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  1. As of now he is also a Type A free agent.

    Comment by SF 55 for life — July 19, 2011 @ 7:48 pm

  2. Small but decent trade for both teams.

    Comment by J Rich — July 19, 2011 @ 7:54 pm

  3. The Giants are currently in first place in the NL West and 15 games over .500 while playing with essentially no second baseman since Freddy Sanchez’ injury and with no offense from the SS position. Keppinger may not seem like much but he’s a huge upgrade on what they’ve had. With their pitching, they don’t need much of an upgrade to really put them in the driver’s seat.

    Sosa and Stoffel both have live arms, but Sosa’s progress in the organization had stalled and Stoffel has never lived up to expectations while on the closer fast-track.

    Love this trade from the Giants standpoint. Like it from the Astros standpoint.

    Comment by DrBGiantsfan — July 19, 2011 @ 8:33 pm

  4. Astros call up Jose Altuve.

    Comment by JordanT — July 19, 2011 @ 9:26 pm

  5. Saying Sosa’s progress has stalled is an understatement. More like it got into a head on collision on the highway, and the cheap mechanic who fixed it screwed it up and accidentally left it permanently in reverse. Still drives fast though.

    Comment by tynandaly — July 19, 2011 @ 9:45 pm

  6. So the Giants can bench Tejada indefinitely now but they wont.
    and Keppinger is the epitome of empty batting average. he has no power, no speed at all.
    he’ll fit right in to the Giants lineup his his crappy OBP.
    I mean 4 BB in 160+ PA’s? thats awful

    and I havent heard anything good about his defense either (he could be ok defensively, but doubt hes any better than Fontenot at 2b)

    at least he was basically free

    Comment by cs3 — July 19, 2011 @ 9:59 pm

  7. dude doesn’t strike out though, and he’s great against lefties. Something the Giants could use.

    Comment by SF 55 for life — July 19, 2011 @ 10:09 pm

  8. Yeah, Keppinger ain’t great, but he’s an upgrade from Tejada and the like.

    Comment by Feeding the Abscess — July 19, 2011 @ 10:20 pm

  9. A Fontenot / Keppinger platoon could be very effective.

    Comment by jp_on_rye — July 19, 2011 @ 10:30 pm

  10. *shore up

    Comment by Keith-in-Law — July 19, 2011 @ 10:34 pm

  11. His walk rate this year is only 2.4%, but it is 7.1% for his career. That’s still below average, but not as terrible.

    Comment by kennv — July 19, 2011 @ 10:50 pm

  12. This is the really fun part of the deal. Altuve is legitimately around 5’5″ but has good contact skills and power that’s surprisingly average considering his size. He might only hit .260/.290/.340 in Houston with okay defense, but he should be enjoyable to watch while doing it.

    Comment by AustinRHL — July 19, 2011 @ 11:23 pm

  13. Pardon my ignorance, but how do you know he’s a type A free agent as of now? Is there a tracker somewhere that lists the potential free agent types based on production?

    Comment by RéRé — July 20, 2011 @ 12:18 am

  14. Yeah, it’s weird to see someone’s approach with the walks change so drastically this deep into his career. Maybe it’s just coincidence–rather small sample size for this season.

    Comment by nosferatu — July 20, 2011 @ 12:46 am


    It’s a reverse engineered system I believe. Not precise, obviously, but it is pretty close.

    Comment by TartanElk — July 20, 2011 @ 2:14 am

  16. His hit tool is off the charts and he does have decent pop as you say. I think it’s really dumb to call him up with about a month’s experience in AA…give the man some AAA seasoning…but I feel he could be something very special in time. Venezuelan Pedroia.

    Comment by Winfrey — July 20, 2011 @ 2:19 am

  17. Well, he is on schedule to be Type A according to Elias, yes.

    But, as pointed out in the article, it won’t matter, as he’s not scheduled to be a free agent. He’s arbitration eligible(he’ll have more than 5 years, but less than 6 years service time at year’s end).

    The only way for him to become a free agent at season’s end would be for the Giants to non-tender him. But in that case, there’s no free agent compensation involved.

    So, it’s not really necessary to consider that he’s Type A. ;)

    Comment by Jim — July 20, 2011 @ 4:12 am

  18. Or the Venezuelan David Eckstein

    Comment by shaun catron — July 20, 2011 @ 4:14 am

  19. Man…it is downright EERIE how similar the career-lines are for Mike Fontenot and Jeff Keppinger:


    .326 wOBA, 93wRC+ .267/.337/.410


    .322 wOBA, 94wRC+ .284/.337/.395

    The Giants might stretch these two further than their ideal usage, but as a platoon they’d make for an effective (Fontenot career .330 wOBA, 94 wRC+ vs RHP; Keppinger career .381 wOBA, 133 wRC+ vs LHP) and cost-controlled (3.35m combined salary) pairing.

    Comment by Romodonkulous — July 20, 2011 @ 5:36 am

  20. Is this true?! I will be watching ‘Stros games for a few days. At least while I can stand it (letting Lyles go out there for the ninth – sheesh).

    Comment by ofMontreal — July 20, 2011 @ 7:20 am

  21. That is weird. But having watched the both a ton, Kep is wayyyy better than Fontenot. This is a smart deal by SF.

    Comment by ofMontreal — July 20, 2011 @ 7:21 am

  22. Exactly. The list on MLBTrade Rumors includes all players, regardless of whether they are to be FAs or not.

    Comment by DD — July 20, 2011 @ 8:31 am

  23. While true, we are just talking about one more year, and in the meantime Keppinger is a pretty good player – suggesting that he will retain that “A” status. Assuming the two prospects SF is gave up are dead weight as Rancel implied, this trade is about as one-sided as they come. Wade got burned.

