SF Giants release veteran left-handed reliever after rough spring

2024 San Francisco Giants Spring Training
2024 San Francisco Giants Spring Training / Zac BonDurant/San Francisco Giants/GettyImages

In February, the SF Giants brought in veteran reliever Amir Garrett with a chance to make the Opening Day roster. However, he will be looking for opportunities elsewhere after the Giants released him, per Alex Pavlovic of NBC Sports Bay Area.

SF Giants release veteran left-handed reliever after rough spring

The Giants are thin on left-handed relievers, so Garrett had a decent shot of breaking camp with the club. At first, he was competing with both Ethan Small and Erik Miller for the second lefty role in the bullpen behind Taylor Rogers. Both Small and Miller occupy spots on the 40-man roster, so they had an inside track, but Garrett does have more experience.

However, Small will likely begin the year on the injured list after sustaining an oblique strain, whereas Miller was optioned earlier in the spring. These moves pave the way for another southpaw in Juan Sanchez to be added to the bullpen. Sanchez has had a very solid spring, posting a 1.80 ERA with 13 strikeouts against only three walks in 10 Cactus League innings.

The 23-year-old finished a solid 2023 campaign in which he registered a 3.03 ERA in 74.1 innings across two levels, including Triple-A. He was added as a non-roster invitee, so the Giants would need to make a corresponding roster move to make room on the 40-man roster.

On the other hand, Garrett has recorded a 4.95 ERA in parts of seven seasons in the majors. He spent the last two years with the Kansas City Royals. On the surface, the lefty reliever performed well in 2023 with a 3.33 ERA but it came with a lot of walks (20) and a high FIP (5.56) in 24.1 innings, suggesting that he had some good luck on his side.

The Royals did release him midway through the season despite the solid ERA. He latched on with the Cleveland Guardians, but did not reappear in the majors and was released before the end of the season.

Garrett's spring training never really got off on the right foot with San Francisco. In his first outing, he yielded three earned runs in only 0.2 innings of work and allowed at least one earned run in three of his next five appearances. Overall, he allowed six earned runs in only 5.2 innings.

The 31-year-old was brought into camp to compete for a spot on a non-roster deal, but he did not perform in his brief time with the Giants. That said, he did make a positive impression on those he interacted with in camp, so the hope is that he can land in a good spot.