The SF Giants are off to an abysmal 6-13 start to the season and it is going to be tough to dig themselves out of this hole. There are several reasons for the slow start but there is one excuse they just cannot use and it is injuries.
The one excuse the SF Giants cannot use after slow start
The Giants pretty much have the same roster out on the field currently despite being one of the more aggressive teams in free agency this past winter. They invested in Mitch Haniger and Michael Conforto while bringing back Joc Pederson.
A lineup with those three in the middle should be able to do some damage. However, the Giants have been unable to use that type of lineup given that Pederson (wrist) and Haniger (oblique) are both on the injured list.
On the pitching side, Alex Wood has already been placed on the injured list. He joins Luke Jackson among others who are also on the shelf. You get the point by now but the Giants have a relatively long list of players who are currently injured.
Sure, that has been a narrative in the early going. The offense has been inconsistent, but it will get going when everybody returns. Or, the starting rotation has the depth to weather an injury or two. Regardless of the situation, these narratives cannot be used as excuses.
The Giants have invested heavily in injury risk over the past couple of seasons. In the rotation, Anthony DeSclafani, Alex Cobb, and Wood have all missed significant time in recent seasons. In the field, Haniger has appeared in over 100 games just twice in his career, whereas Conforto missed the entire 2022 season as he recovered from offseason should surgery.
This was a characteristic of the roster and the front office seemed to double-down on it this past offseason. Hopefully, everyone returns to health but building a roster through free agency is a tough task. That is a function of not having a farm system feed the major league roster.
That said, when you build a roster through free agency, it means you are getting a player with some mileage on their career at that point. Even if they have proven to be durable earlier in their career, that is a quality that does not normally sustain itself as a player ages.
So, the Giants have built a veteran-heavy roster and with that comes injuries. Veterans typically spend more time on the injured list and take longer to return. That is where the Giants are at as they hope to turn things around.
However, it just cannot be used as an excuse for their poor start. This roster was high in injury risk and they are currently realizing that risk. This is a consequence of it. Hopefully, the Giants are able to recover from their slow start when the roster does return to health, but they are getting off on the wrong foot.