    Comment by Sultan of Schwwingg — July 20, 2011 @ 8:44 am

  24. Picking cherries is fun and they are mighty tasty, aren’t they? Come on! You’d think by now that people posting on this site would have some notion of partial season vs career sample sizes.

    Keppinger has a career OBP of .337 against a BA of .284. Not great, but not nearly as terrible as the cherry pickers would lead you to believe. He also as has a career BB% of 7.1 against a K% of 6.1%.

    The biggest negative I can see is he hits a lot of GB’s and thus into a lot of DP’s. Best lineup spot for him is probably in the 2 hole with Torres doing a lot of running if he’s on first base ahead of him.

    As for the empty BA, it’s basically no different than Freddy Sanchez and Giants fans would be very happy to have Freddy back in the lineup.

    Comment by DrBGiantsfan — July 20, 2011 @ 9:07 am

  25. I believe the FA rankings look at the preceding 2 years, thus his 2010 season should not factor in to the determination… In essence, that makes the website predictions useless for anyone not immediately becoming a FA after the season because a bulk of the prediction is based on a season irrelevant to the determination.

    Comment by James — July 20, 2011 @ 9:28 am

  26. I’m trying to figure out why a guy with a lifetime .284 BA is not an upgrade over what the Giants have now?? Empty BA?? Tejada and Crawford can’t hit thier weight, and Tejada is a stone monument in the field, no range at ball. I’m pretty happy with this trade and I’m really hoping the Giants don’t go after Beltran.

    Comment by Hurtlocker — July 20, 2011 @ 10:31 am

  27. define “effective”

    Comment by juan pierre's mustache — July 20, 2011 @ 11:18 am

  28. A hell of lot more effective than Burriss/Tejada

    Comment by TexasRanger — July 20, 2011 @ 11:31 am

  29. Great trade for the Giants. Kep is a solid player at a position where the Giants have exactly 0 solid players.

    Comment by Matt — July 20, 2011 @ 12:49 pm

  30. Somebody else corrected “sure up” so I’ll just nit-pick this:

    Keppinger should maintain a .290-.300 average and may find a few gaps in the Bay area.

    While I’m sure he will, that’s just a very awkward phrasing. “Find a few gaps at AT&T park” maybe?

    Otherwise, a useful summary. I was unaware of his decline in walks this year (it’s easy to be unaware of anything that happens on the Astros) so that’s interesting and a thing to watch going forward. Thanks.

    Comment by joser — July 20, 2011 @ 12:54 pm

  31. Indeed, an empty BA of .280 from a middle infielder is an enormous upgrade.

    Comment by BillWallace — July 20, 2011 @ 12:54 pm

  32. Rumor has it the Giants are looking to trade for Michael Cuddyer. I’d say at this point that Miggy (on the DL now) is out of the picture. With Keppinger, you’ve got a platoon that works at 2nd and Crawford has shown signs of progress in getting on base. He’s not a ML hitter (yet), but he’s a ML shortstop (which Miggy isn’t) and his OBP is almost scratching .300. Which isn’t good, but it isn’t as terrible as his low BA would lead you to believe.

    Since the pickings are so slim for infield help, I’d bet the focus now shifts to upgrades behind the plate and in the outfield. If the Giants do manage to land Cuddyer, I’ll bet that Cody Ross is the odd man out. Either that, or he platoons with Schierholtz in right, which wouldn’t be the worst idea.

    Comment by Fergie348 — July 20, 2011 @ 1:01 pm

  33. As per the article, he has a year of arbitration left, so he’s really no type of FA, right?

    Comment by Steve — July 20, 2011 @ 1:17 pm

  34. You hit the nail on the head, jp. Keppinger is a small improvement over Fontenot on offense, a gigantic drop on defense. Both players are average minus major leaguers, but equal an average 2B as a platoon, with the non-starter a substantial bench improvement over Tejada, Burriss and Hall.
    However, Bochy’s comments on the trade indicate that Keppinger will be the starter. As such, he is no improvement on Fontenot, and his only value will be by adding Fontenot to a very weak bench.
    If platooned, Keppinger would probably represent about a 1-win improvement over the rest of the season.

    Comment by GiantHusker — July 20, 2011 @ 2:31 pm

  35. Sorry, of, but I trust stats more than your scouting ability.

    Comment by GiantHusker — July 20, 2011 @ 2:34 pm

  36. Did you two ever hear of defense? Keppinger’s sucks.

    Comment by GiantHusker — July 20, 2011 @ 2:35 pm

  37. Shortstop is still a much weaker position for the G’s than catcher or outfield.
    However, there don’t seem to be any shortstops available.

    Comment by GiantHusker — July 20, 2011 @ 2:38 pm

  38. Then you weren’t really paying attention to Fontenot’s days as a Cub then.

    Comment by Oasis — July 20, 2011 @ 4:27 pm

  39. Burriss was the option before this and his line of .214/.267/.222 makes me look at Kepp’s BB% as not that bad at all!

    Comment by Kellin — July 20, 2011 @ 5:18 pm

  40. doesn’t “put them over the top”?

    quick reminder: they are the world series champs, better than they were a year ago, comfortably in first place, they are already at the top.

    Comment by jb — July 20, 2011 @ 6:53 pm

  41. Yikes. Fangraphs need a copyeditor? Numerous mistakes in the first four sentences.

    Comment by Kevin — July 20, 2011 @ 7:26 pm

  42. at this point, you or me would be an upgrade over miguel freaking tejada

    Comment by jim — July 20, 2011 @ 7:30 pm

  43. I seriously, seriously doubt that Cuddy is on the trading block. All accounts say he is one of the leaders in the Twins clubhouse. Though the Twins did trade Pierzynski to the Giants a few years back.

    Comment by nolan — July 21, 2011 @ 9:48 am

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