The San Francisco Giants currently sit in fourth place in the NL West. Six and a half games back in the division. That includes an astonishing multi-game deficit to the Colorado Rockies and only a few games separating them and the Swiss Cheese Baseball Team San Diego Padres.
Maybe this is all a continuation of the Giants’ master plan to win a World Series, flop the next year, and then win the next year’s title with another smorgasbord of bit players and trade deadline acquisitions.
Tim Lincecum currently sits fourth in the Giants’ hierarchy of starting pitchers. One spot below Barry Zito. Not an amazing place for a former Cy Young winner. Should San Fran look to offload their former ace in an attempt to gain pieces for next year, Seattle could be the place to look.
The Giants could do with upgrades in left field, right field as well as finding a suitable long term replacement for Marco Scutaro at second base. The defending champs also could use another starting pitcher, even if they decide to keep Lincecum.
The team could be intrigued by any of the Mariners’ young players who have yet to live up to their potential. Justin Smoak could apply, as well as Dustin Ackley, should he fail to establish himself as the Mariners’ everyday center fielder.
San Francisco could also have interest in Joe Saunders, or Aaron Harang. Saunders has provided a steady back-end-of-the-rotation presence while Harang has previously proven himself in the NL West the past two seasons, compiling 24 wins and posting an ERA that hovered near 3.50.
The Giants don’t want Smoak unless they are parting with Brandon Belt in a bigger trade, which is unlikely. Ackley and Saunders for Lincecum though, could entice the Giants to pull the trigger, but might not be enough. Should the Giants up the ante and ask for one of the Mariners’ “Big Three” pitching prospects, the M’s should think twice. I don’t think Seattle would sacrifice one of their young pitchers for Lincecum, even in a one-for-one swap.
Ackley, Saunders and a prospect somewhere between mid-level and blue-chipper for Lincecum seems an ideal trade for both sides. The Giants and M’s both get players who seem in need of a change of scenery, San Francisco gets a sturdy replacement for Big Time Timmy Jim as well as a prospect while Seattle gets a redo on the 2006 draft.