The coronavirus pandemic has dramatically impacted MLB organizations. Late July normally is a time with plenty of player movement across the league, as teams make trade deadline deals and bring up burgeoning prospects while preparing for a playoff push.
But the pandemic made late July the starting point for the 2020 season, with just 60 regular-season games to prove whether you belong in the postseason. For Giants president of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi, assessing the talent both within the organization and across MLB has become much more difficult.
“Not being in the office is obviously different,” Zaidi told 95.7 The Game on Wednesday. “You don’t get to have those organic discussions with your staff about player evaluations, trade ideas, what players seem to be coming on in other organizations.
“It’s a little bit harder to bring everybody together and have a collective picture there.”
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Zaidi also talked about the dialogue between general managers around the league in the aftermath of coronavirus interrupting spring training and delaying the start of the 2020 season.
“I know as we were going through training camp, people were making phone calls almost apologetically, like ‘hey, I don’t know when we’re allowed to start talking about our needs and surpluses and potential deals that may happen.’ And obviously, everyone is really sensitive to the environment that we’re in, not just in baseball and in sports, but in the world as a whole.”
The cancellation of the 2020 minor league baseball season took away any opportunity to see young players getting consistent reps against live opponents. As Zaidi has worked hard to transform the Giants’ farm system, these lost chances at evaluation have to be particularly frustrating.
We’ve begun to see more transactions in recent days, but with so much uncertainty surrounding teams, don’t expect to see many blockbuster trades in this abbreviated 2020 season.