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2006 San Francisco Giants Baseball Preview

San Francisco Giants Predictions – NL WEST

OVERVIEW:

It’s no secret—the Giants are old and getting older. The average age of the starting lineup is 40, last season, the injury hampered Giants struggled. They may have gotten younger at third and first, but that doesn’t mean there’s a youth movement on the team.

PITCHING:

Last season, the staff was fairly average, posting a 4.33 ERA and holding opponents to a .263 BA.

Jason Schmidt (12-7, 4.40 ERA) is the ace and one of the best when ill health isn’t hampering him. Matt Morris (14-10, 4.11 ERA) was a big acquisition during the off-season. The aging vet is poised to have a big season in the spacious SBC Park.

Noah Lowery (13-13, 3.78 ERA) is young and on the track to improvement as is Matt Cain (2-1, 2.33 ERA).

Armando Benitz (19 SV, 4.50 ERA) had a season hurt by injury, like so many men on the team, is back as a sound closer.

HITTING:

Barry Bonds (286 BA, 5 HR) faces a tough season. While trying to pass Ruth and Aaron’s homerun marks, he attempting to stay ahead of the steroid scandal and possible courtroom appearances related to taxes. Come on—he’s got bad wheels already! Bonds is injury prone and chances are he’ll see the DL once again this season.

Moises Alou (.321 BA, 19 HR), Randy Winn (.306 BA, 20 HR), and Ray Durham (.290 BA, 12 HR) provide the offense on the team that posted a .261 BA. Steve Finely (.222 BA, 12 HR), from Los Angeles, has been added to the roster, but he’s lost a lot of his former luster.

This was an average hitting team last season and should be more of the same in 2006.

DEFENSE:

Fielding percentage for the team was .985, while the team made 90 errors, making them the third-best defensive club in the NL.

Omar Vizquel is still one of the best shortstops around and Pedro Feliz plays a sound third. Lance Niekro offers consistency at first, while Ray Durham can still turn the double play.

His legs and age hamper Bonds in the outfield and in center Randy Winn has a difficult time judging balls. In right Moises Alou is showing the deteriorating signs of age.

Catcher Mike Metheny, who just won his fourth Golden Glove in a row, provides excellent backstop skills.

MANAGER AND FRONT OFFICE:

• Felipe Alou fielded a competitive team last season, despite numerous injuries.
• The front office didn’t make as many deals as they could have.
• GM Brian Sabean—does he have a play if players start to fall to the wayside?

INTANGIBLES AND/OR OTHER STRENGTHS AND WEAKNESSES:

• Barry Bonds—distraction include his own “reality” show, the IRS, government, and mistress. Got any time to plat ball, Barry?
• You’re only as old as you feel—oh, my aching back!
• Metheny can work wonder with any pitching staff.

CONCLUSION:

It’s difficult to be positive about the Giants. Bonds is simply a distraction, GM Sabean seems to have not thought through the season, and the pitching staff is merely serviceable. Some feel this team can win the division. It’s true the NL West is a very week division, but after considering the improvements Los Angeles has made towards competing within and out side of the West and the Giants look like a third place team.

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2006 Baseball Team Previews

We have listed all of the 2006 MLB baseball teams below. Each team link will give you a team preview of the respected club. The left side is all of the american league previews, and the right columns contains all of the national league previews. To return to the main page click the 2006 MLB Season Preview link at anytime.


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