The San Francisco Giants season begins on Thursday, which means for the next couple months we’re mostly going to be focused on the team directly in front of us. But over the last year and a half, the most exciting developments in Giants land have been regarding the future of the franchise, not the present.
So it’s fitting that, on the eve of the season starting up again, we have some prospect news to talk about.
First up, the Giants signed another undrafted free agent: 21.8-year old LHP Haydn King.
King is a local kid, having been born in Aptos, and starring for Archbishop Mitty High School. He spent the 2018 season at the University of San Francisco, where he struggled. In 16 innings, he allowed 28 hits and 9 walks, while striking out just 10. His ERA was 7.31.
He then transferred to UNLV, and his latest numbers there were a little bit more promising: 14.1 innings, 9 hits, 3 walks, 9 strikeouts, and a 3.14 ERA. In between USF and UNLV, he had mixed results in the Cape Cod League.
Giants signed LHP Haydn King (21.8Y, 6'2" 205) to a NDFA contract. King is an Archbishop Mitty HS grad and was drafted by OAK in the 39th round in 2017. Transferred from USF to UNLV. FB/CB/CH.— GPT (@giantsprospects) July 21, 2020
2019 (RS Soph): 14.1IP 9H 3BB 9K
Cape Cod: 13.1IP 9H 7BB 9K pic.twitter.com/tqcFukvDXh
Chances are the Giants see something they like in King, and want to make a few mechanical adjustments.
In even more exciting pitcher prospect news, the Rapsodo data is in for 2020 fourth-round pick R.J. Dabovich, and let me just say this: if you want to get irrationally excited, I am not going to be the person to stop you.
Rapsodo readings for Giants 4th round pick RHP R.J. Dabovich. That FB velo on average would have been top 10 in baseball last year (with lower release height than 8 of them), spin rate would be top 5. Good vertical break as well. https://t.co/YkfwKfQHSK— GPT (@giantsprospects) July 21, 2020
Uh, wow.— (@eccentricladdie) July 8, 2020
Dabovich flashes a release height below 5 ft (Rapsodo), 99+ velo, a vertical tilt (12:30ish at times), promising mvt characteristics, and elite raw spin. Getting those traits in the 4th for 300k underslot is nuts. SF absolutely killed their draft; my favorite class. https://t.co/jKJm9vgcIc
There have been mixed reviews on the Giants 2020 draft, and you can never accurately judge a draft until a few years have passed. But if nothing else, data like this confirms what we already knew: the current Giants decision makers are a bit more interested in analytics than the previous front office was. I suspect that will yield some good results.
Did Barry Bonds hit a home run today?
Yes. Honestly, what were you expecting me to say?
July 22, 1993: Against the Philadelphia Phillies, Bonds hit a solo home run in the 2nd inning off of Terry Mulholland. It gave the Giants a 1-0 lead, and they would win 4-1. It was his 27th homer of the year.
July 22, 1994: Against the New York Mets, Bonds hit a solo home run in the 3rd inning off of Jason Jacome. It cut the Giants deficit to 4-1, and they would lose 6-3. It was his 30th homer of the year.
July 22, 1997: Against the Philadelphia Phillies, Bonds hit a 2-run home run in the 5th inning off of Matt Beech, scoring Jose Vizcaino. It tied the game 2-2, Jeff Kent would make it back-to-back homers, and the Giants would win 8-5. It was his 30th homer of the year.
- Grant Brisbee on how the Giants will be wacky and unpredictable (The Athletic, subscription required)
- Mark W. Sanchez on how Jaylin Davis came to the decision to kneel during the national anthem (KNBR)
- Kerry Crowley on how Jaylin Davis wants to keep the conversation going (Mercury News)
- Alex Pavlovic on Jaylin Davis appreciating the support after kneeling on Monday (NBC Sports Bay Area)
- Maria Guardado on Austin Slater’s big game (MLB)
- John Shea on Gabe Kapler’s breakdown of pitcher roles (SF Chronicle)
- Alex Pavlovic on Gabe Kapler’s response to Donald Trump (NBC Sports Bay Area)
- Andrew Baggarly on why Gabe Kapler and many Giants players kneeled for the national anthem on Monday (The Athletic, subscription required)
- Alex Pavlovic examines some position player battles for the 30-man roster (NBC Sports Bay Area)
- Dalton Johnson on Will Wilson’s story of getting traded (NBC Sports Bay Area)
- Jason Martinez on the Giants bullpen ranking 29th (Fangraphs)
- Sean Dolinar on the best 60-game performances (Fangraphs)
Have a great Wednesday, everyone. It’s the last one without a Giants baseball game for more than a month.