Former SF Giants pitcher reveals surprising nugget on free agency

Division Series - Los Angeles Dodgers v San Francisco Giants - Game Five
Division Series - Los Angeles Dodgers v San Francisco Giants - Game Five / Thearon W. Henderson/GettyImages

The SF Giants suffered some notable losses this offseason including Buster Posey to retirement and Kevin Gausman to free agency. The latter made a name for himself since joining the Giants prior to the 2020 season. On Sunday, he revealed an interesting nugget regarding his foray into free agency.

Former SF Giants pitcher sets record straight on foray into free agency

When the Giants signed Gausman before 2020, it was not a move that garnered a lot of buzz and excitement. The right-handed hurler was coming off of a down season in which he registered a 5.72 ERA in 31 appearances split between the Atlanta Braves and Cincinnati Reds.

However, as soon as he put on a Giants uniform, he found a different gear as he has become one of the better pitchers in baseball since then. In his first season with San Francisco, the 31-year-old pitcher posted a 3.62 ERA, 3.09 FIP, 1.10 WHIP, 11.9 K/9, and a 4.94 SO/W ratio in 12 appearances spanning 59.2 frames.

In the following offseason, he was offered and accepted an $18.9 million qualifying offer to remain with the Giants through the 2021 season. He continued his career renaissance as he produced a 2.81 ERA in 33 starts while earning an NL All-Star nod, finishing sixth in the NL Cy Young voting, and receiving down-ballot MVP votes.

He became a free agent and was, not surprisingly, one of the more sought-after pitchers on the market, Given how he had performed over the last two seasons, Gausman and the Giants were expected to pursue a reunion. However, discussions never progressed to that point as Gausman reveals a surprising detail about his most recent trip through free agency:

He confirmed that the Giants never made an offer. Of course, the 31-year-old pitcher signed a five-year, $110 million deal with the Blue Jays as Toronto looks to be geared to be a competitive team for years to come.

For better or worse, the Giants front office seems hesitant or reluctant to hand out five-year deals to pitchers. You don't have to dig too deep into Giants history to discover that long-term deals for pitchers have generally led to unfavorable results.

However, it bears mentioning that if the Giants wanted to avoid a long-term deal, they could have offered a higher annual salary on a shorter-term basis as a way to compensate. Talks never got to that point as Gausman confirmed that he agreed to a deal with the Blue Jays without hearing back from the Giants. He quickly became a fan favorite, but fans will have to watch him pitch in a Blue Jays uniform over the next five seasons instead.