The Giants are suddenly drawing some interest in lefty Drew Pomeranz, tweets Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic. The 30-year-old southpaw lost his rotation spot a couple weeks back and has been sharp since moving to the ’pen — albeit in a tiny sample of three appearances. Pomeranz has tossed 4 1/3 shutout frames with six strikeouts, one hit allowed and one walk.
It’s obviously unlikely that he’d command a significant return after logging a 6.10 ERA, 5.58 FIP and 4.67 xFIP in 72 1/3 innings as a starter. But Pomeranz has had considerable success as a reliever in the past. He spent the bulk of the 2014-15 seasons in the Oakland bullpen and posted a 3.08 ERA with 8.5 K/9, 3.3 BB/9 and 0.9 HR/9. In his career, he’s turned in a 2.86 ERA in 91 2/3 innings of relief, notching a 96-to-34 K/BB ratio and allowing just a .213/.292/.317 batting line in that time.
The situation for Pomeranz isn’t entirely different from that of just-traded former teammate Derek Holland. Pomeranz has also fared much better against left-handed hitters this year, holding them to a cumulative .250/.309/.398 batting line with 11.1 K/9 and 2.8 BB/9. Pomeranz also wouldn’t cost much, as he’s playing on a $2MM base salary in 2019. Both pitchers hold appeal as possible left-on-left matchup men who’d also represent swingman depth given their long histories as starters.
For the Giants, moving Pomeranz wouldn’t necessarily have to occur as part of a broader sell-off. If the club decides to hang onto its best relief assets, it’d continue to feature two quality southpaws in closer Will Smith and setup man Tony Watson. At the same time, if the club does forego significant sell-side moves, it probably doesn’t make much sense to part with Pomeranz if he’s seen as one of the club’s best seven relievers. The return isn’t likely to be substantial. But if he just isn’t a part of the San Francisco plans, perhaps there’s a shot of gaining some salary relief.