Giancarlo Stanton smashing baseballs off the Coke bottle in left field at AT&T Park?
Sign me up.
I know, I know. Most of his home runs would fall a few rows short of the Coke bottle.
Other than that, you got a problem, pal?
OK, serious talk now. Let’s all agree that a 13-13 August record (going into Tuesday night’s game at San Diego) is not enough improvement to let general manager Bobby Evans off the hook in terms of remaking the Giants’ mission statement.
The game has changed, the home runs are flying and the Giants have plainly been caught napping. The defense/pitching/Gregor-Blanco-off-the-bench Giants style worked in 2010/2012/2014 and it worked to all of our eternal gratitude.
But times change. Hairstyles change. Interest rates fluctuate. And muscle-bound sluggers are winning games by studying launch angles, while heat-throwing pitchers are providing the power. The Giants, led by Brandon Belt’s 18 home runs, are not keeping up.
This is where Stanton comes in.
He’s only guy, true. And his salary — an average of $28.5 million per year through 2028, when Stanton would be 38 — is a gigantic thing. It’s daunting to think of a salary yoke, when the Giants’ current predicament of extended deals to Johnny Cueto, Jeff Samardzija, Brandon Belt and Brandon Crawford (and even Hunter Pence and Denard Span next year) have tied the Giants’ hands thus far.
But think of it this fanciful way: Christian Arroyo arrives as a productive MLB hitter in the coming years. So does Chris Shaw. So does Steven Duggar. And Buster Posey continues to be Buster. You add Giancarlo to that lineup and you have legitimacy, you have beef, you have protection.
And maybe perhaps most important, if you trade for him, he’s not a Dodger.
You know the lava-hot Dodgers and their young, creative front office are scheming up ways to land the L.A. native, and to render the Giants to the NL West dustbin for the next decade or so.
We’ve gone 300-plus words into this meaty Jock Blog without considering who the Marlins would accept for Stanton.
That’s a problem. In terms of trade-able assets, the Giants are bringing a butter knife to a gun fight.
The idea of Madison Bumgarner was brought up on the show today. While you have to consider it — as the great Ed DeBartolo, Jr. once memorably said, “You have to bring a** to get a**” — it’s obviously not appealing, for reasons both historic and productive.
Matt Moore, only 28, is an attractive asset. So is Joe Panik, only 26. So is perhaps Triple-A lefty Andrew Suarez. Add that with the Giants taking Stanton’s contract off Miami’s books, and maybe we’re starting a conversation. Maybe Sam Dyson is in the conversation. Maybe Hunter Strickland is, too. Point is, let’s talk.
Look. I ain’t no Branch Rickey. I can’t tell you who the Marlins value in the Giants’ system, or who the Giants consider tradeable. All I know is the team needs a bold move, and historically bold moves have worked for the team. In 1978, the Giants traded seven players and cash to land Vida Blue from the A’s, and he was part of two very memorable Giants teams, in both ’78 and ’82. In 1996, the Giants traded Matt Williams for Jeff Kent (and Jose Vizcaino and Julian Tavarez), and it launched a golden age.
Evans needs to think big, and Giancarlo Stanton is big. Let the conversations continue