SF Giants: How good was the winter and did the team actually get better?
All things aside, the Giants were very productive and winter. While they weren’t the flashiest moves, they did do the one goal of the offseason, which is to get better.
The first move the team did was to sign Mitch Haniger to a 3-year, $43.5 Million deal with an opt-out after 2024. This contract comes with its pros and cons, as does any deal.
Beginning with the pros, Haniger is just a solid all-around player. Just taking a look at some StatCast numbers, you can see this as he’s got a very strong arm that’s rated at 79 and has some good exit velocity numbers off the bat that is rated at 72.
Diving back into his previous numbers, he has hit 123 homers and has 323 RBIs in his career to date. In 2018, he hit 26 homers and had 96 RBIs. Then in 2021, Haniger had a career year where he hit 39 home runs with 100 RBIs. However, that’s the catch too. In both of those seasons, he played 157 games. Other than the 2020 season, Haniger has had a hard time being available.
That wasn’t the only outfielder the team added though. In January, they signed Michael Conforto to a 2-year, $36 Million deal. Again, he’s a solid player. The one thing that could make this deal look bad is if Conforto can’t stay healthy and only plays in 60 games or less. He’s been known to have injury issues and hasn’t played with an MLB team since 2021. However, if he can stay healthy he brings some left-handed pop to the lineup. In 2019, he had his best year where he hit 33 homers and had 92 RBIs. That was the last year of a three-year stretch where he hit 20 or more homers each season. Pairing these guys with Joc Pederson will make the lineup a little bit thicker as well, especially against right-handed pitching.
On top of those moves, the team also took a flier on Stephen Piscotty. This is s low-risk, high-reward. Piscotty is good at hitting left-handed pitching and was a solid player before getting traded to the A’s. Hopefully, the Giants can catch lightning in a bottle here.
Plus, you could argue they did addition by subtraction by moving on from Tommy La Stella who declined badly last season.
The Giants also added some strong arms to their rotation and bullpen that will make a difference. They began by signing Ross Stripling to a 2-year, $25 Million deal with an opt-out after the season. They inked lefty Sean Menea to the same contract as well. Stripling is coming off a nice year where he went 10-4 with a 3.01 ERA with a WHIP of 1.02.
As for Menea, he had a rough 2022 season going 8-9 with a 4.96 ERA and 1.30 WHIP. That being said, he can be a solid back-of-the-rotation guy.
Lastly, they signed left-handed reliever Taylor Rogers to a 3-year, $33 Million deal. Rogers was off to a good start with the Padres and was close to the league lead in saves before being traded at the deadline to the Brewers where he served as a setup man. So it’s safe to say that Rogers can be used in different ways just like his brother, which should help the bullpen immensely. The Giants also took chances on Sean Newcomb, Joe Ross, and Luke Jackson who could all make impacts.