SF Giants headed toward homegrown lineup
Should the Giants trade some of their kids for stopgap help at catcher and second base?
That's old-school. Back in the day, whenever the Giants had a need, they would sign or trade for Wendell Washed-up. The farm system produced turnips and rutabagas.
Something happened. The farm started producing productive produce, prodigiously.
Forward-thinking reader (this column attracts 'em like flies) Gerry Escolar looks ahead to the 2013 season and sees an entire starting lineup, plus pitchers, that is farm-raised, organic and free-range.
Here's Escolar's lineup: Darren Ford (cf), Emmanuel Burriss (2b), Gary Brown (lf), Brandon Belt (1b), Pablo Sandoval (3b), Buster Posey ©, Brandon Crawford (ss), Nate Schierholtz (rf).
Starting pitchers: Tim Lincecum, Matt Cain, Jonathan Sanchez, Madison Bumgarner, Zach Wheeler. I would add Ryan Vogelsong to the mix - a homegrown Giant who wandered several years before returning home. Six superb starters? That's a headache for Bruce Bochy and Dave Righetti to sort out.
Relievers: Brian Wilson, Sergio Romo.
I would shuffle the batting order to: Ford, Sandoval, Posey, Belt, Brown, Schierholtz, Crawford, Burriss. No way Posey bats sixth.
One un-Giant-like thing you've got throughout the lineup: speed.
Who is Gary Brown? An outfielder playing his first full pro season in San Jose. Legend has it Brown is faster than Ford, who is slightly faster than the wind.
Brown is 22, 6-foot-1 and 190, a right-handed outfielder out of Cal State Fullerton. He slowed after a sizzling start, but through 71 games he's hitting .320 with 47 RBIs and 33 steals, but 14 times caught stealing.
Wheeler, a 6-3, 180-pound lefty, is 6-3 for San Jose, with 74 strikeouts in 65 2/3 innings. He'll be 23 in 2013.
Plenty of ways to mix-n-match. For example, Posey catching two games out of three, with Sandoval catching the third. Posey playing a game at first, with Belt moving to left ...
Next job for the Giants: Get all these guys to sign a forever-a-Giant solidarity pact.
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