The Giants shored up their outfield mix with yesterday’s addition of Austin Jackson on a two-year, $6MM contract — threading the luxury tax needle by adding a veteran that serves as an upgrade while still squeezing in just south of the $197MM barrier. That doesn’t leave much room for further upgrades, but executive vice president of baseball ops Brian Sabean and GM Bobby Evans tell reporters that the Giants are still open to supplementing their outfield (links via Alex Pavlovic of NBC Sports Bay Area and John Shea of the San Francisco Chronicle).
Notably, Sabean suggests that Jackson was “probably not” signed to be the team’s everyday center fielder. “I don’t know that in his recent history he’s been able to go out there in that fashion,” Sabean says of Jackson. San Francisco is still exploring some low-salary trade options, and prospect Steven Duggar remains a candidate to win the job (if not in Spring Training, certainly later in the season). Duggar, though, has just 232 minor league games under his belt, with only 60 of those coming in Double-A and just 13 in Triple-A.
San Francisco remains confident in its ability to acquire an additional outfielder via trade, Pavlovic writes. That’ll likely require prying loose a pre-arbitration player making near the league minimum, as the Giants are now within about $2.1MM of the luxury threshold (per Cot’s Contracts). Such assets are the types with which teams are typically loath to part, though the Brewers have reportedly been exploring trade scenarios involving their potential outfield surplus, with names like Keon Broxton and Brett Phillips circulating on the rumor mill.
The waiver circuit could present another option for the Giants as rosters are shuffled leading up to Spring Training; numerous players with some degree of big league experience figure to become available in coming weeks as teams clear roster space for veteran additions. That was the manner by which the Tigers plucked Mikie Mahtook from the Rays last year, acquiring him for a player to be named later and enjoying a fairly productive year out of the former first-rounder. (Speculatively speaking, Mahtook himself could be an option for the Giants, as the rebuilding Tigers will likely be willing to listen on virtually any player.)
If the Giants don’t succeed in landing another option to take over in center field, it seems that Jackson, Duggar, Austin Slater and Gorkys Hernandez will vie for time in center field to open the season. At the very least, it wouldn’t come as much of a surprise to the Giants add a left-handed-hitting veteran on a minor league deal. Jackson, Hernandez, Hunter Pence and Andrew McCutchen all swing from the right side of the dish, so adding a lefty to create more matchup flexibility in the event that the left-handed-hitting Duggar opens the season in the minors seems logical.
Giants been getting a lot of hate here lately…
2018 is an even year, haters 😉
Not a Giants fan, but if Twins can go from 100L+ one year, to playoff year, the next, Giants can do it, right?
So was 2016
They made the playoffs 2016, which would be an accomplishment in itself, after that terrible 2017.
Giants lost to the eventual WS Champs, Chicago Cubs in 2016.
That stupid even year crap was not about making the playoffs, but nice try.
It was. Look at the Twins example I used in my first post. Nobody expected them to make the playoffs after losing 100+ games but they did.
Even years is foreshadowing Giants overachieve, 2018
They made the playoffs and barring an absolute meltdown from their bullpen, they were two outs away from bringing the eventual champion Cubs to a deciding game to move forward to the NLCS. They had a very good Cueto ready for that game. So yeah, even years have been something special for the Giants this decade. By the way, how many championships has your team won this decade or century? Crickets….
2017, Giants were @ 98 losses, we’ll see if 2017 is the start of a pattern, or Anomaly. They’re trying to compete with all these trades, they have my respect.
The twins have a farm, the giants do not. And with tons of aging veterans on the team you’re counting on healthy seasons from everyone basically. To keep up with 3 contending/play off teams in your own division? It isn’t likely to happen. I’d put my money on the Giants finishing 3rd, Rockies 2nd with the dodgers with another huge year.
Justin Turner will be 34 older then Longoria, Blackmon will be 32 older then Cutch, our 2 new players plus Posey, Belt, Crawford, Panik, all younger. Kershaw will be 30, Hill will be 37, Cueto will be 32, Bum will be 29 whose old whose young. How old is the Rockies bullpen, because outside of Melancon we have allot of high velocity young arms. Pollok is 30 will be 31 no JDM and Greinke will be 34 all this stupid stupid talk of how old the Giants are is just pathetic.
Hey, don’t come in here with facts that get in the way of people’s biases. If someone incorrectly said the Giants are old, it’s a lot easier to just repeat that since it fits with likes and dislikes. Stop being such a spoilsport.
Did you forget about Barnes, Seager, Bellinger, Taylor, Puig, Peterson etc…… who are all in their 20’s AND STARTERS?????
