SF Giants Recall Steven Duggar, Option Dereck Rodriguez

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The SF Giants optioned right-handed pitcher Dereck Rodriguez and recalled outfielder Steven Duggar on Monday.

Before the SF kicked off their 4-game series against the Los Angeles Angels, the organization announced a pair of roster moves via the team’s Twitter.

As most fans probably expected, San Francisco optioned right-handed pitcher Dereck Rodriguez to the team’s taxi squad after allowing 5 earned runs over 1.2 innings of work on Sunday in the Giants 15-3 loss to the Oakland Athletics.

On the season, Rodriguez has appeared in 2 games, completed 4 innings, allowed 10 hits, 6 earned runs, walked 3 batters, and managed just 2 strikeouts. It’s now been more than a year since his sensational rookie season in 2018. Over 221.1 career innings, his ERA is now 4.27 with a FIP of 4.74.

While many expected a bullpen arm to replace Rodriguez, the Giants went in a different direction. Instead, outfielder Steven Duggar was recalled from the team’s alternate site in Sacramento. Duggar is one of the fastest and best defensive outfielders in the organization but has struggled to stay healthy and hit at the major league level.

Duggar was with the team earlier in the season and was demoted when rosters were cut from 30 to 28 players. In 2020, Duggar has hit just .133/.188/.200 across 16 plate appearances. Over his career, Duggar has played in 120 games, received 449 plate appearances, scored 49 runs, driven in 47, and managed a .237/.283/.353 triple-slash.

His sprint speeds and defensive evaluation in centerfield have consistently ranked among the best in the organization, although earlier in the year manager Gabe Kapler also showed confidence in his ability to play anywhere in the outfield.

Given the team’s recent defensive struggles, Duggar’s defense should be a source of some relief to a pitching staff that has been struggling enough without the help of erratic defense behind them.

Right field was a particular source of problems for the team against Oakland. Just over the last two games, Hunter Pence misplayed a flyball that probably should’ve been an out on Saturday that cost them in the 9th inning and Darin Ruf turned what should have been a Robbie Grossman single off Sam Selman into a triple.

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Rodriguez will remain on the team’s taxi squad, leaving him next in line to fill in if the team needs further pitching depth. Obviously given the SF Giants staff’s struggles, fans should expect to see him again soon.