Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Andrew Baggarly Says...Nate Schierholtz could be out

It’s getting to that point in the spring when trade talks begin to heat up. But from what I understand, there isn’t anything happening with Aaron Rowand.

Less than nothing, actually. When Texas contacted the Giants to gauge interest in Michael Young a few weeks ago, the Rangers told them in no uncertain terms: “Don’t even bother bringing up Rowand’s name.”

I know Giants fans are conjuring a million fantasy proposals for dealing Rowand – to-the-Phillies-for-Joe Blanton being the most popular framework for a deal. But my sense is that the Giants are becoming more and more convinced that they’ll have Rowand on the roster to begin the season.

In that instance, either Nate Schierholtz or Travis Ishikawa will be off the team – or, in a less likely scenario, both, if Brandon Belt makes the roster. (As a reminder, both Ishi and Nate are out of minor league options.)

The Rowand situation could change with a phone call. But if the choice comes down to Nate vs. Ishi, the indication I’m getting from a few sources is that Schierholtz could be the easiest and most likely to be dealt. Perhaps soon.
Saltzman Says...

If the Giants want to prove winning is more valuable than money, they will release the less talented Aaron Rowand and allow Schierholtz and Ishikawa to start the season on the Major League Roster.

Henry Shulman is reporting that with a projected 12 man staff, there will be two spots for four players (Rowand, Ishikawa, Schierholtz and Belt)

It would make sense to keep Ishikawa and Schierholtz in San Francisco because we have to release them otherwise, and release Rowand. Belt can start the year in AAA.

They could also let Mark DeRosa fully rest is wrist and Brian Wilson fully rest his ribcage on the DL, and keep all four for now. Dan Runzler also has options and might make more sense to start in AAA to get more innings. That way we can give a roster spot to Guillermo Mota, Jeff Suppan or Ryan Vogelsong who are all non roster invitees.

Based on the rules baseball has in place, when a player such as Schierholtz or Ishikawa are 'out of options' they have to be offered to every team in baseball if they don't make the major league roster. If nobody picks them up, they can accept a AAA assignment, or be a free agent. Schierholtz might want to stay in that scenario, because in 1 year, the Giants outfield might go from crowded to empty very quickly. Every single Giants outfielder except for Rowand is on a one year deal, and Aubrey Huff will also be in the last year of his deal. Ross, Torres, Burrell, and DeRosa are all outfield options who could be gone.

Even if Huff, Torres, and Ross came back in 2012, Burrell and DeRosa would most likely be gone. Assuming Rowand is finally gone by then, Schierholtz still becomes the best available outfielder among the other options in Fresno, like Thomas Neal, Darren Ford, and others.

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