clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Giants sign Denard Span to three-year deal

New, 337 comments

The speedy center fielder missed substantial time with a hip injury in 2015, but he's consistently excellent when healthy.

Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

The other, final shoe has dropped, and it's a speedy center fielder. The Giants have signed Denard Span to a three-year deal, pending a physical. The offseason is almost certainly done. This is your offense. This is your pitching staff. Now grab the scruff of the even year's neck and ride it around like Falkor.

The money is reasonable. Three years, $31 million, plus incentives. That's a fair price for a center fielder worth an average of three wins over his eight-year career. When you put it like that, it's a bargain. Then you realize his agent is Scott Boras, and you start to get twitchy and skeptical about this bargain because Boras and bargains are mortal, vicious enemies.

So, yes, there is a reason why he was on clearance, and that's because he had a troublesome hip injury last year. With a normal, healthy season, Span would have been the best center fielder on the market, and he would have picked up Alex Gordon money, if not more. The Giants are obviously getting a discount, but they're taking a risk.

There are so many questions! Who is Span? What's he good at? Does he push Angel Pagan to left field (he should), or will he play left while we all yell and curse? Does Pagan start at all? Is Mac Williamson the right-handed fifth outfielder? Is center fielder one word or two? If it's two, why is outfielder one word?

We'll dive into all this and more in the coming hours. For now, here's your outfielder. He's left-handed and fast, and he gets on base at a good clip. He's fantastic in the outfield when 100 percent, which he might not be. He fills a need now, and he helps the Giants panic next offseason, when the options were going to be extremely limited.

First blush: A fine, practical deal that lacks the $100 million sex appeal that other free agents might have brought with them. Fine and practical is what the Giants do, really. Welcome, Denard Span. Zip around really fast and score/prevent a bunch of runs.