Giants, RHP Wisler agree to 1-year deal

December 9th, 2020

The Giants made their first significant move to bolster their bullpen on Tuesday, agreeing to terms with right-hander Matt Wisler on a one-year, $1.15 million contract.

Wisler is coming off a career year with the Twins in which he recorded a 1.07 ERA and 35 strikeouts across 25 1/3 innings out of the bullpen. He was a versatile option for Minnesota, taking the mound as the Twins’ opener in four games while also earning one save.

Minnesota claimed Wisler off waivers from the Mariners after the 2019 season after he made previous stops in San Diego, Cincinnati and Atlanta. The Twins non-tendered Wisler last Wednesday, making him a free agent instead of arbitration-eligible.

Wisler found success in the Twin Cities by turning almost exclusively to his effective slider; he threw his breaking ball on 83.4 percent of his pitches in 2020, one of the highest single-season rates dating back to the start of pitch tracking in ’08. The approach helped Wisler finish among the top 10 percent of qualified pitchers in both hard-hit rate allowed and whiff-per-swing rate, per Statcast.

Right-handed relief was a relative weakness for the Giants this past season, so Wisler’s arrival should help shore up a group that already includes Trevor Gott, Tyler Rogers, Sam Coonrod, Shaun Anderson and Reyes Moronta, who missed the entire 2020 campaign while rehabbing from shoulder surgery.

The Giants likely aren’t done adding to their bullpen, as they have expressed a desire to acquire a couple of veteran arms to help fill the leadership void left by Tony Watson and Trevor Cahill, both of whom are free agents.