I know there's a lot going on in baseball, but just Giants today, folks.
I was okay with Lincecum. I was happy with Hudson. But I'm really not happy at all with bringing Ryan Vogelsong back.
To begin with: he was awful in 2013. He was just fine in 2012, and quite good in 2011. So we're talking about a pitcher who will be 36 next year and, really, has very little chance of being better than league average.
Granted: a low-priced league-average starting pitcher isn't a bad idea.
Take a team with four solid starters and a hole, and adding a cheap starter -- even one with a low ceiling -- makes a lot of sense.
But the Giants aren't that team. They're counting on a bounce-back season for Cain (seems likely), a bounce-back season from Hudson (somewhat less likely, but he needs less of a bounce-back), and a bounce-back season for Lincecum (really not all that likely).And that's just to get all of them to league-average.
To put it another way: the biggest problem with the Giants last year wasn't that they forgot to have a real left fielder; it was the starting pitching. And Sabean's plan is pretty much to hope that it was just an off year for everyone. Or two years, in some cases.
Or, to put it yet another way...Bumgarner and Cain could be quite good, but the other three spots now all have basically a league-average ceiling. Oh, you can make a case for Hudson to do better than that. But it's hard to see. And what's really easy for me to imagine is Vogelson puttering along, doing just well enough that he stays in the rotation despite actually hurting the team.
I don't know...Vogelsong was a great fairy tale. A terrific story. But hoping that it repeats itself? It's really pushing things.