Giants Acquire Veteran Former All-Star For Playoff Push: Is SF Legit WS Contenders??

The San Francisco Giants have made a significant move to bolster their outfield depth in the wake of Mike Yastrzemski’s injury. Yastrzemski is expected to miss two to three weeks due to a left hamstring strain.

The Giants acquired outfielder AJ Pollock, infielder Mark Mathias, and cash considerations from the Seattle Mariners in exchange for a player to be named or additional cash considerations.

Pollock, a former All-Star and Gold Glove Award winner, is joining the Giants after a season with Seattle where he has slashed .173/.225/.323 with five home runs in 49 games. The 35-year-old veteran has a career .838 OPS against left-handed pitching, making him a valuable addition to the Giants roster.

The Giants have been dealing with injuries to key right-handed bats, including Mitch Haniger (right forearm fracture) and Thairo Estrada (left hand fracture). As a result, Pollock’s arrival is timely, and he is expected to step in and help fill the void in the interim.

Despite being on the 10-day injured list with a left hamstring strain, the Giants are optimistic about Pollock’s quick return. If everything goes well during pregame drills, San Francisco plans to activate him as soon as today.

Giants President of Baseball Operations, Farhan Zaidi, spoke about the acquisition, stating: “It fills a short-term need in the outfield with Yaz going down, but even as we get guys back, I think there’s a role for him to be part of our outfield rotation and help in that way. In this case, I think it’s an instance of a player who hasn’t been fully healthy, hasn’t played a lot. But we still think he has a lot in the tank.”

Zaidi and Pollock are no strangers to each other, as they both share a background with the Dodgers. Zaidi revealed that he had conversations with Pollock before the veteran outfielder signed with the Mariners in the past offseason. However, at that time, there wasn’t a clear roster fit after the Giants added Mitch Haniger.

Pollock’s reunion with former Dodgers teammates, including Joc Pederson, Alex Wood, and Ross Stripling, is expected to ease his transition to San Francisco.

“Obviously, he hasn’t had a great season in Seattle,” Zaidi said. “But we kind of look at sort of some of the underlying measures of plate discipline, of how he’s moving around the field. His sprint speeds are good. We just view him as a really good change of scenery candidate. He’s got a lot of relationships with people here, guys he’s played with before. I know all those guys are really excited to have him because he’s a great presence in the clubhouse.”

In addition to Pollock, the Giants also acquired 28-year-old Mark Mathias, who came from the Mariners in the same trade. Mathias was claimed off waivers from the Pittsburgh Pirates in early July and has seen time at second base and in the outfield.

While the Giants optioned Mathias to Triple-A Sacramento, he may get opportunities at second base while Thairo Estrada continues to work his way back from injury. Mathias has exhibited excellent plate discipline and has shown an ability to hit left-handed pitching effectively, making him a valuable asset to the Giants roster.

The Giants are hopeful that the addition of Pollock and Mathias will strengthen their roster during Yastrzemski’s absence and help them maintain their position in the highly competitive National League West division.

What do you think about the trade?

Are the Giants legitimate World Series contenders?