San Francisco Giants – MLB Trade Rumors 2019-08-22T14:49:00Z WordPress George Miller <![CDATA[Giants Return Rule 5 Selection Travis Bergen To Blue Jays]]> 2019-08-22T04:04:19Z 2019-08-22T00:04:42Z
  • After the Giants designated him for assignment, Rule 5 selection Travis Bergen has cleared waivers and will return to his former organization, the Blue Jays. He’s been assigned to Triple-A Buffalo as he makes his return to the team that drafted him in 2015. Bergen, a left-handed reliever, got into 21 games for the Giants this year and compiled a 5.49 ERA in his first taste of the big leagues. Between two levels of the minors in 2018, he posted a 0.95 ERA while striking out 74 batters in 56 2/3 innings.
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    Mark Polishuk <![CDATA[Latest On Cueto, Anderson]]> 2019-08-21T15:35:17Z 2019-08-21T15:35:17Z
  • Giants manager Bruce Bochy gave an unofficial projection of September 8 as Johnny Cueto’s potential return date to the majors, as Bochy told reporters (including the San Francisco Chronicle’s Henry Schulman) on Tuesday.  Cueto threw 60 pitches in a rehab outing for the Class-A San Jose Giants yesterday, and he’ll make the first of two rehab starts for Triple-A Sacramento on Monday.  Assuming the tentative September 8 date stands, it will mark just over 13 months between Tommy John surgery and a Major League mound for Cueto.
  • In other Giants injury news, right-hander Shaun Anderson has started his own Triple-A rehab assignment, Alex Pavlovic of NBC Sports Bay Area tweets.  Anderson hit the IL on August 8 due to a blister on the middle finger of his throwing hand, so he shouldn’t require too long of a ramp-up period before he is able to rejoin the Giants.  Anderson has a 5.33 ERA, 1.77 K/BB rate, and a 6.0 K/9 over 82 2/3 innings in what has been a rather inconsistent rookie season for the 24-year-old.
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    George Miller <![CDATA[Steven Duggar Avoids Shoulder Surgery]]> 2019-08-21T02:16:53Z 2019-08-20T23:36:05Z After receiving a second opinion on his injured left AC joint, Giants outfielder Steven Duggar has received the best possible news, tweets Henry Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle: he won’t require surgery. Instead, the 25-year-old is looking at a four-to-six week rehab timeline. He’ll still miss the remainder of the season, but it’s nonetheless encouraging that Duggar won’t need to undergo a procedure.

    Of course, it’s a promising development for Duggar, who was recently rumored to be “leaning towards” surgery to repair the grade 3 strain he suffered shortly after returning to the Majors. However, a second opinion from Dr. Neal ElAttrache revealed that such a surgery won’t be necessary.

    Notably, Duggar is no stranger to shoulder injuries—his 2018 season was cut short by a surgery to repair a torn labrum in his left shoulder.

    The premature conclusion to Duggar’s first full Major League season represents the continuation of a string of frustrating developments. Once viewed by many as a key piece of the Giants’ future, he’s since been forced out of regular role, supplanted by surprising outfielders such as Mike Yastrzemski, Alex Dickerson, and Austin Slater, along with trade acquisition Kevin Pillar.

    With the Giants experimenting with droves of outfielders in hopes of forging an above-average unit, Duggar has done little to distinguish himself. After a promising rookie season in which he posted a passable (if unspectacular) 92 OPS+, he’s seen his offensive output dip this season. His OPS has dropped to .619 while striking out in 27.7% of his plate appearances, compared to just a 5.7% walk rate. Of course, his value comes primarily as a defensive outfielder in a spacious San Francisco outfield: this year, he’s credited with 6 DRS between center and right field. As a consequence, he won’t need to hit as much as others in order to carve out a role on a Major League team, though that might mean his best-case outcome looks something like Ender Inciarte.

    While there’s still time for the young outfielder to recoup his value, his development will have to wait until next season in light of the shoulder injury. And with emerging commodities in the San Francisco outfield, he won’t be short on competition as he seeks to prove his worth to a new front office.

