Originally posted on SF Giants Nirvana  |  Last updated 12/15/11

The Giants lost a Joaquin to the Nationals yesterday. Waldis Joaquin was designated for assignment about a month ago, so Washington just swooped in and signed him to a minor-league deal. Joaquin put up a 1.17 K/BB in 50 innings in Fresno. So the Giants did what any clever organization would do. They went out and got a better Joaquin: Joaquin Arias. Well…maybe he’s better.

Arias was once a five-tool talent. He was once a top-100 prospect. This one time, he was traded along with Alfonso Soriano for one of the greatest players of all time. That was all about seven and a half years ago, though.

More recently, he was traded straight-up for Jeff Francoeur. And that really says all you need to know about how he’s progressed in these past seven and a half years. Jeff Francoeur.

But Arias, interestingly enough, is still only 27 years old.

Here’s what I know about the Arias of Christmas Present, from an Amazin’ Avenue post that was written one year ago:

  • He’s probably not a major-league shortstop
  • He’s still got some speed
  • He doesn’t have much power
  • He can’t walk

Miguel Tejada hit .239/.270/.326 this year. Joaquin Arias hit .232/.272/.353. The only problem — aside, of course, from the fact that this is awful production — is that Arias put up those numbers in Triple-A.

The shine from his semi-elite prospect status has long worn off, but Arias remains one of the more intriguing signings the Giants have made in the past two offseasons. Unfortunately, that says more about the utter boredom that is an early 2010s Giants offseason than it does about Arias. At least he’s more interesting than, say, Jeff Suppan.

Two months ’til pitchers and catchers report…

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