Extending Brian Sabean and Bruce Bochy

Brian Sabean told me tonight that he and CEO Larry Baer have talked generally about long-term commitments for Sabean and Bruce Bochy.Wed Sep 28 04:57:11 via web


I don’t mind Bruce Bochy that much. He’s not a terrible manager — he’s just not a particularly great one. I’ve even defended him in the past. But he’s made it blatantly obvious this year that his trust/reliance on veteran players is too extensive. I.e. Brandon Belt should have more playing time under his belt by now (pun half-intended), and the corpse of Orlando Cabrera should never have started 39 games for the Giants.

Bochy managed this team to a World Series title; yet I’m still not particularly keen on retaining him in the long-term future.

Brian Sabean, well, he’s more of an enigma.

When I revisited the Giants’ offseason moves, I concluded that Sabean only really made one big mistake: not finding an adequate starting shortstop.

The Giants’ two biggest positional weaknesses this year have been at shortstop and first base, largely due to a couple major-league signings the Giants dished out this offseason (and, on another note, the organization’s handling of Brandon Belt). While there’s an argument to be made in defense of the Huff contract, the Giants had better options for shortstop in Hardy and Barlett — and based on what the Orioles and Rays fetched in return for their shortstops (respectively), the Giants probably had a good shot at acquiring either of them. Instead, the Giants have paid a price of $6.5MM plus Thomas Neal in order to fill their shortstop needs, and still have not received adequate production from the position. Signing Tejada to that one-year deal is a move that’s proven to be a big mistake for the organization.

His acquisition of Orlando Cabrera seemed to have exposed a fundamental problem with the way he evaluates players. Cabrera can’t hit for average. He can’t hit for power. He can’t draw walks. He can’t play good defense. Well, he can’t really do much of anything. One of the things I heard — multiple times — was that he’d been starting shortstop for a playoff team four years in a row. Which is pretty much indicative of nothing with respect to Cabrera’s talent. The deal never made sense.

On the other hand, the original Aubrey Huff signing — the one-year $3MM deal — worked out very well for the Giants (even if Huff wasn’t Sabean’s first choice at first base). The Juan Uribe signings were good, but the fact that the Giants nearly matched the Dodgers’ three-year offer frightens me.

The Carlos Beltran trade, which will likely draw a lot of criticism if Zack Wheeler realizes his potential, was a defensible move. I didn’t like it at the time, and in retrospect, I still don’t like it. But it was justifiable.

One of the best things about Sabean is that he never traded away Tim Lincecum. Or Matt Cain. Or Madison Bumgarner. Or Jonathan Sanchez I don’t know how much credit to give him for that…I’m sure there was a lot of pressure to do so — mostly external, given the Giants’ recent history with offensive incompetence. But he never gave in. Delmon Young, Alex Rios, Corey Hart, Prince Fielder, etc. Names that have been tossed around in recent years in connection with some of the Giants’ young guns. But Sabean kept them all around long enough to win a World Series.

I don’t think Sabean’s as bad as many people say he is. But, as with Bochy, I don’t think he’s particularly great. I think the Giants can do better than Sabean, and I’d love to see them go in a new direction in terms of management. In fact, I’d really hate to see him signed long-term.

So, yeah. Gut reaction: I think this is terrible news.


8 thoughts on “Extending Brian Sabean and Bruce Bochy

  1. Pingback: Game Recap: Madison Bumgarner. » Giants Nirvana | SF Giants Blog

  2. There is a disconnect for me in this logic regarding Bochy. Sandoval and Posey both blossomed under his management, Belt struggled. He relies heavily on veterans – no doubt – but Renteria and even Rowand came through in the post season because they were not lost on the bench. A year removed from the World Series and we are ready to operate under new management? I think we agree that with a healthy Posey and Sanchez this team would have won 3-5 more games…and earned a playoff spot. I don’t agree with the notion that a different manager would yield better results. Looking at the ENTIRE body of work, Bochy squeezes the maximum out of the roster he has. Can’t say that of many managers.

  3. Are you serious? You clueless fool… Have you bothered to study BochS record? His 1 run wins? His brilliance in winning last yeR at the stretch? The ultimate players manager… Guts who played with him over his career will goto war with him!!! There is Nobody even close out there! He is the man I want in the fox hole… When the shiit is on the line.. He is clutch
    … And whiter it is ping pong , pool, or tidily winks,… He wants the W! Now go look up stats on the Best Manager. Who has won the most 1 run clutch games…. And then apologize for your foolish comments!

  4. Very good post. I agree, Mr. Bochy has shown good will good favor happiness. Thank you for writing. Have you considered constitutional 5 6 7 8123 2725 egophile? You may. THank SChulman right now right write now know. Have a good day.

  5. Rich, you sound like some little girl! Bochy is NOT the end all be all! Sounds more like you have a thing for Mr Bochy. Does he know this? lol Another SF Fruitcake man crush

  6. OK Waynes World… Just go and look up some facts… And while you’re at it, assuming you can handle a dictionary,,, look up Homophobia … You just might see your pathetic picture starring back at you.
    Bruce Bochy IS a great coach and not giving him a longterm contract after what he’s done for this organization,,,,backed up by his stellar long term statistics… Would be a serious misjudgment by ownership. A poor decision that would certainly haunt them like it haunted the Padres last year. Get it?

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