Early Camp Chatter

Not a whole lot of excitement during the first weekend of Giants camp. Let’s see, Pablo looks fit (we already knew that from the pictures this winter), Hector Sanchez has shed some pounds himself, Morse and Hudson are healthy and fitting in nicely. We’re hearing all the things we want to hear this time of year. I have no problem with that. For this group, at this stage, I feel like no news is good news.

We’ll see how everyone holds up once the actual games start in a couple weeks, but right now I’m sensing a good vibe from this crew. A ton of the position players were already in camp on Friday (Posey, Pablo, Morse, Pence, among others), and that’s a good thing to see. The early attitude seems to be very professional, but you know there are a few personalities on this team who will make sure things stay light when they need to. You have to have a nice mixture of personalities in athletics to balance each other out, and this roster seems like it could form a very cohesive group.

As for our kids, Alex Pavlovic has some video of guys like Edwin Escobar, Kyle Crick, Ty Blach and Derek Law throwing bullpens, but the footage is very far away. Not too exciting in my opinion, but here’s the link:

Here’s a pretty cool piece from Andy Baggarly today on Escobar. I know the organization and Baggs himself have mentioned Esky at different times this winter, but I’ve got to think this is the first major article I’ve ever seen dedicated to Escobar. Pretty sweet stuff, as he was essentially a no-name guy this time last year.

Actually, I remember reading the lengthy Escobar vs Mejia debate over at DrB’s site last year during prospect rankings season… how many Giants fans do you think were talking at length about those two guys last offseason? My guess: not many, as the majority of the attention was on Crick and Blackburn. So, I guess you could say it is very rewarding to see guys like Escobar getting big-league mention, especially for the small number of “die-hards” who were excited about him way before the beats started telling his story.

Here’s a snippet from that piece… straight from the Skipper’s mouth to Baggs’ notepad: “He (Escobar) has a different look about him this spring. I think he sees he’s a guy who’s in the mix and also knocking on the door right now. He’s coming out of the chute throwing the ball better than last spring.”

Escobar Interview

That, my friends, is what you like to hear.

Hopefully more tomorrow, including the biggest question looming for los Gigantes this spring. The days are getting brighter…

photo-34

(Photo: Henry Schulman/SFGate.com)

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5 thoughts on “Early Camp Chatter”

  1. With Zito gone and Bum the only lefty in the rotation now, you gotta think Esky is going to get every chance over the next year or two–of course, there’s also Blach and Mejia…it’s exciting.

    1. If one of those 3 is ready and there is an injury or slip-up in the rotation, I’d be happy to see that scenario play out. Of course we would like each of these young pitchers to develop at their own pace, but it is VERY exciting to hear the organization talk about Escobar being on the cusp. Good things are on the way!

  2. I see the Giants being in a great position to let Escobar develop in Fresno while being ready almost from the get-go if needed. With Petit being the nominal 6’th starter, I would place Escobar as the #7 or second backup with Huff and Kickham in the mix. Then by midseason, I could see at least one or two out of Crick, Blach, Blackburn and Mejia being ready so I don’t see the Giants having the severe rotation depth problems they had last year.

    1. I certainly got the opinion from Baggs’ article that Escobar is right on the cusp… which is awesome! And I think you’re right about a chance that we see another one of the kids make their way to Fresno. I’ll put my money on Crick, as I can see him dominating in AA. But Blach and Blackburn are very consistent, and heck, Mejia has already started a game in Fresno!

      Most people outside the org (and even many fans of the Giants) don’t look at it this way, but you really do make great points DrB. There is certainly more depth this year, and Sabes has already said he’d have no problem pulling a guy up from Richmond anyway, as that is the true test (in his words).

      1. Yes Kyle, it is awesome to get additional confirmation that Escobar is on the cusp, and this is in keeping the same drumbeat that Sabean started early in the off-season by dropping Escobar’s name as a possible solution to the issue of rotation depth.

        DrB, will we be able to keep Huff? He is out of options too, like Petit, so they might have to trade him if they end up giving the long relief job to Petit, as they have been saying he had the inside track to all off-season, and now is basically saying the job is his even if he falters in spring, just because of how well he pitched for us last season (particularly coming within an out of a perfect game). I like Huff though, maybe they will try to sneak him through right at the end of spring training, to minimize another team claiming him.

        I agree that the Giants are set up nicely for rotation depth, starting first with Petit, and I expect him to get at least into mid-season to keep the job, at which point Escobar should be ready for his close-up if need be, plus I agree that at least one if not more of Crick, Blach, Blackburn, Mejia being ready. I would put my money on Blackburn being the first one of the group to be ready, then Blach, Mejia, and Crick.

        For Crick, I expect the Giants to keep him climbing one level per season, not because he couldn’t surprise, but more because they don’t really need him until 2016, when both Lincecum’s and Hudson’s contracts are up, though if either is struggling, then maybe mid-2015. With a talent like his, plus his wildness, I think the goal would be to get that wildness tamed before moving him up, unless they need to. With him, I expect the Giants to try to polish up as much as they can before bringing him up, as he’ll be replacing a top-line pitcher, while the others would be expected to fill a back of rotation role (though could perform better). There is no need to rush him with all these other great prospects on the cusp.

        And yeah, Sabes would have no problem bringing up someone from AA if need be, per what he said before. Plus, as TINSTAAPP theory notes, once you got a pitcher, you are just wasting that player’s arm in the minors by not bringing him up. So if someone is ready in AA, it don’t really matter he’s never seen AAA as long as the pitcher has the repertoire to handle MLB hitters.

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