The Giants may have lost out on Bryce Harper, but there are two silver-linings here. First, Harper didn’t go to the Dodgers. The second is that the Giants didn’t make the bone-headed decision of handing out $330 million to one guy just because he would have been the best player on the roster for the next decade and then some.
The Giants get to save that $330 million which means that for the next 12 offseasons the Giants will get an extra $25 million that can be spent oh so much more wisely. Let’s see how the Giants can better spend their saved Bryce Harper money.
Derek Holland’s third-place finish in the NL Cy Young voting will convince Farhan Zaidi and the Giants Front Office to pick up his $7 million option for 2020. They were really on the fence about exercising it because even though his ERA was under 3.00 and FIP, SIERA, and DRA all suggested that was his true talent, the Giants’ internal metrics and algorithms suggested they could get half the production at a fourteenth of the cost from Shaun Anderson.
That will leave the Giants with $18 million left to spend. $10 million of that will go toward extending minor-league deals to Alex Gordon, Kole Calhoun, Leonys Martin, Lonnie Chisenhall and other outfielders. $3 million will go toward getting Jhoulys Chacin on a one-year deal and the remaining $5 will go to Mike Moustakas. That’s a whole lot of depth!
A player’s strike will cancel the 2022 season, so Charles Johnson and co. will get to pocket that money. That is until they have to pay out that $25 million in the ensuing collusion settlement.
With Johnny Cueto coming off the books, the Giants will be in a prime position to spend. They’ll be able to pick up the option on player-manager Buster Posey and go after Mike Trout who will still be a free agent following the missed 2022 season. The Giants will go hard for the centerfielder. Ultimately, they’ll lose out on Trout and instead they’ll settle for signing Ian Desmond, Adam Duvall, and Tyler Saladino to minor league contracts.
Christian Yelich will be the big prize of the 2022-2023 offseason. Without that Bryce Harper money weighing them down, the Giants will be able to extend an offer that will get refused. As a consolation, the Giants will be reunited with Adalberto Mejia on a one-year deal. The remaining $22 million will be spent on re-signing Buster Posey.
In 2024, Heliot Ramos, Joey Bart, and Trygger Josephine, the Giants number-one pick in the 2019 draft, will all be entering their arbitration years, and the Giants will be grateful to have saved the Bryce Harper money when Bart breaks Mookie Betts’ arbitration salary record.
When the Marlins are contracted following the 2026 season, there will be an auction for the players still under team control. You’ll be glad the Giants aren’t paying Bryce Harper $25 million when they get to procure the services of Jaydyn Beerparty and Bumpis Bumpass.
At this point, the sea level will have risen to the point where the Giants will have to construct a barrier between Oracle Park and San Francisco Bay. The Giants won’t be able to afford to improve the roster, but they will be able to keep the ocean from splooshing through the archways. This is the one scenario where the Giants will have a sunk cost of $25 million no matter what they do.
Potable water will be a rarity following the Gasoline Wars of 2028. As such, it will become outrageously expensive. The Giants organization will need to allocate that $25 million to keep their players hydrated, and to replace the grass with artificial turf when they’re unable to water the field.
In 13 years with the Phillies, Bryce Harper will have led the team to three World Championships, won four MVPs, and surpassed Mike Schmidt as their all-time WAR leader. However, over this same span, Harper will have done damage to his personal brand with stuff like saying that cheesesteak sandwiches are bad and that Rocky is kind of a dumb movie. After years of merciless heckling and abuse from Philly fans, Harper will be desperate to leave to leave the city of Brotherly Love, and he’ll sign a one-year, $25 million contract with the Giants. He’ll blow out his knee before Spring Training ends and retire.