Three Switch-Hitting Infield Targets for the SF Giants
2. Marwin Gonzalez
Marwin Gonzalez originally came up with the Houston Astros, and after several strong seasons with them, he entered free agency for the first time in 2108. At the time, he seemed like a perfect target for the Giants. San Francisco, though, was not looking to hand out multi-year contracts in that offseason, so Gonzalez ended up signing on with the Minnesota Twins on a two-year, $21 million pact.
That contract did not exactly pay dividends as the switch-hitter slashed .248/.311/.387 (87 OPS+) with 20 home runs and 77 RBI while being worth 2.0 WAR in two seasons with the Twins. This included a forgettable 2020 season as he registered a meager 68 OPS+ in 199 plate appearances.
Despite the poor offensive output, Gonzalez can still move all around the field. Last season, he made appearances at first base, second base, third base, and right field. Given his recent experience, he would be a natural complement to both Evan Longoria and Donovan Solano when the Giants are facing off against a tough righty. Plus, he has experience at shortstop, so he would give them another option behind Brandon Crawford.
As he makes a second trip through free agency, the 31-year-old will likely struggle to find a multi-year deal. He should command a one-year contract easily in the Giants price range. His 2020 season was easily the worst of his career, posting a .606 OPS. Still, both his strikeout and walk rates were in line with his career numbers.
Given his price tag and versatility along with the Giants need for another left-handed bat, they could match up for a deal if Gonzalez does not land a new home before Spring Training.