SAN FRANCISCO — After a 107-win season and the franchise’s first National League West title since 2012, Giants president of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi isn’t changing his approach to acquiring potential difference-makers.
Zaidi has supplemented the Giants’ core group of players by adding value on the margins of the roster and his quest to do so continued Friday as the club made three waiver claims.
The Giants announced they added outfielder Austin Dean from St. Louis, right-handed pitcher Hunter Harvey from Baltimore and left-handed pitcher Joe Palumbo from Texas on waiver claims that add immediate depth to a roster that lost nine players to free agency and the face of the franchise, Buster Posey, to retirement.
Zaidi indicated Thursday the Giants intend to have a dialogue with a significant number of their free agents such as Brandon Belt and Kevin Gausman, but in the meantime, the organization has plugged holes on the roster with players who may have an opportunity to win jobs with the team during spring training.
The Giants have frequently added players on waivers during the offseason only to designate them for assignment before pitchers and catchers report to Scottsdale in the spring, but Dean, Harvey and Palumbo all possess qualities that warranted interest from San Francisco.
Like many of the position players Zaidi has pursued in recent years, Dean, 28, has historically posted high on-base percentages throughout his minor league career as the 28-year-old has a .349 OBP over parts of nine minor league seasons.
A former fourth round draft choice out of Klein Collins High in Spring, Texas, Dean has 325 career major league at-bats and a career .672 OPS.
Harvey, 26, is an intriguing pick-up for San Francisco as the former Orioles first round draft choice has battled injury issues through the years but has high upside as a potential bullpen arm. In 26 career appearances with Baltimore, Harvey has flashed an upper-90 fastball and struck out 23 hitters in 23 2/3 innings while posting a 3.42 ERA.
Palumbo, 27, was a 30th round draft pick of the Rangers in 2013 out of Stony Brook who beat long odds coming out of the draft to make the majors. The lefty owns a career 9.47 ERA in 19 innings and because he’s started half of his career games in the minors, it’s possible the Giants view him as an upper-level depth option.