At 62-68, the SF Giants have begun to shift their focus to next season as they are effectively out of the playoff picture. While the season has been a disappointment, outfielder Joc Pederson has had a strong year and the Giants would like to have him back.
Farhan Zaidi: SF Giants "would love to bring back" power-hitting outfielder
Farhan Zaidi joined Tom Tolbert and Adam Copeland of the Tolbert and Copes show to express his desire to retain the power-hitting outfielder beyond this season:
""We'd love to have him [Pederson] back next year. We have talked some to his representatives. I've talked to Joc about it himself. He's from here, he has played well here, he was an All-Star for us."- Farhan Zaidi
San Francisco signed the eight-year veteran to a one-year, $6 million pact prior to the season and that is a move that has paid dividends for both team and player. Pederson has slashed .263/.339/.513 (137 wRC+) with 20 home runs, 53 RBI, and 45 runs in 348 plate appearances. This includes an 8.6 percent walk rate against a 21.6 percent strikeout rate.
Giants manager Gabe Kapler aggressively uses platoon matchups and Pederson has been a perfect fit for that strategy. The left-handed bat has registered a 143 wRC+ in 302 plate appearances against righties in 2022, which ranks as the 18th-best mark among qualified hitters this season.
For the statcast fans, Pederson has posted a 93.3-MPH average exit velocity since joining the Giants, which is the sixth-best figure in baseball. He was brought on to fulfill a role and he has exceeded all expectations, so it is no surprise that he was selected for his second All-Star appearance.
It makes sense that the Giants would want to bring him back. As a team, San Francisco has tallied a 96 wRC+ against righties in 2022, so that is an obvious area of improvement and retaining Pederson achieves that end. That said, the Giants will need to add more than just one bat to improve their performance against righties.
Cost is going to be a factor but his next contract will not be prohibitive by any means. He has been worth 1,5 fWAR, meaning that he should be in line for a raise from his $6 million salary in 2022, but it will be an amount that the Giants can afford. If the dollars and years make sense, bringing Pederson back should be a slam dunk decision to start the offseason.