Hey San Francisco Giants, What Exactly Are You Doing Right Now?

SAN FRANCISCO, CA - AUGUST 31: Buster Posey /

With 100 losses seeming the likely outcome for this season, the San Francisco Giants should be looking to the future. Why aren’t they doing it?

So, the San Francisco Giants are bad. Like, really bad. Like, the worst team in baseball bad. Their loss to the Colorado Rockies on Tuesday night dropped them to a .383 winning percentage, slipping under the Philadelphia Phillies for 30th place in all of MLB. They are right on track to have the number one overall draft pick next year.

Even with all those facts staring them in the face, they really can’t seem to come to terms with it. There doesn’t seem to be much of a plan in place, besides “keep running the same guys out there and hope for the best”. With that awful record, they should be using September and the expanded rosters that come with it to get as much of a look at young players as possible. The team really doesn’t seem to want to do that.

Injuries have tied the team’s hands during this expanded roster period. Christian Arroyo has a broken hand and won’t be back this year. Tyler Beede‘s groin injury won’t allow him to be healthy enough to get his first taste of big league action. Austin Slater is back on the active roster, but his hip injury kept him on the shelf long enough that he didn’t have nearly enough of a chance to rehab with Sacramento before their season ended.

Those guys are unavailable (or in Slater’s case, unavailable to an extent), but there are still players like Ryder Jones, and Mac Williamson, and Kyle Crick, just to name a couple, that the team should be running out there every day this month. Instead, the veterans on this team have seemingly been deemed more important than the development of younger plays.

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Pablo Sandoval is the prime example. The third baseman has been back for about a couple months now, and after showing that maybe there was something left in the tank early in his second stint with the Giants, that tank has been completely emptied. On Tuesday, he pulled down an 0-4, running his streak of at-bats without a hit to 37, tying Johnnie LeMaster for the longest hitless streak in the Giants’ San Francisco history. Sandoval is zero for his last 10 games, though he has drawn four walks for an imposing .103 on-base percentage in those 10 games.

Still, the team continues to run him out there. A guy like Jones, who came up as a third baseman, could use the playing time as he tries to get his footing on the big league team. Jones has been playing a lot of first base, but when the team puts Buster Posey at first (which has been happening more often lately), he finds himself on the bench because Sandoval is penciled in at third.

Sandoval is working for the major league minimum with the Giants as the Boston Red Sox eat his salary, so getting a look at him does have some value. But at some point in an 0-37 streak, the team should realize that he doesn’t need to be playing everyday while younger players with more upside sit. Heck, even Kelby Tomlinson would get more use out of those at-bats right now.

Williamson started in left field in both of his first two days back in the big leagues, but after an 0-3 on Monday, he was out of the lineup in favor of Gorkys Hernandez on Tuesday. Williamson is another guy that should be playing everyday, not out of the starting lineup three days back (he did come off the bench and collect two hits on Tuesday). If anything, Hernandez should be playing center field, as Denard Span has proven time and time again that he can not cover ground in center field anymore.

The pitching staff also needs some tweaks. Those tweaks started a little bit on Tuesday, with right-hander Reyes Moronta (an actual, legitimate prospect!) being recalled after Sacramento’s season ended, and fellow right-hander Roberto Gomez having his contract purchased. Getting Gomez on the 40-man roster brought about another questionable decision.

To open a spot on the roster, the team designated Carlos Moncrief for assignment. They easily could have gotten that spot by moving Michael Morse, who hasn’t played since May 29th and isn’t even with the team, but they didn’t. The team didn’t even have to release Morse, they could have just transferred him to the 60-day disabled list. They didn’t, and there really doesn’t seem to be a good reason why.

Moncrief is a 28-year-old playing in the big leagues for the first time, and in all likelihood, wouldn’t have been in the team’s future plans. However, he at least brought something to the table. He owns one of the absolute best outfield arms that baseball had to offer, and that alone at least made him interesting. He could have offered something to the team over the final month, which Morse doesn’t.

Back on to the topic of Moronta and Gomez, as well as Crick, those pitchers could use innings. Innings that are currently going to, for some ungodly reason, Mark Melancon. Melancon is pitching through an injury in his forearm and will have surgery at some point in the near future to fix the issue. If the Giants were in the playoff chase, pitching through pain could be seen as a gritty move that is an inspiration to his teammates. But on the worst team in baseball, it’s simply a head-scratching move that doesn’t make any sense.

Melancon needs that surgery, and there’s really no reason he doesn’t get it done as soon as possible. The bullpen will be bad without him, but his presence isn’t making much of a difference right now. He’s given up five runs in 3.1 innings over his last four outings. The team needs to let guys like Crick and Moronta have the innings that Melancon is working.

And finally, the Giants need to protect Posey. His was injured on Tuesday night when a foul ball caught his bare right hand behind the plate, and though it isn’t fractured, he will still need time to heal up. When he comes back, he shouldn’t be behind the plate anymore this year. Tim Federowicz and Nick Hundley can handle catching duties while Posey plays first base (with Jones at third, please).

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There are a lot of things the Giants need to do. They need to get younger. They need to get better in the outfield, specifically on the defensive side. They need to give young players a chance to prove themselves. They need to stop doing what they’re doing right now and look good and hard to 2018. They aren’t doing much right these days.