The San Francisco Giants and the Free Agent Market: The Relievers

Headline from MLB.com:

Giants look to add bat, bolster bullpen

Club has cleared up to $20 million for free-agent spending

Twenty million? Well, get the collared shirt out of the wash, and take me to Red Robin. We're big spenders now.

Of course, that headline is merely informational. It isn't as entertaining as this masterpiece:

Giants enter offseason thinking title

"A Nightmare on King Street"?. "The Lord of the Ringless"? "Lock, Stock, and Nine Sucking Batters?"  What is the title they're thinking of? That's probably a post for another day.

Back to the original article. Twenty million doesn't go as far as it used to, but it seems like the Giants are committed to buying a free-agent reliever. Though I'm rarely in favor of spending money on relievers in free agency -- call it a latent case of armandophobia -- the current bullpen would probably be terrible. After Brian Wilson and Sergio Romo, there really isn't anyone to get excited about.

Some of the contenders from the free-agent market:


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2008 - Jeremy Affeldt 1-1 74 0 0 0 0 1 78.1 78 36 29 9 25 80 3.33 1.31


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2008 - Joe Beimel 5-1 71 0 0 0 0 0 49.0 50 11 11 0 21 32 2.02 1.45


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2008 - Chad Cordero 0-0 6 0 0 0 0 0 4.1 6 1 1 0 3 5 2.08 2.08


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2008 - Juan Cruz 4-0 57 0 0 0 0 2 51.2 34 17 15 5 31 71 2.61 1.26


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2008 - Kyle Farnsworth 1-1 16 0 0 0 0 3 16.0 27 14 12 4 5 18 6.75 2.00


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2008 - Eric Gagne 4-3 50 0 0 0 10 7 46.1 46 28 28 11 22 38 5.44 1.47


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2008 - Trevor Hoffman 3-6 48 0 0 0 30 4 45.1 38 19 19 8 9 46 3.77 1.04


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2008 - Bob Howry 7-5 72 0 0 0 1 4 70.2 90 44 42 13 13 59 5.35 1.46


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2008 - Jason Isringhausen 1-5 42 0 0 0 12 7 42.2 48 28 27 5 22 36 5.70 1.64


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2008 - Todd Jones 4-1 45 0 0 0 18 3 41.2 50 30 23 5 18 14 4.97 1.63


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2008 - Brandon Lyon 3-5 61 0 0 0 26 4 59.1 75 34 31 7 13 44 4.70 1.48


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2008 - Guillermo Mota 5-6 58 0 0 0 1 3 57.0 52 28 26 7 28 50 4.11 1.40


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2008 - Will Ohman 4-1 83 0 0 0 1 3 58.2 51 27 24 3 22 53 3.68 1.24


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2008 - Chan Ho Park 4-4 54 5 0 0 2 3 95.1 97 43 36 12 36 79 3.40 1.40


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2008 - Brian Shouse 5-1 69 0 0 0 2 2 51.1 46 19 16 5 14 33 2.81 1.17


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2008 - Russ Springer 2-1 70 0 0 0 0 2 50.1 39 14 13 4 18 45 2.32 1.13


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2008 - David Weathers 4-6 72 0 0 0 0 4 69.1 76 27 25 6 30 46 3.25 1.53


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2008 - Dennys Reyes 3-0 75 0 0 0 0 2 46.1 40 12 12 4 15 39 2.33 1.19


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2008 - Damaso Marte 1-3 25 0 0 0 0 0 18.1 14 11 11 1 10 24 5.40 1.31

There are others, of course. Francisco Rodriguez and Kerry Wood, to name two, but the Giants probably aren't crazy enough to get into a bidding war for a free-agent closer.

There are just so many soon-to-be overpaid mediocrities up there, it hurts. Look at all of those shiny, shiny sub-4.00 ERAs. Joe Biemel! Dennys Reyes! Brian Shouse! The stuff of which dreams are made!

  • If I had to choose: Incentive-laden goodness for Bobby Howry. The prodigious son! Or something like that. I'm no good with James Bond references.
  • If I had to guess what Sabean's thinking: David Weathers, the grizzled gamer.
  • Awesomest Baseball Reference sponsor ever: Russ Springer

Comment starter: How you'd spend the money, and your prediction of how the Giants will spend the money. Note that this comment starter is way different than this comment starter because it just is.

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