I really wish I could. Dodgers going to be really good again. I think the Giants will be a wild card, but Rockies are good too
and Vin Scully is 89, so there
The NL west is the best division in baseball. Last years AL central was the worst
No, NL East takes that crown. At least the Central had 2 playoff teams. The NL East had the Nationals… And then 4 teams with a combined 285-363 record. The NL East will be better since the Phillies and Braves should be better, the Mets probably stay the same, and the Marlins will be fighting for the #1 pick.
The Central had 1. The west had the 2 WC teams…
He said AL Central…. 2 teams from the AL Central made the playoffs…
…pretty sure the AL East is still the best division in baseball.
If you’re not a Giants fan then why are you trying to play the grieving fanboy?
Because their team is trying, and still getting made fun of for it.
Because their fans that have posted on here for the most part have totally disregarded the Rockies and Diamondbacks..among others.
No disrespect to the Rockies or Diamondbacks but neither have improved. The Rockies have merely swapped bullpen arms. They’ve done nothing to improve their starting pitching. And frankly, Charlie Blackmon will be 32 in July. Given the skepticism around players age 30 and up, its fair to expect a decline from him. Obviously they still have other pieces offensively, but he’s their starting center fielder and there’s a lot of ground to cover in Coors.
Arizona will be worse next year. They are losing 29 homers and 60 plus RBI from JDM, and Goldschmidt is already 32 and Greinke is 34. They should still be able to put up runs, but to expect them to have the same output as last year despite losing a top offensive performer and expected declines from heir remaining top offensive performer and ace, isn’t reasonable.
No disrespect but the giants have more players over 30 than either of those teams, and of course Blackmon will decline. He destroyed everything last year, but he’s in his prime right now so not too much.
If your gonna play the what if these teams started the season with these rosters game. The Rockies added more then just swapping arms in their BP and have a younger more athletic lineup and a way better farm-that’s one team. The Cardinals have better pitching and have added significantly to a better offense and their farm is way better-another team. Those are two teams not to mention the Brewers are coming and Mets who had major injuries to the their staff. What exactly have the Giants improved that much? They maybe improved 1/3 of their OF,haven’t really addressed a horrible BP,actually lost a starter(yea we know he was horrible) but was a body,and they’ve gotten older. Lastly if they are somehow in it at the deadline they have nothing to go out and get what is needed as much as those other teams do. Please don’t bring up that even year stuff…
My point in bringing up Blackmon was actually to demonstrate that merely being over 30 doesn’t necessarily equate to some massive decline. Giants are getting roasted for adding two players who are roughly the same age as Blackmon, have longer pedigrees of success, and don’t play at mile-high.
And no the Rockies didn’t make any other significant moves. Their weakness is their starting pitching and they did not address that. I didn’t consider the Cardinals or Mets bc they weren’t mentioned in the post I was commenting on. The Cards and Brewers def have a solid team and if the Mets can stay healthy they will be good as well.
Objectively I don’t see how anyone can say they didn’t improve that much. They had huge weaknesses at third base and in the outfield and have addressed both of those, though they obviously still need a centefielder. But to say that Longoria and McCutchen and their 6+ war isn’t a significant improvement is not correct.
The bullpen will be much stronger with Melancon back in form and with the return of Will Smith. And their back two starters are somewhat questionable but Stratton succeeded last year and Blach has done well in the past, too.
I’m with you on the even year stuff it’s dumb and superstitious.
Any 5th starter would be better than Cain was last year. Except maybe Moore last year. Blach/Stratton for a full year is a big upgrade.
I would never bet on the Rockies having two good seasons in a row. Rockies pitchers rarely achieve any sustainable success, and last year’s rotation wasn’t exactly superb to begin with.
I highly doubt the Giants will win the division, but all they really need is the wild card, and they should be competetive in a series with any playoff team. I would love to finally see Giants vs Dodgers in the NLCS.
Melancon might not come back and that leaves the Gints wo a proven closer. Hunter Strickland would have to grow up for it to work
“Melancon might not come back…”
There are facts that will help substantiate a point. or on the other hand, items are made up of whole cloth to justify an opinion. Yours is the latter. There has been absolutely no indication that Melancon may not come back. The surgery was deemed successful at the time, and it was reported that he was playing catch pain free in early December.
The luxury tax limit is 197 mil and not just an even 200? How weird.
