Giants fans need to keep things in perspective this spring

Giants pitcher Jeff Samardzija. (Photo by Jennifer Stewart/Getty Images)
Giants pitcher Jeff Samardzija. (Photo by Jennifer Stewart/Getty Images) /

While it is fun to track the ups and downs of players during spring training, San Francisco Giants fans should take this preseason with a grain of salt.

San Francisco Giants spring baseball is underway from the Cactus League, which inevitably means there will be excitement in the air.

It also means that for the next month, the ups and downs of spring training will be analyzed and overanalyzed. It is only natural for baseball fans to do so after a long offseason layoff.

However, it is important to keep some perspective while tracking progress for the San Francisco Giants this spring training. While that is always the case when it comes to spring training, it is especially important this year with the team entering what is widely viewed as a rebuilding season.

The roster is bound to be in flux through the year, even more than usual. That means the roster is bound to be in flux throughout the year, even more than usual. Guys will be called up and sent down at such a frequent rate that it will be tough to keep track of who is on the active roster.

So while it is fun to monitor player stats in spring training, at the end of the day it simply doesn’t matter a whole lot.

Consider the case of Chris Marrero.

He tore it up for the Giants during spring training in 2017, posting a .979 OPS with seven home runs and 14 RBI in 71 plate appearances to win a spot on the Opening Day roster.

However, after a disappointing 5-for-38 (.132 BA) start to the regular season, he was released on May 25. It just goes to show how fickle spring training success can be.

That’s not to say that spring training stats do not matter. It is just important to keep in mind that a poor spring and a red-hot spring should both be taken with a grain of salt. Breaking pitches do less and balls fly a bit farther in the Arizona heat, so stats can wind up skewed as a result.

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So by all means, watch games on TV and read all the game recaps and player write-ups the internet has to offer. Just try not to read too much into the day-to-day “who’s hot” and “who’s cold” way of thinking that can often take hold.