Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Freddy Stays At The Bay

It's sort of fitting that bosom buds and infield mates Freddy Sanchez and Jack Splat were cut loose from the mothership within hours of one another this afternoon.

As expected, Sanchez went to the punchless Giants after today's game for Top-50 pitching prospect Tim Alderson, a 20 year-old righty. He was the Giants' 2007 first-round pick (22nd overall).

The Giants are loaded with young arms; besides Tim Lincecum and Matt Cain, they have Madison Bumgarner on the fast track to join them in the minors. Alderson is touted to be the real deal; he and Charlie Morton will be counted on as integral parts of the Pirate's future rotation. Here's the scoop on Alderson:

Real GM gives this report:
"Alderson's fastball is in the low 90's and he has an excellent curve, which will probably be his best pitch. He clearly won't be a dominant strikeout pitcher on any level, but his command and ability to keep the ball down will allow him to be very consistently effective."
Scouting Book gives this synopsis:
"The title of best Giants pitching prospect falls to (Tim) Alderson, the 6-7 righthander from Phoenix.

'Big Tim' has a plus-plus curveball and terrific control for such a young player. In his junior and senior high school year combined, he struck out 173 batters while walking only nine. His fastball is in the 89-92 range, though he has been clocked as high as 94, which is remarkable for a pitcher who does not have a windup: Alderson pitches exclusively from the stretch, and if he can really get close to 95 that way, it's hard to imagine the Giants will bother 'teaching' him anything new.

Just-turned 20, Alderson is unlikely to see significant action in San Francisco before 2011 at the soonest."
His prospect rankings going into 2009:

ScoutingBook: #51
Baseball America 2009: #45
Baseball Prospectus: #60
ESPN: #26

The only concerns GW has picked up concerning him is the low K-rate and his funky delivery, which is supposed to stress his arm. Some in the Giant organization thought he'd be better suited for the bullpen to save wear and tear on the wing.

But it was a hefty price to pay. The popular Sanchez was a batting champion and three-time All Star, and an active member of the community. We remember him finally getting the shot to bump Joe Renda off of third base in 2005 and then knocking Jose Castillo out of the organization when he moved to second in 2007.

And in between, who can forget the roar the Pittsburgh fans gave him when the 2006 All-Star game was at PNC? But that was yesterday, and yesterday's gone.

The Pirates continue on their march towards the brave new world.

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