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Fixing The Franchise: The San Francisco Giants – Opening Day 2019

In this post, we start the 2019 season with the San Francisco Giants organization. The team is looking quite a bit different already. Just seven players remain on the squad from the initial 25 man roster. If you want to catch up on the season so far, click the link below:

Spring Training 2019

Contract Extensions

A number of players were looking for contract extensions prior to the start of the season. Some players wanted security with all of the recent roster turnover, others were happy to be in San Francisco and wanted to stay. I wanted to extend players that I saw being with the team for the foreseeable future.

NamePos.AgePot.Ovr.Yrs.Total SalaryOption
Josh Bell1B26A835$30MNone
Dereck RodriguezSP26B815$15.5MNone
Reyes MorontaRP26B815$18MNone
Dominic SmithLF23B752$1.5MNone
Caleb FergusonRP22B752$1.7MNone
Steven DuggarRF25A692$1.2MNone
  • Josh Bell signs for a five year extension. This buys out his three years of arbitration as well as two years of free agency. I lock him down through is age 31 season.
  • Dereck Rodriguez signs for a five year extension. I buy out his remaining renewable years as well as three years of arbitration. He will be a Giant through his age 31 season.
  • Reyes Moronta signs for five years – like the others i have him through his age 31 season. I buy him out through his first year of free agency.
  • Dominic Smith signs through his two renewable years, as do Caleb Ferguson and Steven Duggar.

Updated Budget

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Not much has changed for the 2019 season. We add some money onto future years – but not a substantial amount. I am very happy with the financial flexibility I will have moving forward.

Prospects

The minor league system for the San Francisco Giants is full of talent. It is tough to analyze the Top 50 prospects in the game at this point – with so many of them due to be called up early in the season. For now, here is where things stand:

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As an organization we boast a few of the best prospects in the game – along with some organizational talent. Here is where I would rank the prospects within our system:

Org. RankMLB RankPlayerAgePos.Pot.Ovr.Level
#1#26Royce Lewis19SSA65AAA
#2#37Joey Bart22CA66AAA
#3#44Ke’Bryan Hayes223BA67AAA
#4NRHeliot Ramos19CFA61AAA
#5NRHunter Bishop20CFA60AA
#6NRAlexander Palma22RFA63AAA
#7NRLogan Davidson21SSB64AAA
#8NRDarwinzon Hernandez22SPB65AAA
#9NRShea Langeliers21CB65AA
#10NRSean Hjelle21SPB65AAA

MLB Opening Day

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Opening day was finally upon us. The experts around the league had the Giants ranked as the 30th best team talent-wise. As we all know, anything is possible at the beginning of the season – even for a team that traded away over $140M in contracts in the last few months.

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We had Dereck Rodriguez on the hill against Chris Paddack for Opening Day in San Diego. The lineup for the Giants was questionable at best – the only proven bats in the order were Josh Bell and Pablo Sandoval. Some up and coming players were also in the lineup; Cole Tucker, Dominic Smith, Steven Duggar, and Mike Yastrzemski. These player all needed to take this opportunity and seize it – with the deep talent in the minor-leagues, those players know that there is talent waiting in the wings.

Action was slow to start the game. Each team was able to scatter a few hits without any damage in the first two innings.

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In the bottom of the 3rd the first runs came across the plate – Fernando Tatis Jr. hit a two run shot toward the Western Metal Supply Co. building to put the Padres up 2-0. Rodriguez really regretted hanging that cutter up and over the middle of the zone.

The 4th started off with Mike Yastrzemski making a so-so effort on a low Manny Machado line drive, the ball landed just under Yastrzemski’s glove and rolled all the way to the right field wall. Rodriguez was able to retire the next three Padres in order to keep the score at 2-0.

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Josh Bell led off the 7th with a single down the left field line.

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With one out Steven Duggar drove a line drive over the head of Franmil Reyes in right field to give the Giants runners on 2nd and 3rd. After a Yastrzemski foul pop-out, Stephen Vogt came through for the Giants – singling up the middle to score both runs and tie the game.

