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The Giants are interested in bat-flipping KBO product Jae-gyun Hwang


Jon Morosi of MLB Network reports that the Giants are showing interested in Korean third baseman Jae-gyun Hwang.

Hwang, who held a showcase for roughly 20 MLB teams back in November, is 29 and has a pretty decent line of .285/.349/.433 over 10 seasons in the Korea Baseball Organization. He slugged 26 homers over 118 games last year with the Lotte Giants. His peak season came in 2014 when he hit an amazing .356/.439/.739 with 40 homers in only 117 games. As you probably know by now, however, KBO is a pretty offensive-heavy league, inflating many a player’s power numbers. As yet we probably don’t have enough data to make good projections for a player coming here from there — some have done well, others not so well — but Hwang is at least a plausible option for the Giants’ somewhat unsettled third base situation.

We do know this, though: if Hwang does make the Giants and continues to do this kind of thing after homers . . .

. . . his teammate Madison Bumgarner will find himself in an awkward spot. Or maybe it’s the case that the only people who have to play the game the right way play for opposing teams. I’m not totally clear on that.

Jeff Samardzija to undergo MRI on right shoulder

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Giants starter Jeff Samardzija will undergo an MRI on his ailing right shoulder, according to NBC Sports Bay Area. The right-hander struggled in a minor league game on Wednesday, surrendering a pair of home runs and hitting a batter. Overall this spring, Samardzija has given up 15 runs (13 earned) on 17 hits (six homers) and seven walks with seven strikeouts in 11 innings.

This may mean Samardzija won’t be ready for the start of the regular season. Derek Holland would likely replace Samardzija in the rotation. Holland had been competing for the No. 5 spot in the Giants’ rotation.

Samardzija led the National League in losses last season with 15, also posting a 4.42 ERA with a 205/32 K/BB ratio in a league-high 207 2/3 innings. Since becoming a starter, Samardzija has been able to avoid injury, making 32 or 33 starts in each of the last five seasons.