Four to Call About: Panda Plus Three

All sorts of rumors are flying around out there, mostly about free agents. But there is a fair amount of stuff about younger, team-controlled players potentially being moved. This isn’t a rumors site, nor do I have any special connections that would allow me to divulge scenarios posited by “anonymous scouts” or “unnamed executives from rival teams.” However, there are some interesting things being said about players that teams might want to try and acquire if they are available at a reasonable cost. I’m not talking about completely ripping off the other team. Speculating and analyzing about hypothetical “ripoff” trades isn’t interesting. Obviously, if a team can “get one over” on another team, they should probably do it. Executives are kicking the tires on players all the time, and while I don’t know what it would take to get them, I want to highlight four relatively young ones that plenty of teams should be calling about.

The World Champion San Francisco Giants managed to earn their crown despite a very disappointing year from a player who just a season ago looked like a young superstar: Pablo Sandoval. But even a great nickname couldn’t hide Kung Fu Panda’s problems at plate this season, and in the playoffs the Giants had so little faith in him that they used a combination of Juan Uribe, Mike Fontenot, and Edgar Renteria at shortstop and third base in order to play him as little as possible. Using the leverage of “winning the World Series without him,” the Giants are reportedly going to take a hard line with Sandoval about his conditioning this off-season. Yes, Sandoval had a bad year at the plate, looks awkward around third base (to say the least), and hit poorly this season. It may be a combination of his bad conditioning and (in the case of his hitting) BABIP chickens coming home to roost. However, the defensive metrics don’t see him as irredeemably bad at third, and even if he is, a .396 wOBA during his age-23 2009 season is stunning. Even with his body type, his age indicates room for offensive growth such that his bat could play anywhere — CHONE’s August update saw him as a +20/150 hitter. Who knows, maybe a trade is just the motivation he needs to get his conditioning together? Sandoval isn’t arbitration eligible until 2012, so teams should be calling Brian Sabean (if they can reach him) to see just how deep the organization’s disillusionment with their young, “big-boned” third baseman runs.

After a 2009 season in which Chris Iannetta gave up a considerable chunk of playing time to Yorvit Torrealba, the Rockies seemed to commit to Iannetta as their primary catcher, signing him through through 2012 with a club option for 2013. After a cold (and very short) start to 2010, the Rockies installed a red-hot Miguel Olivo as the starter and sent Iannetta down to AAA. With Olivo traded to the Blue Jays, the way is finally clear for Iannetta, right? Well, the Rockies are rumored to be interested in Mike Napoli. Who knows how much there is to this, and how far it will go, and even if Napoli would play much catcher for the Rockies. Still, other teams have to wonder how much the Rockies are actually into Iannetta given recent history. He’s not a defensive whiz, but he isn’t horrible, and despite a poor offensive performance in 2010 in a very small (and BABIP-unlucky) sample, he’s still a 27-year old catcher with a a103 career wRC+, and is projected to be +8 in a neutral context. He’s a good offensive catcher who is locked up to a reasonable contract, and thanks to the Rockies, doesn’t have an excessive amount of mileage on his knees. Given the Rockies; seeming eagerness to hedge their bets on Iannetta, teams have to at least inquire.

In a brief blurb, the White Sox are rumored to be willing to listen to offers for Gordon Beckham. Beckham’s second season went much less swimmnigly than his first, with dropoffs in walks, strikeouts, average, power… pretty much everything. Still, he was impressive in the minors and 2009, will only be 24 at the beginning of 2011, and seemed to right the ship a bit in July and August (for whatever that’s worth). He has played second and third for the White Sox, and some still wonder if he could have stuck at shortstop (his position in college). His 2010 was pretty ugly, but he’s under team control for a while yet, and Kenny Williams isn’t known for being shy about trading.

I won’t belabor the point about Colby Rasmus. He’s obviously a good, young center fielder. We also know that his manager decided to bench him for stretches in favor of inferior players during a time in which the Cardinals were in the playoff race. While the St. Louis front office has wisely said they want to keep Rasmus, with Tony La Russa (and his great reputation for reconciling with players) coming back in 2011, one has to wonder how much of that public sentiment is “real” and how much of it is to preserve their leverage. This is probably the most obvious one, and I’m sure teams have already been trying to get Rasmus, but this (incomplete) list wouldn’t be right without him on it.



