It will not stop the hunt for a lefty bat, but the Giants quietly added one anyway.
On Tuesday, San Francisco agreed to a major league deal with infielder Jason Vosler, a 27-year-old infielder who last played in the Padres system and has yet to debut in the majors.
Vosler was a late addition to San Diego’s player pool last season and never got his call-up during the 60-game campaign. The Giants’ first free-agent signing of the offseason reminds how difficult it will be to accurately gauge progress of the crop of players every team will be seeking: His latest numbers, albeit many career-highs, are from 2019.
With Triple-A El Paso in the hitter-friendly Pacific Coast League, Vosler starred in 116 games and 425 plate appearances, slashing .291/.367/.523 with 20 home runs. In 129 total minor league games the year prior, Vosler knocked 23 dingers, so the pop is promising.
As is the fit. The Giants relied heavily upon Evan Longoria, who battled an oblique injury, for all of 2020 and lacked a lefty complement. Vosler bats from the left side of the plate and split ’19 between third and first base. He’s also gotten time at second, the type of versatility this regime enjoys. He also has a history of working pitchers, another quality that should intrigue the Giants, although he will need to cut down on strikeouts (149 in 534 plate appearances in ’18).
Vosler, a New York native and Northeastern product, came up with the Cubs before being flipped to San Diego in 2018, and the Giants have seen plenty of him in the PCL.
The Giants will swing higher this offseason, but Vosler is a start for a club that needs a lefty bat. Adding Vosler brings the Giants’ 40-man roster to 38.