Pablo Sandoval is... good this year!!?
You read the headline correctly: this is not some sort of a joke.
Remember Pablo Sandoval? The guy who played for the Boston Red Sox. He's the guy who couldn't field a ground ball, broke his belt in Toronto when swinging and missing at a pitch. He's the guy who the Red Sox dumped halfway through his five year $95 million contract with the team.
Oh yeah, he's actually good this year.
Sandoval is back with the San Francisco Giants, the team he won the World Series thrice with before coming to the Red Sox. Well, as most of you probably know by now, he came crawling back to them after the Sox canned him in 2017.
What might surprise you is that he is actually performing again.
That's right. Through 66 games played, Sandoval has hit .288 with an .889 OPS, nine home runs and 14 doubles. It's better production than the Red Sox expected out of him when they signed him to that big money contract, if we are being honest.
Defensively, he actually has a positive WAR as well (0.1). Yes. You read that correctly. Pablo Sandoval. Positive metric on defense. This is not a joke.
He gets use as a pinch hitter pretty regularly and has gotten some starts at both third base and first base. And, of course, when the Giants face an American League team on the road, that's a chance for him at designated hitter.
The Red Sox don't exactly need Sandoval. Rafael Devers is having a great season. Sandoval probably needed to get out of Boston to have any sort of success. But it is interesting to say the least.
Oh yeah, and Joe Kelly has a 7.25 ERA so far this season, but maybe they is a story for another day. This is panda's time to shine.