In a minor move, the Giants claimed minor-league reliever Hunter Strickland off waivers and sent him to San Jose. Even if you're not concerned with a minor-league bullpen arm, note that the move pushes the Giants' 40-man roster to 40 players. If they want to add another player, they'll have to remove another player to do it now. Maybe even Alex Hin ... no, no, sorry. Let's not get crazy, here.
And from a two-year-old scouting report:
Strickland came along with SS Argenis Diaz from the Red Sox in exchange for Adam LaRoche. When he was acquired he generally threw in the upper-80s to low-90s, although he reached 94 in the last two games before the trade. He obviously does not have a swing-and-miss secondary pitch, as shown by his very low K rate. His strength instead is his ability to locate his fastball. Although he was not rated by Baseball America among Boston’s top 30 prospects coming into 2009, the Red Sox considered him a sleeper prospect. The Pirates consider him athletic and no doubt like his size; scouts are fascinated by RHPs who are 6’4″ and above.
And, yeah, the size + control seems like an interesting combo, especially considering he's still young. As usual, I'll defer to the Juggs-ticklers who know what they're doing and assume this is a smart move with more upside than downside. Or maybe San Jose was just short a reliever. Regardless, if there's a risk, it's that Strickland stays while the wrong player goes when the Giants eventually need roster space, but when was the last real 40-man mistake? Matt Downs? I think they'll be fine.
The first move of the regular season, everybody. Now you'll have something to link back to when Strickland saves the 2017 World Series.