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Matt Klaassen reads and writes obituaries in the Greater Toronto Area. If you can't get enough of him, follow him on Twitter.


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JoeS
Guest
5 years 8 months ago

Mike Napoli a 35 homerun threat next year?

brendan
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brendan
5 years 8 months ago

he has a lot of power. if he plays 120 games at catcher that seems very reachable. always was splitting time with mathis in LA.

DIVISION
Guest
DIVISION
5 years 8 months ago

Sandoval doesn’t have the trade value he had last year and for that reason, it’s very doubtful he’s traded now. Sabean would be foolish to do so UNLESS he’s wowed by a Greinke-type offer, which WON’T happen.

The Panda just needs to push away from the dinner table……….

Dan
Guest
Dan
5 years 8 months ago

It’s amazing how quickly some people will look at all of the potential positives in great detail as if they’re inevitable, yet completely ignore the very realistic downsides. Did you see how Sandoval celebrated his World Series ring? Despite being completely horrible in the playoffs?

http://hardballtalk.nbcsports.com/2010/11/04/picture-of-the-day-pablo-sandoval-celebrates-with-a-sundae/

That’s right, Sandoval celebrated the world series with a giant ice cream sundae. And this is the guy who is going to “push away from the dinner table”? Right. If he moves to first, his value is tanked.

BX
Guest
BX
5 years 8 months ago

A guy on a diet can’t have a sundae after something awesome happens? And, of course, its the media, so obviously they take the most compromising picture they can get (the article states he was probably sharing with kids/family who were there, but the pic of him is alone).

You can lose weight, get in better shape, and still have the treats you desire once in a while.

Actually, most nutritionists tell you to enjoy treats once in a while. Media publishing a picture of Sandoval eating a sundae means nothing.

Max
Guest
Max
5 years 8 months ago

Give the panda a break. His team won the world series. Whether or not he played much of a role, he was still a part of the team that accomplished the ultimate goal. If that doesn’t deserve a sundae, I don’t know what does.

DrBGiantsfan
Guest
5 years 8 months ago

Panda for Gordon Beckham. Who hangs up? I’d make that trade if I’m in Brian Sabean’s position, but it’s probably a good thing I’m not.

DIVISION
Guest
DIVISION
5 years 8 months ago

That’s why you’re not in Brian Sabean’s position.

Panda has more upside than Beckham, even if you factor in defense.

That’s assuming you could even get Sabean on the phone.

He’s very exclusive in terms of which GM’s he’ll even talk to directly.

MikeS
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MikeS
5 years 8 months ago

Seriously, Sabean won’t even talk to some other GM’s? How can he do his job like that?

In terms of which one is better, hard to say. Everyone’s talking about ceilings, but how about floors. Beckham, at worst, is a guy who will ahng around for a decade as a utility infielder. Sandoval could eat his way to a very short career.

DrBGiantsfan
Guest
5 years 8 months ago

Brian Sabean is doing his job just fine, thank you. He talks to the GM’s he knows he can do business with. He admits there are a very few who he doesn’t bother responding to, because he’s learned from past dealings that they call up to blow smoke rather than have serious trade discussions.

Josh G
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Josh G
5 years 8 months ago

As a Giants fan, I’d do backflips if we made that trade. I think Kenny Williams would definitely hang up first.

DIVISION
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DIVISION
5 years 8 months ago

What in Beckham’s resume makes you think he’s worth Panda?

I have WGN and have seen ALOT of Beckham and I don’t see what you’re seeing evidently.

When/if Panda loses the weight and gets in condition, it can only help his fielding and he’s young enough to improve offensively.

I thought you kids from the Bay loved Pandas?

Josh G
Guest
Josh G
5 years 8 months ago

@DIVISION

I like Beckham’s (short) track record in the minors better, as well as his long term ability on defense. And I don’t think Sandoval will have as good a season as he had in 09, but Beckham should have a solid peak.

My echo and bunnymen
Guest
My echo and bunnymen
5 years 8 months ago

As a White Sox fan, I hope that deal never occurs simply for the fact that the “Kung Fu Panda” is the worst nickname in baseball and all the merchandise that is sold in reference is just as bad as Manny hair, Joe Mauer sideburns, and “the antlers”. I realize it’s more for the kids, but when it starts to bother my enjoyment of a baseball game (i.e. vendors selling this crap, and kids and Adults wearing it in front of me) it becomes a problem. The Panda hats and the Manny hair more so than the sideburns. On the baseball field, Pablo is more valuable than Beckham. I just want that nickname to die.

