San Francisco Giants' prospect Gary Brown has been the hot topic of conversation in the Giants' farm system ever since he was drafted 24th overall in the 2010 First-Year Player Draft. Instantly tagged the future of the Giants' outfield, Brown is regarded as the Giants' prized prospect. With his speed, defense, and ability to hit for average he represents to me one of the best outfield prospects the Giants have had in a long while. And on Saturday night (August 18) Brown did something he had yet to do in his professional career: play somewhere other than center field.
Now before you all begin thinking, "Well, why do I care if Gary Brown plays another position?" let's stop and think for a second. (And remember, this is purely speculation on my part.) Gary Brown has been a center fielder for his entire professional career. Then, just days after Melky Cabrera, the Giants' former starting left fielder, gets tagged with a 50-game suspension, you have Brown patrolling left field for Double-A Richmond. (Now do you get it?)
The Giants may have wanted to see what Gary Brown could do in left field and if it affected his play adversely. Is it possible Gary Brown could begin some grooming in left field should the Giants need him to come up to the majors and play there?
I myself don't think Brown is 100 percent ready to take on the major leagues just yet. If anything I don't think he'll be ready until at least 2013, maybe 2014. Perhaps being a September call-up would be appropriate for Brown -- similar to what the Giants did with Buster Posey in 2009 before starting him on the 2010 25-man roster. Other than that, however, I don't see Brown patrolling the outfield at AT&T Park in 2012.
Brian Sabean, the Giants' GM, stated on August 16 that Brown was not in consideration for replacing Cabrera due to him simply not being ready in the team's eyes and that his difficulties hitting right-handed pitching were a big part of that concern. As far as replacing Cabrera goes, it's going to be up to the Giants' current outfield squad to step up to the plate and produce.
Maybe the Giants are doing it as an experiment for Brown's own edification or perhaps they really envision him coming up to the majors this season to fulfill the role that Cabrera left so abruptly and surprisingly. This season alone, Brown is hitting .282 with a .350 OBP and 32 stolen bases all in Double-A Richmond.
When it comes to Brown, perhaps playing left field had nothing to do with the situation happening at the major league level. Or maybe Sabean doesn't wish to divulge exactly what the Giants are up to down in Double-A Richmond. Either way, the move certainly caught my attention and is something to keep an eye on in the coming weeks.
Food for thought: Do you think that Gary Brown could be a viable option for the Giants this season in the outfield with Cabrera's absence? Or is Brown too far from being ready for the big leagues to rush him along?
David is co-founder of wrapupp sports blog where fresh content is posted daily and present sports blogs and sports opinions -- all with a West Coast bias. Growing up in the Bay Area, David is a huge supporter of all the local sports teams; the Giants, Athletics, Warriors, Sharks, 49ers, and Raiders. His one fault, admittedly, as many of his friends and family would say, is his love for the Los Angeles Lakers. Growing up, Magic Johnson was his favorite basketball player and he fell in love with the team. He chalks it up to, "Not knowing any better". Now his love for sports has turned just as academic as it is intuitive and he follows most all sports all over the nation.
You can follow David on Twitter: @officialwrapupp
SFGiants.com. Melky Cabrera suspended 50 games for testosterone use. MLB 2012.
CSNBayArea.com. Time to start 'MVP' chant for Posey, etc. MLB 2012.
MiLB.com. Gary Brown Stats. MiLB 2012.
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