Greek Giant

MLB and the Giants announced a two-year deal for Blake Snell. Welcome to San Francisco, Cy Young Award winner. Count me out as a Snell doubter. I have been a fan since his Rays days. The lefty is a game-changer and can make any team an instant-contender come playoff time thanks to his ace-like stuff. Read this from Rosenthal’s article in The Athletic:

Snell, 31, has been one of the best left-handed starters in baseball over the past eight seasons. He’s one of seven pitchers in MLB history with a Cy Young in both leagues. He has a 3.20 career ERA, two ERA titles and a 3.33 postseason ERA. His Statcast page is a constellation of red dots (and a conspicuously blue one we’ll get to shortly). “Snellzilla” is a monster wielding trophies and a filthy four-pitch mix. No active left-hander, minimum 30 starts, has averaged more strikeouts per nine innings than Snell’s 11.1. And the only active lefty, minimum 30 starts, with a lower career batting average against than Snell (.214) is Clayton Kershaw (.209).

Last year Snell lead the Majors in ERA with 2.25 while pitching 180 innings. I honestly read somewhere that his 180 innings was not an impressive total but that’s utter nonsense. In this day and age with mediocre pitching and non-starters starting and relievers taking over every aspect of pitching, Snell is a major asset for any time, despite his occasional inefficiency on the mound.

The two-year deal is worth $62 million and includes a player opt out after year 1. This is a classic Save my job, low-risk Zaidi move. While it does not guarantee Snell will remain a Giant for long, it’s important to remember the lefty is 31 years-young, in other words, a bit of a risk, health-wise. Personally I am thrilled with the move. It represents an instant infusion of big-time talent to the Giants, my favorite ball club and yours. It is an example of Zaidi and the Giants winning the waiting game/staring contest with Scott Boras, Snell’s agent. Boras overplayed his hand again, as he did with Matt Chapman and again the Giants benefit by signing a top talent for a low-risk, short-term contract.

With Snell, Webb, Harrison, Ray and company the Giants suddenly feature a top ten MLB starting rotation.



Now, about that Luxury Tax:

The Giants’ total offseason spending is around $400 million. The Blake Snell signing sends them past the first luxury tax threshold ($237 million) for the first time since 2017. The team is also above the $257 million mark, where more penalties kick in. But if the club makes it, say… the WORLD SERIES, it’s worth it.