Suffice it to say, this week has not been kind to the San Francisco Giants. First came news that the Giants lost out to the Angels for Shohei Ohtani despite being one of seven finalists for the Japanese two-way star. Then came this statement from the team regarding its pursuit of Marlins slugger and reigning NL MVP Giancarlo Stanton: Our agreement with the Marlins to acquire Giancarlo Stanton subject to his waiving of the no-trade clause will not move forward and it is our understanding that the Marlins and Stanton are exploring other options. So that's two significant losses for a team that badly needed some needle-moving additions this offseason. Let's bear in mind that the Giants are coming off a 98-loss season and a last-place finish. To compound grim matters, they finished fully 40 games behind the hated Dodgers. Yes, the Giants can bank on some improvement in 2018, thanks in part to somewhat stronger underlying fundamentals and the assumption of a healthy season from Madison Bumgarner. Still, heading into the meat of the offseason, the SportsLine (@SportsLine on Twitter) Projection Model tabs the Giants for just 75 victories, which would have put them 12 games out of the second NL wild-card spot this season. Adding the likes of Stanton and Ohtani obviously would've improved that baseline by quite a bit, but that's no longer a possibility for the Giants. Now they're a bad team with a bad farm system -- i.e., not much to trade -- surveying a shallow and flawed free-agent class. That's Domingo Santana, and I'm just not sure the Giants have the young talent needed to acquire him from the Brewers, who have their own designs on contention. Jay Bruce would be a huge problem defensively in the spacious AT&T outfield, and the same goes for J.D. Martinez. Again, no one plausibly available to a team like the Giants improves them nearly as much as Stanton and Ohtani would've. All of this bodes ill for the Giants, insofar as 2018 is concerned. However, if they choose to tear it down and rebuild, then they could see such straits as an opportunity. This would be very out of step for the Giants, who for many years have angled to contend every season. Eventually, though, every team must face the teardown, and perhaps it's the Giants' turn. If they did decide to go such a route, consider what they could do ... Trade Madison Bumgarner You know he's a playoff legend, and over the past three seasons he has improved his regular-season performance by a significant margin. Since the start of the 2015 season, MadBum has pitched to a 2.93 ERA/136 ERA+ and 5.19 K/BB ratio. That's ace-level stuff. As well, he's signed to a contract that's team-friendly in the extreme: He is under team control for the next two seasons at a total cost of just $24 million (incentives could push the price of those two club options a bit higher). He's still just 28, and it a was non-pitching injury that laid him up for a large chunk of 2017. Needless to say, a controllable, affordable ace like Bumgarner would net the prospect-starved Giants a massive return. Bumgarner does have a partial no-trade clause of up to eight teams, but that's easily worked around.
Spurned by Shohei Ohtani and Giancarlo Stanton, Giants can rebuild in a big way
CBS Sports | Dec 9