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The Czar

Hector Sanchez 2012 Season Outlook -- Future Stud

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This guy won't play much unless Buster Posey goes down again, but if and when he gets a starting gig, he is going to be a fantasy monster.

He has a quick compact stroke and is very patient at the plate. He is a switch hitter with an identical swing from both sides that looks very smooth.

For right now he is just Posey's caddy, but this guy has a major future if he can actually prove that he can catch. He looked good back there today with Zito and is expected to catch Zito regularly.

His minor league numbers are going to be a little bit deceptive because he is so young at 22. He hit .302 in 52 games in high-A ball last season with 11 HR and then the Giants jumped him past AA to AAA and he only hit .261 with one HR in 46 games. I believe they jumped him up to Triple-A after the Posey injury to see if he was an option down the stretch and they actually brought him up for a little while. But, he was only 21-years old and that was a huge jump. Despite the leap to Triple-A he managed to cut his K% and increase his BB%.

He wasn't expected to make the club when spring started, but he lit it up and the Giants decided to keep him as the only backup to Posey on the roster. We all know that Posey is supposed to sit quite a bit this year (he has looked great by the way), so this is a big indication that they expect Sanchez to be completely ready and to play quite a bit, up to 35-40 games.

Anyway, I know that he doesn't offer much if any value right now, but keep this guy on your radar. He is absolutely legit as a hitter and I could easily see a future .300 hitter with 20-25 HR power. Think a patient Pablo Sandoval. BTW- remember that I was the first one to post about Pablo on this board when he was first brought up. This guy is Pablo 2.0. He just doesn't have a full-time position yet.

File it away.

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http://mlb.mlb.com/mlb/gameday/index.jsp?gid=2012_04_09_sfnmlb_colmlb_1&mode=box#gid=2012_04_09_sfnmlb_colmlb_1&mode=video

Here is a video of his RBI single today with the bases loaded. Look at that swing. Beautiful. It was a 2-2 breaking ball and he just stayed right on it and squared it. I love the slow motion shot at the end of the frame.

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Two words...Juan Francisco.

(Just busting your balls, LY...I owe you a stogie)

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Any idea how this guy will be getting regular play time in the future? IIRC Belt is the first baseman of the future and Posey is the catcher. Can Sanchez play any other positions?

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Any chance he can play 1B? If his bat is as good as you say, they are wasting him unless they're going to move Posey to 1B long-term.

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Any chance he can play 1B? If his bat is as good as you say, they are wasting him unless they're going to move Posey to 1B long-term.

It's just impossible to say at this point. Belt better start hitting or this guy could steal his job permanently or push Posey there (along with Posey's injury) permanently.

One thing about the Giants, they feel like they can teach any position (if the guy is athletic enough) and they must have some of the best fielding coaches in the business. NOBODY thought that Pablo could move from catcher to third base and he played at a gold glove level last season. If Sanchez can hit like I think he can, they will find another position for him, first base included.

He is a switch hitter that looks like he can swing it from both sides too, so his bat could play vs. righties and lefties.

Right now the Giants need to sit BOTH Belt and Huff vs. Lefties and play either Pill or Posey at first on those days. If they opt for Posey, that means more time for Sanchez behind the plate. The big question mark is whether his defense is good enough to justify Posey playing first vs. Lefties.

I've been a big proponent of Belt getting a shot this season, but right now they don't even look comparable vs. major league pitching. Sanchez is compact and quick to the ball and looks VERY confident in there. Belt looks scared as hell and is swinging right through stuff. He better figure it out quickly or this guy is absolutely going to make a move on playing more catcher or First base.

I don't think they are wasting him. Those 40 games that Posey sits are far too important, especially when your other options were Stewart and Whiteside. Those 40 games could decide whether they make the playoffs or not. There just isn't a full-time option available like Pablo had. Sandoval was in a very similar situation as a switch hitting catcher that nobody knew about that was just too good to sit. Pablo didn't have anyone blocking him at third though and learned it on the fly. He had ZERO experience at third base and they just threw him out there midseason as a 22-year-old. Almost unheard of at the big league level. And Pablo actually made it work. Even more unheard of. This kid is seemingly blocked by Posey and Belt though, so it's tough to say what they can/will do. I want to see him play more, but where is going to be a huge problem. I think he is going to be seeing a lot of pinch hitting opportunities down the line as well though.

