The Giants have placed closer Mark Melancon on the 10-day DL, per a club announcement. He is dealing with the same pronator issue that forced him out earlier this year. Dan Slania will take the open roster spot.
Melancon, 32, has not quite looked himself since joining the Giants on a four-year, $62MM deal over the winter. Through 20 2/3 innings on the year, he has allowed ten earned runs on 25 hits. Though he still maintains typically strong strikeout and walk numbers — 8.3 K/9 against 1.3 BB/9 — the veteran has also coughed up three long balls and seen his groundball rate drop to 50.8% with his swinging-strike rate falling to 9.7% (both far lower than in recent seasons).
Despite enduring a bit of a rough stretch, Melancon could still feature as a trade candidate over the summer. That all depends upon just how interested the Giants are in shedding from future salary — while also embarking upon another search for a closer. (Interestingly, recently acquired righty Sam Dyson will take over closing duties for the time being after washing out of that role with the Rangers.) Though San Francisco is buried in the standings, the organization still has an extensive array of high-priced veteran players and seems likely to attempt to contend again in 2018.
The injury, though, functions as a major bit of uncertainty. It’s still possible that he could be dealt if he’s able to return and pitch effectively before the deadline. And Melancon’s contract is big enough that he could also be moved in August. But the forearm certainly enhances the risk in the hefty remaining value on the deal, particularly in the case of an older relief pitcher.