SF Giants: Grading Farhan Zaidi's Free Agent Strategy

MLB free agency is perhaps the most influential changing of hands and shuffling of cards that occurs in the MLB calendar. This places a massive emphasis on making prudent and intelligent signings that help your team in the short and long term. There is no doubt that the most recent free agent signings by Farhan Zaidi and the SF Giants front office have been, to put it kindly, a mixed bag. Is this one year a continuance of a pattern or a blip on the radar? Today, we will be grading Farhan Zaidi's free agent strategy since his tenure began as the head of the proverbial table. The methodology is simple. Farhan Zaidi was hired on November 6th, 2018 therefore the 18-19 off-season will be disregarded as he was not hired until after free agency had begun. Furthermore, extensions and minor league contracts will not affect the grading while qualifying offers will be counted as one-year contracts.

San Francisco Giants v Atlanta Braves
San Francisco Giants v Atlanta Braves / Alex Slitz/GettyImages
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Grading Farhan Zaidi's Free Agent Strategy

2022 - 2023 FA Class

Ross Stripling: 2 yr $25 million. 2023 78.1 IP, 5.29 ERA, 81 ERA+, .1 bWAR.

Joc Pederson: 1 yr $19.65 million. 2023 106 G, .247/.359/.427, 116 OPS+, .7 bWAR.

Sean Manaea: 2 yr $25 million. 2023 99.1 IP, 4.80 ERA, 89 ERA+, -.4 bWAR.

Taylor Rogers: 3 yr $33 million. 2023 49.1 IP, 3.10 ERA, 138 ERA+, .9 bWAR.

Mitch Haniger: 3 yr $43.5 million. 2023 52 G, .216/.277/.384, 80 OPS+, -.2 bWAR.

Roberto Perez: 1 yr $2.5 million. 2023 5 G, .133/.235/.133, 6 OPS+, -.2 bWAR.

Michael Conforto: 2 yr $36 million. 2023 111 G, .251/.343/.405, 106 OPS+, .8 bWAR

Luke Jackson: 2 yr $11.5 million. 2023 28.2 IP, 3.14 ERA, 137 ERA+, .5 bWAR

Summary: This is a catastrophic free-agent class. The only worthwhile additions are Jackson and Rogers and they still have a few years of possible decline. Literally, everyone else has had a catastrophic season and at the very best is underperforming.

Grade: F

What We Have Learned

The purpose of this exercise is to determine if Farhan Zaidi and the Giants front office have just had a bad year in 2023 or if their free agent choices have a pattern of poor decision-making.

There can be no doubt that the 2019-2020 free agent class was a dream. However, every class that has followed has been mediocre at best and catastrophically bad at worst. While the player development and trade acquisitions during this time have had their bright spots, it is unquestionable that the Giants need to revise their free-agent strategy moving forward.