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Great stuff, thanks for the great insight, as always. Reading about the Giants really makes me miss the Bay Area... damn Boston fans just aren't the same :P

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I mean it wasn't that gorgeous a swing on that RBI single. Smooth, contact swing, but not what I was expecting to see.

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It's just impossible to say at this point. Belt better start hitting or this guy could steal his job permanently or push Posey there (along with Posey's injury) permanently.

One thing about the Giants, they feel like they can teach any position (if the guy is athletic enough) and they must have some of the best fielding coaches in the business. NOBODY thought that Pablo could move from catcher to third base and he played at a gold glove level last season. If Sanchez can hit like I think he can, they will find another position for him, first base included.

He is a switch hitter that looks like he can swing it from both sides too, so his bat could play vs. righties and lefties.

Right now the Giants need to sit BOTH Belt and Huff vs. Lefties and play either Pill or Posey at first on those days. If they opt for Posey, that means more time for Sanchez behind the plate. The big question mark is whether his defense is good enough to justify Posey playing first vs. Lefties.

I've been a big proponent of Belt getting a shot this season, but right now they don't even look comparable vs. major league pitching. Sanchez is compact and quick to the ball and looks VERY confident in there. Belt looks scared as hell and is swinging right through stuff. He better figure it out quickly or this guy is absolutely going to make a move on playing more catcher or First base.

I don't think they are wasting him. Those 40 games that Posey sits are far too important, especially when your other options were Stewart and Whiteside. Those 40 games could decide whether they make the playoffs or not. There just isn't a full-time option available like Pablo had. Sandoval was in a very similar situation as a switch hitting catcher that nobody knew about that was just too good to sit. Pablo didn't have anyone blocking him at third though and learned it on the fly. He had ZERO experience at third base and they just threw him out there midseason as a 22-year-old. Almost unheard of at the big league level. And Pablo actually made it work. Even more unheard of. This kid is seemingly blocked by Posey and Belt though, so it's tough to say what they can/will do. I want to see him play more, but where is going to be a huge problem. I think he is going to be seeing a lot of pinch hitting opportunities down the line as well though.

That you are so low on Belt really makes me question your credibility. It's been 4 games and he has nothing left to prove in the minors. He is young and he needs to be allowed to go through growing pains at the ML level.

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That you are so low on Belt really makes me question your credibility. It's been 4 games and he has nothing left to prove in the minors. He is young and he needs to be allowed to go through growing pains at the ML level.

You may want to check out his posts in the Belt thread before you come to such a swift conclusion.....I think you've interpreted his feelings incorrectly....

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This guy won't play much unless Buster Posey goes down again, but if and when he gets a starting gig, he is going to be a fantasy monster.

He has a quick compact stroke and is very patient at the plate. He is a switch hitter with an identical swing from both sides that looks very smooth.

For right now he is just Posey's caddy, but this guy has a major future if he can actually prove that he can catch. He looked good back there today with Zito and is expected to catch Zito regularly.

His minor league numbers are going to be a little bit deceptive because he is so young at 22. He hit .302 in 52 games in high-A ball last season with 11 HR and then the Giants jumped him past AA to AAA and he only hit .261 with one HR in 46 games. I believe they jumped him up to Triple-A after the Posey injury to see if he was an option down the stretch and they actually brought him up for a little while. But, he was only 21-years old and that was a huge jump. Despite the leap to Triple-A he managed to cut his K% and increase his BB%.

He wasn't expected to make the club when spring started, but he lit it up and the Giants decided to keep him as the only backup to Posey on the roster. We all know that Posey is supposed to sit quite a bit this year (he has looked great by the way), so this is a big indication that they expect Sanchez to be completely ready and to play quite a bit, up to 35-40 games.

Anyway, I know that he doesn't offer much if any value right now, but keep this guy on your radar. He is absolutely legit as a hitter and I could easily see a future .300 hitter with 20-25 HR power. Think a patient Pablo Sandoval. BTW- remember that I was the first one to post about Pablo on this board when he was first brought up. This guy is Pablo 2.0. He just doesn't have a full-time position yet.

File it away.

The way the Giants jumped Pablo through the minors is very similar to what's happened with Sanchez. Good info.

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That you are so low on Belt really makes me question your credibility. It's been 4 games and he has nothing left to prove in the minors. He is young and he needs to be allowed to go through growing pains at the ML level.

