Top 3 SF Giants starting pitching targets by ground ball rate
2. Chris Bassitt - 48.8 percent ground ball rate
In a weird way, there is more than one Giants connection with veteran starter Chris Bassitt. The most obvious connection is that Farhan Zaid and Bassitt were with the Oakland A's around the same time. Their paths did not officially cross as Bassitt was traded to the A's shortly after Zaidi became the general manager for the Los Angeles Dodgers.
The second connection is that the 34-year-old was traded from the Chicago White Sox along with middle infielder Marcus Semien to the A's in a move that sent Jeff Samardzija to Chicago. Samardzija pitched one season with the White Sox before inking a five-year pact with the Giants.
Now that we have taken that trip down memory lane, Bassitt fits the Giants in more ways than one. The righty has quietly been one of the better starters in baseball since 2018, posting a 3.29 ERA in 107 games in that time.
The 2022 campaign was yet another strong season for the eight-year veteran. Bassitt recorded a 3.42 ERA, 3.66 FIP, 1.14 WHIP, 8.3 K/9, and a 3.41 SO/W ratio in 30 starts for the New York Mets. This includes a 48.8 percent ground ball rate, which ranks as the 17th-best mark in baseball among starters with a minimum of 100 innings pitched.
This could prove to be Bassitt's lone season in New York as the Mets will focus on bringing back a number of key free agents like Brandon Nimmo and Jacob deGrom.
Bassitt might not only excel in a quality that the Giants covet but he could fit their risk tolerance as well. The former 16th-round pick will be entering his age-34 season in 2023, meaning that he likely will not receive a deal beyond three or four years at a relatively reasonable rate. Perhaps, Nathan Eovaldi's four-year, $68 million pact that he signed with the Boston Red Sox after the 2018 season would be a good comparison.
The front office has not yet proven that it is willing to invest beyond three years in free agency, so Bassitt could be a better fit than Carlos Rodón in that sense.