Rodriguez had thrown seven strong innings, but with the game tied and a pitcher leading off the 8th inning, I had to bring in a pinch hitter. Rodriguez ended his day giving up just 4 hits and 2 earned runs while striking out 6. The decision to hit for Rodriguez proved to be wise, as Chase Headley led off the inning with a line drive single up the middle. I brought in Austin Slater to hit for Carlos Asuaje, who struggles against lefties – Robbie Erlin was pitching this inning.

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Dang – double play. Or was it? Bruce Bochy challenge the out at first. It was overturned! Unfortunately the Giants once again did not capitalize – we were tied at 2-2 heading into the bottom of the 8th.

Santiago Casilla came in to pitch for Rodriguez. I decided to go with the double switch, keeping Chase Headley in the game at 3rd base, and placing Casilla in Sandoval’s spot since he had just hit. Casilla retired the side in order as we headed in to the 9th.

The Padres brought in Adam Warren to pitch. Dominic Smith started things off with a line drive single to left center field. I brought on Jose Reyes to run for him. After two failed bunt attempts, Steven Duggar went down swinging for the first out. Jose Reyes stole second on the first pitch of the next at bat – and on the following pitch tried to take third but was thrown out. Yastrzemski struck out and the inning was over.

In the bottom of the 9th, Casilla started out hot. He struck out the first two batters of the inning. Up came Manny Machado. Casilla started off immediately with two swinging strikes. After wasting a knuckle curve outside the count was 1-2.

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Machado turned on the next pitch, a fastball, and drove it to left field. Austin Slater jumped at the wall.

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His effort wasn’t enough. The ball sailed over his glove by a few feet and the Padres won the season opener with a walk-off homerun by Manny Machado.

AAA Opening Day

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The Sacramento River Cats were starting Darwinzon Hernandez against Justus Sheffield and the Tacoma Rainiers on opening day. The River Cats had a rough start to the game as Magneuris Sierra misplayed a ball in center field, allowing a leadoff triple. On the next play a slow roller was hit to third, Ke’Bryan Hayes threw home but the runner slid under the tag to put the Rainiers up 1-0.

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Royce Lewis led off for the River Cats in the bottom of the first. He fouled off his first pitch down the left field line. Lewis took the very next pitch – showed the Giants exactly why they traded Madison Bumgarner for him – and drove it over the wall in left center field for a solo homerun.

After allowing a leadoff single – Hernandez hung a slider to Orlando Calixte, who drove it out of the park – giving the Rainiers a 3-1 lead in the top of the 2nd.

After a Heliot Ramos ground out – Zach Green and Magneuris Sierra both singled to give the River Cats runners on 1st and 2nd with one out. The Cats were unable to capitalize and stranded both runners.

Matt Beaty started the River Cats off with a single in the Bottom of the 4th. Heliot Ramos then hit a line drive off the left field wall for a double, setting up 2nd and 3rd with nobody out. With one out, Sierra drove a ball to left center, deep enough to score Beaty from 3rd on a sac fly.

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In the 7th inning Hernandez continued to pitch a strong game. He struck out the side – and completed his third straight inning without allowing a runner on base. In the bottom of the 7th, with two outs, Seth Beer doubled down the 3rd base line. This knocked Justus Sheffield from the game. Unfortunately, Logan Davidson was unable to knock in the tying run from second.

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With two runners on and one out in the top of the 8th, the Rainiers hit a bloop single to shallow center field. Sierra came up throwing and gunned the runner out at home for the second out of the inning. Hernandez was able to exit the inning unscathed, striking out his 11th Rainier of the game.

In the Bottom of the 8th the River Cats had two outs and a runner on 1st. Beaty drove the ball to the right center gap for a triple, scoring Hayes all the way from first to tie the game at 3-3.

In the bottom of the 9th – Seth Beer singled with two outs. Alexander Palma came in to pinch run and immediately stole second base. Logan Davidson was once again unable to come through – stranding Palma on second.