Czar has tons of credibility. If you had read these forums for more than a few months, you would know that.

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Great analysis as always Czar. Would be nice to see him get some more at bats somewhere on that team. They can use all the offense they can get. If he can maximize his at bats on Poseys off days and shine in pinch hitting opportunities, think theres any chance that he or Posey at some point shift to 1B if belt doesnt work out or in the OF once Huffs contract clears the books? Way too early for me to speculate on Belt not cutting it though.

That you are so low on Belt really makes me question your credibility. It's been 4 games and he has nothing left to prove in the minors. He is young and he needs to be allowed to go through growing pains at the ML level.

Probably need to go back and reread the content, Czar is as credible and informed if not more so than anyone you will happen to find on here.

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So hoes does Sanchez fit into the picture with Susac and Tommy Joesph somewhat highly regarded C and c/1B prospects as well?

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That you are so low on Belt really makes me question your credibility. It's been 4 games and he has nothing left to prove in the minors. He is young and he needs to be allowed to go through growing pains at the ML level.

Question my credibility. I don't give a s---.

The reality is that I've probably watched way more Brandon Belt at-bats than you have as in ALL of them.

He had a giant hole on the inner half by his hands last season. Pitchers know that and have exploited it. For some reason he seems to be able to hit at the AAA level, but as soon as he is in the bigs, they bust him right in on those hands again.

I was encouraged in spring because he was actually turning on that pitch. However, as soon as the season started, that hole was there again. Sure, 10 AB's is a small sample size, but he isn't even fouling that pitch off again. He is blowing right through it again. I also don't like how much his bat moves when it is going through the zone.

I've also been around and on these boards for a long time. When you bring something like this to the table, you better have more than me questioning an unproven rookie backing you.

Here is the reality, a guy that is pressing and struggling is way different than a guy with a clear hole in his swing. Right now Belt has a clear hole. I thought he had closed it, but I'm less than encouraged so far. I sincerely hope he does. It's frustrating to watch pitchers do the same exact thing to him over and over and over again and he can't hit it. Belt is very talented and I'm hoping he figures it out. Believe me, I'm really hoping he can figure it out. This is more than just a little bit of a concern though. He is swinging right through it. I've seen too many guys put up huge numbers in the Giants organization and have a hole that they can't figure out like John Bowker and the back foot slider and Todd Linden and pretty much any major league breaking ball. Right now, Belt looks scared and frustrated because he can't hit that pitch and he knows it. It's more than just a little bit of a concern for him and in the Giants organization. If he can't figure it out soon, Brett Pill and Hector Sanchez are going to shove him back to the minors. That is a reality.

If you are just looking at the minor league numbers, Belt looks like a gem. If you are actually watching his AB's, you would know where I'm coming from with the concern.

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So hoes does Sanchez fit into the picture with Susac and Tommy Joesph somewhat highly regarded C and c/1B prospects as well?

This is an excellent question. Check out the recent interview on Fangraphs with the Giants scouting director John Barr. It sounds like catcher is just a huge priority within the organization. Somebody is going to have to be a trade chip, probably like Grandal was in Cincy. Teams are going to want one of these guys.

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This is an excellent question. Check out the recent interview on Fangraphs with the Giants scouting director John Barr. It sounds like catcher is just a huge priority within the organization. Somebody is going to have to be a trade chip, probably like Grandal was in Cincy. Teams are going to want one of these guys.

Great info in this thread in general Czar. You stuff about Belt is something only someone watching him everyday can tell.

Can you hop over to the Lincecum thread an weigh in on your thoughts on him?

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Question my credibility. I don't give a s---.

The reality is that I've probably watched way more Brandon Belt at-bats than you have as in ALL of them.

He had a giant hole on the inner half by his hands last season. Pitchers know that and have exploited it. For some reason he seems to be able to hit at the AAA level, but as soon as he is in the bigs, they bust him right in on those hands again.

I was encouraged in spring because he was actually turning on that pitch. However, as soon as the season started, that hole was there again. Sure, 10 AB's is a small sample size, but he isn't even fouling that pitch off again. He is blowing right through it again. I also don't like how much his bat moves when it is going through the zone.

I've also been around and on these boards for a long time. When you bring something like this to the table, you better have more than me questioning an unproven rookie backing you.