Dan
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Dan
5 years 8 months ago

The Sox should hang up first, because Beckham is more controllable (one extra year of minimum before reaching arbitration) and doesn’t have a massive conditioning red flag on him.

BX
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BX
5 years 8 months ago

Kenny Williams hangs up that phone in a heartbeat.

joeIQ
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joeIQ
5 years 8 months ago

I’d take Beckham. Panda might pull out some good years still. Beckham doesn’t have a lower ceiling and doesn’t need to push away from the dinner table. Panda has more to fix.

obsessivegiantscompulsive
Guest
5 years 8 months ago

I would not trade Sandoval. This is why you need someone who follows a team and its players closely to know what’s up.

His problems are pretty much explainable: he had a very stressful season personally. All of his dips offensively can pretty much be tied to personal problems that sent him down on a tailspin. First being sued for divorce by his wife and the accompanying custody battle. Second going down to Venezuela to sign his divorce papers. Third, his mother nearly dying in the San Bruno gas explosion. Lastly, the pressures of playing in the playoffs and the World Series.

I have no doubts that 2011 will return to 2009 form, assuming other personal problems don’t crop up again. His weight problems could push him to 1B but I think his abilities to hit, combined with his youth, makes him someone you want to hold on to and see what happens. I think the upside way overrides the risks.

The only reason I would trade Sandoval is if we can get a good offense/defense SS we control for another 3-4 seasons. Gordon Beckham would fit that bill if he can still start at SS, but I don’t know if he can still or not. I would not trade for him if he’s going to be a 3B. I have seen other people point out Stephen Drew as someone the Giants should trade for, but I doubt AZ would trade that big within the division.

Besides, I have seen no good explanation for why Beckham performed so horribly most of the season before turning it on late in the season, whereas, for me, Pablo’s dips are explainable. I would rather the Giants stick with who they know since his problems are explainable; what if Beckham continues to struggle for whatever the reasons he struggled in 2010?

Plus, a hitter like Pablo should screw with the minds of pitchers having him in our lineup, hitting good pitcher’s pitches for line drive extra-base hits have got to be bad for some pitcher’s egos to take while on the mound. Him paired up with Posey, who has been great at going the other way for extra-base hits has got to be a great combo in the lineup.

DrBGiantsfan
Guest
5 years 8 months ago

I have to say, I think Pablo’s weight issues are serious and long term. It’s not quite so simple as to say, “Pablo, if you don’t lose the weight, you’re going to the minors.” That might make sense to him on an intellectual level, and he might temporarily lose some weight, but it will come back the minute he lets his guard down or runs into another stressful situation.

Add in his horrible approach at the plate, which MLB pitchers have obviously figured out how to take advantage of, and I think we could be looking at a very short career. Pablo obviously has some unbelievable physical gifts, but I’m really afraid that the the negatives will ultimately win out here.

Sure, he can move to first base but there are other ways to fill the need at first base, Brandon Belt come immediately to mind. A young, cost-controlled left side infielder like Beckham is going to give more value over the next 4-5 years.

DrBGiantsfan
Guest
5 years 8 months ago

I don’t follow the AL that closely. I guess I didn’t realize that Beckham played almost exclusively at 2B last year. Was that because he has arm issues or was that just where he was needed? If he’s stuck at 2B, then nevermind. I’ll keep Pablo. If he can play on the left side, then I’d do the trade.

Nitram Odarp
Guest
Nitram Odarp
5 years 8 months ago

He moved because that’s where he was needed. Not sure why you think 3B is more valuable than 2B either. Its somewhere between neutral and 2B being tougher.

obsessivegiantscompulsive
Member
5 years 7 months ago

DrB, my understanding is that Beckham was moved to 2B strictly because they preferred Alexi Ramirez to stay at SS. Beckham played 3B in 2009, and according to the defensive metrics, he was horribly there, much worse than Sandoval was in 2009 (about half win or so), so that probably explained why he got moved to 2B in 2010. However, he wasn’t that good there either.

