Thursday, September 07, 2006

I Feel Fine: Jonathan Sanchez Great First Start

What a great first start. No-hitter through 4 innings, and ends up pitching 5.2 innings, 93 pitches, 60 for strikes, gave up only 3 hits and 2 walks and struck out 7 batters. That's a PQS of 4, a dominating start from our newest addition to the rotation and his first victory in the majors as a starter for the Giants. Already 2-0 as a reliever, so now 3-0, he could end up with a similar record as Lowry did in his first extended run in the majors (6-0) if the Giants continue to give him starts.

And look at him, he LOOKS like an ace in the making. The talk has been about how poised he is and how calm, cool, and collected he is no matter what the situation he is pitching in.

Wow, I'm liking the rotation for 2007 more and more. Sanchez looks like he'll be ready to join the rotation next season, making it Morris, Lowry, Cain, and Sanchez for now. If Sabean is able to re-sign Schmidt (or somehow sign Zito, the only other ace-type pitcher free agent this off-season), we should have a really awewome rotation in 2007. Then add Lincecum into the mix late 2007 season or in 2008, and the Giants could trade Schmidt off for prospects to stock the farm system with more hitters.

4 comments:

  1. I'm as excited as the next guy about Jonathan Sanchez. He's always had poise (or has always shown it), as you never see him visibly get shaken or upset.

    You're comfortable with the prospectus for next year's rotation, and so am I. There is one thing I don't necessarily agree with you about, and thats going after Barry Zito.

    Suppose Sanchez continues to show that he's ready to join the rotation next year, we'll have (as you've stated): Morris, Lowry, Cain, and Sanchez. Thats a nice mix, with alternating righties and lefties. Now, if the Giants are able to retain Schmidt, we'd have an "ace" or "dominating" right handed pitcher. Not that I put a whole lot of stock into lefty-righty matchups, but going after Zito would mean that we'll have three left-handed starters. For some reason, I'm not comfortable with that idea. Perhaps its because it's unique (or uncommon), and people fear such things.

    In any case, the four we may have for sure are plenty to make me excited. Its just that with a four that has that much potential, how much would you be willing to spend to chase after an "ace"? The team has quite a few glaring needs elsewhere, particularly in the bullpen.

    As I've said previously, Cain has pitched almost as well as Schmidt has this year. Albiet that this year (and last year) have been abberrations from the "normal" Schmidt, but who's to say that the "normal" Schmidt will show in 2007?

    If Cain can get his command under control, and show some consistency, he would very well be Your SF Giants' new ace.

    I make these remarks as the biggest Schmidt fan there is. He's my second favorite Giant only to Bonds, and would love nothing more than to see him finish his career as a Giant. However, the line has to be drawn somewhere, and in a perfect world, Schmidt would never cross that line.

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  2. I think you have to start of assessing the liklihood of trading any of our present starters. Morris is not attractive, IMO, because of his $9 Mil contract. I would trade Lowery if you could get a substantial OF or corner IF bat for him but I do not think that is likely.
    Thus, our rotation for next year:
    Morris
    Cain
    Lowery
    Sanchez
    Hennessey/Correia/Wright/FA
    I like this rotation for its youth, balance of rookie and experience, depth. Given other needs, I don't see the need to ante up for Schmidt or Zito.
    I think we spend the $ on Soriano, and put him at 2b. Then we have an OF of Bonds, Winn, Linden, w/a FA as #4 and Sweeney as #5.
    1B - Hillenbrand
    2B - Soriano
    SS - Dreamy
    3B - Feliz
    This lineup, I think will outperform the 06 offense, w/ good defense (about the same as 06). We will have the same good starting pitching. As always, the pen is the big question.

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  3. I agree with allfrank in that we should use our "bidding war money" on Soriano. Out of all the potential "stars" that may be available, he is by far the best choice.

    Even if we don't retain Bonds, we can fill in LF with Soriano or a FA, and try to resign Durham.

    We won't have a "bonafide" power slugger, but you don't need that if you have people who can get on base and drive in runs.

    C: Alfonzo, Mattheny/Greene
    1B: Hillenbrand, Sweeney
    2B: Durham
    SS: Dreamy
    3B: Happy Pete
    OF: Winn/Ellison/Soriano/Linden
    UT: Frandsen, FA

    That lineup is notably younger, but at the same time has a nice mix of experience.

    2007 may not be as bad as most people are looking at. We're going to fork over quite a bit of money to retain Feliz/Hillenbrand, but in comparison to who's available, we probably won't overpay by much.

    I just hope we only add to our bullpen and improve it. I don't want to take a huge step forward on offense only to fall further backwards with our bullpen.

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  4. Lots of great comments, I'll comment further when I have time, but regarding Zito, I have had this bug for a while, that tells me that we need to have a dominant, DOMINANT rotation, because the offense, even with a few big free agents, will be as inconsistent as 2005-6's versions. That way we are almost always in games and give the offense the chance to come back.

    Morris, Cain, Lowry, Sanchez,and Pick'em (Hennessey, Correia, Wright, FA) is a strong rotation but I would not call it dominant - yet, that is. If everything rolls our way, yes, I would say it is, but look at Cain and Lowry this year, it hasn't been all roses and champagne the whole season, both have struggled for large parts of the season and now Lowry has this elbow irritation. Somebody is going to falter, hence I want to strengthen the rotation a lot.

    That's where Schmidt hopefully comes in, and if not him, maybe Zito, since he is younger (doubtful because he has Boras as agent but you never know; I thought he was all Zen and everything but, whew, going with Boras shows that he is all about le moolah). They are pitchers you can consider to be Aces, Ted Lilly doesn't cut it.

    This ace will be our insurance in case Lowry, Cain, Sanchez falters, or if Lincecum gets TINSTAAPP stamped on his forehead. If anything with this bunch goes wrong, we still have the others doing well PLUS the ace free agent and Morris, who has actually pitched well, his problem has been the Hennessey problem from last season, either he pitches really well or he pitches really badly, he's still a better deal than the other pitchers in his price range.

    If every works out for our prospects, then we'll be in an envious position of having a stellar rotation and the opportunity to trade off Schmidt/Zito, Morris, or even Lowry, to get a good prospect back, probably a startable position player for Schmidt or Lowry (BTW, no "e" in his name :^). That's my thinking about getting Schmidt or Zito (but Zito is really a long shot because of Boras).

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