© Stan Szeto | 2019 Jun 30
The 2019 San Francisco Giants have not been a very good baseball team, but since June 1 they have been playing some of their best baseball since the All-Star break in 2016. They’ve gone 19-14 since June 1 and are only 5.5 games behind the Philadelphia Phillies for the second Wild Card spot in the National League.
Before this stretch, it was almost guaranteed that the Giants would sell off some, if not all, of their best players. Madison Bumgarner and Will Smith looked like they were guaranteed to be heading to contending teams at the trading deadline, but this recent run has muddied those waters to some degree.
Andrew Baggarly, a San Francisco Giants beat writer for The Athletic, stopped by the Murph & Mac show on Monday morning to discuss the team’s hot streak and trade deadline plans.
“You know I think that they’re playing better and it’s good to see. I think that some of the veterans whose heads were spinning earlier in the year…some things have stabilized,” Baggarly said. “(Evan) Longoria obviously is having a good stretch, (Jeff) Samardzija’s having a couple real good starts. You look at the way they won a one-run game yesterday and the heroes were Longoria, Samardzija, and (Kevin) Pillar.”
Baggarly proceeded to caution Giants fans about this hot streak and outlined why it might not be sustainable.
“It’s gonna be hard for me to see them being a competitive offense if Buster Posey is still sitting there with a .312 on base percentage at the end of the year, and if Brandon Crawford’s numbers don’t pick up,” Baggarly continued. “They need some of those core guys to be who they’ve been in the past and they’re obviously having a tough season. The worst team in the majors is gonna win seven out of nine at some point so I think you’re happy about it, you’re enthused about it, but you don’t necessarily allow yourself to get deluded by it.”
Baggarly then discussed the potential implications that this recent run of success could have on the Giants plans at the trade deadline, specifically the plans for Madison Bumgarner and Will Smith.
“I don’t think this run is going to stop them from being sellers, but it might make them stretch it out a little bit longer and say: ‘Look, we’re playing well and if you want us to part with these guys you’re gonna have to give us a reason to do that.'”
He also discussed Farhan Zaidi’s mindset regarding Bumgarner in particular, saying: “I think he’s like ‘Look, this guy is a historic difference maker and you can throw your hard hit rate out the window. I mean, we know what this guy can do, and if we trade him to your LCS opponent and he happens to snuff the lights out of you in October, don’t blame us.'”
Listen to the full interview with Andrew Baggarly below. To hear him discuss the recent success of the Giants and their deadline plans, start from 1:15.