Saturday, February 23, 2013
Does Panda need to make weight?
By Jason Catania
No matter how big he comes up in the batter's box, everyone still just wants to talk about how big Pablo Sandoval is around the waist.
After winning World Series MVP last October by leading the San Francisco Giants over the Detroit Tigers, including his dramatic three-homer Game 1, Sandoval proceeded to play in the Venezuelan Winter League this winter -- where he earned yet another MVP award. The 26-year-old third baseman hit .300 with three homers and nine RBIs over the seven-game championship series for the Navegantes del Magallanes to win the MVP.
So of course, the first thing that came up when Sandoval reported to training camp was how his weight was up to 262 pounds, reported Chris Haft of MLB.com. Giants manager Bruce Bochy said, "It's fair to say he has to shed a few [pounds]."
But teammate Marco Scutaro put it well, saying, "If he's not in baseball shape, who is? He just finished playing," referring to Sandoval's performance over the winter.
Sandoval suffered through a case of colitis last month, and that has been given as a possible reason why he's not quite at the playing weight the Giants want him to get down to. He does still have more than a month of action in spring training -- not to mention, the WBC, in which he'll play for Venezuela this March -- to get his L-Bs down some.
Expect this topic to get plenty of press in the meantime, but if the Panda has made anything clear, it's that he's still one of the best hitters in baseball. Even pound-for-pound.