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San Francisco Giants Add to OF Depth by Bringing Back Blanco

SAN FRANCISCO, CA - SEPTEMBER 15: Gregor Blanco #5 of the Arizona Diamondbacks dives for but is unable to catch a fly ball hit for a single by Joe Panik (not pictured) of the San Francisco Giants during the sixth inning at AT&T Park on September 15, 2017 in San Francisco, California. The Arizona Diamondbacks defeated the San Francisco Giants 3-2. (Photo by Jason O. Watson/Getty Images)
SAN FRANCISCO, CA - SEPTEMBER 15: Gregor Blanco #5 of the Arizona Diamondbacks dives for but is unable to catch a fly ball hit for a single by Joe Panik (not pictured) of the San Francisco Giants during the sixth inning at AT&T Park on September 15, 2017 in San Francisco, California. The Arizona Diamondbacks defeated the San Francisco Giants 3-2. (Photo by Jason O. Watson/Getty Images) /
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Gregor Blanco is rejoining the San Francisco Giants organization on a minor league contract with an invite to Spring Training.

The Giants have a habit for bringing back players from the past. This news should hardly be surprising.

After two injury-plagued seasons and another trip through the calendar, it is fair to wonder what Gregor Blanco has left.

Blanco is still capable of playing all three outfield positions.

He did so with the Diamondbacks last season when he hit .246 in 224 at-bats with 43 runs scored, 10 doubles, 3 triples, 3 home runs and 15 stolen bases.

However, the defensive metrics are beginning to trend in the wrong direction, especially as a center fielder.

At this point, he is a better fit playing the corner outfield positions with occasional starts in center.

Blanco spent five years in San Francisco where he hit a combined .259 over 1,806 at-bats with a .338 on-base-percentage.

His best season came in 2015 with the Giants when he hit .291 in 327 at-bats with 59 runs scored, 19 doubles, 3 triples, 5 home runs, 13 stolen bases and a .368 on-base-percentage.

Blanco played 90 games with the Diamondbacks last year, but I doubt he gets that much playing time with the Giants.

Of course, Blanco has some work to do just make the major league roster as he only signed a minor league deal.

If the 34-year-old outfielder can show he still has something during spring training, I think he’ll be a very solid fifth outfielder for the Giants. Not only that, but I think Blanco is a solid bench player as a pinch runner. He’s stolen double-digit bases in seven of his nine big league seasons.

At the very least Blanco can come off the bench late in games to steal a bag and score a run.

Next: The San Francisco Giants don’t need another center-fielder

I don’t know if the San Francisco Giants are still looking for another piece in the outfielder or not. But I think Blanco is at least insurance in case that deal doesn’t happen.

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