After a disappointing end to his time with the San Francisco Giants, outfielder Hunter Pence is enjoying a career renaissance with the Texas Rangers.
No one could have anticipated that former San Francisco Giants outfielder Hunter Pence would be an All-Star in 2019.
Not even the hottest of hot take proprietors would have had the audacity to make such a claim. Yet here we are. Pence was voted to start the All-Star Game on the strength of a stellar first half and the Giants look like fools.
Pence battled injuries to hit .226/.258/.332 with four home runs in 97 games last season, and it looked like the three-time All-Star had reached the end of the line.
After a showcase performance of sorts in the Dominican Winter League, he signed a minor league deal with the Texas Rangers and won a roster spot out of spring training.
From there, he quickly played his way into an everyday role, and he’s been one of the team’s most productive hitters with a .294/.353/.608 line that includes 15 home runs and 48 RBI.
No one on the Giants roster is even sniffing that level of production.
It would have been one thing if the Giants had to pay a pretty penny to retain Pence. But that was far from the case. The Rangers are getting this Cinderella story for $2 million.
I understand that it is irrational to complain in hindsight. No one saw this coming. Hunter Pence is probably the player I most enjoyed seeing in a Giants uniform, and even I felt it was time to move on once his contract came to an end.
Still, with how unwatchable this year’s team has been at times, it sure would have been nice to have some sort of reprieve from all the hitting woes.
As great as it’s been to see Alex Dickerson carry the team on his back for the past week, we’re all realistic enough to know that he’s not going to keep producing at this level.
Having a resurgent Hunter Pence in the lineup would have provided San Francisco Giants fans with some real excitement.
Alas, he has moved on and become one of the most uplifting stories of the season. All we can do is hope that he keeps it up well into the second half, and take solace in the fact that 28 other teams also feel like chumps for not signing him.