Eli Whiteside has been claimed off waivers by the New York Yankees. He was the third catcher in the depth chart behind Buster Posey and Hector Sanchez and over his time with the Giants will leave with two World Series rings. Something I didn’t pick up on probably because I didn’t visit his player page enough was that Whiteside played with the Orioles in 2005. He was also in the Minnesota farm system, then the Giants system. Dustin Eli Whiteside had 10 HR and 102 H with the G’s over the 2009-2012 seasons in 199 G. Not sure if this means it’s the end of Chris Stewart‘s time in New York, but I’d guess it will at least be one of the two guys fighting for the backup role in Spring Training if CS is held on to and/or extended a minor-league invite.
By the way, Yankees, you like Giants catchers? Mind if we sign Bengie Molina for a day so you can acquire him and give the Giants a useful reliever?
Lastly, this is the time where you fondly remember Eli for his hop-fest in front of Shane Victorino and has face slide into second base.
Yesterday we took a look at the pitching portion of the roster which I estimated to be around $90MM and the Bay Area News Group have posted their arbitration estimates for the whole team here and the numbers aren’t that far off from the estimates I shot forth. Now we take a look at the hitters that are set to come back (or are under payroll), arbitration eligible, and free agents. I’m sure you’re aware of the free agents on the item.
Under Contract in 2012
Aaron Rowand ($13.6MM, released in 2011 due to attitude and sucking. 2012 is his last year.)
Aubrey Huff ($10MM, has option for 2013)
Freddy Sanchez ($6MM)
Buster Posey ($575K in 2011, under control until 2016)
Brandon Belt ($414K in 2011)
Arbitration Eligible (Salary in 2011, Years of Arbitration Left)
Jeff Keppinger ($2.3MM, 1)
Andres Torres ($2.2MM, 2)
Mike Fontenot ($1.05MM, 2)
Pablo Sandoval ($500K, 3)
Nate Schierholtz ($432.5K, 3)
Eli Whiteside ($425K, 3)
Free Agents (Salary in 2011)
Carlos Beltran ($20.07MM)
Cody Ross ($6.3MM)
Mark DeRosa ($6MM)
Orlando Cabrera ($1MM)
Pat Burrell ($1MM)
Miguel Tejada ($6.5MM)
The big question on that arbitration eligible and free agent list is “who will be brought back?” Well, consider that we already have $31.5MM committed to the first category listed and that already puts the Giants at about $120MM of payroll. “Holy F***,” you say. I agree. So which arbitration eligible hitters are tendered? I’m going to guess 4 — Kepp, Panda, Nate, Fonty. However, I expect the Giants to trade Keppinger for something after tendered like a giveaway night that actually gives every fan a bobblehead so they don’t have to spend all day in line for an item that costs the price of admission. For the 3 that stay, I expect it to be somewhere around $5MM for all of them put together. Now that’s $36.5MM for our hitters. So now what? The payroll’s approximately $125MM and you want another hitter? God, you’re selfish. Oh, you want a leadoff hitter? What, have you been good this year or something? Oh, you gave your top prospect away? That was nice of you.
I’m not even going to guess who they Giants might go after. Some have said Coco Crisp. Just what we need, another mascot. Johnny Damon? Hasn’t played CF consistently in years. Andruw Jones? Fits the profile, I suppose. An Aaron Rowand-lite! Josh Willingham? Same as Damon. Jason Kubel? Might as well sign Beltran. Juan Pierre? That would be interesting, to say the least.
So I guess the question will be: How much will Sabes and Co. overpay for Coco and will they have the funds to bring Beltran back to platoon Nate/Belt? The possibilities are limited, and they are definitely frustrating to think through.