It goes up a little bit every year
“Luxury Tax Thresholds go from $189 million in the prior CBA in 2016 to $195 million in 2017, $197 million in 2018, $206 million in 2019, $208 million in 2020, and $210 million in 2021”
Worst Punishment to clubs with payroll $40M+ above Luxury tax
“Beginning in 2018, clubs with a payroll $40 million or more above the Tax Threshold shall have their highest selection in the next Rule 4 Draft moved back 10 places, except that the top six selections will be protected and those Clubs will have their 2nd highest selection moved back 10 places.”
The article on the Jackson signing mentioned he typically carries reverse platoon splits (or did he only do so this past year?) This bears mentioning again when talking about handedness balance.
No, it doesn’t bear mentioning.
By wRC+, he has a modest normal platoon split in his career (106 vs LH pitchers, 102 vs. RH pitchers).
Batter platoon splits also take an incredibly long time to stabilize. Even at Jackson’s ~1,300 career PA’s vs. LH pitchers, our best assumption is that this true talent platoon split is somewhere between his observed career number and the league average for RH hitters.
lefty/righty matchups are overrated. same as power corners. just hit the ball
Well I think it depends on the swing and type of hitter, normally matchups work well with swing and miss power hitters since you can take advantage of an early swig with movement or location and righty righty and lefty lefty allow the pitcher to hide the ball
ball still comes out about the same distance from home plate, whether right or left. see ball, hit ball
It’s not about distance…
what you don’t seem to understand is that a right handed hitter SEES the ball coming out of a left handed pitcher’s hand longer and vice versa. it may only be a second longer but when it’s thrown at you at 90+mph that split second matters greatly
a second longer, or a split second? which is it? you’re contradicting yourself.
When you have no clue what Baseball is and just comment for fun
Oh is it that easy? Shoot, I can be a big leaguer now!
Baseball cannot be analyzed with simple blanket statements like “lefty/righty matchups are overrated”
It depends somewhat on the hitter, better hitters are in general not at a huge disadvantage against a same-handed pitcher, but on average most hitters are. Better hitters have platoon splits with little difference Average hitters will not hit as well against the same-handed pitcher, The most rare occurrence is a hitter that hits significantly better against the same-handed pitcher over his career, not just one season..
Just because a LHP will fail on occasion against a LHH means nothing. Over a number of ABs, the same-handed pitcher will do better than the opposite-handed one, That’s the case for most hitters in MLB. Managers know this and will continue to work the lefty/righty advantage, because over time it dies work.
Yes ! See the ball , hit the ball ! Don’t send a guy to the plate thinking about his splits, freezes his mind and bat !
How about this?
If CHC think they can/should sign Cain
SF get: Almora
CHC get: Beede + others
SF gets their CF without a high salary, CHC can replace Almora by signing Cain, if Beede is healthy and effective, he pitches half the season at AAA while Montgomery starts then pitches second half. Cubs would probably need some other players to get it done.
Might be a fair deal in a vacuum, but as a Giants fan I’d rather they roll with what they have in the OF and hold on to what little pitching depth they have left.
Why is everyone a damn GM on this site.. no one has any inside Insite to theses teams and don’t know half of what they think they know. Leave it to the real GMs and just enjoy your team and hope for the best.
Unless the “others” is Heliot Ramos the Cubs never do that. Beede is older than Almora and has much kess trade value
At this point there’s not a single trade out there that the Giants would entertain Heliot Ramos in. He’s not the second coming of Jesus but he’s the best non pitching prospect they’ve had since Posey. He’s not going anywhere.
Yeah, gotta do at minimum Ramos for Almora 1-1 but even then, probably too light on the SF end. Almora is only 24 in 2018 and is about to blow up. He can’t really do that in Chicago, there wasn’t even 300 ABs for him last year, and he has no split, he hits righties well and mashes lefties – any team that gets him is probably looking at him like the unhyped version of Yelich.
Personally I’d love to see him get 600 PA’s this year, either in Chicago or elsewhere. Really wish they’d trade Schwarber for nothing to the AL to DH somewhere so he’d quit taking OF innings away from Almora, who might be an all-star if given a full time shot.
Yeah, I just said others because I don’t know the SF system well, but the Cubs would want young starters in AAA or in the major leagues with some upside, Beede could fit this description, but I don’t know who else the Cubs would want from the Giants. Samardjiza return maybe interests them if SF takes on part of his salary? (but then SF is low on pitching depth, now they are looking for SP with little money to spend) Heliot Ramos is too far from the majors to help the Cubs soon imo. Almora is pretty inexpensive salary wise and has upside for SF, but if this works it might need to be a three-team trade with SF luxury tax limits.
You are vastly overrating Almora. He’s a useful player, and a breakout is always possible, but the last time that he was much above a league average hitter for his level was in A ball in 2013. That’s an above average player with plus defense in CF, but it’s hardly a star.
