever used PEDs? That’s even Taylor Swift style never ever ever ever. Since none of them can swear that, then letting these 4 in before Bonds and Clemens is just absurd…

  24. James said, on January 24, 2018 at 8:18 pm

    Here are the stats for all the HOF 3Bmen:

    http://www.baseball-almanac.com/hof/hofst3b.shtml

    And here’s a list of 200 plus players ranked by a WAR based formula:

    http://www.hallofstats.com/position/3b

    Don’t shoot, I’m only passing on some joyless numbers!

    • xoot said, on January 24, 2018 at 8:28 pm

      Longoria’s number suggests some joy

      • James said, on January 24, 2018 at 8:36 pm

        Indeed. A bounce back 2018 would be an awesome thing.

      • xoot said, on January 24, 2018 at 9:06 pm

        Past joy too. A lot of baseball numbers reflect joy. That’s the only reason the numbers are relevant, outside commerce

      • James said, on January 24, 2018 at 9:24 pm

        They do have some predictive value. There’s not much else for a GM or armchair fans to go on over a long winter. The speculation is, at the same time, often more than half the fun.

      • xoot said, on January 24, 2018 at 9:35 pm

        To each his own. Omar wore number 13 and averaged fewer than 13 errors per season.

      • xoot said, on January 24, 2018 at 9:54 pm

        And I think Omar has the highest fielding % of any SS in history, to date.

      • James said, on January 24, 2018 at 10:08 pm

        Why Ozzie and not Omar is a mystery.

      • xoot said, on January 24, 2018 at 10:24 pm

        but isn’t the joy in remembering Omar’s play?


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