After the SF Giants bullpen led baseball with a 2.99 ERA in 2021, it has been a totally different story this season as they have struggled badly to the tune of a 4.45 ERA. Which relievers from this roster should they consider keeping for 2023?
Which relievers should the SF Giants keep for 2023?
At 54-57, the Giants currently sit 7.5 games out for the third and final Wild Card spot. The narrative is beginning to shift to next season and that is especially true for the bullpen.
Outside of Camilo Doval, there have been few bright spots in the bullpen. Doval has quickly established himself as a legitimate closer and the type of reliever that the Giants can build a bullpen around.
The right-handed hurler has registered a 2.93 ERA, 3.10 FIP, 1.21 WHIP, 11.3 K/9, and a 3.05 SO/W ratio in 47 appearances with the Giants in 2022. This includes 15 saves in 17 opportunities. Doval has flashed a good slider with a high-90's sinker that has proven to be tough for opposing hitters to barrel up.
There is no question that he will return next season as he is under team control until the 2027 season. Filling the closer role is typically the hardest part but the Giants have that spot set with Doval. The problem will be getting the ball to the young reliever.
Outside of Doval, John Brebbia and Jarlín García should return next season as well. Tyler Rogers has struggled to a 4.85 ERA in 50 appearances and he has three minor league options remaining, so he will likely return in some capacity next season. That said, he is in a position where he will need to work his way back.
Brebbia has been fantastic this season after signing a one-year, $838,000 contract last winter. He is under team control for one more season, so bringing him back is an easy call. The 32-year-old reliever has posted a 2.40 ERA, 2.91 FIP, 1.17 WHIP, 7.2 K/9, and a 2.79 SO/W ratio while leading baseball with 53 appearances. Brebbia has inherited 22 runners and has allowed six of them to score, which is the sixth-best rate among qualified relievers.
García has hit a rough patch recently, but he has still had a very strong three-year stretch in a Giants uniform. Even after accounting for some recent struggles, the left-handed reliever has tallied a 2.95 ERA, 4.22 FIP, 1.24 WHIP, 7.4 K/9, and a 2.69 SO/W ratio in 42.2 frames in 2022.
In three seasons with the Giants, García has posted a 2.43 ERA in 117 appearances. He has been a little exposed recently as the primary left-handed reliever out of the bullpen, but that speaks more to the lack of depth options behind him.
Similar to Brebbia, García is under team control for next season and should return barring a major performance collapse.
That is about it. The Giants have experienced some turnover already from the 2021 season as Jake McGee and Kervin Castro were both designated for assignment last month. Dominic Leone has struggled to the tune of a 4.35 ERA in 2022 while José Álvarez has spent considerable time on the injured list with an elbow injury. The turnover will likely continue.
The Giants will need to rebuild the rotation through free agency and internal options. Spending big on free-agent relievers does not always pay dividends, so they will likely look at value options.
San Francisco does have a few internal options that they should consider including Randy Rodriguez, Cole Waites, R.J. Dabovich, and Joey Marciano. All four relievers will likely be candidates to help the bullpen sooner rather than later. However, there is no denying that the Giants have a lot of work to do for next season.