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Giants sign Jerry Sands to minor league deal


Veteran outfielder Jerry Sands picked up a minor league contract with the Giants on Saturday, per reports by SB Nation’s Chris Cotillo and Mike Ashmore of The move comes on the heels of Justin Ruggiano‘s departure on Friday, when he was designated for assignment by the Giants to make room for Austin Slater.

Sands, 29, has not appeared for a major league team since his 24-game stint with the White Sox in 2016. He batted a cool .236/.276/.291 with one home run and a .567 OPS before getting outrighted to Triple-A Charlotte last June. In 2017, he signed on with the Somerset Patriots of the independent Atlantic League, slashing .319/.387/.688 with 13 home runs and a 1.074 OPS in 163 PA.

The Giants are hurting for outfield depth after losing Hunter Pence (hamstring strain), Mike Morse (concussion), Jarrett Parker (clavicle surgery) and Melvin Upton (thumb surgery) to injuries over the last several months. According to Ashmore, Sands is expected to fill out the roster in Double-A Richmond, but he could see a promotion to the big leagues if the Giants can’t keep their starters healthy.

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.