Even after re-signing Anthony DeSclafani to a three-year, $36 million deal, the SF Giants remained aggressive on the pitching market. According to Jon Heyman of the MLB Network, the Giants were one of eight teams to make an offer to left-handed hurler Steven Matz before he signed a deal with the St. Louis Cardinals.
Rumored SF Giants pitching target signs with St. Louis Cardinals
The Cardinals made a sizable commitment to the 30-year-old southpaw, signing him to a four-year, $44 million deal. Matz has been inconsistent throughout his seven-year career, but he rolled a strong 2021 campaign into a lucrative, multi-year deal.
Last year, Matz registered a 3.82 ERA, 3.79 FIP, 1.33 WHIP, 8.6 K/9, and a solid 3.35 SO/W ratio across 150.2 innings in his one and only season with the Toronto Blue Jays. The Blue Jays acquired him in the previous offseason in a deal that sent three pitching prospects including Sean Reid-Foley, Yennsy Diaz, and Josh Winckowski back to the New York Mets.
The veteran hurler had a disastrous season in 2020 as he posted a 9.82 ERA across 30.2 innings, but he bounced back nicely with the Blue Jays last year.
Now that Matz is off of the market, the Giants will turn their attention to a familiar face as well as a longtime starter with durability concerns. The Giants had reportedly agreed to terms with left-handed starter Alex Wood on Monday to a two-year deal in the neighborhood of $20 million. However, the team has not officially announced the signing nor made a corresponding roster move given that the 40-man roster is currently full.
On the the other hand, they were said to be making a "strong push" for 10-year veteran starter Alex Cobb. Neither deal has been completed but the Giants appeared to be much further along with Wood than they are with Cobb.
There is no guarantee that the Giants will complete a deal with either pitcher but it seemed as if progress had been made. San Francisco, undoubtedly, still needs starting pitching help as the projected rotation for 2022 only includes Anthony DeSclafani and Logan Webb.
With that being said, it is no surprise to see them interested in Matz but his asking price was likely too steep for their comfort level. The lefty commands his four-pitch arsenal well as evidenced by his 3.35 SO/W ratio in 2021 and that is a quality that the Giants covet.
Nevertheless, they can scratch him off of the list as he will spending the next four seasons in St. Louis. The Giants will likely turn their attention back to Wood and Cobb as well as staying in contact with Marcus Stroman. It is clear that the front office still has plenty of work to do but they have been laying the groundwork with the expectation for a busy offseason.