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SF Giants Rumors

Giants: Three free-agent starting pitchers with ties to Farhan Zaidi

MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN - MAY 21: Gio Gonzalez #47 of the Milwaukee Brewers pitches in the third inning against the Cincinnati Reds at Miller Park on May 21, 2019 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)
MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN - MAY 21: Gio Gonzalez #47 of the Milwaukee Brewers pitches in the third inning against the Cincinnati Reds at Miller Park on May 21, 2019 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images) /
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San Francisco Giants
OAKLAND, CALIFORNIA – SEPTEMBER 04: Tanner Roark #60 of the Oakland Athletics pitches against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim in the top of the first inning at Ring Central Coliseum on September 04, 2019 in Oakland, California. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images) /

Giants free-agent target: RHP Tanner Roark

Tanner Roark is set to test free agency for the first time in his career, and he fits the type of pitcher the Giants will likely pursue in free agency.

Roark began the 2019 season with the Cincinnati Reds before he was moved to the Oakland Athletics to help in their playoff push.

However, he had been connected to the Bay Area before being dealt to Oakland:

The right-hander had been rumored as a potential Giants target as soon as Zaidi took charge. Now that Roark is a free agent, it would not be surprising to see if the Giants reignite their pursuit.

The 33-year-old is coming off of his third straight season of posting an ERA north of 4.0, so he has not been the same type of pitcher he was when he finished in the top 10 in NL Cy Young voting by producing a 2.83 ERA across 210 innings in 2016.

However, the longtime Washington Nationals pitcher is a workhorse. He has made over 30 starts in five of the last six seasons, and he averaged 157 innings per year throughout his career.

Given the question marks the Giants face in their rotation, there is value in bringing in a pitcher who is capable of assuming a heavy workload.

Unlike Gerrit Cole or Zack Wheeler, Roark does not pile up the strikeout numbers.

However, he is adept at avoiding hard contact and has a healthy 44 percent ground ball rate. Generating ground balls is an effective way in recording outs, especially since the Giants boast one of the better defensive infields in baseball:

Roark offers plenty of value to prospective teams, but he is not expected to command a lucrative contract this offseason. MLB Trade Rumors predicted he will sign two years and $18 million contract.

With where the Giants are at in the competitive cycle, signing a pitcher like Roark gives them a reliable arm in the rotation without much long-term risk. Since the Giants showed interest last offseason, it would not be surprising to see them check in again on him.

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