    George Miller <![CDATA[Giants Designate Travis Bergen, Recall Abiatal Avelino]]> 2019-08-18T19:33:23Z 2019-08-18T17:34:34Z The Giants have designated left-handed pitcher Travis Bergen for assignment and have recalled infielder Abiatal Avelino, according to Maria Guardado of

    Bergen, 25, was selected by the Giants in last December’s Rule 5 Draft after spending the first four years of his professional career in the Blue Jays organization. If he clears waivers, the Giants will need to offer him back to his former employer—of course, the Blue Jays are not required to accept Bergen back into the fold, in which case the Giants could keep Bergen in their organization.

    In his first taste of Major League action, Bergen has appeared in 21 games for the Giants, striking out 18 batters in 19 2/3 innings. Those numbers have in part led to a 5.55 FIP, which backs his overall 5.49 ERA. With Bergen no longer on the roster, top prospect Logan Webb looks like a good bet to stick around for an extended look, especially after an impressive debut.

    Meanwhile, Avelino is slated to make his first big league appearance of 2019 after a six-game Major League stint in September of 2018. One of the fruits of the trade that sent Andrew McCutchen to the Yankees, the 24-year-old Avelino has spent the entire season in Triple-A. With a .771 season OPS, he’s regarded as the Giants’ No. 27 prospect by MLB Pipeline, which touts his arm strength from the shortstop position and his defensive versatility.

    Connor Byrne <![CDATA[A Minor Signing Pays Off For Giants]]> 2019-08-17T01:03:56Z 2019-08-17T01:03:56Z Giants infielder Donovan Solano has somewhat quietly held his own since the team selected his contract from Triple-A Sacramento on May 7. Dating back to then, Solano has slashed .331/.363/.471 (119 wRC+) with four home runs across 168 plate appearances. Not bad for someone who had to settle for a minor league pact when he joined the Giants last offseason.

    Solano’s output this year has been all the more impressive considering he hadn’t appeared in the majors since 2016 prior to his promotion to San Francisco’s roster. He logged a fair amount of playing time with the Marlins from 2012-15 and a bit with the Yankees the year after his Miami tenure ended, but he only managed a .257/.306/.331 line during that 1,168-PA span between the two teams. What’s more, Solano didn’t acquit himself particularly great as a minor leaguer with the Marlins, Yankees or Dodgers, evidenced in part by his lifetime .724 OPS in 2,570 PA at the Triple-A level. He was solid – albeit far from excellent – as a member of the Giants’ top minors affiliate at the outset of the season, hitting .322/.392/.437 (108 wRC+) with a pair of homers over 97 attempts as part of the hitter-friendly Pacific Coast League.

    Solano’s early season production in Sacramento was enough to earn him another big league call-up, and he hasn’t looked back. His effectiveness has played a role in the resurgence of the Giants, who have rallied from the dead this summer to at least enter the National League wild-card conversation. The question is: Might the Giants – who haven’t gotten much from any second base choice but Solano – have actually found a legitimate late bloomer? Going by the numbers, it’s a mixed bag.

    Solano’s .397 batting average on balls in play isn’t going to continue, which is especially ominous for someone who doesn’t hit for much power, and his 87 mph average exit velocity ranks toward the bottom of the league. He also seldom walks, having drawn free passes at a subpar 4.8 percent clip.

    Solano has, however, offset his lack of walks to some degree by striking out less than most hitters (20.2 percent). When he has put the bat on the ball, the right-hander has increased his line drives and hard-contact rate (according to FanGraphs), cut down on grounders, and recorded quality production against righty and lefty hurlers alike. Solano has struggled mightily at the Giants’ pitcher-friendly confines of Oracle Park, where he has batted .266/.289/.304, though he has made up for that by slashing a fantastic .397/.435/.641 on the road. Overall, Statcast shows little difference between Solano’s weighted on-base average (.356) and expected wOBA (.359).

    While Solano had made clear improvements this season, it’s highly debatable whether he could emerge as a multiyear solution for the Giants. Even if he doesn’t, the Giants couldn’t have expected Solano to put up what has easily been a career campaign in 2019 when they inked him to a no-risk deal. Given the work Solano has done in a San Francisco uniform, he looks like one of the winter’s top minor league signings at this point.

    Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

    Connor Byrne <![CDATA[Giants To Promote Logan Webb]]> 2019-08-16T23:56:16Z 2019-08-16T23:55:04Z TODAY: Webb is indeed taking the ball tomorrow, skipper Bruce Bochy tells reporters including’s Maria Guardado (via Twitter).

