Aug 9, 2015; Chicago, IL, USA; San Francisco Giants left fielder Nori Aoki (center) leaves the game after being hit by pitch with the trainer (left) and manager Bruce Bochy (right) against the Chicago Cubs during the third inning at Wrigley Field. Mandatory Credit: David Banks-USA TODAY Sports
I can only imagine who the San Francisco Giants would be matching up against in the playoffs had their outfielders been able to stay healthy. As we now know, the injuries were too big a hump to overcome and the Giants front-office moves were just not enough.
Lets calculate the amount of games each of the expected Opening Day starters missed this year: Angel Pagan–29 games, Nori Aoki–69 games, and, of course, Hunter Pence–110 games. This does not even include Giants fourth outfielder Gregor Blanco missing 47 games.
Although I may be a Journalism major, lets try and do some mathematics here: each outfield position totals 162 games and there are three outfield positions–this means there is a total of 486 games (3 x 162=486) to be played among outfielders per season. Between Aoki, Pagan, and Pence, they missed a total of 208 games. Consequently, the expected starting outfielders missed almost half of the total amount of games this year. If we dare add Blanco into that equation, it just gets even uglier.
I think we get the point–Giants outfielders battled through injuries all year long. These setbacks led the Giants front-office to make desperate moves in the attempt to keep track with the Los Angeles Dodgers. Beginning with the acquisition of Marlon Byrd, then the trade to get Alejandro de Aza, and finally conceding the NL West and making way for the revolving door of September call-ups.
May 2, 2015; San Francisco, CA, USA; San Francisco Giants outfielders left fielder Nori Aoki (23) and right fielder Justin Maxwell (43) and center fielder Angel Pagan (16) celebrate their 5-4 win over the Los Angeles Angels at AT&T Park. Mandatory Credit: Lance Iversen-USA TODAY Sports.
While we have talked about how the infielders held the team on their back in the previous Infield Edition, it is fair to say that the constant DL stints and unfortunate circumstances are the main reasons for San Francisco missing the playoffs. For our superstitious fans, you just stick to your theory that it wasn’t an even year.
For us more realistic guys, lets take a look at the final report cards for the 2015 San Francisco Giants outfielders.
Next: Left Fielders