As the Giants sink further and further behind, in what, up until a few days ago, was a tight race for the Western Division, Sabean made a major move to save the 2011 season.

Bold moves: SF Giants dump Aaron Rowand, Miguel Tejada

The Tejada move was not a surprise. The 37-year-old infielder rarely played once the Giants acquired shortstop Orlando Cabrera. On Sunday, he publicly embarrassed the coaching staff with a visible, negative reaction to a bunt sign, then dogged it to first base once he laid down the bunt…

Cutting Rowand was a much bigger surprise because the Giants still owe him roughly $14 million of the five-year, $60 million deal he signed before the 2008 season. In hindsight, that was one of the biggest financial mistakes during Sabean’s tenure – this is the largest chunk of money the Giants ever have eaten when cutting a player.

But Bochy was more straight-forward in his analysis…

Manager Bruce Bochy said simply, “It comes down to production, too. We feel like we needed to make changes and get better. It’s time to turn the page.”

Let’s hope the move does something to shake the champs from their second half slumber that has pushed them to the brink of elimination.

Photo collage credit: Aaron Rowand image by Brad Mangin, Miguel Tejada image by Mark J. Terrill / AP