You'll recall...well, if you were reading last fall, you'll recall that among his weak points, Brian Sabean has failed to get a halfway decent first baseman since J.T. Snow stopped hitting. Well, I mean stopped hitting for good; J.T. had plenty of years in which he didn't hit. As I said then (and these are OPS+ numbers):
2005 Snow 85I should update: Ishikawa ended the year at 85.
2006 Hillebrand 74
2007 Klesko 92
2008 Bowker 83
2009 Ishikawa 83
I really don't know how to convey just how bad this is. To go five years without a regular first baseman reaching a 95 OPS+...how about this. If you're old enough, you might remember Mark Belanger, a famous non-hitting SS for the Orioles. Belanger's best five seasons? 100, 97, 95, 75, 64.
How do you wind up with a five-year stretch of first basemen who hit like Mark Belanger?
So, this year, Sabean is going for the Klesko/Hillebrand model, and not the Ishikawa/Bowker/Niekro version: Aubrey Huff.
Aubrey Huff through Thursday? 314 OBP/373 SLG. OPS+ 79. Welcome to the Giants, Aubrey Huff!
And of course the punch line is that he's apparently so bad in the field that they need to keep Ishikawa around to caddy for him. Oh, that's right -- the last two failed 1Bs are still hanging out on the roster, and neither of them has hit a lick for far this year, either.
Nice work, Brian Sabean.