Heading into this month, the Giants were probably playing their best ball of the year. They were still 8-10 games below .500 at the time, but they were only 3.5 games out of first place at one point in early July. However, they lost 7 of their last 9 leading up to the break and the pitching is starting to look tired. The bullpen hasn't been great, but it hasn't been bad either over the first half of the year, but everyone in that pen could use a few days rest and the break couldn't have come at a better time. The offense has been tailing off over the last 2 weeks as well, mainly the run producers in the middle of the order. Aaron Rowand hit only .225 in June after tearing it up and leading all NL outfielders in batting average over the first two months of the year. The teams' cleanup hitter, Bengie Molina, has hit only .234 since June 1st and hasn't homered since May 27th, not quite the numbers you look for from your cleanup spot. The team's number 3 hitter, Randy Winn, has performed more along the lines of a 2nd or 7th place hitter. Winn only has 5 home runs on the year which is low even by his standards. The more disturbing stat for Winn is that he has only one extra base hit since June 20th. Winn's numbers would be a little easier to take if he were hitting for a high average and getting on base a ton, but that's not the case.
Over the next couple weeks leading up to the trade deadline, I will most likely be mentioning something about that in each post. Lately the Giants have had a few players come up in rumors as the Milwaukee Brewers have supposedly inquired about Jack Taschner and Ray Durham. Rickie Weeks has been un-productive for them this year and they would like Durham to come in and platoon with him. The Brew Crew also only sport one left-hander in their pen at the moment and he's a rookie. They would like to solidify that are as they prepare to make a push for the Cubs and/or the wild card spot. Not that Durham and Tascher would get anything major in return, but even a couple mid-level, offensive prospects would be better than having them leave after the year for nothing. They have a few guys who I wouldn't mind nabbing in shortstop Alcides Escobar and Stockton native Chris Errecart. Alcides is probably a stretch, but Errecart could probably be had as he won't ever see time at first base with the Brewers as long as Prince Fielder is there. Again, just pure speculation, but the Brewers are the first team I've hear linked to any Giants players so I thought I'd throw that out there. Either way, the Giants need to be sellers leading up to the deadline. Everybody should be available besides the the obvious keepers and the only ones I see on the big league roster are Tim Lincecum, Matt Cain, Jonathon Sanchez, Brian Wilson, Alex Hinshaw, Merkin Valdez, Jon Bowker and Fred Lewis.
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