Giants Still in on Calero

Giants Still in on Calero

Jan. 15, 2010GIANTS PAGEMychael Urban
CSNBayArea.comLike most every general manager in baseball, Brian Sabean has mastered the art of speaking in terms that can be interpreted -- and misinterpreted -- in a variety of ways. He was at it again this week on the topic of what's left on his to-do list, between now and the start of spring training.Made somewhat clear -- that'll have to do -- is that picking up a reliever is the top priority, and this morning I learned that the Kiko Calero drum I've been banging for so long has not yet been silenced.

I had it confirmed by vice president of baseball operations Bobby Evans that the Giants have indeed been chatting with Calero's agent, Diego Benz.
I called Benz even before I spoke with Evans, but I haven't heard back from him yet. In fact, I just called again and now his voice mailbox is full, so I shot him a text.
I called Kiko, who is inPuerto Rico, and got some freaky error message from his cell service provider. So no dice there, either.
Anyway, the Giants definitely are still interested in Calero, who had a terrific year with the Marlins last season (1.95 ERA, 1.10 WHIP in 69 games) and has a comic-book slider that would be quite the San Francisco treat.
Alas, Evans seems to think Calero will get a more lucrative andor longer offer than what I'm guessing is a one-plus-one deal from the Giants. He also said Calero is far from the only relief option being currently explored. A one-plus-one (the "plus-one" being an option year in case that's too insidery) deal for Calero, who turned 35 last Saturday, sounds about right to me. His almost-exclusive reliance on that slider, which he throws at two different speeds to create two types of break, and his fairly recent elbow-and-shoulder injury history makes him a dicey long-term commitment. But right now, Evans said, most players in Calero's age range who are still productive are looking for as much contract length as possible, for obvious reasons. It could be the last contract these guys get. But the Giants aren't going more than two years with anybody.
Moving on, the next item on Sabean's list of priorities is acquiring a veteran catcher. Or not. His GM-speak on the issue made it very difficult to discern. Buster Posey is the starting catcher as of now, and the Giants have spent the previous two weeks making that clear, but Sabean's most recent comments were about as clear as my head was the morning after my bachelor party.He said the team is prepared to go with Posey, but he's open to picking up a lesser-light catcher who has nowhere else to go. I'm paraphrasing, but that was the gist of what he said, and let's get real: It wasn't exactly a ringing endorsement for Posey or this unidentified, unemployed schlep-rock.Way, way, way down the list is the need for a No. 5 starter. In other words, they don't need one. No. 5 starters are a dime a dozen, if you ask me. Vastly overrated -- unless you have a young stud to fill the role. Madison Bumgarner is that stud, and the Giants know it. So on that topic, it's basically, "Move along folks, nothing to see here."

Dodgers add to riches, acquire Mets slugger in trade


Dodgers add to riches, acquire Mets slugger in trade

NEW YORK — The Los Angeles Dodgers have acquired outfielder Curtis Granderson and cash from the New York Mets for a player to be named later or cash.

The teams announced the deal after their games Friday night. The 36-year-old Granderson is hitting .228 with 19 home runs and 52 RBIs this year.

Los Angeles is running away with the NL West. The Dodgers are 86-34 after Friday's win at Detroit . Granderson gives Los Angeles another option for the outfield along with Cody Bellinger, Yasiel Puig, Chris Taylor and Joc Pederson.

Pederson has been struggling quite a bit of late, hitting .149 since the All-Star break. Granderson, like Pederson, offers some power from the left side of the plate.

Giants pound Phillies in blowout win, Moore pitches into eighth

Giants pound Phillies in blowout win, Moore pitches into eighth


SAN FRANCISCO -- Matt Moore took his time walking off the mound after Giants manager Bruce Bochy came out to replace him in the eighth inning.

Moore wanted to enjoy the ovation from the crowd at AT&T Park, something he hadn't heard for quite some time.

Moore took a one-hitter into the eighth inning and picked up his first win in nearly two months as San Francisco beat the Philadelphia Phillies 10-2 on Friday night.

"It's something that I think is one of the coolest parts about playing here, is just how loud it can get and the appreciation coming off the hill," Moore said. "It was definitely nice to have that."

Hunter Pence and Brandon Crawford both homered, Pablo Sandoval had an RBI single and Denard Span added three hits and made a nice running catch in center field to help San Francisco to its ninth win in the last 12 games at AT&T Park.

One day after becoming the first team in major league history to reach 11,000 wins as a franchise, the Giants added on by beating the worst team in baseball again.

Moore (4-12) was crisp in his second straight strong start despite four walks, allowing two hits over 7 1/3 innings to win for the first time since June 20.

"He's got a good rhythm going," Giants manager Bruce Bochy said. "It looks like he's playing catch with (catcher Buster Posey), that's the effort he's putting in it right now. I think it's helped his command on all his pitches."

Moore credited a calmer approach in his last two starts.

"For a lot of the season I was overthrowing," Moore said. "It's just too much to be gritting that much through. After the break that was something I was working on, making sure I'm not white-knuckling too much stuff."

Four relievers combined for five outs to complete the four-hitter.

Jorge Alfaro singled twice and scored for Philadelphia.

Pence doubled and scored as part of a three-run first inning, then hit his 11th home run in the second.

Crawford tacked on with a two-run home run in the third, his 10th, after Sandoval walked. Crawford, who also doubled in the eighth, had been in a 2-for-22 slump.

Philadelphia didn't get a runner past second base until the eighth when Freddy Galvis singled in both runs.

"We got four hits (and) Alfaro had two of them," Phillies manager Pete Mackanin said. "The bats just ain't there right now."


Starting pitcher Zach Eflin (1-5) allowed six runs and seven hits over five innings for the Phillies and later complained of tightness in his right shoulder. Eflin has lost two of three starts since a two-month stint in the minors. "As the fifth inning came to an end it was more of a precautionary thing to come out because it wasn't feeling right at that point," Eflin said.


Posey has hit safely in 20 straight games against Philadelphia, the longest hitting streak of his career against any team.


Phillies: Mackanin's ballclub was one player short after the team placed OF Odubel Herrera on the disabled list with a hamstring injury in a move that is retroactive to Aug. 15. Herrera has a 17-game hitting streak that is the longest active in the majors. A corresponding move is expected before Saturday's game.

Giants: RHP Johnny Cueto threw 50 pitches in a bullpen session and could begin a rehab assignment early next week. Cueto also threw a 50-pitch bullpen during the team's recent three-game series in Miami. ... 1B Brandon Belt (concussion) and 2B Joe Panik (concussion symptoms) both did cardio work before the game.


Phillies RHP Jerad Eickoff (3-7, 4.45 ERA) makes his second start against the Giants this season Saturday while San Francisco counters with LHP Ty Blach (8-8, 4.37 ERA). Blach blanked Philadelphia with a seven-hitter on June 2.