The Giants were finally going to make a full recovery, which meant a tough move to take.
The tough move came early on Saturday morning, with Giants trading utility player Mauricio Dubon giving the Houston Astros a replacement for catcher and first baseman Michael Papiersky. The Giants also recalled recently acquired infielder Donovan Walton to replace Dubon on the active roster and will start Walton at second base in St.
Dubon was in a fight for roster spots with Thyro Estrada – both out of minor league options – throughout the spring. But injuries to Ivan Longoria, Tommy La Stella and Lamonte Wade Jr opened up opportunities for Dubon to make the opening day roster.
In 49 plate appearances, Dubon batted at .239 with two home runs and eight RBIs. He had his moments in the first month of the season, like going 3-for-4 against the Rockies on Monday with a homer and three RBIs.
But Dubon’s Ops are down 20 points from 2021 and have some mistakes on their bases as well. And with both Longoria and Wade returning — and La Stella not far behind them — the Giants finally had to make a decision for their roster crunch.
Dubon, who was born and raised in Honduras, moved to Sacramento when he was in high school and became a Giants fan, and the natural shortstop idolized Brandon Crawford. Louis did not speak to reporters, but posted on Instagram and Twitter, “Thank you for making kids’ dreams come true.”
Thank you for making children’s dreams come true. pic.twitter.com/C1DzCNVBYO
— mauricio dubon (@mauriciodubon10) 14 May 2022
He now moves to Houston, where he will have the opportunity to play for former Giants manager Dusty Baker and show his ability to play as a second, third and center fielder in addition to shortstop.
Papiersky, 26, is not on Houston’s 40-man roster but has been at Triple-A Sugar Land for the past two seasons. A switch hitter, Papierski batted .246 with seven homers and 46 RBI in 2021, good for .754 OPS, with as many walks (64) as strikeouts (85) in nearly 410 plate appearances.
His numbers are low in 2022, batting only .211 with a homer and a .602 OPS. But he has actually improved his walk-strikeout numbers, now with more walks (14) from 108 plate appearances than strikeouts (nine). He will report to Triple-A Sacramento, where he is likely to have a chance at the back of the plate with 23-year-old top prospect Ricardo Genoves.
Walton, 27, was bought on Wednesday in a trade with the Mariners. He batted .196 in 102 plate appearances with Seattle over the past four seasons. He has played in the major leagues at second base, shortstop, third base and left field.