When the news about Melky Cabrera's failed drug test and 50-game suspension broke on Wednesday, it stunned a lot of people. Actually, probably all people, save for the Melkman and agents.
The group of folks who were shocked includes, apparently, Giants General Manager Brian Sabean who said on Thursday that he was "taken aback" and felt like he got "punched in the stomach" with the news.
"I was so taken aback it was deflating," Sabean said. "I was actually in the meeting with Bruce when he talked to the players and I kind of got emotional because I didn't see something like this coming. We've all been around this game a long time. You get used to making changes and adjustments.
"Things happen out of left field, a lot like life, and this was one of those things you're punched in the stomach with. But you've got no choice but to figure out how to move on."
For the Giants, moving on isn't easy. Melky wasn't their best offensive player at the time of his suspension (Buster Posey was), but Cabrera's the reason the offense didn't fall apart in the first half, and he was having a season that would at least put him in the discussion for MVP.
That's obviously laughable now, even if Melky can still win the freaking batting title despite missing the final 45 games of the season. But that hollow title won't help the Giants fill out the lineup -- they'll probably need some help from outside.
Sabean's not that optimistic the team can really get much though.
"Not too compelling or interesting," Sabean said when asked about bringing in players off waivers or via signing.
That's to be expected, given the time of year it is and the lack of options truly available to the Giants. They're simply going to need other guys to step up while Melky's off counting the millions of dollars that he won't be getting as a result of his stunning mistake.