Scott Kazmir held a workout for scouts today and Buster Olney of ESPN.com reports that approximately 10 teams sent someone to take a look at him.
Kazmir’s fastball was clocked mostly in the high-80s, which is similar to the diminished velocity he’s shown while struggling during the past few seasons.
Kazmir is still just 28 years old, but hasn’t been healthy and effective in the same season since 2008 and was released by the Angels following just one start last year. Overall he has a 5.54 ERA and 210/141 K/BB ratio in 299 innings over the past three seasons, but Kazmir’s once-overpowering raw stuff has gradually deteriorated and he coughed up a remarkable 30 runs in 15 innings at Triple-A last year.
The fact that two-thirds of the teams didn’t bother sending anyone to scout Kazmir says a lot about his chances of getting back to the big leagues, but it wouldn’t be surprising if he landed a no-risk minor-league deal from one of the 10 teams in attendance.
The Giants placed outfielder Hunter Pence on the 10-day disabled list with a right thumb sprain, per an official announcement on Friday. Pence initially sustained the injury during the club’s home opener on April 3, when he dove to intercept a line drive double from Robinson Cano and jammed his thumb. Weeks of playing through the pain hasn’t worked, so he’ll take a breather while the Giants give outfielder Mac Williamson a chance to start in left after getting called up from Triple-A Fresno.
Pence, 35, wouldn’t pin his recent struggles on his injury, but it’s clear that he’s having difficulty finding his footing this year. He slashed a meager .172/.197/.190 through 61 plate appearances in 2018, collecting just one extra-base hit and two walks during the Giants’ dismal 7-11 stretch. While it’s far too early in the season to make any final judgments, it doesn’t look like the veteran outfielder will be replicating the .275+ average, 4.0+ fWAR totals of years past (at least, not anytime soon).
Williamson, meanwhile, has gotten off to a hot start in Triple-A. Prior to his call-up this weekend, the 27-year-old batted an incredible .487/.600/1.026 with six home runs and a 1.626 OPS through his first 50 PA. A hot Triple-A bat doesn’t always survive the transition to the majors, but the Giants will use all the help they can get — especially as they take on the AL West-leading Angels this weekend.