    YESTERDAY: The Giants haven’t named a starter for Saturday’s game in Arizona, but president of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi “strongly hinted” in a radio appearance on KNBR the job will go to right-hander Logan Webb, Henry Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle tweets. Webb is already on the Giants’ 40-man roster, so calling him up from the minors wouldn’t require a corresponding move in that regard.

    Now 22, Webb joined the Giants as a fourth-round pick in 2014. He underwent Tommy John surgery two years later, which limited him to 70 innings from 2016-17, but has come back to thrive since then. The hard-throwing Webb’s currently one of San Francisco’s highest-regarded farmhands, ranking among the team’s top 10 prospects at (No. 5), Baseball America (No. 8) and FanGraphs (No. 9).

    The majority of Webb’s work this year has come in Double-A ball, where he put up a 2.18 ERA with 10.23 K/9, 2.61 BB/9 and a 65.5 percent groundball rate in 41 1/3 innings en route to his first Triple-A promotion. Webb made his inaugural Triple-A start Monday and fired seven innings of one-run, seven-hit ball, notching seven strikeouts and no walks along the way.

    While Webb has been stellar on the mound this season, his year hasn’t been free of issues. Webb received an 80-game suspension May 1 after testing positive for the performance-enhancing drug dehydrochlormethyltestosterone. But it doesn’t appear that ban will prevent Webb from debuting this year for the starter-needy Giants, who are continuing to hang around the .500 mark and the National League wild-card picture.

    Jeff Todd <![CDATA[Giants Outright Kyle Barraclough]]> 2019-08-16T18:06:11Z 2019-08-16T18:06:11Z The Giants have outrighted right-hander Kyle Barraclough to Triple-A after he cleared waivers, as Alex Pavlovic of NBC Sports Bay Area was among those to cover on Twitter. Barraclough had been designated for assignment shortly after being claimed off waivers.

    Barraclough has made just one appearance at the Giants’ top affiliate. It was not a good one, as he coughed up five earned runs without recording an out. That follows a rough showing with the Nationals. Barraclough worked to a 6.66 ERA with thirty strikeouts and a dozen walks, but also eight home runs allowed, in 25 2/3 innings.

    It is not entirely clear what intentions the Giants have for Barraclough, who was mostly effective (3.21 ERA with 11.5 K/9 and 5.5 BB/9) in 218 2/3 innings over four seasons with the Marlins before he landed in D.C. The club has absorbed the remainder of his $1.725MM salary, so you’d think they have a bit more in mind than late-season depth. It’s possible the San Francisco org will implement some tweaks and consider tendering him a contract for 2020, though he’ll surely need to show a spark before the end of the season for that to occur.

    Mark Polishuk <![CDATA[Early Return For Cueto?]]> 2019-08-16T02:35:36Z 2019-08-16T02:13:50Z Johnny Cueto’s rehab outing with Single-A San Jose is set for tonight, manager Bruce Bochy told reporters (including NBC Sports Bay Area’s Alex Pavlovic and Kerry Crowley of the Bay Area News Group), with the veteran righty slated to make 45 pitches.  Cueto is expected to make one more start beyond tonight for San Jose, though the original plan of two further rehab outings at Triple-A would be altered, as Cueto might simply get called back to the majors if he is healthy and throwing well.  By having “Cueto get up to speed in big league games,” as Pavlovic puts it, the Giants would get some needed rotation help, even if Cueto is limited to only four or five innings per start.  All will depend on how Cueto is feeling as he reaches the final stages of his Tommy John rehab, of course, though getting Cueto back in anything close to his old form would certainly help a San Francisco club that is struggling to stay in wild card contention.

    Mark Polishuk <![CDATA[Giants Select Fernando Abad’s Contract, Designate Kyle Barraclough]]> 2019-08-15T22:55:35Z 2019-08-15T22:37:38Z The Giants announced a series of roster moves, including the news that catcher Aramis Garcia and left-hander Williams Jerez were optioned to Triple-A Sacramento and right-hander Kyle Barraclough has been designated for assignment.  Right-hander Dereck Rodriguez was called up and left-hander Fernando Abad’s contract was purchased from Triple-A.

