Via the San Francisco Chronicle‘s Hank Schulman:
The Giants and Pablo Sandoval’s representatives have not had any discussions about a contract extension for the third baseman, and general manager Brian Sabean said the club will hold off “as of now.”
Schulman adds on Twitter that Sandoval and his reps want at least five years and $90 million — which is what Giants outfielder Hunter Pence signed for in late September. San Francisco’s front office isn’t ready to commit that kind of money or contract length to a player like Sandoval, whose numbers (and weight) have been so up and down in recent years.
Sandoval entered camp this spring in improved physical shape and has every reason in the world to keep his weight in check. He’s currently scheduled to hit the free agent market five days after the World Series.
The Giants aren’t ruling out an in-season contract extension for the 27-year-old third baseman.
Bob Nightengale of USA TODAY Sports reports that the Diamondbacks and reliever T.J. McFarland have avoided arbitration, agreeing on a $1.45 million salary for the 2019 season. McFarland, in his third of four years of arbitration eligibility, filed for $1.675 million while the Diamondbacks countered at $1.275 million. McFarland ended up settling for just under the midpoint of those two figures.
McFarland, 29, was terrific out of the bullpen for the D-Backs last season, finishing with a 2.00 ERA and a 42/22 K/BB ratio in 72 innings. While the lefty may not miss a lot of bats, he does induce quite a few grounders. His 67.9 percent ground ball rate last season was the third highest among relievers with at least 50 innings, trailing only Brad Ziegler (71.1%) and Scott Alexander (70.6%).
McFarland was dominant against left-handed hitters, limiting them to a .388 OPS last season, but the D-Backs deployed him nearly twice as often against right-handed hitters, who posted an aggregate .764 OPS against him. It will be interesting to see if the club decides to use him more as a platoon reliever in 2019.