The trading deadline for major league baseball, according to this site, is next Sunday on July 31st. At this point, the Giants seem sure to do something besides trading for Jeff Keppinger. As we’ve already covered, Keppinger is a nice fill-in for second base, but the Giants need offense, and despite a nice batting average, Keppinger isn’t going to be providing the type of offense the Giants need. Though, I did find it funny/sad/humorous/sad-again that he was batting 5th yesterday.
The shiniest prize on the trading market is (still) Carlos Beltran. Entering today, Beltran owns a batting line of .291/.393/.520 which is phenomenal for any year, really phenomenal in a down year for offense. By the park-adjusted stats like OPS+ or wRC+, Beltran is right around 55% better than league average as a batter. That’s downright great.
The Giants-Mets connection seems to be heating up. Jeff Passan tweeted earlier today:
Indeed, the Giants shouldn’t be afraid to trade prospects for an upgrade — which Beltran certainly is, but with how the team is currently built, upgrading the outfield isn’t a slam dunk like an upgrade at SS or C would be. The Giants have a collection of pretty decent outfielders this season. By wRC+, the Giants’ outfielders: Nate Schierholtz (116), Pat Burrell (113), Cody Ross (111), Andres Torres (100), and Aaron Rowand (75). You could probably include Brandon Belt (87) in there, too. Nate’s development this year has been a big treat. Burrell is more of a pinch-hitter right now, but the point stands — the Giants are getting league average(ish) production from their outfielders. And, despite Aaron Rowand, it’s a been a pretty good group for the Giants this year.
So, while Beltran is a definite upgrade for the team, it might not be as big of an upgrade at first glance. Fixing the holes at SS and C should still remain a priority and it’s one that will probably cost less to fix while providing the same gains.