    After signing a minors contract with the Giants in February, Abad is lined up to receive his first MLB action since 2017.  His 2018 season was marred by a lengthy appeal of a positive PED test that eventually led to an 80-game suspension.  Abad had agreed to a minor league deal with the Mets prior to the season but the suspension caused New York to pull out of the agreement before it became official.  Pitching for Sacramento this season, Abad has been very impressive, posting a 3.07 ERA and 49 strikeouts against only four walks over 44 relief innings.

    Rodriguez will get another chance at salvaging what has been a rough sophomore season for the 27-year-old, who has a 5.32 ERA, 5.9 K/9, and 1.68 K/BB rate over 64 1/3 frames this season.  It’s a far cry from Rodriguez’s 2.81 ERA in his 2018 rookie season, as the righty has been up and down from the minors on multiple occasions this season as he has tried to regain last year’s consistency.  He’ll be put to work immediately, as Rodriguez is scheduled to start tonight’s game against the Diamondbacks.

    Barraclough was claimed off waivers from the Nationals just last week, and now could potentially be on the move again in what has been a trying season.  Barraclough allowed eight homers in just 25 2/3 innings for the Nats, leading to an ugly 2.5 HR/9 and 6.66 ERA.  After posting a measly 0.4 HR/9 in his first three seasons for the Marlins, Barraclough’s number jumped up to 1.4 HR/9 in 2018, which was perhaps one of the reasons Miami was willing to deal in a trade with Washington last October.  Beyond the increasingly worrisome long-ball issues, Barraclough also spent roughly four weeks on the injured list this year due to nerve irritation in his forearm.

    Jeff Todd <![CDATA[Giants Put Sandoval On IL, Activate Dickerson]]> 2019-08-14T19:26:23Z 2019-08-14T19:20:48Z 2:20pm: The Giants announced that Sandoval has indeed been placed on the injured list due to elbow inflammation. Outfielder Alex Dickerson has been reinstated from the IL in a corresponding roster move, although Dickerson is not in today’s lineup.

    1:07pm: Giants third baseman Pablo Sandoval says that he expects to be placed on the 10-day injured list, as John Shea of the San Francisco Chronicle was among those to cover (Twitter links). Sandoval is dealing with bone chips in his right elbow.

    It seems that Sandoval has already attempted a cortisone shot, without sufficient effect. The malady has limited him when throwing and hitting from the right side of the plate.

    It’s not clear at this point how much time the Panda might miss. He indicated that he’s hopeful of making it back to the active roster, even if he’s limited to hitting from the left side of the plate, though it seems a timeline won’t become clear until he has had some time to rest.

    Sandoval, who recently turned 33, narrowly made the Giants roster out of camp but has turned out to be a key cog. He has accumulated 295 plate appearances of .269/.314/.509 hitting with 14 home runs — a vintage performance for a player who was once a quality regular. Sandoval will return to the open market at season’s end.

    Steve Adams <![CDATA[Yankees Claim Ryan Dull]]> 2019-08-14T19:02:07Z 2019-08-14T18:28:49Z The Yankees announced Wednesday that they’ve claimed right-hander Ryan Dull off outright waivers from the Giants. In order to open a spot on the 40-man roster, right-hander Brady Lail was designated for assignment.

    Dull, 29, was designated for assignment by both Bay Area teams in the span of nine days this month. The longtime Athletics reliever never made it to the Majors with the Giants in his extremely brief time with the organization, as San Francisco optioned him to Triple-A Sacramento immediately upon acquiring him.

    Dull has been up and down with Oakland over the past five seasons, pitching to a collective 4.08 ERA with 8.7 K/9 against 2.6 BB/9 in 167 2/3 innings of work. The right-hander’s best year came with the 2016 A’s, when he logged 74 1/3 frames of 2.42 ERA ball, but he’s been hampered by knee and shoulder injuries since that time. In a total of 76 1/3 big league innings since Opening Day 2017, Dull has posted an underwhelming 5.66 ERA with a 74-to-27 K/BB ratio. He’s averaged just over 11 strikeouts and 2.3 walks per nine innings pitched throughout his minor league career.

    Lail, 25, was the Yankees’ 18th-round pick back in 2012 and made his MLB debut just last week, tossing 2 2/3 innings but allowing three runs (two earned) on five hits. He’s been solid out of the bullpen across three minor league levels this year, as evidenced by a 2.79 ERA with 11.8 K/9 and 2.8 BB/9 in 42 innings of work.

