The Giants are looking to add outfield help, and Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle reports that Eddie Rosario and Jackie Bradley Jr. are two of the names under consideration. Both players are also left-handed hitters, “which ticks off another box on the Giants’ wish list,” Slusser writes.
Considering that Bradley and Rosario have very different skillsets, the Giants are clearly keeping their options open as they explore how to best construct their outfield. The current mix consists of Mike Yastrzemski as the only true everyday option in right field, Mauricio Dubon getting the bulk of center field playing time, and Alex Dickerson and Darin Ruf platooning in left field. Austin Slater, Steven Duggar, Luis Alexander Basabe, and Jaylin Davis provide further depth on the bench and in the upper minors.
Signing Bradley would bring one of the game’s top defensive players to the spacious Oracle Park outfield, and he would immediately slide into the everyday center field job. Dubon would still get some playing time in center field when a left-handed starter was on the mound, but the Giants could perhaps bounce Dubon around the diamond to second base, shortstop, or possibly other positions in a super-utility role. Signing Rosario to take over in left field would perhaps make Dickerson a little superfluous, though since Yastrzemski has looked okay in limited center field action, the Giants could opt for an all left-handed array of Rosario/Yastrzemski/Dickerson in the outfield against some right-handed pitching.
Bradley offers excellent glovework and something of an inconsistent bat, though he is coming off a season that saw him hit .283/.364/.450 with seven home runs over 217 plate appearances for the Red Sox. He also posted some strong numbers in 2015-16, but a slash line of only .234/.318/.409 in 1643 PA during the 2017-19 seasons seemingly lowered Bradley’s potential ceiling as a hitter. Bradley turns 31 in April, but a change of scenery could revive his bat after eight seasons in Boston.
As something of the opposite of Bradley, Rosario is a bat-first player who is perhaps a little underrated on defense, considering that Rosario has been above-average (+9 Defensive Runs Saved, +2.9 UZR/150) over 4848 career innings as a left fielder. Rosario also delivered plenty of pop during his six years with the Twins, hitting .277/.310/.478 with 119 homers in 2830 PA.
In December, however, Rosario wasn’t tendered a contract. Minnesota opted to let Rosario go due to his escalating arbitration price tag (projected to land between $8.6MM and $12.9MM) and because top prospects Alex Kirilloff and Trevor Larnach are both waiting in the wings for regular Major League duty. The 29-year-old Rosario also posts a lot of strikeouts and doesn’t reach base often, which limits his offensive production.
Bradley has drawn more public interest than Rosario this winter, as Rosario has been linked to only the Marlins and Red Sox on the rumor mill. Boston has also been known to have interest in a reunion with Bradley, and at least five other teams have also been connected to Bradley’s market. Of course, that list has likely seen some alterations as the offseason has rolled on — the Blue Jays, for instance, are almost certainly out on Bradley after signing George Springer.