The SF Giants further enriched their already deep outfield depth throughout their organization earlier this week when they acquired Luis Gonzalez off waivers from the Chicago White Sox. The move was first reported by ESPN’s Kiley McDaniel.
A third-round pick in the 2017 MLB draft by the White Sox out of New Mexico, Gonzalez has worked his way through the minor leagues, making short big-league stints in 2020 and 2021. However, after suffering a season-ending shoulder injury, Chicago opted to try and save money by placing him on waivers. With an open 40-man roster spot, the Giants decided to take advantage.
The SF Giants claimed OF Luis Gonzalez off waivers.
Gonzalez’s scouting report will sound familiar to Giants fans who have followed the team closely since Farhan Zaidi was hired as the president of baseball operations. While Gonzalez lacks an obvious plus tool, he has always carried a well-rounded profile with roughly average tools across the board. The left-handed hitter has posted a solid .266/.345/.414 triple-slash throughout his minor-league career with an above-average walk (10.3%) and strikeout rate (18.6%). In nine big-league games, Gonzalez has hit .222/.462/.444 with two doubles, three walks, and three strikeouts in 13 plate appearances.
Defensively, Gonzalez has always received rave reviews for his glovework in the outfield, but without exceptional speed, he could eventually be pushed to an outfield corner. However, the Giants have shown a proclivity to play “tweeners” in center field, and Gonzalez is considered a far better defender than players like Mike Yastrzemski, who have gotten opportunities in center with the Giants.
Without big-time power, it’s hard to imagine Gonzalez becoming more than a fourth outfielder. But, with that said, the same was considered true of Yastrzemski and LaMonte Wade Jr when they were acquired by the Giants, and of course, both have begun consistently generating power since arriving in San Francisco.
The SF Giants added to their already strong outfield depth this week by acquiring Luis Gonzalez off waivers from the Chicago White Sox. While a shoulder injury will likely prevent Gonzalez from making an impact for the Giants in 2021, he could have a chance to make an impact for the team down the line.