Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Sabean and Bochy: They're back! (Unfortunately...But Neukom did it right)

It's official. Brian Sabean will be back as general manager and Bruce Bochy will return as manager for the San Francisco Giants. I hated it when I first heard it, wished against it with all my heart, but unfortunately, they're back and I have to live with it, despite my frustration with the pair these past few years (though I don't feel I am alone in my dismay).

However, there is a silver lining in this deal. The two-year contracts. Kudos Bill Neukom. Thank freaking God the Giants have an owner who knows what the hell he is doing.

Now, I know you're asking, "What the hell is so special? He re-signed a pair of aging, old-school (in a bad way) morons. How did Neukom handle this the right way?"

The two-year extensions are huge in my mind because it puts pressure on Sabean and Bochy to produce next year. Anything beyond two years and the Giants would be screwed. If the Giants tanked, finished in last place next year in the National League West, and Sabean and Bochy had signed three or more years extensions at this time, Neukom couldn't afford to fire the pair. You can't fire guys and eat contract money in this economy. It's impossible. You want to know why Omar Minaya has a job? Because he has a humongous contract and the Mets can't afford to take his salary in addition to the salary they have to pay to a new GM.

And this is a Mets organization that ate a humongous amount of money (including the cash from Phillips' asinine acquisitions) to fire Steve Philips and hire Omar Minaya about five years ago.

Yet the two year structure is great for this organization because if the Giants falter next year, they can afford to fire Bochy and Sabean because it won't be that bad absorbing just one more year of salary. One year is nothing. The freaking New York Knicks absorbed god knows how many years of Allan Houston's contract and still were able to function...somewhat.

Also, to put some more silver lining behind this wretched event, this latest move leads me to believe Neukom and company aren't completely sold on Sabean and Bochy just yet.

If Neukom truly believed in these two, there would have been a three year extension minimum. Granted, his confidence in the two isn't too shaky (if he had only given a one-year extension then he would have showed a serious lack of faith), but it's certainly shaky enough to the point where he can be fair about Sabean and Bochy's future and not be totally bought by the overachieving 2009 season (unlike the Razor and Mr. T and the rest of the Bay Area media).

Overall, I'm not happy with the two back in the Bay. But for the first time since taking over for former owner Peter Magowan, I am starting to think that Neukom might know how to run a professional ball club.

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