Making official what was reported earlier this week, the Rays and David DeJesus have agreed to a two-year contract extension that includes a third-year team option.
DeJesus gets $10.5 million guaranteed and then Tampa Bay will have a $5 million option on his age-36 season in 2016. He’s coming off a two-year, $10 million deal signed with the Cubs and that contract included a $6.5 million option or $1.5 million buyout for 2014. So this is a nearly identical pact.
DeJesus had a pretty typical year, hitting .251 with eight homers and a .729 OPS in 122 games for the Cubs and Rays. His offensive production is slightly below par for a corner outfielder, but clearly the Rays feel his plus defense makes up for it and then some. Expect him to start every day versus right-handers and sit versus most left-handers in 2014.
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.