There has been a recent prediction that the SF Giants will land two future Hall of Fame pitchers in the forms of Max Scherzer and Justin Verlander. This article will argue that neither player will sign with the Orange and Black this offseason.
Why the SF Giants will not sign Max Scherzer or Justin Verlander
At this point in the MLB offseason, spicy rumors and predictions reign supreme. That is why the San Francisco Giants are predicted to sign both Scherzer and Verlander according to MLB.com. There are also other predictions, that our own Jeff Young has documented, that link Verlander to the Giants as a potential offseason fit.
While it is not entirely out of the realm of possibility that one, or both, of these veteran starters sign with the Giants, we all must be honest and acknowledge that it is extremely unlikely. One reason is that Verlander was issued a qualifying offer from the Houston Astros which could mean that the Giants would lose a second round draft pick if they signed him.
Another key reason is that signing marquee free agents has not been a part of Farhan Zaidi's M.O. as president of baseball operations with the Giants. Of course, part of this has to do with the fact that the Giants were considered an uncompetitive team in a stacked division until they set the world on fire in 2021, but I do not see Zaidi taking a big swing at a veteran starter just because the Giants had one exceptional season.
Plus, we must consider the injury histories of both Scherzer and Verlander. Verlander missed all of 2021 due to Tommy John surgery so, despite his incredible career, he is something of an unknown quantity heading into the 2022 season in which he will be 39 years old. In Scherzer's case, the last time he pitched he complained that his "arm was dead" in Game 2 of the NLCS. Scherzer will be 37 at the start of next season, so an injury is something to be worried about for him as well.
It seems much more likely that the Giants will commit to an offseason strategy that involves re-signing Kevin Gausman and, perhaps, Anthony DeSclafani and may try to add another starter or two through free agency or trade.
While it is fun to imagine both Verlander and Scherzer at starters for the Giants, the team's recent history in building the rotation suggests that they will opt for a different approach this offseason. They will cast a wide for starting pitching and that net could reach either pitcher, but that is not necessarily how this front office operates.