The Giants announced Tuesday that they’ve acquired outfielder TJ Hopkins from the Reds in exchange for cash or a player to be named later. Cincinnati designated Hopkins for assignment last week.
Hopkins, 27 next month, made his MLB debut this past season and went 7-for-41 (all singles) with a pair of walks and 17 strikeouts in 44 plate appearances. It was hardly an eye-catching debut, but the 2019 ninth-rounder’s production in Triple-A Louisville was far more intriguing. In his first full season at the top minor league level, Hopkins delivered a robust .308/.411/.514 batting line with a 14% walk rate, 23.9% strikeout rate, 16 home runs, 18 doubles, a triple and a pair of steals.
Hopkins has played primarily left field in his professional career but has plenty of experience in right field and center field as well. He’s been an average or better hitter at every minor league stop and steadily improved both his walk and strikeout rates as he’s climbed the minor league ladder. Hopkins was in the first of three minor league option years this past season, so he has two more remaining. He’ll give the Giants a right-handed depth bat to add to a heavily left-handed outfield mix.
Presently, the Giants project to have lefties Michael Conforto and Mike Yastrzemski in the outfield corners, where they’ll flank newly signed center fielder Jung Hoo Lee. The KBO star — another lefty bat — signed a six-year deal that’ll pay him $113MM just last week. Also in the outfield mix in San Francisco are righties Mitch Haniger, Austin Slater, Luis Matos, Heliot Ramos and lefties Blake Sabol and Wade Meckler. Haniger, who’s entering the second season of a three-year contract, could see a fair bit of time at designated hitter. Sabol could see big league time as a reserve catcher and outfielder.