Oh, the above was BB-Ref, but Baseball Projection’s stats. Here, by UZR, he was considered average at 3B, slightly below average at 2B. Wide difference of opinion, clearly. And DRS has him basically in-between UZR and Baseball Projection. I would split the middle and go with DRS that he’s slightly below average at both positions, which implies that he is probably pretty bad at SS.

According to BA’s report, scouts were divided on whether he could play SS, but the White Sox thought that he can play there. BA notes that he has work to do to reach that potential, so perhaps moving around is causing him to be below average. Maybe he’ll be better at 2B or 3B in 2011 getting to play the position again for another season.

If he is the plus hitter he showed before, he probably can hold his own at 3B offensively and defensively, assuming he can get to average (or 0) defensively there. Obviously, he’ll be more of a plus player if he can hit like 2009 at 2B, less so at 3B. They had Vizquel playing most of the season at 3B in 2010. But Dayan Viciedo could be their 3B for 2011, as he was playing there mid-season, but long-term, he’s probably 1B or DH material, he was horrible at 3B in 2010 and the ChiSox seemed to recognize that, as he was 1B/DH for the last part of the season. Unsure if there is a 3B prospect, Morel was the 3B du jour pre-2010 season, not sure how he did.

Chris H
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Chris H
5 years 8 months ago

This is all conjecture. You think you know the story as an outsider, but you really don’t have any proof as to how much these distractions played in his professional performance. Truth is, some guys rally around hard times, and for you to assume that his troubles are solely due to short-term personal issues reeks of homerism. To make matters worse, your “expert” analysis sees no reason why Beckham had such a drop off, even though he struck out a ton more this year. Were pitchers getting to him? Was he dealing with an undisclosed injury? Or maybe he too had personal issues of which you’re not aware?

My point is that you have to be consistent and unassuming. You are not Panda and you simply do not know how he was feeling every day. Please stop pretending like you have all of the answers.

Chris H
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Chris H
5 years 8 months ago

That was for OCD not Dr B

DrBGiantsfan
Guest
5 years 8 months ago

Well, Pablo’s ups and downs this last season did seem to correlate with events in his personal life, so OGC has a point.

I guess my point is that Sandoval didn’t just get fat this season as a reaction to his personal problems. He’s been grossly overweight going all the way back to his teens in the lower minors. I’m not saying it’s impossible for him to control it, but the natural history of teenage obesity strongly favors it getting worse in the 3’rd and 4’th decades of life. If you are going to play the odds, selling Pablo now might not be selling low!

jason
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jason
5 years 8 months ago

Midway through the season I listened to a radio interview with Whitesox hitting coach, Greg Walker, as he spoke about Beckham. He said that what was going on with Beckham was that his mental approach at the plate was off early in the season. Walker said that Beckham was defending against his weaknesses, rather than hitting to his strengths. So rather than attacking the fastball, he was worried about the curve… or whatever the exact pitches were. So the 1st/2nd half stats either indicate improved approach late in the season, SSS, or a bit of both.

FWIW

obsessivegiantscompulsive
Member
5 years 7 months ago

OK, I’ll admit that I don’t know exactly when he got the divorce notice. But after hitting 1000+ OPS in April, suddenly he drops to around 300 OPS for two weeks, before recovering a lot (~800 OPS) for around five weeks, before collapsing again (mid-400 OPS) for 3 weeks before ASB.

I would guess the first was the divorce, the second was the custody battle. So yes, conjecture.

The other two, however, are well documented in the newspaper. The flight to Venezuela took him away for a number of days. He was hitting well before that but wasn’t hitting well after that. Once he started hitting again, the San Bruno gas pipeline exploded in the news, and he wasn’t hitting well again. He ended the season on a small hitting streak, nearly 900 OPS the final two weeks of the season.

I never said I had an expert opinion on Beckham, I openly admitted that I don’t know what was wrong with him. I would rather deal with what I know versus what I don’t know. If that is a crime, let me know.

I had Beckham on my fantasy league to start the season, so clearly I think a lot about his abilities. I’ll also admit some fondness for Panda, but that don’t factor into my opinions on whether to keep or get rid of a player.

I would have been OK if the Giants didn’t sign Huff to his big contract, but was happy on a personal level that they got him back. I just have a accept a part of me being worrying that he had a final peak to his career, like Robby Thompson, to nail a big contract. Just like I worried over Bonds last big contract, for an old player like him, I would have been OK with him moving on.

