Andrew Baggarly thinks that Pablo Sandoval’s biggest problem this year is his conditioning:
I’ve noticed in recent weeks that Sandoval has lost a step from last
season. Some time toward the end of the last homestand, he got thrown
out trying to stretch a single into a double. It would’ve been an easy
double for him a year ago, I thought.
I’ve seen him after taking ground balls at third base, even in cool weather. He’s got his hands on his knees, gasping.
Of all the speculated reasons for his severe dropoff at the plate
this year, I think conditioning is the simplest and most logical one.
It’s alarming when a 23-year-old kid is already losing a step in the
I couldn’t tell last night if Sandoval’s failure to move over to third on Tim Lincecum’s bunt last night was a mental error or a physical one, but the guy does seem off this season. And obviously he doesn’t appear to be in great shape. Baggarly, obviously, would know better, having watched him nearly every day for the past six months.
I like the Panda, though, and I hope that he takes his conditioning more seriously going forward. Because I liked Kevin Mitchell and Dmitri Young too, and those dudes ate their way out of the league.