How the San Francisco Giants can ace the 2019 MLB trade deadline
By Hunter Ruetz
Perfect Fit: OF Clint Frazier, New York Yankees
This is where Farhan Zaidi can prove that he was the right man for the job. Making a deal with the New York Yankees can set this team up for the future.
Any deal with the Yankees is almost certainly going to include Madison Bumgarner, which means the Giants will not be able to make a serious run at Keston Hiura. Since that deal was unlikely to happen anyway, the Giants should put their eggs in the Yankees’ basket, with some quality eggs expected in return of course.
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The Sonny Gray trade in 2017 can be looked at as a reference when trying to determine what the Yankees might be willing to give up in order to acquire someone like Bumgarner. Gray wasn’t a rental like Bumgarner, but he also didn’t possess the same track record and resume of postseason excellence.
The Yankees gave up two MLB Pipeline Top 100 Prospects in Dustin Fowler and Jorge Mateo, in addition to James Kaprielian, who was used as a pot sweetener. The Yankees have a history of being aggressive at the deadline and they’ve already pulled the trigger on one big move to acquire Edwin Encarnacion.
Would they be willing to part with young outfielder Clint Frazier?
He can be the piece of this Giants rebuild that shows fans and teams around the league that San Francisco does not want to be floundering at the bottom of the division for much longer.
Once an MLB Pipeline Top 25 prospect, Frazier is having quite the year for the Bronx Bombers with a .283/.330/.513 line that includes 11 home runs and 34 RBI in 53 games, and he’s doing it at the age of 24. He would clearly be the offensive MVP if he were on the Giants right now.
So why would the Yankees be willing to trade a player like Frazier?”.
That is a valid question.
The Yankees recently acquired Edwin Encarnacion from the Seattle Mariners and in order to clear a roster spot, Frazier was sent to the minors. Someone had to go and Frazier had options remaining, so it made sense from a roster standpoint.
However, his stellar play this season led more than a few to question the decision. Fellow FanSided contributor, Rucker Haringey, believes that this move shows that Frazier is officially on the trade block:
"[Mike] Tauchman will almost certainly follow Frazier when [Giancarlo] Stanton comes back to the Majors, but sending Frazier down first should be interpreted as a message from Cashman and the Yankees’ front office. They are clearly willing to field offers for the 24-year-old outfielder."
It also sounds like Frazier himself may be ready for a change as he described the demotion as a “tough pill to swallow” while talking with the media.
Frazier is truly a trade return that comes around once in a blue moon. Landing an MLB-ready talent instead of a low-level prospect will ease the blow of a Bumgarner trade to the fan base while also expediting the rebuild.
The biggest gripe with Frazier is his subpar outfield defense. Defensive miscues are annoying, but they can be worked on. Also, with the Giants giving Stephen Vogt a try in left field this season in an effort to add some offense, it’s clear defense is not the No. 1 priority.
Frazier also has a swagger that is invaluable in players today. With some quick coaching and inevitable maturing, Frazier can easily become a fan favorite in a city looking for a new, young superstar. He can be the centerpiece of this trade and this rebuild, and now it is up to Farhan Zaidi to get the deal done.
These hypothetical moves would ruin my homegrown outfield projection for 2022, but if Clint Frazier and Ian Happ are wearing the orange and black come August, there is a lot of hope for this franchise in the near future.