Via Andrew Baggarly, the Giants have set their Division Series roster:
The Giants released their division series roster, with one major surprise — and it wasn’t the omission of Barry Zito, which we all knew was coming.
Jose Guillen was left off the list, too.
It really shouldn’t come as a shock, given Guillen’s lack of production and defensive shortcomings. Guillen was hitting .121 and hasn’t driven in a run since his six-RBI game Sept. 19. He has hit a stunning eight double-play grounders in 128 at-bats, too. And he’s 3 for 19 in his career against right-hander Derek Lowe, who loves to get ground balls with his sinker.
But Bruce Bochy’s puzzling loyalties to Guillen seemed strong as he started 15 of the club’s last 16 games in right field.
Guillen started swinging the bat better in mid-September after he got an injection to alleviate pain from a disc issue in his neck. It turns out that was just a temporary fix. Although Bochy kept insisting Guillen was fine, AOL Fanhouse.com’s Jeff Fletcher just Tweeted that Bochy says Guillen’s neck is an issue again.
Guillen hasn't been hitting, and his absence certainly doesn't hurt the Giants. What hurts the Giants is their systemic lack of good left-handed hitting. They've got Aubrey Huff, and they've got switch-hitters Andres Torres and Pablo Sandoval. And unless you count Mike Fontenot, that's just about it. Travis Ishikawa isn't going to play, and Nate Schierholtz probably shouldn't.
All of which is a particular problem against the Braves, who feature three good (or better) right-handed starting pitchers.
Picking up Pat Burrell in May worked out wonderfully for the Giants. It's just a shame they couldn't find a lefty-hitting equivalent. Because with the exception of Torres, the Giants don't have a single outfielder who figures to thrive against the Braves.