SF Giants News

What Should The Giants Do With Ailing Jonathan Sanchez?

By Bryan Rose

Ho hum, just another typical Jonathan Sanchez start last night. 4.2 innings pitched, six base on balls. 59 walks on the season in 89.2 innings.

When Sanchez is right, there’s no doubt about it – he’s a top pitcher. Stuff wise, one of the most un-hittable in the league judging by his 5th ranked (and 1st, last season) batting average against. The elusive command though continues to be his downfall.

If you think Dirty is worried however, think again. Check out Sanchez’s reaction when pressed about his spot in the rotation:

"“I’m the second starter in the rotation, so no pressure,” he said. “Nothing is wrong with me. I’m fine. I’m healthy. I’m just having a hard time.”"

Despite Sanchez’s feelings, Giants manager Bruce Bochy doesn’t exactly share those same sentiments:

"Bruce Bochy said he would meet with pitching coach Dave Righetti late Friday and take Sanchez aside on Saturday before deciding what to do. But Bochy didn’t shy away from the suggestion that Sanchez could be skipped or sent to the bullpen.“Just watching him, I can tell he’s lost some confidence,” Bochy said. “It’s just not happening. He’s all over the board, and that’s not him. We may keep throwing him out there. We may back him off. We’ll see. But getting (Barry) Zito back does give us that option.”"

Oh boy. You want to talk about some options there. Continue to watch Sanchez struggle with his control or replace him with Zito for the time being. Is option three a hot poker to the eye? I think I might take that…

In all seriousness though, the Giants are in a mini-bind. Sanchez just looks awful right now. In his final 21 starts from last season (including the playoffs), Sanchez only walked over three a total of four times – so far in 2011? Eight, in just sixteen starts. And the alternative – Barry Zito? Sanchez has a far better BAA (we’re talking significant) and somehow, even a better WHIP than Zito has had the past two seasons plus. If that’s not a scary thought….

So fans of the black and orange, how say you? What’s your quick fix?