The San Francisco Giants will have some decisions to make in a couple of weeks about their outfield situation.
The only problem with these decisions is that no one player is performing particularly well. The prime outfield candidates for the San Francisco Giants include Steven Duggar, Gerardo Parra, Cameron Maybin, Drew Ferguson, and Mac Williamson.
If Duggar remains healthy, he will likely be the starting center fielder on opening day. However, the rest of the outfield remains a question mark.
Parra and Maybin were brought in on minor league contracts, so they are not currently on the 40-man roster. Ferguson is a Rule 5 draftee, and he must remain on the 25-man roster or else the San Francisco Giants will risk losing him back to the Astros. Mac Williamson cannot be optioned without being exposed to waivers.
As things currently stand, Duggar is really the only guarantee to make the 25-man roster. The rest is a giant question mark. If this outfield contingent seems unaccomplished and unimpressive, well, that is because it is.
Through 2 weeks of Spring Training games, the outfield competition is largely unresolved. Parra got off to a nice start, but he cooled has cooled off recently. He has posted an .811 OPS with 2 home runs. There are no guarantees beyond Duggar, but so far Parra has probably shown enough to stick with the team.
Maybin got off to an extremely slow start. However, he has warmed up over the past few games. He has posted a .517 OPS which is not great in the hitter-friendly Cactus League. Most of that production has come in the past few games.
With the glove, Maybin is getting game repetitions in center field. This could help his case since the San Francisco Giants will need to carry at least 2 outfielders capable of playing center field, but the more the merrier.
It should be noted that Maybin created some off-the-field baggage for himself. This could certainly impact his chances of making the team.
Mac Williamson is not helping his case either. He is out of options, so the Giants may be forced to retain him regardless of Spring Training performance. Still, it would be swell if he was hitting a little better.
Williamson has not given the Giants brass the confidence or evidence that he needs to be retained. He is batting .222 with a .707 OPS and he is not hitting the ball like he did last spring.
Lastly, Drew Ferguson has impressed in a few ways including with the glove and his patient approach at the plate.
As a Rule 5 draftee, the San Francisco Giants will need to retain Ferguson on the 25-man roster otherwise they risk losing him. He is batting .143 with a .476 OPS. Given his status as a Rule 5 pick, he will get plenty of playing time to make his case.
Other players are involved in this competition as well. Though, that list keeps getting smaller:
Shaw was a long shot to make the team. Given his struggles last season and the fact that he has options remaining, it is no surprise to see him as part of the roster cuts.
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Austin Slater is a part of the competition as well. However, he has options, and is struggling like the rest of the group with a .501 OPS.
Though, Gerber might be having the best spring of the outfield group. He is batting .438 and could quickly emerge as a an outfield candidate this season if he can put his poor 2018 season behind him.
Besides Gerber, no one is really banging on the door with their production. Is the lack of production concerning this close to the start of the season? Not necessarily since spring training stats are difficult to interpret.
However, the lack of production is making it difficult for the San Francisco Giants to evaluate the outfielders in camp. It may even push them to add someone from outside of the organization if the current outfielders continue producing like that have. Only time well tell, but so far the results from the Giants outfield contingent have not been promising.