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merkin Profile
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THE NEW GIANTS #1: RYAN KLESKO





]Click here for 2006 Player Marketplace Index


THE NEW GIANTS #1
PLAYER: Ryan Klesko
Bats Left, Throws Left
Height 6' 3", Weight 220 lb.
Born June 12, 1971 in Westminster, CA
2007 Opening Day Age 35
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Contract Status:
1 year/$[sign in to see URL] (2007), plus incentives

2006 Review:
Klesko’s body started to break down in 2005 with back and neck ailments, and then a right shoulder problem in Spring Training 2006.... but it was his Left (throwing) Shoulder that ended up costing him his 2006 season, logging just4 At Bats in the big leagues before a back injury suffered during his rehab assignment finished off his season.

Future expectations:
After hitting 3 homers in the Braves World Series win in 1995, Klesko finally became the Full Time Starter at age 25. Despite his 34 homers and .280 average Klesko struggled mightily versus lefties, and after another year of struggles in 1997, the Braves started to limit his exposure to Lefties and turned Klesko into a platoon player. And a funny thing happened while Klesko was hidden from Lefties, he started to become a better overall hitter as his strikeouts plummeted and his On Base Percentage started to soar. This spike in stats was more than just the result of being platoon, but his numbers isolated versus righties was showing real growth.
That overall growth was tapped by the Padres in 2000, when he was given free reign to play versus Lefties and this time Ryan held his own. After a couple of years of decent success versus Lefties, Ryan turned in solid numbers versus Lefties in 2002, while maintaining his dominance versus Righties. Although Klesko had a down year in 2003 versus righties and lefties, he greeted his spacious new home at Petco Park with a new approach that bumped his batting average and on base percentage but reduced his power numbers (3 home HR’s) across the board. Ryan’s 2005 was highlighted by his attempt to reclaim his power but failing to hit for much power or average. Ryan has the ability to spray the ball all over the park, but still gets into prolonged periods where he tries to jerk the ball out of the park. He is at his best when making contact and working the count allowing the game come to him.
Ryan was deceptively fast in his day, but back injuries and age have diminished his range. Klesko had some arm strength in his day, but was erratic and the league would run every chance it would get. Now that Klesko has had his shoulder cut up, one can only guess how tempting that noodle hanging from his shoulder socket looks to opposing baserunners. Add that diminished range and poor arm to his below average instincts and you have a poor outfielder. Klesko is best suited to 1st base, where he has decent hands and range and would make a below average to average first baseman.
Much of what Klesko can still do at age 35 remains to be seen. His back and shoulder injuries may have sapped what little power he had left. If Klesko was juicing in his prime, that would be another reason he might now see a power outage. He was never highly successful versus Lefties, and what he does when exposed in anyone’s guess. But one thing is pretty damn sure, if Ryan is healthy he will likely be a force versus right-handers, spraying the ball all over the field, drawing walks, and hitting the occasional long ball.
My Guess, Ryan is good for 350 AB’s of .280 AVE, .350+ OBP, and 10 HR’s versus Righties

And for the Giants?
The more I think about this, the less is pisses me off.
Now don’t get me wrong, Ryan isn’t the holy grail or even a full time player.
The Bad News is Ryan’s ceiling is limited, and the Giants have basically kissed Niekro (and Sweeney) goodbye, and crowded Frandsen out of even MORE at bats.
The Good News is Ryan IS a very good bookend on the left side of a 1st base platoon with Aurilia who murders Lefties.
The added Good News is that if Feliz Stumbles, or Ray gets hurt, Aurilia can slide across the Diamond and pick up the slack. Add Frandsen to the mix and you have a deep infield.
I don’t think this affects Linden much, as he will get the playing time that fall between Winn, Bonds, and Roberts, which could be about 500 at bats worth. Of course if the Giants decide that god awful slow Sweeney is a decent outfielder, Linden could be fighting him for at bats as well.
Overall, if Klesko shows he can still smoke righties and proves his health, he gives the Giants another short term contract that can be traded at the deadline and jumpstart the youth movement.


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"...the best evaluation of players is subjective judgment...The real baseball world is inevitably going to be hundreds of times more complicated than the model that we construct...." -Bill James
12/19/2006, 11:54 pm Link to this post   
 
Bhaakon Profile
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It's hard to wrap my head around the fact that Klesko spent more time with the Braves than the Padres.
12/19/2006, 11:57 pm Link to this post   
 
chefjuan Profile
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Re: THE NEW GIANTS #1: RYAN KLESKO


i hope, hope, hope that Klesko has a decent first half and the Giants get some interest in him at the trade deadline.

The problem with that is the same problem with Benitez, Aurilia, Durham, Feliz and Omar. If they're all having decent years, the Giants probably won't be far enough out for Sabean to pull the trigger to sell.

Then the irony really starts. If the hitters put up attractive numbers, but the Giants are ten games out, it means the young pitching is struggling, which means Sabean is going to scrap the youth movement and bring in more veteran pitchers and the cost of the young hitter on the farm.

It's a vicious downward spiral. I hope I"m wrong.

---
"If the Pilgrims had landed in California the East Coast would still be wilderness"
12/20/2006, 12:25 am Link to this post   
 
fuqthebums Profile
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Re: THE NEW GIANTS #1: RYAN KLESKO


Dirty klesko!!!

I love ya Merk, but I totally disagree. !@#$ HIM!! That dude makes me want to STAY HOME.
12/20/2006, 12:36 am Link to this post   
 
merkin Profile
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Re: THE NEW GIANTS #1: RYAN KLESKO


quote:

fuqthebums wrote:

Dirty klesko!!!

I love ya Merk, but I totally disagree. !@#$ HIM!! That dude makes me want to STAY HOME.



Klekso is a prick, and one of my favorites to heckle

And Sweeney is a cool dude, and even picked me out of the crowd to throw me a ball last year

But the bottom line is that Klesko likely has more to offer than Sweeney... and when you compare Klekso's splits with Aurilia's splits you can see what Sabean is thinkin

---
"...the best evaluation of players is subjective judgment...The real baseball world is inevitably going to be hundreds of times more complicated than the model that we construct...." -Bill James
12/20/2006, 12:50 am Link to this post   
 
Monkey51 Profile
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Re: THE NEW GIANTS #1: RYAN KLESKO


quote:

merkin wrote:

Klekso is a prick, and one of my favorites to heckle



 emoticon

quote:



But the bottom line is that Klesko likely has more to offer than Sweeney... and when you compare Klekso's splits with Aurilia's splits you can see what Sabean is thinkin



 emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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Hamels started toward the dugout after what he thought was a strike. Lincecum didn't get the call & buzzed ump Dana DeMuth w. a fastball that slammed off the backstop & then froze Hamels w. another 3rd strike. 4/28/10 Timmy the ump killer.
12/20/2006, 12:54 am Link to this post
 
92388 Profile
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For [sign in to see URL] million, this could be a steal. I don't know what we'll do with Sweeney now, though.
12/20/2006, 1:08 am Link to this post   
 


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