SF Giants: 3 players who needed a spring training do-over
By Kurt Mensching
The SF Giants’ spring training was cut short in March.
We all probably know by now that spring training stats don’t mean much. Still, all things considered, you’d rather see some good ones than bad ones. Unfortunately for a few SF Giants, their spring training performances left a little to be desired.
We know it doesn’t matter much. Spring training came to a premature conclusion. The MLB season is postponed indefinitely. If they do find a way to play, the season will likely look dramatically different. But hey, at least there will be a spring training do-over for these players.
Today I found two players who’ll likely be in the starting lineup, along with one from the rotation, who had springs they’ll be happy to move on from.
3B Evan Longoria
There is no doubt Evan Longoria will be the Giants’ starter at third base if and when the MLB does find a way to play baseball in 2020. He’s being paid a lot of money to start, so that’s what he’s going to do.
If he has a good year, maybe they’ll even be able to find a way to trade him.
But Longoria didn’t get off to the best start with the Giants (.727 OPS over two seasons) and his spring training session didn’t give you a lot to be excited about either.
The 35-year-old Longoria went 5-for-25 (.200) with .259 on-base percentage and .280 slugging with a .539 OPS in Scottsdale. He had five strikeouts and two extra-base hits.
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OF Mike Yastrzemski
Yastrzemski had a promising debut in 2019, hitting for an OPS of .852 (123 OPS+) in 411 plate appearances. The 29-year-old right-handed batter is pretty much guaranteed a starting spot in the lineup in 2020, and that’s fine.
His spring training line, however, was not one to be relished. He went 7-for-26 with seven strikeouts and a walk. A lone triple was his only extra-base hit. His line was a forgettable .269/.296/.346, good for a .642 OPS.
SP Johnny Cueto
The 35-year-old right-hander is owed a little shy of $50 million over the course of the next two seasons (that includes a team buyout on his 2022 option). Cueto hasn’t done much during his past two years in San Francisco, limited to just 69 innings due to injuries.
That doesn’t matter much. Cueto was set to start Opening Day against the Dodgers until it was postponed.
Despite closing 2019 strong, Cueto’s spring was abysmal. He made three starts, totaling 6.1 innings, but managed to allow nine runs on 13 hits and two walks during that time, resulting in an ERA of 12.79.