After shipping out Sam Dyson, Mark Melancon and Drew Pomeranz at the MLB trade deadline, the San Francisco Giants fortified their bullpen by promoting young flame-thrower Melvin Adon.
The San Francisco Giants traded from a position of strength on deadline day, shipping out multiple pieces of the MLB bullpen for a collection of prospects and big-league talent.
They opted to hold onto All-Star closer Will Smith and veteran setup man Tony Watson, and with tremendous bullpen depth in the upper levels of the minors, the relief corps should still be a strength going forward.
As a result of their dealings, there are now several open spots in the bullpen.
It looks like one of them could be filled by prospect Melvin Adon:
There has been no official move to promote him just yet, so this could wind up being just a rumor, but he’s still worth talking about as someone on the cusp of making his MLB debut.
Even with Dyson traded, the team can still lean on Watson and Reyes Moronta to fill the setup roles, while Trevor Gott and Sam Coonrod are available for middle relief work.
That means the Giants can ease Adon into life in the big leagues, rather than immediately dropping him into a high-leverage role. Considering he has yet to play above the Double-A level, that’s probably for the best.
Used almost exclusively as a starter prior to this season, Adon has moved into a relief role after a dominant showing in the Arizona Fall League where he posted a 2.92 ERA and racked up 21 strikeouts in 12.1 innings over 10 appearances.
He’s continued to impress out of the bullpen at Double-A Richmond, posting a 2.60 ERA and converting 14 of 15 save chances with 59 strikeouts in 45 innings. He’s allowed just two runs in his last 10 appearances.
Alongside his impressive 31.2 percent strikeout rate, Adon has also walked batters at a 13.8 percent clip with 5.2 BB/9. His command will need to improve if he’s going to fill a late-inning role, but there’s no ignoring his stuff.
Around the Foghorn contributor Marc Delucchi had this about Adon while ranking him as the No. 15 prospect in the San Francisco farm system during his midseason top 30 update:
Adon has a true 80-grade fastball, routinely sitting from 99-100 mph and touching 102 mph. It isn’t straight either and has some run to make it even harder to square up. He’s toyed with a two-seamer, but there’s no need to move away from one of the best heaters in organized baseball.
In a lot of ways, he’s similar to Ray Black who was just traded to the Milwaukee Brewers along with Pomeranz in exchange for Mauricio Dubon. Both are hard-throwers who can routinely touch triple-digits on the radar gun and both will need to rein in their command to succeed at the highest level. The biggest difference is that Adon is four years younger and still settling in as a reliever.
While we probably will not see Adon entering games in any high-leverage situations early on, it will be nice to get a closer look at a guy with elite velocity. If he impresses in the opportunities he is given, he just might stick on the 25-man roster.
The pieces are there for Melvin Adon to develop into the next impact bullpen arm for the San Francisco Giants, and it will all start with this first MLB promotion.