Position Battle Update - 3/30

It's the final update from the Cactus League! The Giants blasted the A's in the final game, but it turns out two of the four battles had already been won! Which two! What are the consequences? And what's yet to be decided? 4 Spots remain, with no less than 9 possible contenders! San Francisco, here we come!

Position: 5th Starter

WINNER: Jamey Wright: 4.0 IP, 7 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 1 BB, 4 SO
YTD: 1.38 ERA, 13.0 IP, 14 H, 4 R, 2 ER, 0 HR, 0 HBP, 6 BB, 11 SO

Brad Hennessey: DNP
YTD: 7.02 ERA, 16.2 IP, 23 H, 15 R, 13 ER, 2 HR, 0 HBP, 9 BB, 8 SO

Kevin Correia: DNP
YTD: 2.45 ERA, 11.0 IP, 6 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 0 HR, 1 HBP, 1 BB, 8 SO

The Results: Jamey Wright is the 5th starter, not a big shock. He was informed he made the roster early in the week, but he didn't learn about his spot in the rotation until after his start, in which he gave up his first earned runs of the spring. Hennessey's been optioned to Fresno, but Correia remains with the team, and in the heart of the competition for a bullpen spot. Wright was required to be added to the 40 man roster by Wednesday, and the Giants DFA'd minor league reliever Jon Coutlangus to make space. Coutlangus, a converted outfielder who had a good year at Single-A San Jose, has a good chance of clearing waivers and making it back to the minors.

Position: Back-Up Catcher

Winner: Todd Greene: 2-6, 2 R, 4 RBI, 1 HR, 1 SO, 1 BB
YTD: .258/.303/.548, 8-31, 5 R, 3 2B, 0 3B, 2 HR, 5 RBI, 2 BB, 7 SO

Eliezer Alfonzo: 0-4, 2 SO
YTD: .313/.333/.531, 10-32, 1 2B, 0 3B, 2 HR, 8 RBI, 1 BB, 9 SO

The Results: Again, not a surprise. Greene's experience over Alfonzo really gave him an edge, but Alfonzo did a great job of impressing the team, and will very likely be competing for a major league job next season, as well as being the first callup should injury strike. Like Wright, Greene will require a roster move to make room on the 40 man roster, and that must be done by the end of Thursday. Meanwhile, Alfonzo will remain with the Giants as they play their last exhibition games in San Francisco and Oakland.

Position: Bullpen (2 or 3 spots available)


Kevin Correia: See Above Stats

Jack Taschner: 1.0 IP, 3 H, 4 R, 4 ER, 1 BB, 2 SO, 2 HR
YTD: 7.04 ERA, 7.2 IP, 10 H, 6 R, 6 ER, 2 HR, 0 HBP, 2 BB, 9 SO

Scott Munter: 0.1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 SO
YTD: 1.35 ERA, 6.2 IP, 3 H, 2 R, 1 ER, 0 HR, 1 HBP, 1 BB, 2 SO

Jeremy Accardo:
YTD: 1.50 ERA, 6.0 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 HR, 0 HBP, 1 BB, 5 SO

Tyler Walker: 2.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 0 SO
YTD: 8.31 ERA, 8.2 IP, 7 H, 8 R, 8 ER, 1 HR, 1 HBP, 5 BB, 4 SO

Merkin Valdez: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 1 SO
YTD: 4.32 ERA, 8.1 IP, 6 H, 4 R, 4 ER, 1 HR, 0 HBP, 5 BB, 8 SO

Did Good: Tyler Walker had a nice couple of outings, which might have raised his trade value (See below).

Did Not So Good: Taschner had a horrible outing early in the week, but got a second outing the next day and looked a lot better. 2 home runs, yikes.

Eliminated: Merkin Valdez was sent to Fresno along with Hennessey earlier this week. There were indications that the Giants might have him act as closer there, further insinuating the suggestions that Valdez is getting moved to reliever again.

Other News: It had been reported last weekend that the Tampa Bay Devil Rays was interested in trading for Tyler Walker. Earlier this week, the Baltimore Orioles were also identified as a possible trading partner.

The Battle So Far: Taschner's bad outing probably won't be a big factor. This is an amazingly tight race, and Correia's addition to it makes it even tougher. At least Merkin Valdez's send-down offers a little clearer picture. With teams reportedly after Walker or some of the Giants 3 left handed relievers, trades may also be a factor in this picture.

Position: 25th Man (And maybe 24th)
Todd Linden: 3-6, 2 R
YTD: .291/.397/.364, 16-55, 12 R, 2 2B, 1 3B, 0 HR, 6 RBI, 8 BB, 9 SO, 1 SB, 0 CS

Jason Ellison: 2-8, 2 R, 1 HR, 2 RBI, 2 SO, 1 BB, 1 SB
YTD: .418/.515/.655, 23-55, 16 R, 5 2B, 1 3B, 3 HR, 10 RBI, 10 BB, 4 SO, 3 SB, 1 CS

Kevin Frandsen: 5-11, 3 R, 3 2B, 1 RBI, 1 SO, 1 BB, 2 SB
YTD: .373/.415/.644, 22-59, 13 R, 6 2B, 2 3B, 2 HR, 11 RBI, 3 BB, 6 SO, 1 SB, 1 CS

Angel Chavez: 3-9, 2 R, 3 2B, 1 SO, 3 BB, 2 E
YTD: .302/.431/.472, 16-53, 9 R, 9 2B, 0 3B, 0 HR, 4 RBI, 12 BB, 5 SO, 1 SB, 0 CS

Did Good: Frandsen made one late push to try and pry his way onto the roster. It probaby wasn't enough, but it won't be forgotten.

Did Not So Good: Believe it or not, a week in which Ellison hit .250 with a home run, a walk and a stolen base is the worst, but only by comparison. These players have been phenominal this Spring.

Don't Forget: The pitchers are in this mix as well, and that doesn't bode well for the pitchers.

The Battle So Far: Ellison has been all but named to a roster spot, and his hitting of a home run in Wednesday's final Cactus League contest probably did not hurt his chances. Linden's all but sent down, but he proved this spring that he can draw more walks and less strikeouts. Now he needs to prove he can do that and keep hitting for power. Frandsen also is probably on his way to Fresno, but he did so well that a lot of players wanted to vote for him in the Harry S. Jordan award (given to the most impressive player in his first major league camp) despite it being Frandsen's second big league camp. Derin McMains took the award, by the way. That leaves Chavez, and he is the hardest to figure out. He played shortstop, drew walks and stole bases this week, showcasing even more versatility. He also got 2 more errors. The Giants are well aware that they have 2 elder statesmen in the middle infield, and another backing them up. Chavez has a real chance to make the roster, taking a spot away from the bullpen.

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