The non-tender deadline came and went on Friday afternoon for the SF Giants and there were few surprises. They tendered many of their arbitration-eligible players a contract for 2023. However, they also non-tendered 10 players including Alex Young, Mauricio Llovera, and Donovan Walton.
Are the SF Giants gearing up for more moves in the near future?
The non-tender deadline is a unique point in the offseason in that teams can non-tender pre-arbitration players, thereby clearing a 40-man roster spot. This is unique because the player becomes a free agent without being exposed to waivers.
The Giants have used this maneuver quite a bit in recent years in order to retain players like Chadwick Tromp and Luis González. In essence, the Giants made 10 players free agents without the chance of them being claimed off of waivers. Many of those players will sign elsewhere, but this front office has a habit of keeping these players in the organization by re-signing them to minor league deals.
I would expect players like Colton Welker, Sam Delaplane, Dom Núñez, and Drew Strotman to return. In the case of Welker and Delaplane, they received a nice pay bump by being added to the active roster before being transferred to the 60-day injured list. The Giants did them a solid, so in theory, either player will be motivated to return.
Núñez and Strotman are local to northern California, playing at Elk Grove High School and Saint Mary's College, respectively. They could be motivated to remain in California by re-signing with the Giants and working out in Sacramento until a need arises on the major league roster.
However, Friday's moves created an interesting dynamic. The Giants non-tendered three players in Alex Young, Donovan Walton, and Mauricio Llovera. All three players occupied spots on the 40-man roster, so by non-tendering them, San Francisco created three vacancies.
Anyone who has followed this front office knows what that means. But, if you do not, it is likely that the Giants will likely be active in the coming days as they rarely keep a roster spot open for long. It would be swell if they were keeping those spots warm for players like Aaron Judge, Carlos Rodón, and Trea Turner. That said, they are probably going to make some waiver claims before any of the big dominos fall in free agency.
It is not necessarily the type of activity that many Giants fans hoped. This front office has been as aggressive as any team in baseball recently on the waiver wire. The strategy is to rebuild depth and they have jettisoned over a dozen players from the 40-man roster in the past two weeks. Judge may not be coming (yet), but the Giants likely will make a few roster moves in the next couple of days.