For the better part of the last decade, the Los Angeles Dodgers have largely been unencumbered by their division opponents. The emergence of the San Francisco Giants in 2021, however, changed all that.
From 2015 until the start of 2021, the Giants, San Diego Padres, Colorado Rockies and Arizona Diamondbacks hardly did anything of note. Limited (if any) playoff success, most certainly NOT a destination for top free agents, and hardly pesky in the regular season (which explains the Dodgers’ eight straight division titles from 2013-2020).
But 2022 is starting to appear as if it could be a slight changing of the guard. The Padres, for as dysfunctional as they were last season, still have a very good team with no real need to orchestrate an overhaul, especially after importing manager Bob Melvin from Oakland.
The Giants, on the other hand, upended the Dodgers’ 2021 campaign and now figure to threaten them for multiple top free agents. At the very least, they’re going to get better even though they’re losing some players, because their organizational philosophy came to fruition during their 107-win season.
So you can bet they’ll attract free agents, and Nick Castellanos is reportedly among those being considered at the moment by San Fran.
The Giants are eyeing key free agents in their quest to take down the Dodgers.
Don’t forget, another star in Marcus Semien is being considered, which we also talked about recently.
The addition of Castellanos proves the Giants aren’t going to leave a single stone unturned on the free agent market. Buster Posey’s retirement and most of the rotation hitting the open market certainly hit hard, but the Giants had always planned to be active this offseason with so much money coming off the books.
And for Castellanos, he’s really hit his stride as a professional over these last five years, culminating with a career campaign in 2021 that helped him opt out of his contract with the Cincinnati Reds. Posey is an irreplaceable bat, but supplementing his production with Castellanos’ .309 average, .939 OPS, 136 OPS+, 34 homers and 100 RBI? That helps.
The greater topic at hand here is the Giants’ consistent involvement with big names. They’re reportedly in on Starling Marte. They reportedly haven’t ruled out Kris Bryant. Max Scherzer and Justin Verlander were reportedly considered options for them as well.
Nothing’s done yet, but we just really don’t like where this is trending. Not one bit.