Giants extend qualifying offer to Gausman
In a mild surprise, the Giants extended a one-year, $18.9 million qualifying offer to right-hander Kevin Gausman ahead of Sunday’s 2 p.m. PT deadline.
Gausman was one of six players to receive a qualifying offer this year, joining the Reds’ Trevor Bauer, the Yankees’ DJ LeMahieu, the Phillies’ J.T. Realmuto, the Astros’ George Springer and the Mets’ Marcus Stroman.
Gausman will have until Nov. 11 to accept or reject the qualifying offer. If he declines the deal and signs elsewhere, the Giants will receive Draft pick compensation. Only eight players have taken a qualifying offer since its inception in 2012, but Gausman could be tempted to do so, as it would represent a significant raise from his $9 million salary in 2020.
Sunday’s decision telegraphed the Giants’ serious interest in retaining Gausman and served as a potential precursor to a multi-year agreement between the two sides.
The 29-year-old right-hander emerged as the club’s most dominant starter in 2020, logging a 3.62 ERA, 3.09 FIP and 1.11 WHIP in 12 games while averaging 11.9 strikeouts per nine innings. The Giants have holes in their rotation that need to be filled this offseason, with only three members of their 2020 rotation -- Johnny Cueto, Logan Webb and Tyler Anderson -- projected to return next year.
Gausman has expressed a desire to remain in San Francisco, and president of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi has confirmed that the interest is mutual.
"I would love to come back. I think I've made it pretty open that I feel good here," Gausman said in September. "I really like this club. I really like the team, and more than anything, I really like the guys. I think the staples that we have in our lineup, the experience that they bring every day -- a big part of that, a guy that's not here, is Buster [Posey].
"Hopefully he's going to be back here next year. He was a big reason why I decided to sign here. Coming back and knowing that he's going to be here next year definitely adds another element to it. We'll see what happens."
In 2019, the Giants tendered qualifying offers to Madison Bumgarner and Will Smith, who turned down the proposals before signing multi-year deals with the D-backs and Braves, respectively. With their two compensation picks, the Giants selected left-hander Nick Swiney and shortstop Jimmy Glowenke in the 2020 MLB Draft.
The Giants reinstated right-handers Tyler Beede and Reyes Moronta and catcher Aramis Garcia from the 60-day injured list on Sunday, along with outfielder Joey Rickard, who was outrighted to Triple-A Sacramento. Catcher Tyler Heineman and left-hander Anthony Banda were also outrighted to Sacramento, with Banda signing a Minor League contract for 2021.
The Giants now have 37 players on their 40-man roster.