Written by: Marc Delucchi
When it comes to Pillar I have to ask myself at what number would this be a no-brainer?
To me, if Pillar’s arbitration number was closer to what it was last year (about $6 million), this would be easy.
I’m very confident in Pillar’s ability to be worth about 1 WAR next season. Of course, Pillar’s estimated arbitration salary is actually going to be about $10 million. The economist in me doesn’t like committing to an obvious overpay, but the alternatives aren’t particularly appealing.
While I am confident in Zaidi’s ability to find more options from the rough, like Alex Dickerson, Jaylin Davis, and Mike Yastrzemski, I do not know how much they can rely on that.
Furthermore, there is a dearth of center field options in this year’s free-agent class. Normally, a two-year extension at a lower average salary would make sense, but I’m not that keen on a long-term commitment to Pillar.
I would try to offer Pillar a one-year, $8 million contract with a second-year club option of $8 million that includes a $2 million buyout. That would guarantee Pillar $10 million, give the Giants the flexibility to let him go next season, and leave a bit of upside for the team if Pillar takes a jump.
If he declines that proposal, I would still tender him a contract.
Even as tentative as I am, the Giants shouldn’t be making every decision on the value of every marginal dollar. The team’s payroll is historically low and there are no long-term risks.
Our three writers are all in agreement. What do you think the San Francisco Giants should do? Let us know in the comments below and on our Twitter page.