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Giants settle on Hector Sanchez as Game 3 designated hitter

Oct 26, 2012, 6:52 PM EDT

Hector Sanchez AP

The Giants will go with their 22-year-old backup catcher as their designated hitter in Game 3 of the World Series in Detroit on Saturday. Hector Sanchez is getting the call for the third time in the postseason.

Aubrey Huff was the most likely alternative in the spot.

Both of Sanchez’s previous assignments this month came behind the plate, with Buster Posey shifting to first base. Sanchez often caught Tim Lincecum and Barry Zito in the regular season. However, Lincecum has started just the once in the postseason, and since Sanchez had such a rough game in his lone start against the Cardinals, Giants manager Bruce Bochy has decided to have Posey catch Zito in his last two starts.

Of course, since pretty much everything Bochy touches has turned to gold this month, Sanchez figures to be good for at least one homer tomorrow. The free-swinging switch-hitter batted .280/.295/.390 with three homers, 34 RBI and a 52/5 K/BB ratio in 218 at-bats during the regular season. He’s 1-for-7 with two walks and four strikeouts in the postseason.

  1. sisqsage - Oct 26, 2012 at 7:37 PM

    The kid’s a good young talent. This postseason experience will help him out tremendously down the road.

    Scouts think he could be a full-time catcher in the bigs by next season. A few of the Giants’ pitchers actually prefer him to Posey, ergo Posey’s many starts at first base this season.

    Okay, throw sentiment and good vibes out the window and let’s roll the dice. Panda will never have higher trade value than this offseason after his three-homer masterpiece in Game 1. Why not trade him for 1-2 top notch players and make the overall roster stronger?
    Move Posey to third and prolong his career, and give the catching gig to Sanchez.
    If Posey can hit .336 as a beatup catcher, think of what he could do as an everyday corner infielder.
    Posey is the rock of this team, and makes them go, not Panda.
    Buster played a lot of short in college, so he knows the infield.
    I for one am sick of Panda’s weight issues, hand injuries because he swings too hard and spends like six weeks every year on the DL, not to mention his off-field poor judgment situations.
    Posey and Sanchez with like 500-plus at-bats each makes the offense better in 2013.
    Also a big trade like this would help prevent a 2011-type malaise from setting in.
    Regardless of how this World Series ends up, a trade like this, and moving Posey to third, would help the team going forward.

    • SOBEIT - Oct 26, 2012 at 8:16 PM

      Ummmmm no.

    • temporarilyexiled - Oct 27, 2012 at 10:40 AM

      Too bad so many of you are giving sisqsage’s post ye olde thumbs down. The post makes perfect sense. It all depends on how the Panda decides to roll (no pun intended). He’s had a lot of self-control issues – lack of discipline at BOTH plates – and there is Santa Cruz. If he gets his act together, he’ll end up being a cross between Prince Fielder, Vlad Guerrero, and Chipper Jones. If not, the post I’m replying to is staring you in the face. The Giants will figure out whether the Panda is still for real, and make the right decision in 2013.

  2. proudlycanadian - Oct 26, 2012 at 7:43 PM

    As we all know from our study of The Iliad, Hector was slain by that heel, Achilles in the battle of Troy. The omens are not good for Hector Sanchez.

    • sailcat54 - Oct 26, 2012 at 9:01 PM

      Calm down, Cassandra. As Bruce Bochy frequently, says, “Let me not then die ingloriously and without a struggle, but let me first do some great thing that shall be told among men hereafter.”

      Hector will do just fine.

      • proudlycanadian - Oct 26, 2012 at 9:09 PM

        It was Andromache not Cassandra, who pleaded for Hector not to go into battle. She knew that he would be slaughtered. I simply do not like the omens at all, if the Giants use Hector as the DH.

      • sailcat54 - Oct 26, 2012 at 9:27 PM

        Touché!

  3. nogoodtomedead - Oct 26, 2012 at 7:57 PM

    1) Despite what your “scouts” are telling you- Sanchez is still incredibly raw and stabs at pitches like an over-eager teenager trying to squeeze a breast, and he is hardly a reliable bat

    2) Panda’s value will be far greater after a season in which he is healthy and puts up the .320 avg, 30 hr, and 100 RBI that he should be capable of.

