The San Francisco Giants are poised to be one of the most active teams at this year’s MLB trade deadline.
Despite a 9-3 record in their last 12 games and a 4.5-game deficit in the wild-card standings, the San Francisco Giants still look like sellers as we approach the MLB trade deadline.
After all, they are still six games under .500 in last place in the NL West standings, and they have seven teams to hurdle in the wild-card standings to climb into the No. 2 spot.
With one eye already fixed on the future, a brief window of success in a rebuilding year can’t cause them to deviate from their long-term plans.
To that point, there are a number of potential trade chips on the roster, and the team has a prime opportunity to bolster the farm system over the next two weeks.
Setup reliever Sam Dyson is one such trade chip.
After a breakout 2016 season where he saved 38 games while posting a 2.43 ERA and 1.22 WHIP in 73 appearances, he was shelled to the tune of a 10.80 ERA with four consecutive blown saves to start the 2017 season.
The Texas Rangers designated him for assignment as a result, and the San Francisco Giants wisely bought low, acquiring him in exchange for outfielder Hunter Cole.
He had a 4.03 ERA with 14 saves in 17 chances following the trade, and he’s since settled in as a reliable setup man.
Here’s a look at his numbers the past two seasons:
- 2018: 74 G, 15 HLD, 2.69 ERA, 1.08 WHIP, 2.6 BB/9, 7.2 K/9
- 2019: 42 G, 14 HLD, 2.86 ERA, 0.98 WHIP, 1.2 BB/9, 8.2 K/9
Not only has he been a reliable late-inning option this year bridging the gap to closer Will Smith, but he also has team control through the 2020 season, so he’s more than just a rental.
So what is the reason for his success?
For starters, his 3.5 percent walk rate is the best of his career and ranks in the 97th percentile leaguewide, according to Baseball Savant. His opponent’s exit velocity of also ranks in the 84th percentile, as he’s been tough to square up all season.
He’s not without some red flags, though.
Take a look at his home/road splits:
- Home: 21 G, 23.1 IP, 0.39 ERA, 0.73 WHIP, .188 BAA
- Road: 21 G, 20.2 IP, 5.66 ERA, 1.26 WHIP, .275 BAA
While the three earned runs he allowed without getting an out in his last appearance on the road against the Milwaukee Brewers inflated his road numbers a bit, the point still stands.
He’s also already making $5 million this season with a decent bump coming in his final year of arbitration. He’s not overpaid by any means, but he’s far from a low-cost option.
All of this will need to be taken into account by contenders eyeing him as a potential trade chip.
If he does stay put, there’s a good chance he would be first in line to step into the closer’s role likely to be vacated by Will Smith. A strong showing in the ninth inning could increase his value heading into the offseason.
The San Francisco Giants have some big decisions to make leading up to the MLB trade deadline, and the asking price they place on Sam Dyson will be among them.