Not so long ago Dan Straily looked to be establishing himself as a long-term member of Oakland’s rotation, but after failing to make it out of the fifth inning in back-to-back start the A’s demoted him back to Triple-A.
Straily is 24 years old with a 1.79 ERA and 102/25 K/BB ratio in 85 innings at Triple-A, so he doesn’t have a whole lot more to prove in the Pacific Coast League at this point. He allowed just nine total homers in 28 starts between Double-A and Triple-A, but Straily is an extreme fly-ball pitcher and has served up 17 homers in 19 starts with the A’s.
All those homers have led to a 4.58 ERA as a big leaguer, but Straily has posted a solid 85/36 K/BB ratio in 106 innings while holding opponents to a .238 batting average. Expect him to be back in the A’s rotation soon enough.
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.