The SF Giants began a three-game set in Colorado on Tuesday. The timing was opportune as the lineup returned to full strength for pretty much the first time in 2023 as both Joc Pederson (hand) and Thairo Estrada (wrist) were activated from the injured list according to the team's transaction log.
SF Giants lineup returns to full strength with latest set of moves
In corresponding moves, both Bryce Johnson and Brett Wisely were optioned back to Triple-A. Johns recorded seven hits in 40 at-bats while serving primarily as a late-inning defensive replacement and pinch runner.
On the other hand, Wisely registered a .195/.230/.317 line (49 OPS+) with two home runs, seven RBI, and five runs in 88 plate appearances. He saw time at both second base and center field with the latter being a position where he did not have prior experience. He struggled with the bat, but flashed a competent glove, especially at second base.
The return of Estrada and Pederson will be welcomed additions to the lineup for a team that has won just two of its last six games. This included a couple of tough opponents like the Pittsburgh Pirates and Baltimore Orioles, but the offense fell short in some of those loses.
Estrada has been playing at an All-Star level in 2023, slashing .301/.345/.466 (121 OPS+) with six home runs, 17 RBI, and 30 runs in 206 plate appearances. He is also fast on the bases, swiping 13 bags in 16 opportunities. The 27-year-old's defense at second base graded out poorly last year, but he has shown a lot of improvement this year.
Pederson adds a true, middle-of-the-order bat. He has been excellent when healthy, but has made two trips to the injured list for the same hand issue. The left-handed hitter has registered an .844 OPS with five home runs in 97 plate appearances this year. Despite his excellent bat, could the Giants move Pederson this season?
Austin Slater and Mitch Haniger missed the first month of the season, whereas Pederson and Estrada missed the second half of May as well as the beginning of June. The first three appeared in Tuesday's lineup, which was one of the few times they had all been in the same lineup at once. The Giants hope that the injury woes do not continue as they gear up for an important stretch in the season.