In a normal season, front offices get a large amount of time to see if they have a team that can compete for a playoff spot. This isn’t a normal season for the SF Giants and the rest of MLB.
With the trade deadline less than three weeks away, many executives, like Giants president Farhan Zaidi, will be forced to decide on the fly. It’s also been complicated more by the fact that a total of 16 teams will make the postseason, which creates more incentive to go all-in.
The 2020 season was one the Giants weren’t planning to compete, judging by the offseason moves they made. Most fans would tell you that the start they’re off to now is better than they expected, too.
With all that being said, San Francisco should sell at the deadline. The reason why they should do this isn’t that they can’t compete, but because now is as good of a time as there is to get out of some heavy contracts.
SF Giants should trade Johnny Cueto
One of the contracts the Giants could attempt to get rid of would be Johnny Cueto.
Cueto has started the season great, especially given the fact that he only made a handful of starts last season after coming back from Tommy John surgery.
More from Around the Foghorn
- SF Giants place closer Jake McGee on IL, recall Jay Jackson
- Podcast: SF Giants drop pair against Padres, gear up for Atlanta
- SF Giants: Checking in on the Tony Watson trade
- San Francisco Giants fans need this Captain Brandon Belt shirt
- SF Giants: Brandon Belt’s surge has powered winning streak
So far this season, Cueto is 1-0 with a 5.40 ERA in four starts. He’s also worked 18.1 innings, striking out 14, and walking nine batters. In his most recent start against the Dodgers, he carried a no-hit bid into the sixth inning.
One team that would be a perfect fit would be the Atlanta Braves. Read Marc Delucchi’s story from a few days ago to see why.
Trading Cueto would also help the Giants add more depth to their vastly improved farm system, which should have talent bibbling up to the MLB over the next three seasons. At the very least, the return could be bullpen help, which is something to team desperately needs.
Also, it’s been the younger players who have put the team on their back so far this season anyway. Players like Mike Yastrzemski, Mauricio Dubon, Donovan Solano, Darin Ruf, Wilmer Flores, Alex Dickerson, and Austin Slater have made big impacts so far this season compared to the veterans like Pablo Sandoval, Hunter Pence, Brandon Belt, and Brandon Crawford.
Another reason why the team should trade their ace is that they didn’t do that last season when they never had a chance to make the postseason. They did give a qualifying offer to Madison Bumgarner, who has been struggling in Arizona, but they chose not make him any offer beyond that, signaling the end of an era.
The Giants did draft Nick Swiney with their compensatory pick at least.
On top of that, they’re in a stacked National League West division where they have very slim chances to finish third and grab a Wild Card spot. That’s more reason to sell.
In the end, it’s simply not worth it to give up assets in the farm system to go after a playoff spot. The Giants should sell and sell as much as they possibly can at the upcoming Trade Deadline.