Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Giants Depth Charts: Centerfield

If you take Giants management at their word in their end-of-season press conference, and there is no history of them ever straying too far from from what they say in that yearly forum, centerfield is the position most likely to get an upgrade from outside the organization this winter.  This means that last year's starter at the position, Denard Span, will almost certainly not be playing the position in 2018, whether that is due to a move to LF, a trade out of the organization or some other destination.  Gorkys Hernandez is left standing at the top of the current depth chart pending the expected addition.  Jarrett Parker could probably play there in a pinch, but otherwise, that's it for the MLB 40 man roster.

AAA:  Steven Duggar has been drawing raves for his CF defense, both in August for the Sacramento River Cats and now the AFL Scottsdale Scorpions.  His bat seemed a bit rusty after missing most of the season with an injury, but the Giants seem to think he could take over CF with just a bit more seasoning.  From their history and public statements, don't expect them to hand him the job in spring training, though.  Slade Heathcott is an intriguing name on he current Sacramento roster.  I am not sure if this means he is signed for next season or if he is a minor league FA.  Heathcott was steady all season for AA Richmond but did not really get traction after a late season promo to Sacramento.

AA:  There are no CF listed on the current Richmond Roster.  Caleb Gindl finished the season as their starting CF, but he seems to have disappeared.

High A:  2017 2'nd round draft pick, Bryan Reynolds, had a fine first full pro season playing all 3 OF positions for San Jose.  Analysts are divided on whether he can play CF at the MLB level.  Ronnie Jebavy keeps bumping more highly ranked prospects out of CF with his sensational defense but he has never found traction with his bat.

Low A:  Johneshwy Fargas and Ashford Fulmer are still looking for traction on their pro careers and are probably organizational players at this point.

Short Season:  Malique Ziegler has tools and got off to a great start for the Salem-Keizer Volcanoes but totally collapsed in the second half casting a huge dark cloud over his future. Was it injury?  Fatigue?  Pitchers finding his holes?  Bryce Johnson played CF in college but played mostly LF for S-K.

Rookie AZL:  If Heliot Ramos, the Giants 2017 first round draft pick, is not their CF of the future, I will be one disappointed and sad Giants fan.  It will take some time to get there, but he's the #1 Giants prospect in my book right now.  Nick Hill is probably already on organizational player.

DSL:  Jose Patino has not made much progress while repeating the DSL twice.


  1. Somehow I lost a comment from Moses re. Heliot Ramos timeline and how Steven Duggar could get 3-4 years of time as the starting CF while waiting for Ramos to develop. He also noted that Gorkys Hernandez is a negative defender, but not as bad as Denard Span.

    If you look only at Gorkys' CF UZR's, he's actually graded out with a +UZR for CF in 2017 with acknowledgement of the sample size issues with UZR.

    1. -DRS. KInd of like he's got 'range' but 'meh' leather. Which kind of what I saw of him. He could run, but sometimes... It waa really frustrating.

    2. I saw Gorkys make a lot of really good catches, certainly ones that Span would not have come close to. Like Gregor Blanco for several years, I don't think it's going to be as easy for the Giants to find a better option on either the FA or trade markets as it would seem on the surface.

  2. several ways to define No. 1 prospect - who is closest to MLB ready? or who has most chance of making biggest impact based upon tools and minor league numbers. i agree - Ramos No. 1

  3. An aging but able FA CFer (with some injury history) is Lorenzo Cain who had a good 2017, which probably makes his price too high after making $11 mil this year.
    With better batting numbers from right and left fields, couldn't the Giants live with a good-glove-less-bat in center? indicates that the Giants have team control for Slade Heathcott -- if he's completely healthy next spring, perhaps he'll show what he can do. Of players under control, he may well be the best bet.
    If an inconsistent bat is not an issue, Parker provides speed and arm and can't be a lot worse than other 2017 Giant CFers. At least he doesn't need an extra relay man.
    If Chris Shaw gets an outfield shot in left, another LHB is in the outfield mix along with Parker, Span, Heathcott, and Belt (if he is an OFer). What would that do for RHB Austin Slater?
    Are the Giants are overloaded with lefty bats? Gotta hope Pence does not decline more -- if he could only continue his late season surge but is not a plus in the OF defensively.

  4. FYI: During his recent chat Law opined that Ramos ceiling is above-average RF

  5. Dusty Baker just fired. Not terribly surprised after the NLDS loss.

    1. The Nationals didn't need a manager to get them to the playoffs -- they at least wanted to get past the LDS!
      In 6 years for Washington, 3 different managers have won divisions -- 4 of them! One, Davey Johnson -- even won 98 games and got fired after finishing 2nd the next year!
      Funny thing that they thought Baker would win the BIG ONE which he has notoriously not done.
      A wonderful players manager, had he managed before 1969, in the golden days of league winners, he might have won one when there were fewer chances to make a mistake.
      Since the playoffs began in 1969 -- 48 World Series ago -- the "best" team (won the most games) has only won 12 times! (Two of them, the winner was tied for the beat record.)
      You need luck -- surely even Bruce Bochy thinks he was lucky at least once -- in 5 or 7 games anyone can win a series in baseball. There was an article last week that Baker was "cursed" -- maybe but he certainly is unlucky.

  6. Oh, and this came up sometime in the last day. I just saw it though:


    Giants prospect Steven Duggar went 4-for-5, stole two bases and scored three times in the Scottsdale Scorpions' Arizona Fall League win Wednesday. Injuries limited the 23-year-old to just 44 games this season."

  7. Duggar has had a pretty good OBP throughout his minor league career. His SB record has not been stellar but he seems to be the best lead off hitter and CF on the roster. Lorenzo Cain would be a good addition if the Giants were closer to realistically contending and not so financially pressured. I say they let Gorkys, Heathcott or Parker duke it out to start the year in CF as a placeholder for Duggar. If Duggar proves he is not ready or qualified to be a starter or if the Giants surprise and have a real shot at the postseason they can try trading for a legit CF in midseason.

  8. Shows the price to be paid when 2010 1st rounder Gary Brown turned into a bust.

  9. DrB: are you going to preview Game 7?
    Who do you think should start for Stros tonight -- Morton or McCullers? Old vet or young kid? McCullers has pitched better against the Yankees this year, regular season and LCS.

    1. forget game 7. giants just stole the show with a huge coaching shakeup

    2. A narrow perspective but this is a Giants' site.
      Game 7 chooses who will play the Dodgers and not-Yankees is important -- NY would be rolled by LA!
      Thing about the Giants' coaching, we don't know why, we don't know what's next, we don't know the effect.
      It's news, but it's questions, not answers, and of those there are none!
      For ALCS Game 7, momentous, funny thing,it wasn't Morton or McCullers, it was Morton AND McCullers.

  10. Sorry, I have been away at a conference. Back to blogging later this evening or tomorrow. Rags reassignment is a huge story. End of an era. IDK if there are any pitching coaches in the HOF, but Rags should be considered, IMO.