I see your point about rallying around hard times, but you are taking simplistic view of it. I went through hard times and going to work was a huge relief from my massive personal problems (problems with fiance/wedding), so I totally understand that. I worked hard and long because it allowed me to avoid thinking about my personal issues.

But Sandoval’s problems were all baseball related. The reason for his divorce is because baseball has groupies that apparently tempted him and he partook of the advantages, which his wife found out about and instigated the proceedings. Baseball is the reason the divorce was happening, he certainly would not have had the same opportunities, say, working for his mom’s business in Venezuela.

And if he were not a baseball player, his mother would have been safe in Venezuela tending to her business rather than in San Bruno, taking care of her son.

He was constantly reminded of his personal issues by continuing to play.

So OK, that’s my personal take, I have always assumed that people understand that a lot of what is written in comments is personal take, I would not say that I’m an expert, but I’m certainly more clued into what is happening with the Giants than any of the writers who have to write about anything in baseball instead of focusing on a team. This is not the first time I’ve seen writing where they don’t know all the facts that should be considered. I think these facts are pertinent, but you are free to feel differently.

And I don’t view what I wrote as me having all the answers. I wrote my opinion, hence why I wrote “I would not trade” instead of “The right thing to do is…”. I think this is the right thing, and I think I’m allowed to be forceful with my opinion if I hold to it strongly. If you don’t, please rebut with some logic and opinion of your own, which you did but made it very personal. And I have rebutted back.

And it’s ogc

Jim
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Jim
5 years 8 months ago

“What in Beckham’s resume makes you think he’s worth Panda?”

Flipping that question around:

What in Sandoval’s resume(sorry, can’t call him Panda) makes you think he’s worth Beckham?

Beckham may have had an off season in 2010(the dreaded sophomore slump), but I saw enough signs from him in the 2nd half of the season to see that he’s still quite valuable. And that’s just on offense. The defensive question marks with Sandoval make me question how valuable of a player he is now, much less in 4-5 years(assuming he’s still in MLB at that point.)

DIVISION
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DIVISION
5 years 8 months ago

Jimmy, I never said Beckham wasn’t valuable, to the contrary I think he’ll be above average defensively for the majority of his career. Offensively, though, I see Panda as having higher upside than Beckham with an emphasis on OPS moreso than AVG. Beckham’s ceiling isn’t that high compared to Panda’s.

Defensively, I think the weight is the major factor and (as a personal trainer), I know that Panda can get in condition and regain flexibility in that area given his relative youth. He’s nimble given his size so losing the bodyfat will only help.

This isn’t a David Ortiz situation here. The Panda is a kid entering the prime of his career………….

With Beckham you have more of a known commodity with a limited upside (especially offensively). Panda’s ceiling is as high as his appetite will allow it to be.

Bigmouth
Guest
5 years 8 months ago

I don’t get why Beckham is an upgrade over Panda, who was better both offensively and defensively last year despite the slump.

My echo and bunnymen
Guest
My echo and bunnymen
5 years 8 months ago

For whatever it’s worth, I’m betting Pablo won’t stay at 3b for long. If the Giants decide to keep him (probably) he should move to 1b eventually (ignorant on his range, but I have yet to see a site that thinks he’s good on defense either). That should help him long-term, at least as far as I know.

DIVISION
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DIVISION
5 years 8 months ago

Joy Division > Echo and the the Bunnymen

DJF
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DJF
5 years 8 months ago

Can’t we have both?

That being said, I’m going to go spin Closer now.

My echo and bunnymen
Guest
My echo and bunnymen
5 years 8 months ago

I prefer Echo and the Bunnymen over Joy Division/New Order, but that’s just a personal perference and no way indictating that Joy Division/New Order isn’t a great badn in its own right.

Oddly enough (at least to me it’s odd) both band’s most popular song (Love Will Tear Us Apart/Lips Like Sugar) completely misrepresent their music.

victor frankenstein
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victor frankenstein
5 years 7 months ago

Spare us the cutter.

Kool
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Kool
5 years 8 months ago

If the Giants trade Pablo, I’ll be very sad.

My echo and bunnymen
Guest
My echo and bunnymen
5 years 8 months ago

When one panda sticks his furry little willy into another panda’s ear, that makes me a sad panda.

