The Cal Stevenson era is officially in the books. The SF Giants designated the speedy outfielder for assignment in a slew of moves last week and he did not make it through waivers as the Philadelphia Phillies were awarded the claim according to the team's transaction log.
SF Giants lose speedy outfielder on waiver claim to Phillies
Stevenson holds a uniquely niche spot in Giants history. The left-handed bat began the season with the Oakland A's, but he was placed on waivers and eventually traded to the Giants. The Giants and A's have not connected on many trades in recent years.
Interestingly, San Francisco designated Sam Long for assignment to make room on the 40-man roster for Stevenson. Long was traded to the A's, but this was not a player-for-player trade, but rather a trade of players on the waiver wire.
Stevenson and Long will join the likes of Burch Smith, Skye Bolt, and Adam Pettyjohn as players to be shipped between the local rivals over the last 25 years. However, they have not connected for a player-for-player trade since Darren Lewis was sent to San Francisco in 1990.
For Stevenson, his Giants tenure comes to an end after collecting nine hitless at-bats, but he did work three walks against two strikeouts. With Sacramento, the 26-year-old slashed .163/.293/.225 with one home run, one RBI, and eight runs in 58 plate appearances.
Unfortunately, that is not the type of performance that will keep a player on the 40-man roster. The issue was compounded by the fact that Stevenson and Bryce Johnson share a similar skill set in terms of speed and quality defense.
However, the latter is a superior glove in center field while being able to hit from both sides of the plate. Sooner or later, the Giants needed to make a decision and Johnson got the nod as he has spent most of the year on the active roster while serving as a late-inning defensive replacement.
Philadelphia might not be a bad landing spot for Stevenson. The Giants faced off against the Phillies recently and there were several defensive miscues in the outfield that led to them taking two of three games against them.
The Phillies have a formidable outfield contingent, but they need some balance as bats like Kyle Schwarber and Nick Castellanos do not offer much defensive upside. The Phillies optioned Stevenson to Triple-A for the time being.