Giants

EXTRAS: Giants considered re-signing Renteria

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EXTRAS: Giants considered re-signing Renteria

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. The Giants reached out to veteraninfielder Edgar Renteria in the offseason and expressed interest in re-signingtheir only World Series MVP in history.But they did not make a formal contract offer. Renteriaturned down two other minor league contracts, including one from the MilwaukeeBrewers, and is leaning toward retirement, Fox Sports reported on Wednesday.If this is truly the end for the decorated 35-year-oldshortstop, hell exit with a lasting legacy in San Francisco and with theadmiration of his former teammates.
If there was a heart and soul of that team (in 2010), someone whoseemotions really kind of carried us, it was him, Tim Lincecum told me. You cansee what the game meant to him. The tears would come at the appropriate times.Just what a great career.The most memorable tears came during a team meeting in thebatting cage underneath the Wrigley Field bleachers in late September, when theGiants were fighting to make a late charge in the NL West. Renteria broke downin tears, telling his teammates he didnt care if he had become a role playerwhile battling season-long injuries. He just wanted one more chance to win aWorld Series, and challenged his teammates to make it happen. Aubrey Huff has credited the speech with bringing the teamtogether. And Renteria, who barely made the playoff roster, delivered aspromised. His home run off Cliff Lee in the seventh inning of Game 5 accountedfor all the runs in the 3-1 victory that clinched the title.Renteria signed with the Reds after winning series MVPhonors; he struggled most of the year, but still found a way to rise to a fewbig moments. His single in the 13th inning off Brian Wilson on July29 sent the Reds to a walk-off victory over the Giants. That game began thesteep descent for the defending world champs, as they lost eight of nine tolose their grip atop the NL West. Any chance of bringing back Renteria went out the windowwhen the Giants signed Ryan Theriot to be a right-handed complement toshortstop Brandon Crawford.Theriot figures to be a popular Giant. Theres no questionRenteria wouldve been welcomed back within the clubhouse, too. I havent been here too long, but hes one of my favoriteteammates for sure, catcher Buster Posey said. He always had a quietconfidence about him. He made everyone relax. He made you feel comfortable. Hehad that little winning edge that you want.Its just an air he had about him. He had confidence inwhatever he did, and that rubbed off on the rest of us. He knew the right timesto speak up. He didnt talk all the time, but he wasnt shy. If he felt hecould help someone, hed take them aside. Hes a winner. I guess thats the best way to describe it.Right-hander Sergio Romo called Renteria everything everybodysaid he was -- one of the best teammates I ever had. It didnt matter thesituation or the time. He took pride in what he did. You value guys like that. Romo said Renterias leadership had no bounds.Not just the Latin side or the American side, Romo said.Its the clubhouse in general. Hes there to push you every day. Here I am, apitcher, and Im taking advice from a shortstop. Its understanding the gameand my position and how to believe in myself. You learn as much as you can frompeople like that. They dont come around too often. Renteria doesnt plan to file retirement papers in case hegets a guaranteed opportunity with another club, Fox Sports reported. Injuriesare part of spring training, so perhaps that could happen. But it appears thisis the end for the two-time Gold Glove winner and five-time All-Star.--Bruce Bochy will gather the team for a meeting before thefirst full-squad workout on Friday. But its never too early to start thebonding rituals.So in their quick briefing before Thursdays workout withpitchers and catchers, Bochy asked right-hander Seth Rosin where he went toschool. (It was Minnesota.) Thenhe asked if he had pride in his alma mater. Of course, Rosin said. OK, Bochy said. Sing the fight song.So Rosin had to fumble through the words to MinnesotaRouser. He managed to remember them all, though.--It's stunning news that Ryan Braun's 50-game suspension was overturned by an arbitrator on Thursday. And it's news that will impact the Giants in a big way.RATTO: MLB way off base in Braun case
The Giants play all six of their games against the Milwaukee Brewers on or before May 23. Braun would have been ineligible for all of them. Now the Brewers will enjoy the full services of the reigning NL MVP.

Giants hire David Bell to fill key front office role

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AP

Giants hire David Bell to fill key front office role

SAN FRANCISCO -- A familiar face is returning to the Giants organization to serve a key front office role.

The Giants announced Friday that David Bell, their former third baseman, has been hired as Vice President of Player Development. General manager Bobby Evans said Bell will oversee all aspects of player development, including hitting, pitching, strength and conditioning and the operations of the minor league affiliates. 

"He was the perfect fit," Evans said. "His experience is so strong and encompasses so many aspects of the game. He’s got a really strong base of experience and background and understanding of the game, and he has a passion for the game and working with young players. He really showed a desire to pursue this opportunity." 

Bell, 45, played 12 major league seasons and spent 2002 with the Giants. He hit 20 homers that year as the starting third baseman and scored the winning run in the final game of the NLCS. Since retiring, Bell has served as a minor league manager for the Reds and a big league coach for the Cubs and Cardinals. He spent last season as the bench coach in St. Louis. 

Shane Turner had previously served as farm director, but at the end of the minor league season he was asked to take a role as a special assistant in baseball operations. While Evans did not announce any other changes Friday, there are expected to be other moves within the organization's depth chart. At least one member of the coaching staff is still in the running for a managerial opening. 

Dusty Baker won't be remembered the way he should be remembered

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AP

Dusty Baker won't be remembered the way he should be remembered

Firing a manager is easy, and there are lots of ways to do it.

Dusty Baker, for example. He worked this year on the last year of a contract, which usually means there won’t be another one, and he relied on his players to deliver the goods.

Which, as we remember from our reading, they didn’t do. Again.

But Baker was marked for the chop unless those players did deliver, and when they didn’t, general manager Mike Rizzo did the expedient thing.

He fired one person rather than several. And changed exactly nothing.

Baker’s managerial career is probably over now, as most teams don’t look at 68-year-olds to fix their teams. He will never manage a  World Series champion, something he ached for, and he was always be caricatured in part as the guy who didn’t speak metric, and who believed in players as men whenever in doubt.

And the Nats didn’t betray him, either. They were always not as good in the big moments because someone else was, and they became part of Washington’s new fetish – Why Can’t We Win One? It’s as if having a cringeworthy President isn’t good enough for them.

So the time came, and he will be replaced by someone who will either win and get credit for work that was largely his, or he won’t win and the town can continue to wallow in its tedious We’re-The-New-Cubs pity. It is the circle of life.

At least it is for groups of people. For individuals, the circle of life is actually nothing more than a straight line that ends abruptly. For Dusty Baker, as it did for Tony La Russa in Phoenix two days earlier, that day came today. He deserves to be remembered as a very good manager who won a lot more than he lost, made more friends than enemies, and was honest from Day One until the end.

Which, as we also know, doesn’t matter a whole lot on days like this.