Monday, March 30, 2009
Ronny Paulino, We Hardly Knew Ye
The funniest part of this flurry of swapping is that the Giants look like they may have miraculously turned a totally interchangeable (not to mention bad) bullpenite into a real life prospect. Correa had a lost season in 2008, fighting blister problems and throwing only 13 innings all year, but in 2007 he showed promise. He struck out an eye-popping 83 batters in 58 and 2/3 innings as a 19-year-old in low-A. He then went to high-A and stunk it up, but whenever you show the ability to strike that many hitters out, anywhere, that's a sign of some kind of talent.
So basically the Giants got an incredibly young pitcher with promise for a guy who is likely to wash out of the majors in like a year. Sounds good to me. To replace Taschner, there's talk of bringing tragic hero Will Ohman (Bay City Ball and Lefty Malo have the dirt).
My thoughts: the Giants already have Jeremy Affeldt, and LOOGYs are just terribly overrated in general. The Angels won for a few years (sigh) with a great bullpen that didn't include a single lefty, and using up a roster spot on a pitcher who can only face one batter a game seems like a waste. Alex Hinshaw would seem to have dibs on the LOOGY role, but he has no control and hasn't been good this spring. Once again, the Giants are a team on the rebuild and at this point should probably just focus on filling the bullpen with the best pitchers they can find, regardless of which arm they throw with.
--This (scroll waaaaay down to the bottom) might be my favorite news of the year so far. The Giants have hired Steve "Bye Bye" Balboni as a major league scout. For those who don't remember, Balboni was the hulking first baseman for the Royals' 1985 championship team who developed a sort of weird cult following. He was a guy who could hit massive home runs and do little else. He ran like he was immersed in a vat of super glue, he lumbered around in the field with the grace of a drunken rhino, and he sported one of the all-time great mustaches.
Not surprisingly, he became a quirky fan favorite, a guy like Jack Cust, beloved for his odd talents and flaws. He also played a key role in the infamous Don Denkinger rally in Game Six of the '85 Series. I have no idea how good his advanced scouting abilities are, but I will say that it's great to have you on the team, Balb!