In the 2008 season the San Francisco Giants called on a young third baseman to play at the big league level. For 41 games Pablo Sandoval showed what he was capable of. It won him a full time job, primarily as the third baseman the next season. Since that time he has had a couple of seasons where his average was below .300 and a couple of seasons where he received MVP votes. With a little up and down action to his career so far, what will it take to turn the corner and become an elite third baseman?
The truth of the matter is that Sandoval seems to already have everything he needs to complete the transition from promising young star to recognized superstar at the major league level. After a slump in August of last season, Sandoval turned up the heat on his stats through all of September and October. That includes really showing up big time in the playoffs and batting .500 during the World Series.
This spring Sandoval shows no signs of slowing down. His average is once again around the .500 mark and he seems to be in regular season form. This season should provide ample opportunity for Sandoval to show what he can do on a regular basis. If he stays healthy he could easily hit over .300, hit thirty homers and even drive in 100 runs. Buster Posey’s MVP competition might come from within the same clubhouse if the Giants win the west again.