Giants

Tigers win tiebreaker with Giants, land top pick in 2018 MLB Draft

Tigers win tiebreaker with Giants, land top pick in 2018 MLB Draft

The Giants entered the final day of the 2017 regular season with a one-game lead over the Tigers in the race for the worst record in baseball and the top pick in the 2018 MLB Draft.

To get the top pick, the Giants needed to lose or have the Tigers win. Neither of those things happened on Sunday, thanks to Pablo Sandoval and the Minnesota Twins.

At exactly 3pm PT, Sandoval hit a walk-off home run to push the Giants' final record to 64-98. At that point, attention shifted to the Tigers and Twins.

But at 3:27pm PT, former Giant Ehire Adrianza caught a fly ball for the final out of the Twins' 5-1 win over the Tigers, meaning Detroit finished with the exact same 64-98 record as the Giants.

The tiebreaker? The team with the worse record in 2016. And there was almost a tie there as well. Last year, the Giants (87-75) finished a half-game better than the Tigers (86-75).  Detroit played one fewer game than the Giants because they had a game rained out. They didn't make it up on the Monday following the season because it wouldn't have factored into the playoff standings.

So, instead of the Giants, the Tigers are on the clock for the 2018 MLB Draft, which will be held early next June.

Some notable players expected to be in play for the top overall pick are high school RHP Ethan Hankins, high school SS Brice Turang, high school third baseman Nolan Gorman, Florida RHP Brady Singer, Oregon State infielder Nick Madrigal and South Florida LHP Shane McClanahan.

The Giants and Tigers are five years removed from facing each other in the 2012 World Series.

Here is the order for the first round of the 2018 MLB Draft, according to MLB.com:
1. Tigers
2. Giants
3. Phillies
4. White Sox
5. Reds
6. Mets
7. Padres
8. Braves
9. Athletics
10. Pirates
11. Orioles
12. Blue Jays
13. Marlins
14. Mariners
15. Rangers
16. Rays
17. Angels
18. Royals
19. Cardinals
20. Twins
21. Brewers
22. Rockies
23. Yankees
24. Cubs
25. D-backs
26. Red Sox
27. Nationals
28. Astros
29. Indians
30. Dodgers

Durable Longoria ready for additional boost from ballpark, Giants fans

Durable Longoria ready for additional boost from ballpark, Giants fans

SAN FRANCISCO — The field at AT&T Park is covered with patches and small piles of dirt right now, showing the signs of a winter hosting holiday parties and concerts, and a week with plenty of rain. 

For Evan Longoria, though, that grass was a beautiful sight.

A month after a trade that had him switching coasts, Longoria was introduced at a press conference at AT&T Park and ran the usual gauntlet with team employees and season-ticket holders. He spent some time this week looking for housing in the Bay Area, but soon he’ll be back in Scottsdale, getting to know new teammates and preparing his body for the 2018 season. 

Longoria said his workouts have been a bit different with a new staff, but the goal remains the same. He is a player who prides himself on taking the field every day, and that’s one of the traits that drew the Giants to Longoria. He has played at least 156 games in five consecutive seasons, and 160 in four of those seasons. 

It’s no accident that Bruce Bochy has mentioned durability during every media session this season. Andrew McCutchen has a similar track record, and the Giants lineup certainly could use some stability, especially at third base, where seven different players made double-digit starts last season. Longoria will change that. 

“I have a desire to play every day, and I think that that is infectious,” he said. “Players that may feel the grind of a long season or might be in a little bit of a funk offensively or defensively or with pitching, something like that can give you a boost when you have guys around that you know come to play and compete on a daily basis, no matter what the circumstance is.”

[RELATED: Just a number? Longoria says slow down with concerns of Giants' aging roster]

For Longoria, who turned 32 early in the offseason, the circumstance has changed for the better. After years on the unforgiving turf at The Trop, he comes to a park and division featuring nothing but natural grass. 

“I hope it helps,” he said. “Going on the road (with the Rays), my body definitely felt better when I played on grass. I’m sure that it will help. It’s definitely not going to be a negative. Not playing on the turf anymore is something that crossed my mind as soon as the trade happened.”

Longoria expects to benefit from another aspect of AT&T Park, too. The Rays finished dead last in the majors last year with an average of 15,670 fans per game. Even though their sellout streak ended, the Giants still had an average of more than 40,000 per night. Asked about playing outdoors, Longoria smiled and added, “in front of fans.”

“The environment here is obviously much different, so it’s going to be nice to step into that on a daily basis and play in front of a fan base that’s obviously very storied,” he said. “It helps with energy. It helps with motivation.”

McCutchen ready for more conversations with 'Steve the Seagull' at AT&T Park

McCutchen ready for more conversations with 'Steve the Seagull' at AT&T Park

Andrew McCutchen has been one of the best players in the National League for years now. The 31-year-old is a five-time All-Star and was named the 2013 NL MVP. 

Not only do his stats stand out, McCutchen is also one of the most entertaining players in baseball. And that's clearly going to continue in San Francisco. 

On Thursday, McCutchen was asked about the famous seagulls of San Francisco flying around the outfield at AT&T Park. 

"I definitely made a few friends out there over the years. Steve the Seagull out there, I know him," McCutchen said on KNBR. "He comes in every now and then. We have a little pow-wow when I come to San Francisco. Yeah, we get along well, me and the guys, me and the birds. They know when to come in that's for sure." 

Denard Span, who the Giants traded to acquire Evan Longoria, had a much different relationship with the seagulls. 

McCutchen is clearly the opposite of Span in this regard though. He seems about as calm as can be when it comes to the birds paying him a visit. 

"They chill, we have some conversations. It's all good," says McCutchen. 

One other aspect McCutchen can't wait for in the outfield at AT&T Park, is getting to know all the fans. Specifically, not being a part of a special chant Giants fans have for opposing outfielders. 

"I'm lookin' forward to fans not callin' me bums anymore," McCutchen said with a laugh. "I'm glad I'm on the winning side. I'm glad I'm on the San Francisco Giants side. I can't wait to meet all the fans."