SF Giants News

Projecting the 2020 Opening Day bullpen for the Giants

Nick San Miguel
Giants reliever Tony Watson. (Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images)
Giants reliever Tony Watson. (Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images) /
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Giants reliever Tony Watson. (Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images) /

The San Francisco Giants only have a few relievers who are guaranteed a spot in the 2020 bullpen. Who will make up the rest of the relief corps to start the year?

Heading into the 2020 season, it appears the San Francisco Giants will have a weaker bullpen than they did last year.

The recent addition of Jerry Blevins adds some strength to a relief corp that lost its closer Will Smith to free agency and traded away solid arms like Sam Dyson and Drew Pomeranz last summer.

So what will the bullpen look like on Opening Day?

It is obviously a tough thing to predict, and may be a moot point if guys are demoted shortly after the season begins. But it does not hurt to try to determine who the best relievers on the team are as of right now.

Under the new 26-man roster rules, the limit for pitchers on a roster is 13. Assuming the Giants go with a five-man starting rotation, that leaves room for eight relievers on the roster.

Veteran left-hander Tony Watson looks like a lock for a spot at the back of the bullpen. He’s coming off a rough 2019 that ended with a wrist injury, but is still the most accomplished reliever on the team.

Blevins seems like another lock due to the fact that he is the most accomplished left-handed reliever that the club currently has outside of Watson. With a score of right-handed relievers, it would be wise to have at least two lefties for the sake of matchups.

Reyes Moronta would have been another lock for a spot on the team, but his shoulder injury will likely keep him out until August. That’s a big blow to a bullpen that really needs him.

So if we’re saying that Watson and Blevins are locked into spots on the Opening Day roster, that leaves six more slots to fill in the bullpen.

With the rotation as weak as it currently is, it could be a smart move to add one or two relievers who can go two or more innings with regularity, such as Dereck Rodriguez or Andrew Suarez.

At the same time, the team could also use some hard-throwers who can come in during the late innings and hold onto tenuous leads.

With those considerations in mind, let’s try to predict the other six relievers who will be on the Opening Day roster.