Giants Rumors: Joc Pederson Drawing Interest from SF After 7 Years with Dodgers

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistJanuary 27, 2021

Los Angeles Dodgers' Joc Pederson celebrates a home run against the Tampa Bay Rays during the second inning in Game 5 of the baseball World Series Sunday, Oct. 25, 2020, in Arlington, Texas. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)
Eric Gay/Associated Press

Joc Pederson may be changing sides in the National League West rivalry between the Los Angeles Dodgers and San Francisco Giants.ย  ย 

Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle reported the free-agent outfielder who spent his first seven seasons in the major leagues with the Dodgers is in discussions with the Giants. Slusser noted Pederson cheered for the Giants while growing up in the Palo Alto area and knows president of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi and manager Gabe Kapler from their time together in Los Angeles.

San Francisco missed the playoffs at 29-31 during the shortened 2020 campaign and was a solid but unspectacular 12th in MLB with 81 home runs. It was 26th in the league in long balls during 2019, the last full-season sample size from which to draw.

Pederson could provide some much-needed power to San Francisco's outfield.

He hit 25 or more home runs four times in a five-year stretch from 2015-19, including when he launched 36 in 2019. He also has extensive postseason experience with 64 playoff appearances on his resume from his time with the Dodgers.

It is fair to worry about his career batting average of .230, especially after he slashed .190/.285/.397 during the 2020 season, but he did post a career-high average of .249 in 2019.

Pederson is also just 28 years old and figures to remain in his prime for the next couple of seasons, which should mean he challenges for 25 or more home runs again if he remains healthy. That is largely the type of power that was missing from San Francisco's lineup while it failed to reach the playoffs the last four years.

The Giants know what Pederson is capable of as a power hitter from their time battling him in the NL West and could look to bring him in prior to the 2021 season as they attempt to close the gap on the defending-champion Dodgers.