DIVISION
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DIVISION
5 years 8 months ago

When one panda cries, we all die a little bit inside…..

Little panda, dry your cryin’ eyes. How can I explain the fear you feel inside? ‘Cause you were born in to this evil world where Sabean kills a roster and no one knows just why. What have we begun? Just look what we have done. All that we’ve destroyed, you must build again…

When the Panda cries……

victor frankenstein
Guest
victor frankenstein
5 years 7 months ago

I don’t understand how the “visual acuity as possible additional culprit” angle simply disappeared. Did Failto (Hittheball) slip out for some quick keratotomy and Cola?

Graham
Guest
5 years 8 months ago

Without looking this up (hey, I’m lazy), I’d venture to say that a disproportionate number of Sandoval’s errors are throwing errors. His range isn’t exceptional, but neither is it horrible. And he has soft hands. (In fact, virtually all of him is soft.)

All this is just to say — Sandoval’s failures on defense to this point have been more due to mental mistakes than physical deficiencies. And that’s before factoring in that he’s a converted catcher who began playing third base regularly last year.

I’m hardly discounting the weight, which is obviously an issue; but watching Sandoval a lot, it seems as though the bulk of his problems on both sides of hte ball stem more from an unfocused mental approach than any physical issues. Sometimes players can develop a better approach and get “smarter” within the context of the game, and sometimes they can’t; but I don’t think it’s time to give up the oversized ghost yet.

obsessivegiantscompulsive
Member
5 years 7 months ago

Believe it or not, he played SS a lot when he was younger. Vizquel was a hero of his, so in order to play SS, he learned to throw right-handed – yes, he’s a natural left-hander. I am not sure what he was playing before the Giants picked him up, but basically the Giants have been trying to figure out a position for him, and it has varied between 3B and C in the minors, then 1B in the mix in the majors.

The thing is, and I realize that one season could be skewed SSS, his UZR was actually positive this season. DRS too. Overall, covering 2009 and 2010, his UZR/150 was barely under 0 or average.

The problem, I believe, is that people imagine things when they see his big body. Their bias against his size interferes with their judgement.

And I’m not saying that he couldn’t lose a lot of pounds – he should and he’s working actively on beating that, he’s working with this professional outfit in Arizona that has helped major leaguers like A-Rod, Barry, and Sheffield get into shape. He has reportedly lost 15 pounds already and the Giants think he should lose another 15 at least.

But I believe people are seeing how he looks and see what they believe fat people are capable (or incapable in this case) of. This is because he is actually very good on his feet and agile with his body. I hold this belief because twice in one week, Sandoval scored on a close play at home plate, and both times he slid perfectly to avoid the tag – had he not slid perfectly, he would have been easily out. So I understand the skepticism but after being flabbergasted seeing such a large bowling ball shaped person score like that TWICE – once I could chalk up to extreme luck, but I saw a very athletic player, albeit round mound shaped, making two great slides to score.

In addition, here is what Baseball America said about him in their prospect book in 2006: “He’s athletic despite a pudgy 5-foot-11 frame that never will look good in a uniform.” They felt with more experience, he could become average defensively there (which, as most sabers would agree, is actually pretty good, being average). His UZR/150 so far suggests that he is.

Mylegacy
Guest
Mylegacy
5 years 8 months ago

Rasmus to the Jays – he fixes FOUR positions with one move for them. Rasmus to CF, Wells to RF, Snider to LF and Bautista to 3rd (the Jays just cut Encarnacion today).

Jays can offer young Majors ready pitching and catching in return.

Austin
Guest
Austin
5 years 8 months ago

Here’s the only problem. If the Cardinals were to trade Rasmus, who takes his place? Certainly not Jay… So, St. Louis would have possible holes in CF, RF, 3B, 2B, and RP.They have a talented catcher and several possible sleepers in the minors. Pitching is never in excess, however.

chuckb
Guest
chuckb
5 years 8 months ago

You might have also noticed that the Cards don’t need catching.

jirish
Guest
jirish
5 years 8 months ago

Rasmus would be a great add for the Jays.

They need to stay in touch with the Cardinals. There is no way Rasmus stays there-they have never kept a player around that LaRussa had problems with. Despite saying he’s not on the market, he most definitely is. Pitchers and infielders are necessary to acquire him, though.

