SF Giants: Speedy and Versatile Infielder Signs with Fubon Guardians
Eduardo Núñez is heading back to the baseball diamond after collecting just two plate appearances with the New York Mets in 2020. This time, Núñez will be in an entirely new environment.
The right-handed bat had spent the early part of his career with the New York Yankees and the Minnesota Twins before being shipped to the Giants right before the 2016 trade deadline in exchange for pitching prospect Adalberto Mejía.
He came over to the Giants as infield depth but was thrust into a starting role at the hot corner after popular third baseman Matt Duffy was traded to the Tampa Bay Rays one week later.
Núñez helped down the stretch with a .269/.327/.418 line (101 OPS+) with four home runs and 20 RBI in 199 plate appearances following the trade. Furthermore, he swiped 13 bags in 17 chances (76% success rate).
The Giants snuck into the playoffs on the final day of the season and faced off against the Chicago Cubs in the National League Division Series (NLDS). Núñez battled a lingering injury and only collected three hitless at-bats in that series before the Cubs eventually won in four games.
San Francisco tendered a contract to the speedy infielder to return in 2017. However, that season quickly became a disaster and the Giants were in the unusual position of a potential sell-off. Despite the team’s struggles, Núñez played well as he slashed .308/.334/.417 (97 OPS+) with four home runs and 31 RBI. This included stealing 18 bags in 23 chances (78% success rate).
By the trade deadline, San Francisco was in the midst of one of its worst seasons in recent memory, so they shipped Núñez to the Boston Red Sox in exchange for a pair of prospects in Shaun Anderson and Gregory Santos.
From the Giants’ standpoint, Santos was the key piece of that deal and Giants fans should see the young, right-handed hurler soon enough as he was added to the 40-man roster this past winter.
Núñez remained with the Red Sox until 2019, and his stint included a World Series victory against the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2018. Although, the good times came to an end as the Red Sox placed the struggling infielder on waivers midway through 2019. He re-emerged with the Mets briefly in the following season.
Now, the 33-year-old is looking to continue his playing career overseas. If he performs well, he might get another major-league opportunity down the road. It happens a lot and the one-team American League All-Star could be the next in line.