SF Giants are not close to moving on from a pair of struggling veterans

San Francisco Giants v Miami Marlins
San Francisco Giants v Miami Marlins / Rich Storry/GettyImages

Mike Yastrzemski and Austin Slater are off to rough starts in 2024. However, both seemingly still have a strong hold on their roles as SF Giants team president of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi indicated that it is too early to make a decision on either veteran.

SF Giants are not close to moving on from a pair of struggling veterans

The Giants' top executive joined the Tolbert and Copes Show on KNBR on Thursday and was asked about balancing the struggles from both Yastrzemski and Slater against having someone like Heliot Ramos in Triple-A.

Ramos is off to a stellar start, slashing .333/.403/.650 (158 wRC+) with four home runs, 13 RBI, and 12 runs in 67 plate appearances with the Sacramento River Cats. This includes a 7.5 percent walk rate, 26.9 percent strikeout rate, and a .317 ISO. It has been the best he has performed in four seasons in Triple-A.

Naturally, calls for the 24-year-old outfielder to supplant one of the struggling veterans has grown louder with each game. Slater has tallied just two hits in 18 at-bats, whereas Yastrzemski has a .358 OPS through 39 plate appearances.

Zaidi affirmed that the Giants are monitoring how Ramos is performing, but reiterated that it is "way too early" to make a decision on Yastrzemski or Slater. The Giants front office executive went on to recognize that both were productive last year and that they work together to form a solid platoon battery.

Yastrzemski is coming off of a solid 2023 campaign in which he posted a .775 OPS with 15 home runs in 381 plate appearances while playing above-average defense. The six-year veteran has spent considerable time in center field in recent seasons but has shifted to right field following the addition of Jung Hoo Lee. Right field is Yastrzemski's more natural position.

On the other hand, Slater recorded a solid .748 OPS in 207 plate appearances last year. He continued to be an effective bat against left-handed pitchers, producing an even .800 OPS in those matchups last season.

Each player has a solid track record in their favor, so the Giants are not going to make any rash decisions. If they decide to move on from either player, they need to be certain that the replacement is a meaningful upgrade.

The front office and coaching staff are not quite there yet. However, if the struggles continue, both Slater and Yastrzemski could be on the roster bubble sooner rather than later.