    3) I know its been talked about- but we haven’t seen Posey play third, and he wants to be a catcher. I think the position change will be a good thing down the line- but he’s only 25- his body can take it for a while- plus he has intangible leadership qualities behind the plate (see catching as a rookie in 2010 and the pitching this off-season)

    4) Marketing my friend. Hector don’t sell no Panda hats. Giants ownership is raking it in hand-over fist right now- and if a second title is in the works they are going to be looking to add cars to the gravy train

    5) Who are these stars yet to be named that the trade is for? Arm chair GM’s come up with crazy fantasy scenarios- prospects don’t make the team better- and your over-estimating Panda’s worth

    I think your idea is right- but it is not the time for this scenario

    • temporarilyexiled - Oct 27, 2012 at 10:53 AM

      1. Hector has shown a lot for a rookie. Why everyone gives him a hard time is beyond me.

      2. You’re right about trade value, but if the Panda puts up those kind of numbers, you’d be crazy to trade him. So it really comes down to whether you think he’ll get his act together.

      3. Posey hasn’t shown me anything as a catcher that can’t be duplicated. I’d be just fine with him being another David Wright, and not getting beaten up as a catcher.

      4. Can’t argue with this one. But he still has to keep his act clean, or they’ll find some other animal to market. Plenty of other animals/characters on this team to work with.

      5. It’s Brian Sabean, not any GM. Say what you will. He’s doing pretty well right now. Are you still doubting his ability to come through – if Panda doesn’t – and needs to be moved?

  4. mgflolox - Oct 26, 2012 at 8:19 PM

    I’m sorta stealing this from an old Baseball Prospectus, but in order to speed up the game, whenever Aubrey Huff bats they’re just going to have him throw a two-hopper to the second baseman.

    • ccmf69 - Oct 27, 2012 at 12:56 PM

      I called Huff’s pinch hit appearance perfectly the other night…weak grounder to second…

  5. kardshark1 - Oct 26, 2012 at 8:44 PM

    Hacktor Sanchez versus righties this year: .266/.295/.367. And that’s WITH a .347 BABiP!

    To make things worse, for his career, Anibal Sanchez has reverse splits and is actually better against lefties – even more so for 2012.

    This is either a really bad choice by Bochy or the Giants bench is horrific… Or both.

    • sailcat54 - Oct 26, 2012 at 9:39 PM

      Hell, Zito got an RBI off of Verlander in the first game so why are you so worked up about Sanchez hitting off of Detroit’s #3 and #4 pitchers? He’ll do just fine.

      • historiophiliac - Oct 26, 2012 at 10:02 PM

        #3 and #4 pitchers? I *know* you aren’t talking about Scherzer.

      • sailcat54 - Oct 26, 2012 at 10:48 PM

        Well, maybe not Scherzer. He’ll still do just fine, though.

      • historiophiliac - Oct 26, 2012 at 10:58 PM

        We shall see.

  6. indianbob - Oct 26, 2012 at 9:09 PM

    Get rid of the favorite player of all the kids? You must not like Big Bird either!

  7. raiderfanatic4life - Oct 27, 2012 at 12:51 AM

    I know everybody wants to question the strategic placement of position players by Bruce Bochy, but we as society of baseball fans know very little about what takes place in the mind of one of baseballs most elite masterminds.

    That’s like trying to figure out how Einstein came up with the theory of relativity.

    Point is, he knew the tigers were off for a entire week before coming to AT&T Park, and they spent that week practicing against another team (of very poor quality I’m sure) so starting our 3/4 pitchers against the Tigers 1/2 starters when the Giants clearly had momentum offensively, and defensively was a slice of genius. Now the Giants have their 1/2 starters in Vogelsong, followed by the All-Star game winner Matt Cain on the road where the Giants averaged 5 runs per game leading the National League.

    Bochy right now could put Scooby Doo in as the designated hitter and still put up 5 runs against Sanchez who by the way went 5-7 at home this season between two parks with a 4.35 ERA. So, by no stretch of the imagination would I call that a dominant pitcher.

    I know the Tigers play a lot better at home then they do on the road, so things should equal out, right????

    Wrong!!!

    Vogelsong has a 1.00 ERA in his last six starts, combine that with a 5 runs per game average for the Giants offense, and the tigers being as cold as ice with their heads resting in the defeated position for the last two games.

    In baseball there are two things that supersede talent. One is chemistry, and the other is momentum. The Giants have both with enough talent offensively, and defensively to put this game away come Sunday evening. I will be in shock if they don’t despite what the ESPN talking heads say. Those clowns are about as useless as a boat made of cardboard.

    Go Giants, see you in the parade.

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