Giants claim outfielder Mike Gerber off waivers from Tigers


Giants claim outfielder Mike Gerber off waivers from Tigers

LAS VEGAS -- The Giants have spent most of the last month clearing out roster spots. On Monday morning they finally made an addition. 

Outfielder Mike Gerber was claimed from the Detroit Tigers, giving the organization a fifth young outfielder on the 40-man roster. Gerber, 26, goes down as the first 40-man roster addition of the Farhan Zaidi Era. 

Gerber has just 42 big league at-bats. He hit .095 for the Tigers last season with 21 strikeouts in those 42 at-bats, but the Giants surely see something in his minor league profile that intrigues them. Zaidi had success with similar players while with the Dodgers, and the Giants have been pushing to add position player depth to their 40-man roster. 

Gerber hasn't hit for many homers at the minor league level but has shown an ability to reach base, posting a .346 OBP in five minor league seasons. He had a .304/.373/.496 line across three minor league levels in 2017 but was down to .213/.277/.411 in Triple-A last season. 

Perhaps most importantly, Gerber has played all three outfield spots in the past and has plenty of experience in center field. The Giants are thin there after letting Gorkys Hernandez go. Gerber took home a minor league Gold Glove in 2016.

Gerber joins Steven Duggar, Mac Williamson, Austin Slater and Chris Shaw as the outfielders on the 40-man roster.

NBA rumors: Kevin Durant, Clippers 'very viable' fit in free agency


NBA rumors: Kevin Durant, Clippers 'very viable' fit in free agency

Stephen A. Smith has changed his mind. Kevin Durant is going to the Los Angeles Clippers.

You might recall Smith said last month on ESPN’s “First Take” that he believes KD will join the Lakers in free agency next summer, with the Warriors, Celtics, 76ers and Knicks also on the superstar’s list, in that order.

No Clippers. Until Friday, that is.

Smith cited “very, very well-connected” sources in reporting this: “People in NBA circles believe that Kevin Durant -- the Los Angeles Clippers have a legitimate shot of acquiring him.”

Smith cites the Clippers’ available salary-cap space -- according to him, the team is only committed to $47 million next season, with over $60 million -- as why they’re “very viable.”

Smith’s report could be bad news for Warriors fans, but it’s really harsh for Knicks followers. Smith said KD-to-the-Knicks is just “a smokescreen” and that “there’s no way in hell he’s playing there.”

But we’re still seven months from NBA free agency, so there’s no way in hell anyone knows where Durant will play. The Warriors have just as much of “a legitimate shot” of keeping KD, especially if they win a third consecutive NBA championship.

Inside last year's convo with Steve Kerr that changed Draymond Green's energy

Inside last year's convo with Steve Kerr that changed Draymond Green's energy

Programming note: Watch tonight's Warriors-Timberwolves game streaming live at 7:30 p.m. PT on the MyTeams app.

You all remember how the Warriors closed last regular season. It was pretty ugly.

Not only did Golden State lose 10 of its final 17 games, but the Warriors dropped three of their final four -- which included a 20-point loss at Indiana, a home defeat to New Orleans and 40-point shellacking at Utah.

Over those final four contests, Draymond Green averaged just 5.5 rebounds and 5.5 assists, while committing 4.5 turnovers per game.

On Monday, Sports Illustrated named the Warriors the 2018 Sportsperson of the Year. And within the article, Draymond reflected on a conversation he had with Steve Kerr in the days leading up to the start of the playoffs.

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"He said, 'You have the ability to take this team left or right, up or down. You can carry that weight, but right now you’re killing us. Your body language is not good, your energy is not good and you’re pouting every play when something doesn’t go right. And you’re dragging Kevin down with you.’

"And I immediately noticed it. I said, ‘You’re right, and I’ll be better.’"

Better is an understatement. Against the Spurs in the first round, the 2017 Defensive Player of the Year averaged 11.4 points, 11.2 rebounds, 8.0 assists, 1.4 steals and 1.0 blocks (he did not shoot the ball well, however).

He took his game to another level in the second round vs New Orleans -- racking up 14.8 points, 11.8 rebounds, 10.0 assists, 2.4 steals and 1.6 blocks. He shot 49 percent overall and 40 percent from deep. 

 “It’s great to have people—coaches, front office, teammates—that can remind you that your shi* stink, too,” Draymond told Sports Illustrated. “Sometimes we can see everyone else’s problems and bullshi* and completely overlook our own.”

Drew Shiller is the co-host of Warriors Outsiders. Follow him on Twitter @DrewShiller