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3.19.2005

Nice Thread 

A little news 'n' notes for a Saturday afternoon:

* There's a nice thread about Brian Sabean's draft philosophy over on the McBoofy Chronicles.

* Jerome Williams threw 2 2/3 innings today and struggled with control in only his second spring outing against major leaguers. I wasn't counting pitches and neither was Jon Miller on the radio broadcast, but I'd guess he threw about 60. If J-Rome struggles again in his next outing, the Giants may think about holding him back when the season starts for a couple more turns in the minors. He's missed a chunk of spring training because his dad is seriously ill; Williams lost his mother a couple years ago in his rookie year, I believe.

* Sabean stopped by the radio broadcast booth to answer a few questions. In typical Sabean fashion, he didn't really say anything specific, although it sounds like the Giants will first try internal options to fill Bonds's spot. He also said it's really hard to make a significant trade in spring training, which doesn't mean anything. If he really wants to make a trade, he has the chips to do it.

* Pedro Feliz just blew a play in the outfield. He will be the Giants' left fielder for much of Bonds's absence, which changes the Giants' outfield defense from old and slow to slightly younger, just as slow and far less experienced.

* No word from Sabean whether the Giants will break camp with 11 or 12 pitchers, although the likelihood of Bonds missing April makes one think that Felipe Alou will want more bench flexibility. Jason Ellison seems nearly a lock. Stories in today's papers give Tony Torcato a good shot because he's hitting the ball well and is left handed. When Tucker starts, which he'll do often against RHPs, the Giants would have no other lefties on the bench.

* If Williams needs extra time to get up to speed, the Giants have plenty of options to take his place in early April. They'll need a fifth starter on April 9 against Colorado but have two off-days in the second week of the season, which means Williams could squeeze in a couple starts at Fresno and only miss one big-league turn. This could give them the chance to break camp with four starters, seven relievers (including a long man who would start Apr. 9), and that extra bench guy who'll no doubt be valuable in Bonds's absence.

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