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San Francisco Giants: Free agency predictions

By Danny Vietti
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Since signing Aaron Rowand to a 5 year/$60 million contract in 2007, the San Francisco Giants have not signed a free agent to a contract longer than two years. Although they made many extensions, resigned a number of Giants, and were reported to have been linked to stars like Jon Lester and CC Sabathia, the only big money spent in recent off-seasons has been from within.

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  • For instance, the most money the San Francisco front-office has surrendered recently is through the contracts of Angel Pagan (who played for the Giants before he signed), Hunter Pence (also played for the Giants before he signed extension), and Buster Posey’s 9 year/$164 million extension signed in 2013. Other than that, there were the occasional two and one year contracts given to guys like Michael Morse and Tim Hudson.

    The point is that the San Francisco front-office is known for building from within and not spending big on free agents. Nevertheless, this off-season is a little different than past off-seasons. This is why:

    For starters, Hudson and Jeremy Affeldt both announced their retirements, leaving a hole to be filled in both the bullpen and rotation. Furthermore, starting pitchers Ryan Vogelsong, Tim Lincecum, and Mike Leake are all set to hit the free agency market, digging the Giants rotation into an even deeper hole.

    “If VP Brian Sabean and GM Bobby Evans decide to take a pass on these free agent pitching stars, they might as well be taking a pass on making the playoffs in 2016”

    As for the position players, barring injury problems, they are pretty much set for next season except for their desire to find a new team for Pagan and add a younger, more consistent center fielder.

    Therefore, this off-season is very different than previous ones simply because the Giants are desperate to fill the holes. In the past, it would have been nice to add a Jon Lester because they would have liked to add another top-tier starter next to Madison Bumgarner, but it wasn’t necessary. This year, they either need to sign some free agents or they will have to throw some Triple-AAA caliber players into the rotation and hope for the best–this second scenario is not likely.

    So, what will San Francisco do? Will they spend all of their $43 million spending money in one place or will they spread it out and sign role players? Whatever they decide to do, expect the starting pitching for San Francisco to undergo a “renovation,” if you will.

    Here are my predictions for how the free agency period will go down this off-season.

    Next: Prediction #1

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