Friday was the non-tender deadline in baseball. The SF Giants had six arbitration-eligible players to consider and they resolved two cases after agreeing to terms with Mike Yastrzemski and Austin Slater for $7.9 million and $4.0 million, respectively, per Alex Pavlovic of NBS Sports Bay Area.
SF Giants agree to terms with two steady contributors
Interestingly, the Giants did not make an announcement on the remaining four players consisting of LaMonte Wade Jr., Thairo Estrada, Tyler Rogers, and J.D. Davis. None of the four are currently listed as free agents, so it is a safe bet to assume that all four have been tendered contracts for next season as well.
All six cases were very easy decisions as they were some of the more valuable players on the roster. Teams will retain players under team control so long as there is surplus or marginal value and that is the case with each of the players.
For the Giants, they get cost certainty with a pair of outfielders in Slater and Yastrzemski. Slater was projected to earn $3.6 million according to MLB Trade Rumors. However, he received a bump above that, agreeing to a $4.0 million deal for 2024. This represents a nice raise from his $3.2 million salary last year.
The right-handed bat posted a .270/.348/.400 line (107 OPS+) with five home runs, 20 RBI, and 24 runs in 207 plate appearances. This includes a 9.7 percent walk rate, 28.0 percent strikeout rate, and a .130 ISO.
Slater has a knack for hitting against left-handed pitching and is capable of playing all three outfield positions. The Giants would like to see him spend more time in the corners going forward, but he is passable as a center fielder. Interestingly, the seven-year veteran is now the Giants' longest-tenured player with Brandon Crawford becoming a free agent.
Similar to Slater, Yastrzemski received a nice pay bump from his projected arbitration salary of $7.3 million. His $7.9 million salary for 2024 is a sizable increase from his $6.1 million salary from last season.
When healthy, the left-handed bat continued to be a steady contributor. He tallied a .233/.330/.445 line (113 OPS+) with 15 home runs, 43 RBI, and 54 runs in 381 plate appearances. This includes an 11.8 percent walk rate, 26.0 percent strikeout rate, and a .212 ISO.
The Giants' outfield struggled badly in 2023, but not due to Yastrzemski's contributions. He was easily the best outfielder on the roster and the Giants need to get more consistent production from the the rest of the group. That said, the 33-year-old made three trips to the injured list in 2023 as he battled a nagging hamstring injury. He only appeared in 106 games.