Hard-throwing Hunter Strickland was once viewed as the future closer for the San Francisco Giants.
Originally drafted by the Boston Red Sox in the 18th round of the 2007 draft, he was traded to the Pirates two years later in the deal that sent first baseman Adam LaRoche to Boston.
He spent the entire 2013 season at High-A San Jose, posting an 0.86 ERA and 0.71 WHIP with 23 strikeouts and just five walks in 21 innings while tallying nine saves in his first season in the Giants organization.
The following season, he split the year between High-A and Double-A and posted a 2.09 ERA and 0.80 WHIP with an eye-popping 55 strikeouts in 38.2 innings.
That earned him an MLB call-up when rosters expanded in September and he recorded seven scoreless innings in nine appearances over the final month of the year to land a spot on the postseason roster. He made eight more appearances in the playoffs and recorded one save.
On the heels of that performance, he began the 2015 season as the No. 8 prospect in the San Francisco Giants farm system, according to Baseball America. From there, he quickly carved out a prominent role in the MLB bullpen.
- 2015: 55 G, 0 SV, 20 HLD, 2.45 ERA, 0.86 WHIP, 8.8 K/9
- 2016: 72 G, 3 SV, 18 HLD, 3.10 ERA, 1.13 WHIP, 8.4 K/9
- 2017: 68 G, 1 SV, 21 HLD, 2.64 ERA, 1.44 WHIP, 8.5 K/9
- 2018: 49 G, 14 SV, 0 HLD, 3.97 ERA, 1.41 WHIP, 7.3 K/9
Despite his solid numbers, the Giants decided to non-tender him after the 2018 season and he ended up signing with the Seattle Mariners in free agency.
All told, Hunter Strickland posted a 2.91 ERA, 1.20 WHIP and 8.4 K/9 in 253 appearances with the San Francisco Giants. Not bad for a waiver claim who came to the club with zero MLB experience.
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