The Giants have selected outfielder Heliot Ramos and right-handers Sean Hjelle and Randy Rodriguez to the 40-man roster. The moves keep them from being eligible for the Rule 5 draft. To create roster space, San Francisco designated reliever Jay Jackson for assignment and returned Rule 5 pick Dedniel Nuñez to the Mets.
Ramos is among the better prospects in baseball, entering the 2021 campaign as Baseball America’s #83 overall farmhand. A first-round pick out of Puerto Rico in 2017, the right-handed hitting Ramos has compensated for a lot of swing-and-miss by hitting for a lot of power. He’s regarded as a potential above-average everyday right fielder and hit .254/.323/.416 with 14 homers in 495 plate appearances between Double-A Richmond and Triple-A Sacramento.
Hjelle was a second-rounder out of the University of Kentucky in 2018. The big righty draws praise for his deception and control, but his minor league track record has been mixed. The 24-year-old dominated in the low minors but has run into some trouble at the higher levels, particularly in Triple-A. BA ranks him eleventh in system and calls him a potential back-end starter.
Rodriguez, 22, is a former amateur signee out of the Dominican Republic. Working exclusively as a reliever, he pitched to a sterling 1.74 ERA with a huge 39.1% strikeout rate and a fine 8.9% walk percentage over 62 innings with Low-A Augusta. Rodriguez has never appeared on an organizational ranking at FanGraphs or BA.
San Francisco’s decision to DFA Jackson comes as a bit of a surprise, considering the club just exercised a 2022 option on his services a few weeks back. Signed to a minors pact in January, the 34-year-old Jackson made the big league club in July and worked 21 2/3 frames down the stretch. He struck out a strong 31.1% of opposing hitters in that time, although he also handed out free passes at an alarming 13.3% clip.
Nuñez never appeared in a regular season game with the Giants. Selected out of the New York organization in last year’s Rule 5 draft, he suffered an elbow injury in Spring Training and eventually underwent Tommy John surgery. He’ll return to the Mets but won’t occupy a 40-man roster spot.