It's finally baseball season!
Some real baseball was played, then fake baseball was played, and now real baseball, again, will be played. That means it's time for an outlook on each of the teams.
This isn't one of those run-of-the-mill wins/losses predictions posts -- those are designed to irritate fans. And don't get me wrong, they make for a great discussion, but we wanted to have some fun with a vision for the upcoming Giants' season by using GIFS (once again, soft "G").
Let's look at what to expect from the Orange and Black as they begin the 2019 campaign:
Umm ... OK?
Why the shrug GIF, Jess? Well, because nobody knows.
Nobody knows what kind of season the Giants are about to have. However, the outside noise toward this team has more of a pessimistic outlook. Now, anything can happen -- baseball is beautifully weird that way. Like the few recent backup catcher additions of Erik Kratz and Tom Murphy. The Giants released veteran catcher Rene Rivera, who assumedly had the job of Buster Posey's backup on lock.
So the Giants have a ton of catching:
But they're projected across multiple platforms to finish last in the National League West. Which is fair to a certain extent, but come on.
Look to the young ones
This adorable guy doesn't play for the Giants -- at least not yet, but the president of baseball operations, Farhan Zaidi, did say to pay attention to some of the young guys in the organization.
"From our standpoint, for us to have a successful 2019 season, we're going to need contributions from young players that our fans might not be familiar with right now," Zaidi said in an interview during an A's-Giants spring training game.
Connor Joe is one of the recent newbies to join the team. He's 26, so depending on who you ask, he might be young. He played exceptionally well across two minor league teams last season, boasting a .299/.408/.527 line with 17 home runs. Some of these games occurred in the Pacific Coast League, which is a hitter's haven, but it appears he would not have any trouble adjusting to big league play.
Michael Reed also is a new-faced 26-year-old coming to the Giants. He boasted a .286/.286/.286 line with two hits last season across seven games with the Braves.
But his minor league numbers? Whoo boy. He hit .342/.453/.520 with 11 homers between the Braves' Double-A and Triple-A affiliates.
No GIFs for these guys available -- at least not yet.
There are no Bart GIFs ... yet. He's just a youngin' who has yet to make his major league debut. And while I should tell you not to get excited, you should. The 22-year-old has been impressive and not just to prospect fans, but to Bruce Bochy himself.
"He's an eager learner," the Giants manager told NBC Sports Bay Area's Alex Pavlovic last month during spring training. "You watch him and he listens and wants to take in everything. ... I love the way he's carrying himself."
Bochy also talked about Bart's mechanics and how he's more than confident in the catcher's ability to be able to handle the workload behind the plate.
And the power. Oh, that power:
We might not see Bart in a big league uniform until next season, and I just realized I got you too excited for no reason.
Pablo pitching again?
You guys, we might be able to witness the beauty of Pablo Sandoval pitching again.
Which will make us feel like:
But seriously, this could happen again, and it appeared Bochy was very pro-Pandoval pitching.
Try saying that three times fast.
"He's perfect, and he wants to do it," Bochy said. But ... "I hate to think of him pitching again." That's mainly around the fact that if there was a scenario that involved the two-time All-Star pitching, it's more than likely a situation in which the Giants are down -- and by a lot.
No offense, Panda. But at least the option is there. And, hey, across one inning he boasts a 0.00 ERA with a 3.16 FIP.
Better numbers than I have.
The Giants' pitching staff might take shape to something we aren't familiar with, but I can almost guarantee a lot of the success will come from Rodriguez.
Peace out, Boch
Bochy announced in February that he will retire at the end of the 2019 season.
I know. I was sad, too.
"It's time," Bochy said. "It's been an unbelievable ride. There's so much to be grateful for. With the players ... the city ... the fans ..."
He's a probable Hall of Famer, already tallying 1,926 wins as he heads into his final season. That's 11th all time, and the 10 managers ahead of him already have been enshrined in Cooperstown.
Baseball will miss you, Boch.
Real baseball for the Orange and Black starts Thursday as the team heads to San Diego, so at this moment, we don't know what the Giants will do. They're also in an interesting NL West that, yeah, that more than likely will be dominated by the Dodgers, but you never know.