SF Giants take advantage of Mariners cheapness, acquire RHP Sam Delaplane

Jul 7, 2020; Seattle, Washington, United States; Seattle Mariners pitcher Sam Delaplane throws during batting practice at T-Mobile Park. (Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports)
Jul 7, 2020; Seattle, Washington, United States; Seattle Mariners pitcher Sam Delaplane throws during batting practice at T-Mobile Park. (Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports) /
SF Giants, Sam Delaplane, Seattle Mariners
PEORIA, ARIZONA – MARCH 05: Pitcher Sam Delaplane #77 of the Seattle Mariners throws against the San Diego Padres during a Cactus League spring training baseball game at Peoria Stadium on March 05, 2020. The SF Giants acquired Delaplane on Monday. (Photo by Ralph Freso/Getty Images) /

The SF Giants acquired right-handed pitcher Sam Delaplane from the Seattle Mariners in a trade for cash considerations. Delaplane was a rapidly ascending relief-pitching prospect in the Seattle farm system but underwent surgery to repair a torn UCL in March and will likely not pitch in an official game until the summer of 2022. Delaplane was born and raised in the Bay Area, attending Leigh High School in San Jose.

Delaplane may have been the most dominant reliever in minor league baseball since the Mariners drafted him in the 23rd round of the 2017 MLB draft out of Eastern Michigan. While the righty has made one Triple-A appearance, he has split most of his career between Class-A, High-A, and Double-A. He has a 2.29 ERA in 161.1 career innings (100 appearances) with 270 strikeouts and 54 walks.

The SF Giants acquired Sam Delaplane from the Seattle Mariners for cash.

The 26-year-old reliever generates an impressive amount of movement on all of his pitches from an over-the-top motion. Delaplane relies on a mid-90s fastball and a potential plus-plus slider that could be one of the best breaking balls in professional baseball. Entering this season, FanGraphs’ prospects expert Eric Longenhagen ranked Delaplane the 13th-best prospect in the Mariners farm system.

There is no reason for the Mariners to have made this trade from a baseball standpoint. Instead, the same organization where former CEO Kevin Mather admitted to violating the collective bargaining agreement and taking cost-cutting measures wherever possible chose to trade an intriguing young pitcher for minimal cost savings. Luckily for Giants fans, Farhan Zaidi and co. were willing to capitalize.

The Giants have been dealing with a 40-man roster crunch all season but had a free spot when they placed Scott Kazmir on the restricted list on Monday. Since Delaplane can be placed on the 60-day injured list at any point while he recovers from surgery, San Francisco will be able to add another player to the 40-man roster shortly. That could be Kazmir when he returns or if they have their eye on a pitcher at Triple-A, like John Brebbia or Dominic Leone.

Delaplane will have to be removed from the 60-day injured list and placed on the 40-man roster this offseason, but the Giants should have more free spots created by departing free agents at that time.

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The SF Giants improved their organizational bullpen depth with a minor trade on Monday by acquiring Sam Delaplane for cash considerations from the Seattle Mariners. While he will not help the team this season, president of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi has added a tantalizing prospect for virtually no cost.