So let’s take a look at the players the Giants have tried at second base this season.
- Ryan Theriot
- Emmanuel Burriss
- Joaquin Arias
- Aubrey Huff
- and now Charlie Culberson
All of that has added up to 0 HR, 6 RBI, .208 AVG, .259 OBP, .216 SLG. In case you haven’t figured it out, that’s the worst for any position other than pitcher on the team.
Even Giants shortstops are hitting .240.
In fact, Giants pitchers have delivered two more doubles than second basemen.
With that as a backdrop, we share news Monday that Freddy Sanchez had ANOTHER setback on his recovery from shoulder surgery.
Except this time, it was his back that flared up.
Manager Bruce Bochy called it a “minor setback.” But no setback for Sanchez can be consider “minor” at this point. Plus, Sanchez battled a sore back when he started spring training in Arizona.
Bochy said Sanchez’s back was bothering him for a few days, but has now become so bad that “he can’t do anything.”
Bochy said earlier this month that there was 50-50 chance of Sanchez returning to the Giants by the end of the month. Those odds went WAY down after Monday’s news. In fact, if you had “September 1 to never” in your office pool on Sanchez’s return date, you’re looking good right now.
So where do the Giants’ go from here?
Well, in the short term, they’ll turn to Charlie Culberson.
Culberson went 1 for 5 in his big-league debut Sunday after getting a late call Saturday for a promotion. 3B Conor Gillaspie was sent down.
Culberson is a 23-year-old who was a sandwich pick out of high school in 2007.
The Giants started him out as a shortstop. But after committing 35 errors in 79 games at Class A Augusta in 2008, they moved him the third base. But he maded 40 errrors in 132 games there for Augusta in 2009.
That led to a move to second base, where he found success. Coincidentally (or not), once Culberson found a defensive position, his offensive numbers improved. After hitting .234 in 2008 and .246 in 2009, he hit .290 with 16 HR, 71 RBI for Class A San Jose in 2010.
He followed that up with 10 HR, 56 RBI and .259 at Double-A Richmond in a league that usually challenges hitters.
He was hitting .284 with 5 HR and 24 RBI, plus 11 doubles for Fresno. It’s that show of power that led the Giants to call on Culberson over the more experienced Brock Bond, who was hitting .380 with a .450 OBP for Fresno. But the 26-year-old Bond had 1 HR and 11 RBI.
But we’ve seen players who were hitting at Fresno come to San Francisco and failed to get the job done. That was the case with Gillaspie, who was sent down as much for his defense as his offense.
So we’ll see what Culberson can do.