    Connor Byrne <![CDATA[Giants Claim Burch Smith, Designate Ryan Dull]]> 2019-08-12T18:15:10Z 2019-08-12T18:02:27Z The Giants have claimed right-hander Burch Smith off waivers from the Brewers, Adam McCalvy of tweets. Smith had been in limbo since the Brewers designated him for assignment Friday. The Giants opened up a spot for Smith by designating fellow righty Ryan Dull for assignment, Kerry Crowley of the Bay Area News Group reports.

    Smith’s the second waiver claim since Friday for the Giants, who took Kyle Barraclough from the Nationals then. Smith, like Barraclough, will report to Triple-A Sacramento. The 29-year-old Smith has pitched to an ugly 7.82 ERA/6.69 FIP with 9.95 K/9 against 7.11 BB/9 in 12 2/3 major league innings this season. He has been much better over 77 1/3 Triple-A frames, however, with a 2.33 ERA/4.29 FIP, 9.89 K/9 and 4.31 BB/9.

    The 29-year-old Dull lasted only a week on the Giants’ 40-man – they claimed him from the Bay Area rival Athletics last Monday. Dull didn’t throw a pitch for the Giants, instead tossing three frames of three-run ball with their Triple-A affiliate. The once-promising major leaguer has spent the majority of the past two seasons in the minors.

    Mark Polishuk <![CDATA[Pablo Sandoval Could Require Offseason Elbow Surgery]]> 2019-08-12T04:59:50Z 2019-08-12T04:59:50Z
  • Pablo Sandoval has loose bodies in his elbow that could require offseason surgery to correct, Giants manager Bruce Bochy told the San Francisco Chronicle’s Henry Schulman and other reporters.  For now, Sandoval is being rested as he deals with elbow inflammation.  If Sandoval does go under the knife, such surgeries are usually relatively minor procedures, though any sort of injury red flag is of note for a pending free agent, especially given how the market has been so unfriendly to veteran corner-infield types like Sandoval in recent years.  The Panda celebrated his 33rd birthday on Sunday, and the longtime Giants fan favorite is enjoying his best season in years, hitting .269/.314/.509 over 295 PA as a part-time player in San Francisco.
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    Anthony Franco <![CDATA[Cueto, Dickerson Nearing Returns]]> 2019-08-11T16:27:26Z 2019-08-11T16:27:26Z
  • Johnny Cueto made his second rehab appearance in the rookie level Arizona League Friday, tweets Maria Guardado of Guardado notes he maxed out at 92 MPH, right in line with the low-90’s fastball he sported before going down with Tommy John surgery. While the Giants’ miserable August has all but ended any hope they had of a surprise Wild Card run, getting Cueto back on the mound this season could offer something of a morale boost for a still-important piece of the organization. The 33 year-old is guaranteed $47MM for the remainder of his six-year contract ($21MM per year through 2021 with a $5MM buyout on a 2022 club option).
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    Jeff Todd <![CDATA[Steven Duggar Weighing Shoulder Surgery]]> 2019-08-10T00:26:42Z 2019-08-10T00:26:42Z Giants outfielder Steven Duggar says that he has been diagnosed with a grade 3 sprain of his left AC joint, as Henry Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle was among those to report (Twitter links). While he’s heading for a second opinion, Duggar says he’s leaning towards surgery.

    The San Francisco organization had only recently called Duggar back up to the bigs when he came up injured. He was shifted to the 60-day IL earlier today, meaning that the team has already scratched him for the rest of the season. Clearly, the focus will be on getting Duggar back to health. Worryingly, he also ended his 2018 season with a significant left shoulder injury.

    The 25-year-old had been seen by some as a key potential part of the Giants outfield for some time to come, but he’ll be a question mark entering 2020. In addition to the health issues, Duggar simply has not produced in the majors when healthy. Through 281 plate appearances on the year, he carries a .234/.278/.341 batting line with four home runs.

    There’s still promise for Duggar. He was much better this year at Triple-A, where he was walking nearly as often as he struck out while showing much more power. And he’s a gifted defender, so it’s not as if he needs to be a monster at the plate to be a useful big leaguer.

    The move on Duggar created space for the activation of lefty Travis Bergen. The Rule 5 pick had been working back from a shoulder injury. It seems the club remains committed to carrying him for the rest of the season, though that could change as time goes on.