Here is the reality, a guy that is pressing and struggling is way different than a guy with a clear hole in his swing. Right now Belt has a clear hole. I thought he had closed it, but I'm less than encouraged so far. I sincerely hope he does. It's frustrating to watch pitchers do the same exact thing to him over and over and over again and he can't hit it. Belt is very talented and I'm hoping he figures it out. Believe me, I'm really hoping he can figure it out. This is more than just a little bit of a concern though. He is swinging right through it. I've seen too many guys put up huge numbers in the Giants organization and have a hole that they can't figure out like John Bowker and the back foot slider and Todd Linden and pretty much any major league breaking ball. Right now, Belt looks scared and frustrated because he can't hit that pitch and he knows it. It's more than just a little bit of a concern for him and in the Giants organization. If he can't figure it out soon, Brett Pill and Hector Sanchez are going to shove him back to the minors. That is a reality.

If you are just looking at the minor league numbers, Belt looks like a gem. If you are actually watching his AB's, you would know where I'm coming from with the concern.

I know about the hole he has on the inside half. I haven't just been looking at his minor league numbers. It sounded like he had figured it out in spring like you mentioned and if/when he goes back to AAA, is he really going to even get enough AB's where he is challenged inside in the minors? My point was that he needs to be given a chance for regular PT instead of being jerked around. And like you said, it's only 10 AB's. Is the Giants offense really that worse off with him in the lineup struggling for the time being? I don't think so. I'd say give him a month of AB's before you make a rash decision. But I doubt the Giants will be so patient.

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I know about the hole he has on the inside half. I haven't just been looking at his minor league numbers. It sounded like he had figured it out in spring like you mentioned and if/when he goes back to AAA, is he really going to even get enough AB's where he is challenged inside in the minors? My point was that he needs to be given a chance for regular PT instead of being jerked around. And like you said, it's only 10 AB's. Is the Giants offense really that worse off with him in the lineup struggling for the time being? I don't think so. I'd say give him a month of AB's before you make a rash decision. But I doubt the Giants will be so patient.

See, this, I totally agree with this and it is a solid post.

I don't think you had to "question my credibility" though. I think I've proven myself enough on these boards to have gained a little bit more respect than that. I want to see Belt succeed, I really do. He deserves a shot. He also needs to make contact in key situations like when there is a guy on third and no outs. Right now he isn't even doing that. And then you see Brett Pill come in and hit a pinch hit HR. If Belt doesn't get it done, he does have some competition. EVERYONE wants to see Belt do it though, myself included.

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See, this, I totally agree with this and it is a solid post.

I don't think you had to "question my credibility" though. I think I've proven myself enough on these boards to have gained a little bit more respect than that. I want to see Belt succeed, I really do. He deserves a shot. He also needs to make contact in key situations like when there is a guy on third and no outs. Right now he isn't even doing that. And then you see Brett Pill come in and hit a pinch hit HR. If Belt doesn't get it done, he does have some competition. EVERYONE wants to see Belt do it though, myself included.

Czar, I'm guessing the batting stance adjustments made by the Giants staff this spring directed at closing the hole in his swing. From your observations it sounds like these changes worked during ST but have now been lost as we have moved into the regular season. Is this the correct read?

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LOL @ questioning the Czar's credibility. He may be right or he may be wrong about Sanchez. But Czar is in fact one of the MOST credible posters on these forums. THAT is a FACT.

Thanks for pointing Sanchez out Czar. He was completely off the radar for me.

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certainly not questioning Czar on Hector's hitting, but I saw Lincy pitch to Hector in this game on my last day in Phoenix and he had trouble blocking Tim's stuff then. i know Timmy is damn wild anyway, but Hector will need to work on blocking dirtballs to get consistent playing time at C imo, whether in SF or elsewhere via trade.

http://mlb.mlb.com/mlb/gameday/index.jsp?gid=2012_04_01_sfnmlb_milmlb_1&mode=box

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Czar's boy is off to a pretty good start. and Amy G said yesterday that Pablo Jr has been taking grounders at 1B in an attempt to keep his bat in the lineup. not music to my ears since Belt is starting to come around, but just thought the RW crowd should know.

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Is Sanchez worth dropping Saltalamacchia or A.J Ellis for in a dynasty league that scores OPS?

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I don't want to take this off-topic.... but I guess it depends on if you need playing time out of those two catchers. A.J. Ellis is already in his 30s, and while I think he's legit, if it's a dynasty league go for it.

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