The Diamondbacks agreed to terms with No. 3 overall pick Trevor Bauer earlier today, but it doesn’t sound like the Astros are close to an agreement with their first-round pick.
Confirming a story passed along by Tim Dierkes of MLB Trade Rumors earlier this afternoon, Brian McTaggart of MLB.com reports that George Springer did indeed meet with the general manager of the independent league Long Island Ducks on Saturday.
Springer’s father, George Springer Jr., attended the meeting and said that they merely met with the Ducks in case an agreement couldn’t be reached with the Astros prior to the August 15 deadline.
“Obviously, whatever discussions are going on with the Astros are going to be kept between us and the Astros, and hopefully we can reach some agreement,” Springer Jr. said. “We have to prepare for all contingencies if that doesn’t happen. I don’t want anybody to read into it more than that.”
Springer, a 21-year-old outfielder, was selected No. 11 overall out of the University of Connecticut in June’s First-Year Player Draft. While talks with the Ducks could very well be a bluff, Springer’s father said that returning to college isn’t a likely option. If the two sides are unable to reach an agreement before the deadline, Springer would re-enter the draft in 2012 and the Astros would receive compensation in the form of a draft pick.
The Giants are finalizing a minor league deal for free agent outfielder Cameron Maybin, according to Andrew Baggarly and Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic. The team has not confirmed the signing, but it’s in keeping with their stated goal of adding more veteran presence and outfield options to their roster in advance of the 2019 season.
Maybin, 31, appeared in back-to-back gigs with the Marlins and Mariners in 2018. He slashed an underwhelming .249/.326/.336 with four home runs, 10 stolen bases (in 15 chances), a .662 OPS, and 0.5 fWAR through 384 plate appearances for the two clubs, a clear improvement over his totals in 2017 but still shy of the career numbers he posted with the Padres all the way back in 2011. It’s not only his offense that has tanked, but his speed and defense in center field, all of which he’ll try to improve as he jockeys for a roster spot in camp this month.
The Giants’ outfield has been largely depleted of any kind of consistent talent lately, especially taking into account the recent departures of Hunter Pence, Gregor Blanco, and Gorkys Hernández. Even with the acquisition of, say, All-Star right fielder Bryce Harper, there’s nothing standing in the way of Maybin and fellow veteran signee Gerardo Parra grabbing hold of full- or part-time roles this year, though they’ll need to outperform candidates like Chris Shaw, Steven Duggar, Drew Ferguson, Mac Williamson, Austin Slater, Craig Gentry, Mike Gerber, and others first.
In a previous report on Friday, Baggarly revealed that a “handshake understanding” had been established with several veteran players already this offseason, all but guaranteeing them regular starting opportunities over the course of the season. How those agreements will be affected by spring training performances remains to be seen, but at least for now, the Giants appear prepared to give their newest players a long leash as they try to get back on top in the NL West.