The Giants needed a 40-man roster spot after signing Javier Lopez, who officially signed a three-year deal Tuesday. With Lopez and Jeremy Affeldt on guaranteed, multi-year deals, that meant there probably wasn't room for a third lefty.
Jose Mijares was outrighted to clear room for Lopez on 40-man, Mijares now a free agent.— Alex Pavlovic (@AlexPavlovic) November 27, 2013
Jose Mijares, we hardly knew ye. But what we knew of ye was kind of gross. MLB Trade Rumors projected him to earn close to $2 million in arbitration, which was way too much for a superfluous lefty.
The problem with Mijares is that he's always been superfluous on this team. Let's look at his career splits:
|vs RHB as LHP||599||14||67||94||1.40||.289||.371||.447||.818|
|vs LHB as LHP||533||7||36||135||3.75||.225||.288||.335||.623|
And let's compare them with Javier Lopez's:
|vs RHB as LHP||887||11||94||92||0.98||.301||.386||.428||.813|
|vs LHB as LHP||954||9||91||203||2.23||.212||.295||.301||.596|
Pretty much the same danged thing. Except Mijares would have come $10 million cheaper, at least. The problem was the Giants were using him as a regular reliever instead of a LOOGY:
Plate appearances against LHB vs. plate appearances against RHB, 2013
Lopez: 98 left-handed batters out of 161 total plate appearances
Mijares: 109 left-handed batters out of 236 PAs
Righties murdered Mijares in those 127 plate appearances. They hurt Lopez, too, but in far fewer chances. Plus, Lopez had Romo to help clean up, whereas Mijares usually had some goofball straight up from Fresno to help with his messes.
Point is, someone's going to use Mijares, and he'll be an excellent value signing for them. The Giants were just stubborn. It was like having the world's best cricket player in your rotation, and it went on for so long, it was easy to forget just how stupid it really was.
I like Javier Lopez, so I'm not going to question his contract, even if Mijares is almost certainly the better value for a team that would use him normally. Not going to lie, though, I'm not exactly distraught. Funny how those memories start chewing on your logic gland.