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Giants bring back Travis Ishikawa on minor league deal

The 2014 NLCS hero is headed back to the franchise where he saw his greatest success.

Colorado Rockies v San Francisco Giants Photo by Lachlan Cunningham/Getty Images

I imagine Travis Ishikawa sees this every night before he goes to sleep.

The 32-year-old first baseman and outfielder is exactly the sort of anonymous, weak-hitting bench player who routinely serves as a playoff hero for the San Francisco Giants. Now that they have acquired Ishikawa for the third time - he is a 2002 draft pick and a product of their own farm system - it sets the stage for a narrative in which Ishikawa is once more a post season folk legend, given that this is an even year and all. Sometimes it feels like the Giants are just playing a different sport with a different set of rules.

Ishikawa has had not an incredibly productive career to this point, not counting the inexplicable playoff bat he sports. In 2014, he started with the Pirates, hitting .206 with a .646 OPS, but naturally, when he was moved to the Giants, his BA went up 68 points and he started getting on base more often. The following season, he got into six Giants games without logging a hit before heading back to Pittsburgh, where he slashed .224/.318/.328 and impressed no one in particular. He'd been tooling around with the White Sox Triple A affiliate this season, putting up very "Travis Ishikawa" numbers (.201/.277/.344 with 54 SO in 154 AB) when the Giants grabbed him. He's now headed for their Triple A team in Sacramento.

San Francisco GM Bobby Evans cited organizational depth as the impetus for the mood, which makes sense as Brandon Belt's backup at first base is Buster Posey, a man who is a little busy at the moment. And the Giants have not been squeezing much juice out of their corner outfield slots either, with Jarrett Parker, Gregor Blanco, and Mac Williamson hitting a combined .230 on the season. Ishikawa may not be able to outhit the rest of the lukewarm-at-best players at his outfield position, but he does offer at least another option.

Of course, in a few months, we'll probably be gushing over any one of those guys being named World Series MVP, so I'm not really sure what Evans is so worried about.