KPIX 5 Sports Director Dennis O’Donnell hosts “Gameday” every Sunday night at 11:30pm on KPIX 5 and offers his unique sports analysis here.
(KPIX 5) Pablo Sandoval wants $90 million over five years to remain a Giant. San Francisco has offered $40 million over three years which Pablo’s agent calls an insult.
If I’m Brian Sabean, I tell Pablo to take a hike. Don’t get me wrong, I love the guy, but his loyalty is with a third Big Mac, not third base. Pablo didn’t show up to camp in great shape because the light finally clicked on. He showed up looking like a Jenny Craig model because it’s payday.
Where was the commitment to conditioning last year or the year before that? Sandoval batted .278 with 14 home runs and 79 RBI in 2014, and committed a career-high 18 errors at third base. Those are not numbers deserving of $18 million per year. Here’s a list of the third baseman that will make more than Pablo in 2014.
David Wright (Mets) $20 million
Adrian Beltre (Rangers) $17 million
Aramis Ramirez (Brewers) $16 million
Ryan Zimmerman (Nationals) $14 million
Martin Prado (Diamondbacks) $11 million
Chase Headly (Padres) $10.25 million
Pablo Sandoval (Giants) $8.25 million
The experts that cover the Giants said the team doesn’t have a hot shot replacement for Pablo. Furthermore, there aren’t likely to be any big name free agents that play third base in 2015. Consequently, the Giants will have to pay him simply because they have no other option.
But I think they do. His name is Buster Posey. The Giants catcher began his college career as a shortstop. He’s got the arm, the glove, and the bat, minus the baggage.
How much longer do the Giants want to see him get beat up behind the plate anyway? Posey is just 27, so the transition will give him plenty of time to evolve into an All-star third baseman. Does Johnny Bench ring a bell?
While the Giants have no third base prospects looming in the minor leagues, they just happen to have hotshot catching prospect in 24-year old Andrew Susac. The Roseville resident will open the season at Triple-A Fresno and has been mentioned in trade discussions.
But given the uncertainty with Pablo Sandoval, there’s no way I’d trade Susac now. The Giants minor-league hitting instructor sees similarities between Susac and Posey that go beyond the position they play. Susac batted .360 in the Fall league and spent Spring Training with the big boys.
Pablo’s agent thinks he has the leverage. The opposite is true.
I’ll see you on TV.