Everyone remembers the stretch during the mid-90′s of horrible first basemen that played for the Giants. The list went a little something like, Mark Carreon, Todd Benziger, and J.R. Phillips. Yeesh! Thats a hard list to read for even the most hardcore of Giants fans. Eventually J.T. Snow landed in San Fran and put together a really nice run but those days are over. Now J.T. is just a distant memory in many saddened fan girls minds. The tandem of Neikro and Hillenbrand was a tough pill to swallow, one that I couldn’t fully keep down before blowing garlic fry chunks all over the place.
First base is up in the air again. Who will man it in 2007? I have a sneaking suspicion that Brian Sabean will try and bring back Shea Hillenbrand to play first. Even though he filed for free agency yesterday I am cautiously negative. Hillenbrand has said that he wants to come back but I want something more than a warped Dr. Doolittle playing first next year. I could paste in all sorts of stats right now to try and tell you how uninspiring Shea is but I’ll spare you the extra words. Hes just not very good.
Enter Patt Burrell. Philly isn’t the most civilized sports town on the planet and they really don’t like Burrell. I mean, really don’t like him. Hes a 0-3 day away from getting battery acid and beer bottles chucked at him. Heres why I think he would be a great fit for the Giants. His contract, even though expensive, runs out after 2008 and he would be a good stopgap until something better comes along or if EME can stay healthy enough to make it to the majors. Pat is good for 30 HRs, 100 RBIs, and a high OBP. The only thing that concerns me with acquiring Burrell is that he has a no-trade clause and has already stated he wouldn’t waive it to go to Baltimore because they aren’t a contender. Gulp.
Across the diamond, third base is another question mark. Giants fans cling to fond memories of Matt Williams like a life preserver in a angry ocean. While the post Williams-era hasn’t been as bad as the post Clark-era, there have been some car crashes. Russ Davis, Edgardo Alfonso, and Pedro Feliz have all left bruises. Thank goodness the Giants may pursue options at third other than Feliz. Aramis Rameriz would be a fine option but he will be heavily coveted and pricey. I suggested a week ago that the Giants give a good hard look at Akinori Iwamura to play third. It makes too much sense, hes young, proven, and versatile. He also would get a shorter contract than Ramirez and cost less in the long run.
Now thats over with, I am getting out my Ouija board to contact Matt Williams and Will Clark to see if they can still snag grounders.