SF Giants: 6 blockbuster trade proposals for ‘untradeable’ players
SF Giants trade proposal: Brandon Belt to Texas Rangers
Giants first baseman Brandon Belt might be the hardest of the bunch to find a willing trade partner for — even harder than those with full no-trade clauses.
First off, Belt himself has a partial no-trade clause. Though that sounds like a sticking point, it is never a finality as Belt can waive it for the right opportunity.
What makes Belt difficult to move is the demand: almost every team in the MLB has a clear-cut, bonafide starting first baseman. On top of that is the financial issues as Belt, who averaged a mediocre .242 with 16 home runs over the last three seasons, is owed $16 million per year through 2021.
Luckily, there is one team that up until the COVID-19 pandemic forced a suspension in baseball activities had a question marks at the position, and that was the Texas Rangers. So let’s try this:
It would be a nice gesture on the Giants’ part to send Belt to his home state. But besides being the local boy, Belt would provide an immediate solution at first base where contenders Ronald Guzman and Greg Bird performed poorly during 2020’s shortened spring.
Outfielder Leody Taveras is an intriguing prospect who, in High-A and Double-A last season, slashed .279/.344/.376, hit five home runs, logged 56 RBI and stole 32 bases. Over his four seasons in the minors, he’s demonstrated he can hit effectively and use his speed, though he has been caught stealing frequently too.
A 2019 draft pick, 22-year-old Josh Jung has had just 198 professional plate appearances, but he has had analysts raving. His MLB.com prospect profile sums him up as such:
"Jung has a controlled approach at the plate, repeatedly barreling balls to all fields with a sound right-handed swing. He lets his power come naturally and his bat speed and strength should translate into 25 or more homers per year once he turns on more pitches."
According to FanGraphs, Jung is the Rangers’ best prospect at third base. If dealing him was out of the question, Texas has another power-hitting prospect at the hot corner in Sherten Apostel who is coming off a 19 home run campaign. However, his struggles at the plate even in the minor are apparent with his .249/.368/.426 line over four seasons, making him more of a project.
Either way, this solves problems for both teams as the Rangers would find their immediate solution at first base with Belt, while the Giants would add a speedy centerfielder and a potential heir, along with Zach Green, to the starting third baseman role after Evan Longoria departs.
Furthermore, the Giants would be giving up a proven major league hitter with a great eye for prospects two-or-more years away from MLB debuts, so there lies a chance the Rangers do the deal and take all of Belt’s contract.