Cubs aren’t trading Almora.
To think that a team with just under $200M in payroll obligations for the coming season is struggling to fill roster needs is mind boggling. I understand the whys of it all, but it’s like owning a Lamborghini and being restricted to shop at WalMart for parts.
Challenge trade: Odubel Herrera for Heliot Ramos
Too much salary. Would need to trade salary
The Giants will not remain under cap before the season starts. If all goes bad in season they can always get under tax. So money is not issue both Evans and Sabean has stated this multiple times in interiews over the past few months. These writers don’t listen and write what they believe. There was never a plan to stay under tax.
If there wasn’t a clear plan to stay under the threshold, I think the Giants at least make a feeble offer for either JD Martinez or Yu Darvish. They haven’t been shy the last several years, with regard to making weak offers to the biggest free agents available. This year, they’re not even on the radar. Seems like a pretty concentrated effort to tighten the purse strings, if you ask me.
I think you are mistaking the willingness to spend with staying under the tax. The front office has always said that they have no issue spending but this year getting in under the tax is important as it pertains to next year when if your tax is low you can blow past it on a huge FA class.
Under the guidelines of the CBA the teams are not allowed to say which players they like or dislike.
I’m pretty sure their genuine attempt at Giancarlo Stanton was proof that they’ve tried this off-season. Mind you he wasn’t a free agent and instead would have been a hefty trade but the logic remains the same regarding the luxury threshold.
While definitely an intriguing proposal, Ramos really just looks like an Odubel Herrera who is five years away.
I think Herrera is one of the core pieces to the future success of the Phillies. He’s a top three defensive center fielder with a good hit tool, solid speed and surprising power. I think he’s arguably one of the most underrated players in baseball.
He’s definitely not underrated, underrated guys don’t deals that lock up their arby years.
He also doesn’t have the same trade value as Ramos. Ramos has a lot more.
So in five years you want the Phillies to embark on another eight to ten year rebuild?
Empty farm. That’s how the Phillies got here.
The Giants could get a better player back than Herrera if Ramos is on the table.
Ramos is 17 years old. Herrera is a fantastic get. The biggest challenge is on the Phillies.
Dyson ..simple solution!
Dyson isn’t signing for less than 2.1 m
Trade Strickland ($1.5 mill) and beede (and/or?) to nats for Taylor. Whatever prospects it takes. They’d stay under the threshold. And put Stricklands and Harpers lockers next to each other.
as much as giants fans dislike hunter, he has improved and is now a valuable arm in our depleted pen, giving him and beede up for taylor would be insane.
They should try and swing something with SD for Jankowski. He would be a perfect fit to cover all that ground in center. As he develops as a hitter he would lead the league in triples as well. Log jam in center for the Padres and would not cost as much as most other options.
I’d think Margot would be more attractive. He’s a pretty great fielder, no?
He is, but not someone that SD would move. Especially in the division. Not to mention SF wouldn’t be willing to give up what it would take to get Margot.
Expect you’re right. Is Jankowski a stellar outfielder as well?
He is a good Outfielder and should get even better. Great first step and a ton of speed.
There’s not really a lot jam in cf for the padres. It’s just Margot…
Not true. Cordero is waiting in the wings and Gettys shortly there after.
Padres Armchair GM
Or see if the giants would do cordero and thompson and for shaw and gregorio or suarez. cordero slots in for cf long term for the giants.
It might be pretty tough to pull off a trade with SD, but Matt Szczur could probably be had quite easily considering the Padres have a lot of young guys they want to play and Matt is out of options. He presents the same platoon issue that comes with AJax, but he is still not at the money making threshold yet, and SD has cap space to take on a minor contract for the services of Szczur. The thought behind that is, if you get him for nothing, you have the roster space but no cash, and another player who can play all outfield positions and you can move one of your lesser outfield options from SF that you think won’t fit your long term plans(Not Pence of course,SD simply won’t absorb that contract just to help SF). Similar to signing a minor lg player who is DFA’d because he is out of options.
If the Giants don’t get off to good start I could see them trading away pieces. They should have did this last year in July.
They tried to. Their best trade chip at the time (Johnny Cueto) imploded and landed on the DL 2 weeks before the deadline.
If healthy, Cueto would have been long gone.
And they traded Nunez and Kontos. Really anyone else they would’ve entertained trading, they’d have been selling low, with the exception of Posey, who they aren’t trading, and Strickland, who doesn’t even make $2 million.
1 year / 1 million for Ichiro.
Ichiro and Pence are reversible in LF/RF and McCutchen plays CF, when Jackson is out.