Griggs
Guest
Griggs
5 years 8 months ago

Good to see Iannetta in this article. I agree he makes for a good trading chip because I think he could be a top 5 or 6 overall catcher in the majors. He is better defensively than usually given credit for and would probably benefit with an orginazion change. The Rox need to get back good value but they should be pursuing trades.

caballete
Guest
caballete
5 years 8 months ago

Panda is going to in perfect shape next season. You are going to see. he knows that he made a mistake and he is going to show the fan that we are going to have Panda for years hitting 300 ave. he started to workout already.

Believe me .

The Wisdom Cow
Guest
The Wisdom Cow
5 years 8 months ago

I could see the Panda be moved (I kinda like “Panda” or “The Panda,” but loathe “Kung Fu” with it). The main reason is Brandon Belt. He is the future at 1B. I defended Pablo against angry fans complaining of his bad numbers much of the season. Like OCG, I saw his personal life as being the main problem. I think he’ll get SOME weight down and get some focus back with his off season workout plan in San Diego, but I kinda think many other GMs believe that, too, meaning they may actually trade value for him.

I have always been impressed with how well he charges bunts from 3B, so I don’t see a move to 1B being needed ASAP, but I do think it is an inevitability at some point. Because of Belt’s promising future, I’d seriously consider a trade. [I wonder if the Rays would be interested, some package with a RP for Upton or one of their young mid-infielders.]

Bigmouth
Guest
5 years 8 months ago

Could someone point me to some research about the impact of weight gain on performance? I’m aware of the study that found home-run hitters tend to have higher BMI, and the one finding that short, fat pitchers tend to have longer careers. But has anyone done any research on the relationship between obesity and performance?

DrBGiantsfan
Guest
5 years 8 months ago

No studies.

Lots of baseball players are overweight, but Pablo Sandoval takes it to a whole new level. I mean, he even puts David Ortiz and Prince Fielder to shame! If he gets his plate discipline issues under control, he can probably play first base, but as has been noted several time, his value goes way down there.

DIVISION
Guest
DIVISION
5 years 8 months ago

No confirmed studies.

From an athlete’s perspective (personal trainer), I do assessments of people based on body composition. It’s rather routine after training people for years. Panda’s problem is diet more than training. His body-type doesn’t respond well to simple sugars and excess carbs in general, which he is known to eat in excess. The insulin response to his poor diet is directly responsible for the size of his belly, which in turn hinders his mobility defensively. He has gotten away with it for years due to youth but if he doesn’t address this now, he’ll suffer injuries and decreased productivity as a result (sooner rather than later).

He would respond well to a ketogenic diet, and losing forty plus lbs. during the off-season is definitely within reason.

Right now he’s carrying around about 40% bodyfat or more, and that can’t feel good.

It’s convincing him to make the commitment to a carb-restricted diet that will be the sticking point.

Not sure about his maturity level or fortitude……..

Chris H
Guest
Chris H
5 years 8 months ago

His poor performance correlated with the timing of his personal problems? He was bad the entire year!

And then we see photos of him on Deadspin celebrating his WS victory by going to that family-style italian place, Buca, and eating a dessert made for 6 people all by himself!!

Scott
Guest
Scott
5 years 8 months ago

Except in the first month when he hit .368/.433/.575 and August when he hit .312/.348/.560.

Scout Finch
Guest
Scout Finch
5 years 8 months ago

Signs of life indeed. Baseball is a mental grind and most Sandoval’s problems were between the ears. Conditioning and good coaching should give him a good chance at resurfacing as a .290-.310 hitter with 20-30 HRs. Give him his confidence back and he can carry an offense over a hot streak.

As for Beckham, he could blossom or could be a David Bell type.

Chris H
Guest
Chris H
5 years 8 months ago

Fact is, winning the world series was the worst thing that could have happened to him. I believe that getting the ring could act as a fake confidence booster that positively reinforces his offseason routine.

“Well, I couldn’t have been that bad – I just won the World Series!”

foothills
Guest
foothills
5 years 8 months ago

on Brandon Belt playing 1B–yes, he is good there. Also played some outfield last year, is still learning it and will probably become adequate if they take time with him. Was a pitcher until partway through college.
so–Belt is not a reason to trade Sandoval.

