July 27, 2011
GIANTS PAGE GIANTS VIDEO
PHILADELPHIA -- As the Giants and Phillies are going head-to-head on the field this week at Citizens Bank Park, their respective front offices are doing the same thing off the field.Sure, the acquisition of Carlos Beltran likely ends the Giants' trade talks, but with the Sunday deadline looming, now's as good a time as any to take a look at the other players rumored to be potential trade targets and their respective pros and cons.Hunter Pence, OF, Astros: Pence would be a heck of a pickup for now and the future. He runs well, plays solid D (his recent struggles notwithstanding), gets on base, hits for average and power and drives in runs. Because of that, however, he's going to cost quite a bit. Houston is said to be asking for as many as three premium prospects, perhaps as a way to scare anyone off, and that should certainly be enough to scare off the Giants, who are loathe to deal away too much young talent.
Michael Bourn, OF, Astros: His contract situation is similar to that of Pence, though he's making 4.4 million this year to Pence's 6.9 million, and he's also 28, but that's where the similarities end. Bourn is a leadoff hitter, and a fine one at that. It's possible the Giants would look into adding a table setter if they aren't sold on the idea of Andres Torres catching fire down the stretch.B.J. Upton, OF, Rays: Another fairly friendly contract situation makes Upton -- who is earning just under 5 million this year and isn't yet eligible for free agency -- attractive to teams who look as his five-tool skill set and drool. He could serve as a table setter or a middle-of-the-order threat; his 15 homers this year would be tops on the Giants by six. But Upton, 26, is not flashing all five tools this season; he's batting in the low .200s with a poor on-base percentage, and he's been prone to mental lapses. It probably wouldn't take a ton to get him, and he might be worth the risk as a change-of-scenery guy.Michael Cuddyer, OF, Twins: A 32-year-old who'll be a free agent after the season Cuddyer also fits the heart-of-the-order profile, but the Twins are still within striking distance in the soft American League Central, so anyone renting Cuddyer might be asked to pony up more than usual under the circumstances. That said, Cuddyer feels Giants-ish, and he might not be all that difficult to re-sign. Consider Cuddyer the sleeper of the lot.