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Offseason Rumors and Updates for the San Francisco Giants

Sep 19, 2013; New York, NY, USA;  San Francisco Giants relief pitcher Javier Lopez (49) and catcher Hector Sanchez (29) celebrate the win against the New York Mets at Citi Field. Giants won 2-1.  Mandatory Credit: Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sports
Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sport
Keely FlanaganContributor IIINovember 25, 2013

Article after article and writer after writer has stated the San Francisco Giants must make an impact this offseason. 

The Giants have already made a splash, signing veteran starting pitcher Tim Hudson to a two-year, $23 million deal, thereby filling a gaping hole in the starting rotation.

But the Giants are not done shopping, and they are certainly not done spending.  According to Andrew Baggarly of CSNBayArea.com, the Giants are looking to trade for a much-needed left fielder.  He writes:

As for left field? Well, the Giants don’t like any of the free-agent options out there and aren’t planning any grand expenditures. They’ll try to work the trade market at the winter meetings next month, and could end up settling for a platoon partner with Gregor Blanco, I’m told. There are a few left-handed options out there as well, including the Orioles’ Nate McLouth.

BALTIMORE, MD - SEPTEMBER 24: Nate McLouth #9 of the Baltimore Orioles swings on a dropped third strike against the Toronto Blue Jays in the ninth inning at Oriole Park at Camden Yards on September 24, 2013 in Baltimore, Maryland. (Photo by Patrick Smith/
Patrick Smith/Getty Images

While seemingly there are a plethora of free-agent outfielders, general manager Brian Sabean has expressed an unwillingness to go after any free agents who declined qualifying offers.  Sabean stated the following in an article by SFGate.com's Hank Schulman:

We’re not going to be interested in giving up our first-round draft pick, so anybody with a qualifying offer with first-round draft-pick compensation attached to that, we’re probably not going to be in on...So that shrinks the pitchers’ list, and quite frankly, whether it’s through trade or free agency, the ability to get the bat is going to be difficult and may just have to happen over time.

That pretty much disqualifies the Giants from any talks pertaining to outfielders such as Jacoby Ellsbury, Shin-Soo Choo, Carlos Beltran and Nelson Cruz.  

While securing a fifth starting pitcher is Sabean's first priority, he cannot ignore the glaring weakness in left field.  The thrifty GM ignored the problem last season and to disastrous results.  

The Andres Torres/Gregor Blanco combination produced little in 2013.  Torres batted a subpar .250, while Blanco hardly picked up the slack, batting .265.  

Even worse, the Giants have no power in a historically powerful hitting position.  

On the flip side, Sabean's logic does have some...logic to it.  

The Giants have not been quiet thus far this offseason, re-signing outfielder Hunter Pence, pitchers Tim Lincecum and Javier Lopez and staying active in the free-agent pitching market.  Still, if they do not want to part with their first-round draft pick and sign a premier free-agent outfielder, Sabean will need to use his savvy to make a trade. 

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