When the A's released tarnished slugger Jason Giambi towards the end of August, many tall foreheads and assorted baseball watchers left the big lefty for dead. The stench of performance enhancing steroids hung over the former Giambino and his precipitous offensive drop-off.
While many clucked their tongues and derided the Dan O'Dowd's insurance acquisition as a waste of time, a select group of elite thinkers could see good(ish) things in Giambi's future. That is right; three members of the Walkoff Walk editorial team predicted, with alarming prescience, the resurgence of Jason Giambi: designated walker.
During the August 24th edition of the Walkoff Walk Furious Five Podcast, Rob, Dmac, and myself discussed the potential role for Giambi with the Rockies. Here is a sampling of our quotes on the matter:
- All that's going to happen is they're going to bring in the lefty reliever and he's going to walk
- ...is he going to produce any value or is he just going to walk a lot?
- If he's going to come in and he's going to draw a walk, that's okay especially in the National League.
- There is always that threat...he can still run into a fastball and then you're behind
And what has Jason Giambi done since joining the Rockies? He's walked. Walked like a retiree before the mall opens. The once lavishly paid slugger has only made 3 starts in September but so far has 7 walks in 22 plate appearances at the big league level, 4 in his 9 pinch hit chances. That is good for a .591 on base percentage and a 31.8% BB rate. He even notched tater tots in back-to-back games this weekend, raising his Rockies' OPS to an alarming 1.458.
Even more alarming? That we idiots three called it. We could see value in Giambi's ability to convert 50% of his pinch hit chances with a modicum of success. I predict we'll each be fielding numerous calls from big league front office's looking to gain the edge of our baseball acumen flying under their respective flags. Don't expect us to come running though. Like Jason Giambi, we'll just walk.