SF Giants bolster bullpen depth, add 7-year veteran on a minor league deal

Kansas City Royals v St. Louis Cardinals
Kansas City Royals v St. Louis Cardinals / Scott Kane/GettyImages

The SF Giants bolstered bullpen depth on Monday. Seven-year veteran Amir Garrett reportedly agreed to join San Francisco on a minor league deal, per Robert Murray of FanSided.

SF Giants bolster bullpen depth, add 7-year veteran on a minor league deal

Murray reports that the contract includes a camp invite and a $1.35 million salary if he is added to the major league roster. Garrett checks a box off for the Giants. They had a need for another left-handed reliever or two out of the bullpen.

Currently, Taylor Rogers is the only experienced lefty out of the bullpen. The Giants also have Erik Miller and Ethan Small on the 40-man roster, but neither one is a proven option. By the end of the season, either young reliever could carve out a role in the bullpen.

However, the presence of those three should not preclude the Giants from adding depth. That is where Garrett comes into play. The veteran lefty spent the 2023 season with the Kansas City Royals and posted a 3.33 ERA in 24.1 frames. While the ERA looks solid, it came with some concerning underlying numbers such as a 5.56 FIP, 1.5 HR/9, and a 7.4 BB/9.

Across seven seasons, the lefty reliever has tallied a 4.95 ERA, 4.92 FIP, 1.43 WHIP, 10.4 K/9, and a 2.00 SO/W ratio. The strikeout numbers are promising, but below-average command and being too prone to the long ball have impacted his overall performance.

Garrett has had some solid seasons like the 3.21 ERA he posted in 69 outings with the Cincinnati Reds in 2019. However, his good seasons have often been alternated with some rough years as well. He allowed just a .676 OPS against left-handed hitters since debuting in 2017, so there is a chance that he could function in a matchup role out of the bullpen.

On the mound, the veteran reliever flashes a mid-90's four-seam fastball with a sinker and a slider. The slider has been his best pitch as opposing hitters recorded just a .218 batting average against it in 2023. The slider has typically been a good pitch against left-handed hitters, but it had solid results against right-handed hitters (.194 batting average against) last year.

At the end of the day, there is a chance that Garrett makes the club out of camp. This is the type of move that the Giants should be doing more of to add depth. They have too much continuity in a bullpen that was not a strength last year. It would behoove them to see if they can find some quality innings on the minor league market to round out their bullpen.