The San Francisco Giants have set their sights on right-handed starting pitcher Yoshinobu Yamamoto, a highly sought-after free agent in the MLB market. Yamamoto, ranked second among free agents, is currently available for acquisition by MLB teams, and the Giants are keenly interested in securing his talents.
Giants’ president of baseball operations, Farhan Zaidi, has expressed a strong desire to bring Yamamoto to San Francisco. According to reports, Zaidi’s commitment to signing Yamamoto surpasses any previous pursuit of free agents during his six years leading the Giants’ baseball operations.
This level of determination is notable, given the Giants’ recent efforts to sign high-profile superstars, including successful attempts to secure center fielder Jung-Hoo Lee with a contract exceeding $100 million in guarantees. However, Yamamoto, who Zaidi personally scouted last month, stands out as a top priority.
Yamamoto is considered one of the most coveted international free agents in MLB history, and his potential earnings have no limits. At just 25 years old, he has been the dominant force in Japanese baseball, boasting an impressive track record. Over the past seven seasons with the Orix Buffaloes, Yamamoto has maintained a remarkable 1.82 ERA, recording 922 strikeouts and a mere 206 walks in 897 innings pitched.
What sets Yamamoto apart is his exceptional command of the game. He possesses a diverse pitching arsenal, including a fastball that ranges from 92 to 95 mph and can touch 99 mph. His splitter is renowned for inducing swings and misses, and he complements it with a traditional curveball. Yamamoto’s skills make him a complete and formidable pitcher, a genuine ace, and an ideal addition to the Giants’ roster alongside Logan Webb.
Reports suggest that the Giants are prepared to offer Yamamoto a lucrative deal, dispelling any notion that they might lose out due to financial constraints. However, the question remains whether Yamamoto is willing to forgo offers from bigger-market teams with recent success, such as the Dodgers, Yankees, Phillies, and Mets, in favor of joining the Giants.
Zaidi’s commitment to securing Yamamoto is not surprising, given his track record of scouting and acquiring talent from international leagues. Throughout his career, Zaidi has demonstrated an ability to identify and sign impactful players from abroad, making him a strong advocate for international acquisitions.
Despite industry speculation that the Giants may fall short in their pursuit of Yamamoto and pivot toward other options like Blake Snell, the franchise continues to demonstrate unwavering determination. The Giants’ front office and ownership are resolute in their pursuit of top targets, undeterred by past challenges. Farhan Zaidi’s fervent desire to see Yoshinobu Yamamoto in a San Francisco Giants jersey speaks volumes about the player’s potential impact on the team in the upcoming season.