Major League Baseball Update:

Sanchez in playoff hunt

August 19, 2009

Keeping up with the lone local playing in the major leagues:


(Burbank High) infielder, San Francisco Giants: Sanchez has a chance to experience something he has never accomplished in his Major League Baseball career.

In his eight-year professional career, the Burbank High graduate has never competed in a postseason game.

However, after being traded to the San Francisco Giants late last month, Sanchez, a 31-year-old infielder, is involved in the postseason chase.


The Giants haven’t reached the playoffs since 2003 and have endured four straight losing seasons. However, heading into Tuesday’s game, San Francisco (64-54) was 5 1/2 games behind the Dodgers in the National League West Division and just a game behind the Colorado Rockies in the wild-card race.

Sanchez, 31, played well Monday in the Giants’ 10-1 win against the New York Mets. The second baseman was two for four with a run scored and a run batted in.

This season, the three-time All-Star is batting .297 (122 for 411) with 53 runs scored, 39 RBI, 29 doubles and seven home runs.

Sanchez made an instant impact when he first joined the Giants after being traded from the Pittsburgh Pirates on July 29. He went seven for 14 and had three RBI in his first six games.

Sanchez, who is under contract through next season, proved to be a steady contributor with the Pirates.

He batted .344 to win the National League batting crown in 2006, when he also notched his first All-Star selection. An All-Star in 2007 and 2009, he has been one of the most consistent players on a Pirates team that has not had a winning season since 1992.

Failed attempts between Sanchez, who will be paid $8 million next season, and the Pirates to negotiate a contract extension in July only intensified the speculation he would be dealt ahead of the July 31 non-waiver trade deadline.

Jeff Tully

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