It’s possible the Giants already have assembled their rotation to start the season. They’re still on the lookout for more possible help, though.
After they last week added Alex Wood to a staff that would have five starters if Logan Webb is included, the Giants were represented at a showcase featuring a couple veteran arms seeking their next contracts.
According to a source, the Giants watched Anibal Sanchez and Julio Teheran pitch in Miami on Tuesday, one of a reported 24 teams to scout the righties.
The Giants also had watched Corey Kluber throw in Florida last week, according to a source, which did not lead anywhere as the Yankees swept up the two-time Cy Young winner. Six days later, they had their eyes on a couple well-traveled options seeking to rebuild their values.
Sanchez is probably best known to Giants fans as an enemy, the then-Tigers standout pitching Game 3 of the 2012 World Series, in which he struck out eight Giants in seven, two-run innings, but Ryan Vogelsong, Tim Lincecum and Sergio Romo outdueled him in a 2-0 Giants win.
Sanchez, who will be 37 next month, has been around long enough to have pitched six years with the Florida Marlins, compiling a remarkable 15-year career that tumbled last season, when he pitched to a 6.62 ERA in 53 innings with the Nationals. Of course, there is much debate over how to evaluate the performance of pitchers, especially, in the shortened season that had plenty of starts and stops.
Teheran also will hope teams look past the 2020 numbers. The soon-to-be 30-year-old tested positive for the coronavirus, didn’t make his first start until Aug. 5 and struggled the rest of the campaign, posting a 10.05 ERA in 31 1/3 innings with the Angels.
The two-time All-Star had signed a one-year, $9 million pact in his first season away from the Braves, with whom he pitched nine seasons after emerging as a top prospect. His major league career has been mostly solid, with a lifetime 3.81 ERA, but inconsistent, often flashing brilliance but also struggling through a 2017 season in which the mark rose to 4.49.
The Giants got a good look at both ahead of a season in which depth will be more important than ever because of uncertainty over arms holding up.
San Francisco has a projected rotation of Kevin Gausman, Johnny Cueto, Anthony DeSclafani, Wood and possibly Webb, who has stuff the club likes but, as a 24-year-old, has not put it all together. Tyler Beede, who missed last season with Tommy John surgery, is hoping to be back around May.
Farhan Zaidi said last week he wouldn’t rule out bringing in another starter. What could complicate the timeline, though, is the Giants have a filled-up 40-man roster; if they wait until spring training to add a pitcher, they would have more space through placing reliever John Brebbia and perhaps Beede on the 60-day injured list.
“We could add a veteran knowing that in a usual year, you need nine, 10, 11 starters to get through 162 games, and that number might be higher in 2021,” Zaidi said. “We also feel good about giving our internal candidates a chance to make the rotation out of camp, so we’ll just see how it goes.”