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Thursday, December 2, 2010
Great to have Burrell back, but ...


The Giants have re-signed Pat Burrell, and early reports suggest it's a team-friendly deal.

This speaks well of the Giants, who apparently have created a friendly environment. This speaks well of Burrell, who's apparently going to take a significant pay cut -- he made $8 million this year -- and must know that he'll continue to be yanked from the game almost every time the Giants have a lead after the sixth or seventh inning.

So this is a day when everyone should feel pretty good about themselves.

Tomorrow, though, the Giants will still have some tough questions to answer. Internally, anyway. Burrell and Aubrey Huff are back in the fold. But will they be as good next year as they were this year? Will Andres Torres?

I admire the Giants for (presumably) not matching the Dodgers' offer for Juan Uribe, and Miguel Tejada makes for a perfectly acceptable place-holder. The Giants didn't really get better at shortstop, though. And at some point this winter they need to get better, somewhere.

They do get a little better with a full season of Buster Posey behind the plate. They do get a little better, probably, when super-prospect Brandon Belt joins the lineup at some point next spring. But the re-signing of Huff does make it a little bit tougher to get Belt into the lineup, and the re-signing of Burrell might mean Carl Crawford isn't even on the Giants' radar screen.

They can say that Barry Zito's and Aaron Rowand's and Mark DeRosa's contracts are irrelevant all they like. But it's hard to look at all those dollars and not imagine what the Giants could do if they had them.