As we went to extras, Hernandez wanted to keep going, but we had to keep his long-term health in mind and remove him from the game. He ended his night with 12 strikeouts.

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In the top of the 11th, Miguel Diaz came back for his second inning of work. He hung a changeup to J.P. Crawford who drove it over the right field wall to put the Rainiers up 4-3. Diaz struck out the next three batters – but the damage was done.

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In the bottom of the 11th, Matt Beaty continued his solid day by hitting a homerun of his own over the right field wall. The game was tied 4-4, and Beaty was now a double shy of the cycle.

With two outs in the bottom of the 12th, Hayes singled. Ronnie Jebavy came in to run for Hayes and stole second. Joey Bart left him stranded on second and struck out to end the inning.

In the top of the 17th with one out and one on, Jaycob Brugman hit a ground rule double to deep center field – putting runners on 2nd and 3rd. I decided to pull Travis Bergen from the game, who at this point had thrown a scoreless 2.2 innings. I brought in Joey Gerber to get me three righty vs. righty matchups in a row. On Gerber’s very first pitch, the Rainiers attempted a squeeze. Their batter missed the bunt and the runner from 3rd was out by a mile.

With two outs and a runner on 3rd – the River Cats had a devastating error.

A soft line drive was hit to Lewis at short, and he somehow missed it. The run scored, putting the Rainiers up 5-4, and costing me a controller in the process.

Logan Davidson started off the bottom of the 17th with a single.

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With two outs and a runner on first, Joey Bart came up and hit an absolute shot to left-field. John Andreoli gambled and absolutely laid out and caught the ball to end the game.

AA Opening Day

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Alek Manoah was making his debut for the Flying Squirrels on the mound against Jesus Tinoco and the Hartford Yard Goats.

Drew Weeks initiated the scoring for the Yard Goats in the 1st, with a two out RBI double down the left field line. Bret Boswell scored Weeks with a single down the 1st base line to put the Yard Goats up 2-0/

Logan Wyatt led off the bottom of the 1st with a single on the first pitch he saw. Hunter Bishop was hit by a pitch with two strikes, giving the Flying Squirrels two on and nobody out. Will Maddox grounded into a double play, moving Wyatt to 3rd. Jarren Durran was up next and lined a single up the middle to score Wyatt and bring the score to 2-1.

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Brice Turang led off the 4th with a single, and promptly stole second base. With one out Jeremiah Jackson drove the ball to left center gap for an RBI double, tying the game at 2-2.

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The bottom of the 6th started much like the 4th. Turang got on with another single and stole second once again. Shea Langerliers hit a line drive up the middle for a base hit. Turang got a bad read on the ball and ended up at 3rd. The Flying Squirrels had 1st and 3rd with one out. Jackson grounded into a double play to end the threat.

Alek Manoah had a solid day on the mound, but I needed an offensive spark – I called for a pinch hitter to lead off the 7th. Manoah ended the day with 10 strikeouts while giving up just 3 hits for 2 earned runs. That pinch hit decision proved to be meaningless – as the Flying Squirrels could not get anything going in the 7th.

With Hunter Bishop making the final out of the inning, I decided to go with a double switch. I brought Conner Menez in his spot to pitch. Bryce Johnson came in to play CF.

With one out in the top of the 9th – Peter Mooney tripled for the Yard Goats. This ended the day for Menez. I brought in Sam Wolff to face back to back righties. This proved to be wise, as Wolff got the two guys he faced out.

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The Flying Squirrels were unable to get anything going in their half of the 9th – sending this game to extra innings. Peter Boswell led off the 10th with solo homerun, putting the Yard Goats up 3-2. The next batter, Sam Hilliard, doubled – ending Wolff’s night. With one out, Chris Rabago doubled off the wall – scoring another run for the Goats. Those two runs proved to be the difference – the Yard Goats took home the 4-2 victory.

Coming Up

I will sim the season a bit and see how all levels of the organization are doing. We will keep an eye on the trade block and waivers to see if there are any additional moves I can make. How do you think this season will turn out? Will the Giants be competitive?

– Buzz

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