Outfielder Gregor Blanco is a non-roster invitee who hasn’t played in the majors in two seasons. He had an injury-riddled 2011 in the minors.
And yet the vibe around media members in the Cactus League is the speedy outfielder will be on the Giants’ 25-man roster to open the 2012 season.
After watching Blanco use his speed to leg a single to right into a double in Saturday’s 3-3 tie with the Dodgers, Alex Pavlovic of the San Jose Mercury noted how a couple of opposing beat writers reacted.
“Gee-whiz, he’s fast,” said one.
“Sheesh, he can fly,” said another.
OK, OK. Those aren’t direct quotes. But MoreSplashHits is a family fan blog, so we cleaned up the language.
Pavlovic noted it was the third time this spring that he’s heard other beat writers marvel at Blanco’s speed. “Likely won’t be the last,” Pavlovic added.
In another post, Pavlovic shared a conversation he had with a Venezuelan writer, who said Blanco has been the best player in the Venezuelan Winter League the past five years, calling him “an on-base percentage wizard.” Blanco was the VWL MVP this past winter.
On-base wizards have been a myth on the Giants rosters in past seasons, so his addition would be appreciated.
This spring, Blanco is hitting .444 (16 for 36) with 10 runs, two doubles, five walks, a .512 OBP and a major-league best seven steals in eight attempts.
Mark Purdy of the San Jose Mercury News says Blanco has already earned a spot as the No. 4 outfielder. For his impressions, click here.