Before the Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) expired, the SF Giants were moderately active on the free agent market by rebuilding much of the rotation and bringing back longtime first baseman Brandon Belt. That said, it is fair to say that the front office still has plenty of work to do when the lockout is over.
Outlining the SF Giants remaining offseason needs
The Giants are bringing back many of the same names from last season including Belt, Brandon Crawford, Anthony DeSclafani, and Alex Wood. However, it is going to be tough to fill the voids left behind the dish and in the rotation with Buster Posey's retirement and Kevin Gausman's departure, respectively.
The Giants still have one key free agent available in Kris Bryant and bringing him back would check off a lot of boxes. Outside of retaining the former NL MVP, the Giants still have a lot of needs.
The Giants had four holes to fill in the rotation and they filled three of those spots by bringing back DeSclafani and Wood as well as reeling in Alex Cobb on a two-year, $20 million contract. Given that both Wood and Cobb have had durability concerns in the past, the Giants will need at least two more starters to give the rotation the innings and depth that it needs.
Outside of Curt Casali and Joey Bart, the Giants have very little catching depth in the upper minors. The bad news is that the free agent market is very thin on catching options, so the front office will be tasked with finding another backstop or two to give them insurance in case of an injury or underperformance. There are a couple of veteran catchers available but the Giants will likely want a receiver like Beau Taylor, who has minor league options remaining that they can stash on the 40-man roster.
When the 2021 season came to a close, second baseman Tommy La Stella underwent surgery on his left Achilles with an estimated recovery time of four months. Given that La Stella hits from the left side, it makes sense for the Giants to be in the market for a right-handed-hitting middle infielder. Donovan Solano checks that box but he is limited to second base at this stage in his career. They could also see what they have in either Thairo Estrada or Mauricio Dubón.
If the Giants improve the lineup, it seems likely that they will target an outfielder, especially one who hits from the right side. They were reportedly in on Nicholas Castellanos before the lockout and could circle back on him when baseball returns. San Francisco did not get nearly enough consistent production from the outfield core in 2021, and given that there are so many options available, they will likely add one notable name.