Heading into the 2022 trade deadline, there was some level of uncertainty as to what the SF Giants might do. They did not approach it as clear buyers or sellers, but they did move some pieces around. One move has turned out to be a clear victory for the front office as they acquired J.D. Davis and Thomas Szapucki along with two prospects from the New York Mets in exchange for Darin Ruf.
The SF Giants definitively won a trade with the New York Mets at the trade deadline
Prior to the trade, Ruf was in the midst of a subpar season as he posted a .216/.328/.373 line (98 OPS+) with 11 home runs, 38 RBI, and 46 runs in 341 plate appearances. This was a sharp decline compared to the combined .900 OPS he tallied in the prior two seasons with the Giants.
That said, he was still a threat at the plate, especially against left-handed pitching. When the Giants decided to ship him to the Mets, it was a mild surprise and a bitter pill to swallow for some as he had become popular among Giants fans.
Despite this, it has become a definitive win for the Giants. J.D. Davis has been fantastic following the move trade as he has posted a .928 OPS with eight home runs in a Giants uniform. It helps that he is not necessarily a platoon player as he has registered a .789 OPS against right-handed pitcher compared to a .774 OPS against left-handed pitching this season.
One of the criticisms of Giants leadership in 2022 is how aggressively they lean on platoon matchups, so it is refreshing that Davis is platoon-proof. He is under team control for two more seasons, and can easily slot into the middle of the lineup.
On the other hand, Darin Ruf has struggled badly during his time in New York. He has recorded a .413 OPS with no home runs in 74 plate appearances. It is tough to see him struggle so badly, and hopefully, he can turn it around as he is under contract for next season with the Mets.
If it was a one-for-one trade with Davis and Ruf, it would be considered a clear win for the Giants. However, the Giants also received left-handed hurler Thomas Szapucki along with a pair of pitching prospects in Nick Zwack and Carson Seymour.
Szapucki has appeared briefly with the Giants but he has flashed the ingredients of a leverage reliever in that he throws a four-seam fastball that sits comfortably in the mid 90's to go along with a high-spin curve ball. Control has been an issue for the southpaw throughout his career, but it has not been observable since coming over to San Francisco.
In nine appearances, 26-year-old pitcher has allowed just three earned runs on 16 strikeouts against only two walks. That will paly if he can sustain it.
Seymour and Zwack are similar to Szapucki in that they has tallied strong strikeout numbers but this comes with subpar command at times. Both were assigned to Eugene following the trade and excelled. Zwack recorded a 3.99 ERA, 11.0 K/9, and a 2.25 SO/W ratio in six starts with the Emeralds, whereas Seymour also generated a 3.99 ERA but with a 13.2 K/9 and a 4.30 SO/W ratio in six starts.
Again, if this was a one-for-one trade, it would have been a victory for the Giants. However, the fact that they might have received a functional reliever in Szapucki and two pitching prospects with upside is a legitimate heist considering what they gave up.