Urban: Giants' plan for backup shortstop changing

January 13, 2011, 7:47 pm
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Once the Edgar Renteria saga came to a conclusion the assumption was that the Giants would start to focus on finding another outside option as Miguel Tejada's primary backup at shortstop for 2011.

A week ago that assumption was correct, but it sounds like that's no longer the case.

According to one of my best Giants sources, with whom I spoke Thursday morning, the team is growing more and more comfortable with the idea of filling that role internally.

There's been some concern all along that the Giants are a little bit too right-handed heavy up the middle (Tejada, Freddy Sanchez), so they'd like to have a left-handed option as a backup at both middle infield positions.

Mike Fontenot, who has been re-signed for 2011, is exactly that.

Beyond that, the Giants are increasingly comfortable with the idea that Emmanuel Burriss and top shortstop prospect Brandon Crawford might also fill the void.

And then there's Mark DeRosa, who's recent health history and age prompt reservations about his ability to fill in at shortstop on a long-term basis, should Tejada sustain an injury that would sideline him, for say, a month.

Yet DeRosa, who turns 36 next month, is an infielder at heart, above all else, and certainly provides a modicum of insurance up the middle.

Besides, the Giants right now essentially have 26 guys competing for 25 spots. So if you're expecting them to add anybody at any position on a major league deal before camp opens, you might want to pack a lunch.