“Cabrera, sure, he’s made some errors,” Bochy said. “But you’ve got an experienced guy out there. I know he’s dropped a couple of popups. I think he’s as shocked as anybody he didn’t catch the ball, and he made some nice plays today coming in.”
Bruce Bochy, quoted in Hank Schulman’s recap: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2011/09/07/SP4G1L1FOD.DTL#ixzz1XKvKDrir
Let me start by saying that I am not by any stretch a Bruce Bochy hater. I think he’s mostly okay, and 90% of the things that he drives me nuts with would just be replaced by another set of things that another manager would drive me just as nuts with.
I also am on the record as thinking that it was not a terrible idea to trade for Orlando Cabrera. I thought he could probably play better defense than Miguel Tejada and hit better than Brandon Crawford. I think Mike Fontenot is playable at SS, but I don’t think it’s a great idea to play him every day there. Cabrera was a reasonable, if depressing, solution to these problems.
Well, after watching far too much Orlando Cabrera for my taste, I don’t think he’s much better on defense than Miguel Tejada and I don’t think he’s a much better hitter than Brandon Crawford. I feel pretty confident in saying that the one skill that Orlando Cabrera still has is the ability to not strike out, but that age has taken away such things as defensive range, ability to steal, and the ability to consistently drive the ball. If the Giants were breathing down the Diamondbacks’ necks, I would see the justification for playing him over Crawford, but I certainly wouldn’t start him over Fontenot (unless maybe there were a lefty on the mound).
I’m not really sure if the Giants think they are in “WIN NOW!” mode, or if they are in “eh, we’ll get ‘em next year” mode. Justin Christian starting against a right-hander screams the latter, but Cody Ross’s presence in the lineup says it’s the former. Orlando Cabrera’s role, at this point, seems to say that Bochy isn’t really all that sure how to do either.