Not ideal, but it keeps you under the threshold and has potential offensive upside, while letting Slater/Hernandez/Duggar get some more seasoning.
omg please take Broxton off our hands and all you need to do is a lottery ticket in A ball
Slater hit .282. He was the Giants’ only good outfielder last year.
I think Keon Broxton is the way to go here. Tons of potential (power/speed combo) good defensive metrics-tighten up the Ks (like most Giants have done in the past) and would cost less than a Santana or a Brinson would in a trade.
I don’t know what Broxton’s UZR was but I know that by the end of the season last year he was making a bunch of very difficult catches that he was almost-but-not-quite making earlier in the season. If the Giants wanted him to steal bases I don’t think 40 or 50 would be out of the question. When the Brewers began hitting so many homeruns early, they shut down the running game almost completely. But when Broxton did steal, it was seldom even close.
But oh those strikeouts…
Was thinking they’d make a play for Corey Dickerson before they signed Jackson. Good left handed bat to plug into a heavy right handed outfield. They’d have to dig to include some solid prospects from their thin system, along with a piece to offset salary. But I figured it could have been done.
Or maybe pull a Seattle and trade for Villar and put him in center. Maybe he is another “_buy low” candidate plus only making 2.55MM this year.
The headline says Giants are gonna stay under tax. When he never said that he said they are in talks with certain players and if they come to terms they will exceed the tax which is what Sabean has been saying for months that there is no plan to stay under tax.
i would retool the outfield with the brewers., so tell me your thoughts.
giants give, hunter pence, joe panik, mac williamson, mid level prospect
brewers give ryan braun, keon bruxton, jonathan villar.
No. You are majorly undervaluing Panik also with Pence ntc as well as Braun’s ntc wouldn’t be possible. Hunter is not gonna leave.unless trade to. Houston where he still owns a home and other businesses. Broxton strikeout % is over 40% his value isn’t as high people think. Villar strikeout % and poor performance last year forcing the Brewers to trade for Walker, Villar value is also lower then people think.. Panik a gold glove at the keystone who performance at a high level in the playoffs would be very difficult to replace.
i would agree and good points but its worth trying he is why. panik though good glove is a little over rated he has back issues that are a concern. and very avg power. he makes good contact and high batting avage but i want more speed. as for broxton is we go defense for center i would want twenty bombs and stolen bases than gorkys or jackson. and it would hurt to ask pence for braun they dont want his contract we dont want pences ethier his is longer but his numbers have always been far better plus this would be a clean salary swap which would keep us under the lux tax
Panik’s back issues are what’s overrated. His problem was not a disk, which can be an issue over time. It was a small bone break that was somewhat freakish, and which has since completely healed.
Why on earth would Milwaukee want pence at all. They have a bunch of OF depth prospects mlb ready who are better than pence and making 18 mil less
If Milwaukee is taking on a 18 mil dollar contract it would be for a SP.
While Braun has a bad contract he’s still much better then Pence.
This is an MLB the Show trade if I’ve ever seen one. Unfortunately you’ll never see trades with this many major league players involved. Just doesn’t work. Prospects are often the currency in trades, just like draft picks are in the other major sports.
If the Giants make another trade to get a CF, what happens at the trade deadline if they are contending? They won’t have any trade pieces to get bullpen help or bench depth to make a playoff push.
From what I’ve witnessed this decade, the Giants are extremely savvy with their trades at the deadline each year. Somehow they manage to consistently find underrated players that end up helping a lot without giving up hardly anything in return, with the 2011 Carlos Beltran trade being the biggest exception that comes to mind.
What about the Giants trading for Kevin Pillar? He’s cheap and is one heck of a CF. I think the jays would part with him for a starter. In the past the jays have been linked to Samardzja. If the giants were willing to eat some money I think the jays would think about it. Last I heard the jays had 12-13 mil to spend. This would free up some salary for the giants and given the market it seems like they could add a starter for say 9-10 mil granted probably not as good as Jeff but might be something they would think about.
We are not trading one of our 3 starting pitchers for a center fielder it’s not gonna happen. Someone would have to offer a big package for any 3 of them definitely not just for an outfielder when we can just sigh Cain or use Duggar/Slater.
Go get Yelich and show us you’re serious. Move the Shark if you need $$$… he’s going to be more useless this year than last year. Throw in Gorkys and Don’t Buy The Hype Jarrett Parker. Get it done and we’ll get excited about this year.
What are the chances sign Brandon Moss off waivers? Seems like a great fit (backup Pence and Belt) and a value! Squeeze him under the luxury tax!