The Opening Day lineup of the San Francisco Giants has been announced.
- CF Steven Duggar
- 1B Brandon Belt
- 3B Evan Longoria
- C Buster Posey
- SS Brandon Crawford
- LF Connor Joe
- RF Michael Reed
- 2B Joe Panik
- P Madison Bumgarner
That’s the ninth consecutive Giants opening day for Buster Posey and Brandon Belt, the eighth straight for Brandon Crawford, fifth consecutive for Joe Panik and second straight for Evan Longoria.
The other positions are different from last year, including left field.
Congratulations, Connor Joe. You are the 13th different Opening Day starting left fielder for the Giants over the past 13 Opening Days.
We knew that the Giants’ very unusual streak was going to continue for a 13th year when last year’s Opening Day left fielder – Hunter Pence – signed with the Rangers in the offseason.
Many of us thought that starting left fielder would be Mac Williamson, who was designated for assignment Thursday morning, and not Connor Joe. But don’t feel too bad for Mac.
Being named the Opening Day left fielder practically guarantees that player won’t be playing for the Giants in 2020, if not completely out of baseball.
That’s been the other part of this trend.
Of the 12 players who have preceded Joe as the starting left field on Opening Day for the Giants, 11 were off the Giants’ roster the following season. And seven of those players never played another game in the majors the season following getting that Opening Day start.
Let’s run down the list.
2007 – Barry Bonds
Bonds was not re-signed in 2008 and never played another big-league game.
2008 – Dave Roberts
Yeah, THAT Dave Roberts. Roberts also wasn’t re-signed in 2009 and never played another big-league game.
2009 – Fred Lewis
Lewis was traded to the Blue Jays in 2010. He played 110 games for the Jays in 2010, 81 for the Reds in 2011 and 18 for the Mets in 2012 before finishing his playing days for the Hiroshima Toyo Carp and three independent league teams.
2010 – Mark DeRosa
DeRosa is the only player on this list to return to the Giants the year following his Opening Day start. He’d play in 47 games for the Giants in 2011 before reinjuring his wrist and ending his season. He’d play 48 games for the Nationals in 2012 and 88 for the Jays in 2013.
2011 – Pat Burrell
Burrell did not re-sign with the Giants in 2012 and never played another big-league game.
2012 – Aubrey Huff
Huff did not re-sign with the Giants 2013 and never played another big-league game.
2013 — Andres Torres
Torres was not re-signed by the Giants in 2014 and never played another big-league game
2014 – Mike Morse
Morse signed with the Marlins in 2015. He’d play 53 games in Miami plus another 45 for the Pirates in 2015. He’d play another six in for the Bucs in 2016 before playing 24 more back with Giants in 2017.
2015 – Nori Aoki
Aoki did not re-sign with the Giants in 2016. He played 118 games for the Mariners in 2016, 35 for the Astros, 12 for the Jays and 27 for the Mets in 2017.
2016 – Angel Pagan
Pagan was not re-signed by the Giants in 2017 and has not appeared in another big-league game
2017 – Jarrett Parker
Parker was designated for assignment by the Giants in 2018. He signed a minor-league deal with the Angels but has not appeared in another big-league game
2018 – Hunter Pence
Pence signed a minor-league deal with the Rangers in 2019 and will be the Opening Day lineup for the Rangers as the designated hitter.
Here’s another stat about this post-Barry Bonds trend: In 2008, Amy Gutierrez was hired as the sideline reporter for Giants game by NBC Bay Area.
Coincidence? I’ll let you decide.