Gregor Blanco

Looks like Vogelsong is heading to Houston, Giants competing with Yankees (among others) for Moncada

Ryan Vogelsong Giants Yes Yes Yes

Update (11:11 pm EST, Jan. 21): Looks like all of those Vogey-to-Houston reports might turn out to be wrong.

Time for a post full of Giants notes. Not a lot has gone on, but a lot has been said, and that’s the business we’re in!

— Is Ryan Vogelsong headed to the Astros?

The Astros appear to be on the verge of signing right-hander Ryan Vogelsong, according to multiple reports. Ken Rosenthal of reported on Monday that the sides were in “serious discussions” about a deal, with Mark Berman of FOX 26 adding that Vogelsong is presently in Houston and may be in town to take a physical with the Astros.

It looks like Houston is going to get a little … (puts on sunglasses) Vogelstronger. YEAAAAAHHHHH

— In case you’re wondering, the Giants play a pair of two-game series against the Astros this season, one in May and one in August.

— It’s weird to think Vogelsong will pitch for another team before retiring and probably getting hired within 30 seconds by CSN Bay Area to work as a pregame/postgame analyst. It’s also weird to think the Giants are going to go into next season with Tim Lincecum as their No. 5 starter when he didn’t start a game after August.

— One has to wonder if Vogelsong would’ve gotten a strong(er) offer from the Giants if his last three postseason starts didn’t last a grand total of 6 2/3 innings combined with eight earned runs, 14 hits and four walks allowed. That used to be Vogelsong’s calling card, that he was nails in the playoffs.

— Still, innings-eaters like Vogelsong are valuable. His arm never gave him any trouble — that we heard about, anyway — in his second stint with San Francisco. In a rotation full of question marks, it seemed like one final year made sense for both sides. But if the Astros are offering a two-year deal, it’s a no-brainer … even though the Vogelsongs love San Francisco.

Bye, Vogey. I’ll miss wondering whether you were really, really angry with me every time I asked you a question, then realizing you’re just that intense and you were never angry at all (I think).

— Gregor Blanco got a two-year deal over the weekend. He’ll get $7.5 million over those seasons, which takes him through his last arbitration year and represents a very fair rate for someone who’s been a good fourth outfielder for quite some time. Sure, he’ll get into ruts where he swings for the fences, and his baserunning decisions are often curious (to put it mildly), but if he hit fewer popups and used his speed a bit more wisely, he’d be one of the best outfielders in the game.

Also, this means we’ll get to keep tabs on his son’s blossoming media career.

— No word yet on these guys:

If history is a guide, expect some last minute deals for Brandon Belt, Brandon Crawford and Casey McGehee. The Giants hate going to arbitration, ever since the A.J. Pierzynski case didn’t go so well. Yusmeiro Petit already agreed to a one-year, $2.1 million deal.

— Via Ben Badler of Baseball America:

Count the Giants in when it comes to the teams pursuing Yoan Moncada. The Giants, Baseball America has learned, have already held a private workout for Moncada, a 19-year-old infielder drawing widespread interest around the league.

Several sources have said the Giants have been trying to get more involved in the Cuban market, with the push coming at the ownership level. If the Giants were able to sign Moncada, he would immediately become their top prospect—and one of the top prospects in all of baseball—although he isn’t eligible to sign just yet. Moncada must obtain a specific license from the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) before Major League Baseball will allow him to sign.

Don’t get your hopes up, Giants fans. Two days later (today), Badler wrote the following:

Cuban infielder Yoan Moncada can’t sign just yet, but he’s in the process of conducting private workouts for teams. The Yankees, Baseball America has learned, are one team that has already held a private workout for Moncada.

From conversations with several industry sources, the Yankees are one of the frontrunners to sign Moncada, who has residency in Guatemala and is a free agent, though Major League Baseball won’t let him sign until he receives a specific unblocking license from the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC).

Always a bridesmaid, as Bobby Evans might say. Except when it comes to World Series in even years, that is.

— I’m flying with the World Series trophy to New York tomorrow (I have to be at the airport at 5 am, so good thing we have a newborn and I’m used to waking up at previously unheard of hours). Virgin America invited me aboard, so I’ll be posting photos and whatever else I can gather from the trip, which will include a St. Johns game at Madison Square Garden tomorrow evening (they’re honoring Joe Panik at halftime). Hopefully I’ll get to check out Finnerty’s.

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