Spring training is almost over and the Giants, ready or not, will be heading up north for their final exhibition games on the weekend. This year will most likely be filled with lots of pain and agony. This roster is full of players that might not be major-league caliber and also not very likeable.
There will be no Barry Bonds to save the day this time. The most popular player they have is shortstop Omar Vizquel who is injured to start the season. Their big free agent acquisition, Aaron Rowand, is a good but not great player. According to the Giants marketing department, he is quite the "gamer" though. The highest paid player on the team is Barry Zito.
Zito may be likeable to young girls and Hollywood starlets but he does not have many fans at 24 Willie Mays Plaza. Zito was probably the most booed Giant last season. With his pompous attitude, high ERA, and rich contract, he is a big target for angry and disappointed fans after every horrific outing. When he shows up at fan functions, he shows as much passion and energy as a gay man at the Playboy Mansion.
The media can bash Bonds all they want but he was beloved by many fans. Who doesn't like to watch baseball history or long home runs? Bonds had the whole Bay Area flocking to AT&T Park every season. No one on the team can fill up seats like Bonds could.
Who cares about Kevin Frandsen or Daniel Ortmeier? Does anyone like Dave Roberts besides Red Sox Nation? Has he done anything good since stealing bases against Mariano Rivera in the ALCS a few years ago? How about Randy Winn and Ray Durham?
The veterans on this team are just playing out their careers on a losing team and collecting a paycheck. The younger guys on the team like Fred Lewis just want to be up in the big leagues and are more concerned about that than winning.
This team is going nowhere but down in 2008. The problem is they won't even be loveable losers. There will be packed houses when the Mets, Cubs, and Dodgers come to town, but half of the fans will be wearing the visiting team's hats and jerseys. If you thought last season was bad with Bonds, imagine what will happen this year.