Giants Needs More Kelby Tomlinson in the Lineup


The San Francisco Giants lost the opener 8-5 to the Chicago Cubs in a pivotal three-game series on Tuesday. Matt Cain came out crisp for two innings, then made key mistakes that put Chicago up big early in the game, and the Cubs held on to sit the Giants down. Perhaps it’s time the give Kelby Tomlinson more playing time.

While it is one game, there is something not flowing through this ball club right now, and it is a rare site. Angel Pagan went down back in the beginning of August for knee tendinitis, Joe Panik has missed the month with a lower-back injury, and the club lost Hunter Pence to a strained oblique while swinging the bat on the trip in St. Louis.

Tuesday, another injury occurred as Brandon Crawford is dealing with some lower back stiffness after swinging. Being smart, Bruce Bochy had no choice but to replace his break-out shortstop and hope the injury is nothing more serious than a day-to-day stint.

The Giants’ lineup production has been sucked up as the injuries have been piling. Is there someone who could possibly kick-start this team?

In a Christopher Walken tone, “The club has got a fever, and the only prescription is more Kelby Tomlinson.”

The Double A product from Texas Tech University could be that glue and the spark to get other guys in the lineup going.

Currently, being the star and face of the franchise, Buster Posey is in middle of quite possibly one of the worst slumps of his career, as he has six hits in his last 38 at-bats (.158 batting average). Posey appears to be pressing at the plate in the absence of two big-time hitters, as it is up to him to drive in the runs.

For being called up, Tomlinson could provide that opportunity to be in scoring position. But Bochy is not using him enough. Ehire Adrianza is the regular second baseman in the absence of Panik.

With both having not committed an error in 2015, Adrianza’s defense is being prioritized over Tomlinson’s ability to get on base.

By a substantial amount offensively, Tomlinson deserves the nod to be at second base over Adrianza who is struggling to surpass the Mendoza line. (Tomlinson .333 vs Adrianza .196)

The Giants offense, which was howling and getting many runners on base for three-quarters of the season, has been affected by the multiple injuries as of late, as they are scraping for any kind of runs.

After acquiring Marlon Byrd, it was expected as of past deadline moves, that he would be what it takes to get over the hump. After an excellent impression in the first game with the team, Byrd has flown away from that production. But the blame should not be placed on him or anyone entirely. He was brought in to help, but the lineup is not built for a large surplus of runs currently. This places pressure on the pitching staff.

Tomlinson has had limited action in the big leagues as he has played in 18 games and has started only in 11 of them. The speedster with the goggles has already gained attraction and generated buzz in the social media world as “Clark Kent” in all the creative memes. Sometimes, the quirkiness of the Superman comparisons actually pay off.

He’s arguably the fastest guy on the team, and applying Tomlinson into the two hole or anywhere else in that starting lineup may allow Bochy to adjust and place guys in their comfort spots.

With a lineup stuck in a funk, Tomlinson is replicating a Matt Duffy season from a year ago. Both being Double A call-ups, and both made noise in the playing time given to them. Having the second spot being held by Tomlinson will allow for Duffy to return to the third spot where a majority of his offensive break-out has occurred. Due to injuries, Bochy is having to improvise, and it is requiring to bump everyone up in the order. If it is not working — very much like it is right now — then that is a cue that a tweak needs to happen.

More from Golden Gate Sports

The 2015 season is already full of gloom and doom in the eyes of Giants’ fans, but what can’t be forgotten is the wonders and treasures of courting three world titles in the last five seasons. That is dynasty material.

Getting in the way of expanding that dynasty is the unfortunate injuries to multiple key members of the team. In consecutive seasons, the Giants have never reached the playoffs in back-to-back seasons in the Bochy-era. Having doubts is pretty-well justified in a sense. But 2015 is far from over.

More from San Francisco Giants

Astonishingly, the Giants are only 2.5 games out of first place in the division and 7.5 games in the NL Wildcard. There is still a whole month of baseball left and weird scenarios sure can happen. Nori Aoki, Andrew Susac, and Mike Leake have returned, and Pagan and Panik’s returns are close. Reinforcements are coming.

The Giants are running out of options for answers nowadays, but they still have one option who is Tomlinson. With Crawford’s injury, it has opened the door. The Giants are searching for a hero, and Tomlinson’s presence is a chance to bring Steve Perry back into AT&T Park and encourage Giants’ fans “Don’t Stop Believing.”