Offseason checklist: SF’s needs and moves

February 5th, 2021

The Giants secured their fourth consecutive losing season by going 29-31 in 2020, but the 60-game campaign still represented a step forward for the organization. San Francisco fell only one win short of a playoff spot, a painful outcome that figures to motivate players and management to reach for greater heights next year.

So, what are the Giants’ biggest needs entering 2021, and what moves have they made to address them? is keeping track here. As the offseason continues to unfold, be sure to check back for updates.


Starting pitching
The Giants brought back on a one-year, $18.9 million qualifying offer and signed newcomers and , adding much-needed stability to a starting rotation that was thinned following the departure of Jeff Samardzija, Drew Smyly, Trevor Cahill and Tyler Anderson. and are expected to be back next year as well, along with , who missed the entire 2020 campaign while rehabbing from Tommy John surgery.

The heavy lifting appears to be done with the deals for Gausman, DeSclafani and Wood, though the Giants could look to round out their depth by bringing in other veteran starters on Minor League deals and giving them a chance to compete for spots on their pitching staff this spring, much like they did with Trevor Cahill and Tyson Ross last year.

Veteran relief help
Left-hander served as the de facto leader of an inexperienced relief corps, but he is now a free agent, creating a leadership void in the bullpen. The Giants would like to acquire another steady veteran who can help lock down late innings and serve as a mentor to emerging relievers like , and . The free-agent market is expected to be flooded with quality relief arms this offseason, though the Giants will likely focus on right-handed options, as they already have several lefties in Baragar, Selman, and . They made their first significant moves to bolster their bullpen by signing right-handers and to one-year deals.

Left-handed bat
President of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi said he felt the Giants were one left-handed bat short in 2020. and didn’t produce as hoped, and newcomers like and ultimately didn’t stick. The Giants found an ideal fit in , who joined the club on a three-year, $18.75 million deal in February. La Stella is expected to see time primarily at second and third base, allowing the Giants to rest and against tough righties. San Francisco secured additional depth by signing infielder , a former Cubs and Padres prospect who agreed to a Major League contract in November.

Catching depth
The Giants are projected to enter 2021 with a talented catching duo in and top prospect , but Zaidi hasn’t ruled out seeking more help behind the plate this offseason. Bart’s struggles in '20 made it clear that he could benefit from more development at Triple-A Sacramento, so San Francisco brought in additional experience by signing veteran to a one-year deal. The catching depth chart also includes , who landed a Major League deal with the Giants after being non-tendered in December.


Feb. 4: The Giants acquired outfielder LaMonte Wade Jr. from the Twins in exchange for right-hander Shaun Anderson.

Feb. 4: The Giants signed infielder Tommy La Stella to a three-year, $18.75 million deal. Outfielder Luis Alexander Basabe was designated for assignment.

Jan. 14: The Giants signed left-hander Alex Wood to a one-year, $3 million deal. Wood can make an additional $3 million in performance bonuses for games pitched in which he records 10 outs or greater: $125,000 each for 12 and 14; $250,000 each for 16, 18, 20, 22 and 24; $500,000 each for 26, 28 and 30.

Jan. 9: The Giants traded right-hander Sam Coonrod to the Phillies in exchange for pitching prospect Carson Ragsdale.

Jan. 4: The Giants signed catcher Curt Casali to a one-year deal and sold the contractual rights of left-hander Andrew Suárez to the KBO’s LG Twins to make room for Casali on the 40-man roster. Casali can earn up to $500,000 if he makes the Giants’ active roster for Opening Day, or $125,000 apiece for 30, 60, 90 and 120 days on the active roster.

Dec. 21: The Giants signed right-handed reliever John Brebbia to a one-year, $800,000 deal.

Dec. 16: The Giants signed right-hander Anthony DeSclafani to a one-year, $6 million deal. He can earn an additional $250,000 in performance bonuses for innings pitched: $62,500 each for 140 innings, 160 innings, 180 innings and 200 innings.

Dec. 10: The Giants selected right-hander Dedniel Nunez from the Mets in the Rule 5 Draft.

Dec. 9: The Giants agreed to terms with catcher Chadwick Tromp on a Major League deal. The club also signed the following 11 players to Minor League contracts with invitations to Major League Spring Training: right-handers Melvin Adon, Daniel Alvarez, Silvino Bracho, Rico Garcia, Dominic Leone, Yunior Marte, Raffi Vizcaíno and Sam Wolff; left-handers Anthony Banda and Sam Long; and infielder/outfielder Jason Krizan.

Dec. 8: The Giants announced that they signed right-handed reliever Matt Wisler to a one-year, $1.15 million deal. Wisler can earn an additional $500,000 in performance bonuses.

Dec. 2: The Giants agreed to terms with six arbitration-eligible players on one-year contracts for 2021: outfielders Alex Dickerson, Darin Ruf and Austin Slater; left-handers Jarlín García and Wandy Peralta; and right-hander Trevor Gott. The club’s two remaining arbitration-eligible players -- infielder Donovan Solano and right-hander Reyes Moronta -- were tendered contracts but remain unsigned. San Francisco non-tendered left-hander Tyler Anderson, infielder Daniel Robertson, right-handers Melvin Adon and Rico Garcia and catcher Chadwick Tromp.

Nov. 25: Three Giants claimed off waivers: catcher Aramis Garcia (Rangers), right-hander Jordan Humphreys (Indians) and first baseman/outfielder Chris Shaw (Orioles).

Nov. 20: The Giants added outfielder Alexander Canario and right-handers Camilo Doval, Gregory Santos and Kervin Castro to their 40-man roster, shielding the four prospects from the annual Rule 5 Draft. Catcher Aramis Garcia, right-hander Jordan Humphreys and first baseman/outfielder Chris Shaw were designated for assignment.

Nov. 11: Kevin Gausman accepted the Giants’ one-year, $18.9 million qualifying offer.

Nov. 10: The Giants completed their first signing of the offseason by agreeing to terms on a Major League contract with Jason Vosler, an infielder.

Nov. 1: Right-handers Tyler Beede and Reyes Moronta and catcher Aramis Garcia were reinstated from the 60-day injured list, while outfielder Joey Rickard, catcher Tyler Heineman and left-hander Anthony Banda were outrighted to Triple-A Sacramento. Banda signed a Minor League contract to remain with the organization in 2021. Rickard and Heineman were declared Minor League free agents.