At 40-34, it is hard to predict what the SF Giants might do at the trade deadline a month from now. After going 2-3 in a homestand against the Cincinnati Reds and the Detroit Tigers, this team is not inspiring a lot of confidence.
3 buy-low position players that the SF Giants could target at the trade deadline
The Giants are not currently in a position like last season when they acquired Kris Bryant from the Chicago Cubs. They were 65-39 and the best team in baseball at the time of the trade.
It is a new year and this Giants roster is more than one big addition away from being a true contender in the National League. San Francisco has the seventh-best winning percentage in the league at .541, so there is plenty of opportunity to tweak the roster in the hopes of pushing the needle just enough into playoff contention.
The Giants have not given the front office the confidence that it needs to invest significant prospect capital at the trade deadline with the goal of upgrading the roster. That said, there are some buy-low options that they could target with the hope of catching lightning in a bottle.
1. Outfielder Mitch Haniger, Seattle Mariners
I know what you are thinking. The Giants have not made nearly enough trades with the Mariners this season, which is why they should target Mitch Haniger. Haniger was one of the more valuable trade assets in baseball a few years ago but he has sustained several injuries including a high ankle sprain in 2022.
The right-handed bat is set to return to the lineup soon, but the 31-year-old outfielder becomes a free agent at the end of the season. In 36 plate appearances, Haniger has posted a .708 OPS with three home runs and seven RBI this year.
Given his struggles to stay on the field and the fact that he is a rental, the six-year veteran is an affordable option with upside for the Giants. Last season, Haniger slashed .253/.318/.485 (121 OPS+) with 39 home runs, 100 RBI, and 110 runs in 691 plate appearances. He would easily slot into the middle of the lineup, especially against left-handed pitching.
2. Outfield Joey Gallo, New York Yankees
This is an idea that will receive some groans and deservedly so. However, Joey Gallo was one of the top trade options available last July, but a lot has changed since then as he has struggled mightily in a Yankees uniform. Despite the fact that the Yankees will be buying at the deadline, they may look to shed Gallo, who is in need of a change of scenery.
The left-handed bat is slashing just .167/.276/.333 (76 OPS+) with nine home runs, 18 RBI, and 24 runs in 214 plate appearances in 2022. Since 2017, Gallo has posted a 114 OPS+ with 160 home runs, so he would bring good offensive upside with more game power than just about every Giants hitter not named Joc Pederson.
It would be a bit of an awkward fit as the Giants' lineup leans a little too heavy on left-handed bats. He has generally posted strong marks with the glove in the outfield, which is one area where San Francisco could use some help.
3. Infielder Adam Frazier, Seattle Mariners
After the Giants trade for Mitch Haniger, there is still time for them to make one more trade with the Mariners in 2022. Seattle was hoping for better production from Adam Frazier after acquiring him in the offseason in a trade with the San Diego Padres, but that has not come to fruition.
The middle infielder is just one year removed from an NL All-Star selection in a season in which he registered a .305/.368/.411 line (114 OPS+) with five home runs, 43 RBI, and 83 runs in 639 plate appearances. However, he has struggled to the tune of a .585 OPS in 312 plate appearances in 2022.
The left-handed bat may not have more upside than Thairo Estrada right now, but he has a recent track record of being a reliable bat. The Giants could use that. Plus, Frazier is pretty versatile with the glove, so he would be a nice addition to a roster that has too many players who are limited defensively.