After 2016, It was a no brainer the San Francisco Giants had two major factors that needed to be addressed…an elite closer and more depth in the outfield. A simple solution to be solved.
The San Francisco Giants got Mark Melancon, a closer to help bring the bullpen back to life, even though it’s still a work in progress. However, the Giants main issue is not enough depth in the outfield.
After the Giants decided not bring back outfielders, Angel Pagan and Gregor Blanco, they instead went in a different direction. The position in left field became a vacant spot and the Giants decided to promote within the organization. Back in February, Giants General Manager, Bobby Evans, said he didn’t want both Jarrett Parker and Mac Williamson to platoon in left field.
During Spring Training, Parker and Williamson were contending to win a spot on the roster, but most importantly be the next starter in the left field. In the end, Williamson was out of the competition when he suffered a quad injury last month. Therefore, it open the door for Parker to start as the next left fielder.
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Even though Parker won by default, and seemed to be the better choice for the job, there is still the question whether he is the right man for the job? in the season opener against the Diamondbacks, Parker grounded out, struck out then was pulled out of the game and replaced by Gorky Hernandez in the sixth inning. Now Parker and Chris Marrero are platooning in left field for the time being.
After Marrero had an impressive spring training, he was able to make the roster. Marrero knocked out 8 home runs and tied with Washington Nationals, Bryce Harper. But Marrero’s spring training performance hasn’t reflected onto the regular season. Marrero has been struggling at the plate. He is 1 for 17 for a batting average of .059. But Parker has shown improvement.
Parker was zero across the board until Monday’s home opener, Parker walked and hit a single for the first time this season. On Wednesday night against the Diamondbacks, Parker hit a triple to center field.
Left field isn’t the only issue, center field could use some improvement as well. Denard Span and Hernandez haven’t been cutting it. In the first week, Span suffered a hip injury after season opener at Arizona and he didn’t play again last Saturday against the San Diego Padres. As for Hernandez, his defense has Giants’ fans pulling their hair out after he made a few errors on the field.
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Right field may be the only one that hasn’t been too much of an issue. Hunter Pence is the best outfielder the Giants have on their team. However, in the past two seasons, Pence suffered injuries. Despite the injuries, Pence is still a good player and he is one of the leaders of the Giants clubhouse.
Of course, some could say Evans should’ve gone through the free agent market and purchase an outfielder instead of promoted players within. Rewind back in 2015, when Parker had three home runs against the Oakland A’s, so he showed potential at the time, but doesn’t mean he’s the right one to play in left field.
Evans signed two veteran outfielders, Drew Stubbs and Melvin Upton Jr to Minor League contracts. But let’s not jump for joy with these signings. Stubbs and Upton Jr may not to the solution to the issues in the outfield. Both players had low batting averages throughout spring training. Stubbs averaged .139 and Upton Jr had brought .194. Both of them were released by their teams.
The problem with the lack of depth in the outfield is because Giants management have not done enough to find the right player who is can perform above average both defensively and offensively. So what if the player will cost a bundle, what’s the harm of paying a little extra money? The goal is to win a championship, right?