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San Francisco Giants: Three Minor Leaguers who can help in 2018

SCOTTSDALE, AZ - FEBRUARY 20: Steven Duggar #78 of the San Francisco Giants poses for a portrait during a MLB photo day at Scottsdale Stadium on February 20, 2017 in Scottsdale, Arizona. (Photo by Jennifer Stewart/Getty Images)
SCOTTSDALE, AZ - FEBRUARY 20: Steven Duggar #78 of the San Francisco Giants poses for a portrait during a MLB photo day at Scottsdale Stadium on February 20, 2017 in Scottsdale, Arizona. (Photo by Jennifer Stewart/Getty Images)
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CINCINNATI, OH – JULY 31: The glove and hat of Carlos Beltran #15 of the San Francisco Giants sit on the dugout steps during the game against the Cincinnati Reds at Great American Ball Park on July 31, 2011 in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

D.J. Snelten

The Giants lack any legitimate lefty relief options. Enter D.J. Snelten. Snelten is a closer, who has been around the organization for a bit. He made the 40-man roster this winter to avoid being lost in the Rule-5 draft. The Giants have likely been kicking themselves for losing Joe Biagini to the Blue Jays in the Rule-5 draft, who has been excellent out of the pen for the Jays.

Snelten had a 2.20 ERA across both AA and AAA in 2017. He had 71 strikeouts to 21 walks, which  sounds good to me out of the pen. He also posted a 1.09 WHIP, opponents had a .208 batting average against, and he surrendered four homers all year long (all four at triple-a).

Converted from a starter, he made 2017 his first full year as a reliever and stayed that way. He doesn’t necessarily have closer potential, but lefty specialist, or even a solid lefty arm is definitely his future. The Giants need to do this with more of their guys who don’t ever develop their third or fourth pitch. We saw it happen with Crick, and Snelten might just be the lefty version.

Next: Thoughts as the Stanton thing drags out

The great thing about minor leaguers is that we’re never really sure what’s going to happen with them. We can project as much. But nobody knows what they’ll be until they hang their glove up for good. We’re confident that these three can provide a good impact in 2018, and help the Giants with some depth needs, even jump into full-time roles if needed.

We’ll have to see how the trading and offseason all shakes out, because who knows! Potentially none of these guys could be here with the Stanton trade looming over it all. But if they stay? I expect them to contribute in some capacity in 2017.

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