If you’re a Giants fan with a pulse, then you know that within the last 24 hours the Giants have shipped off much maligned closer Armando Benitez to the Marlins for RHP Randy Messenger. After Benitez’s meltdown in New York it was only a matter of time before something was done. He was conveniently held out of the lineup the following game with knee problems and bam, he’s gone the day after.
In the mean time, Brian Sabean is pissed off. In a Mercury article he sounds off on the teams poor performance as of late.
“We had three players who weren’t available except for one at-bat (Tuesday) and that wasn’t Armando’s fault. Tonight we had three hits and looked as dead as a doornail, and that’s not Armando’s fault.
And on older players on the team not making consistent starts (Bonds, Durham, Klesko, etc.)
“Ask the guys that can’t answer the bell every day,” said Sabean, whose own job is on the line. “Once we find out who’s ready to play every day, then we’ll have a better answer to about what we have internally.”
This has irked me, and many other fans who follow this team. Goodbye old whipping boy Mando and say hello to new whipping boy, Brian Sabean. The teams performance should land squarely on the shoulders of the man who assembled that team. Any GM who expects Bonds (42), Aurilia (35), Vizquel (40), Roberts (35), and Klesko (36) to (A) Play most of the season without getting injured or experience nagging injuries and to (B) Not decline at all in performance, is bonkers.
I can see that Sabean wants to fire up the team, to get the team playing well but you ripping apart a flawed team isn’t going to turn them into superstars. Like it or not, Sabean is going to have to ride this year out and not deal away prospects for crappy veterans. Use the draft to improve the farm system, hold onto what you’ve got, and look forward to the next year. Good GMS are the ones that don’t make desperation moves and can ride out the tough times.
Back to Randy Messenger. The 2.66 ERA looks nice but most of his other stats are a little sketchy. Low K’s per 9 and he appears to have been giving up a lot of hits. At this point he looks to have been real lucky to this point. His fastball slider combo does have some promise but his command is generally poor, and that has hurt him the most. For those that saw Dusty Baker last night on Baseball Tonight, don’t listen to him on that Messenger will be the favorite for saves in San Francisco. Hennessey will be the favorite for now and others like Correia might get shots too.
At the end of the day the Giants shed Benitez, while paying over 5 million of his salary to do so, and pick up a unspectacular arm in Messenger. The Giants obviously felt that Armando had to go and didn’t care about eating the salary. Benitez in all regards is a better pitcher than Messenger but the Giants felt that had given Benitez all the chances they could give.
Comment Starter: How do you feel about this trade?