John
Guest
John
5 years 8 months ago

I really don’t understand why fangraphs.com allows comments like gfdo’s and this guy’s to stay on the site. Why do you not delete them? Lack of manpower? I’ll mod them. If not, something has to be done about this.

El
Guest
El
5 years 8 months ago

Sandoval wasn’t just bad in September, he might have been the worst player in the bigs, and Bochy’s acceptance of this was crucial to the Giants’ winning it all.

He was worse than helpless from both sides of the plate with absolutely no pitch recognition, wild swings, and an approach that could only be characterized as horrifying.

His defense was offensive in every way possible. Couldn’t catch a ball cleanly (in his armpit, crook of elbow, etc…), throws both standing and on the move were high/low/wide, and worst of all, he looked like he had never played the position before making one terrible decision after another. Just a horror show.

So:
You couldn’t start him because he was a liability on O & D.
Couldn’t PH him because his plate approach actually got worse with runners on and few rallies are helped by a DP.
Defensive replacement was out of the question.
Couldn’t PR because whatever instincts he had, had disappeared, and he was too fat to run.

I couldn’t think of another player in the game who had zero baseball skills.

If I want a cheerleader, give me a perky blond with a smaller ass.

Scout Finch
Guest
Scout Finch
5 years 8 months ago

Funny. Hopefully not true of Sandoval in ’11. But recent performance should be a more reliable indicator than past performance.

Ballplayers have to have right mental tools to succeed and I don’t think anyone is certain Sandoval has that skill set.

victor frankenstein
Guest
victor frankenstein
5 years 7 months ago

Last season Sandoval was overly casual during Spring Training conditioning drills – goofing with others, walking where others jogged, cutting the distance short. Indicative?

Mas rapidamente, por favor.

Ryan
Guest
Ryan
5 years 8 months ago

I really don’t see how the Cardinals could trade Rasmus without getting a king’s ransom in return. It will be bad enough having Jon Jay as a part of a platoon in right; any at bats he gets as a regular in center will only remove the Cardinals that much more from making it back to the playoffs.

pft
Guest
pft
5 years 8 months ago

Panda is a walking heart attack waiting to happen. His weight makes him one of the worst base runners in MLB and when he stumbles he has trouble getting up. His foot work in the field is beyond clumsy. His plate discipline is awful, as it seems is his discipline at the dinner table.

By the age of 25 his body will be breaking down at the rate of a 35 yo. Athletes who do not take care of their body should not be counted on, no matter how talented. If he was released I could see teams picking him up, but not trading anything of value.

Giants should send him to API in chains and not let him out until he loses 50 pounds.

DIVISION
Guest
DIVISION
5 years 8 months ago

I second that. API would handle the diet and training, so all he’d have to do is show up and do what they tell him. Too easy. I still say that with his genetics and body-type, he needs to go on a ketogenic diet and see if he can maintain that lifestyle for the longterm. He could shed 40+lbs. of bodyfat in a few months easily while retaining his lean muscle mass. He could even have a Sunday once a week if that’s what it would take to bribe him.

No one said maintaining the care of a Panda was easy, San Fran…..

Ray
Guest
5 years 8 months ago

Panda will stay in SF at least one more year-If he does do much again then they will move him-they wouldnt get much for him now–Sadly I dont think Napoli will stay an Angel–Scossia will say 35 HRs yes but he will allow much more being behind the plate-I have personal expeiriance in that area–However I would keep Napoli-Wilson and Conger–The problem is Napoli would play much more on many other teams

James
Guest
5 years 7 months ago

It would be foolish to give up on Sandavol too early. I would take a chance on him bouncing back. The 2009 Sandavol at 3b would be hard to come by and he has an upside. If Sandavol can bounce back, that gives the Giants a good young core of Posey, Belt and Sandavol. You can’t your bad players for another teams good players.

mjk415
Member
mjk415
5 years 6 months ago

Triple Threat Performance Pablo just got done with an awesome 2.5 hr Christmas Eve training session. Not sure what everyone else is doing, but The Panda is “Doin Work.” December 24, 2010 at 12:22pm · Triple Threat Performance According to the Bod Pod. Pablo Sandoval lost over 10 lbs of fat and gained over 7 lbs of muscle in the last 30 days. This very exciting news and great progress for Pablo.

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