A Tale of Three Shortstops
Orlando Cabrera is the newest San Francisco Giant trying to establish himself as a force in the drive for a second consecutive World Series title. His post-season track record is eye-opening. He has played on teams entering the playoffs for six of the last seven seasons, the past four in succession.
This strongly implies that Cabrera has some of the intangibles that managers look for when trying to bolster up a team for the stretch drive. What it does not address is that the Giants must now decide how to rearrange our three shortstops.
Brandon Crawford has done everything on the field defensively that could be asked of him. Where he has struggled is at the plate. His .190 batting average would probably be acceptable, if we were playing out the string, as are so many other teams. But we need more productivity at shortstop than Crawford can supply. His range is as good as any recent applicant for the position has been able to provide, so that is a very bright spot, but he has never played at the Triple A level, so he needs to go down and play every day, and take in some better pitching until he gets to a higher level.
What about Miggy? Miguel Tejada has been a trooper. When responding to negative media criticism, recently, Tejada pointed out that he has played second base this season for the first time in his career; he has also played thirty-eight games at third base, filling in for the Panda.
In all fairness to Tejada, I must point out that being willing to help the team, by being available to play various positions, is not conducive to furnishing stats that appear flashy. I have said that Tejada brings intangibles to the game that cannot be measured quantitatively. However, he has not had consistent enough playing time at shortstop to make a legitimate claim on the spot.
Sabean has brought Cabrera on board; this indicates that Orlando will be our starting shortstop. The best thing that Tejada can do, is continue to make himself available to play where Bochy needs him most. With Crawford and Emanuel Burris back down in Fresno, and Freddy still not back, I think Miggy will see plenty of action. If it is true, as Miggy says, that he only wants to help the team, then I think Miguel Tejada will do exactly that, utilizing those intangibles to help the Giants get back to the Show.