The Giants added an intriguing reliever with local ties and big numbers in the minors, and all it cost them was a little cash and a roster spot.
Right-hander Sam Delaplane was acquired from the Seattle Mariners on Monday in exchange for cash considerations. Delaplane, a 26-year-old who went to Leigh High School in San Jose, has a 2.29 ERA in three minor league seasons with 270 strikeouts in 161 1/3 innings.
The catch? Delaplane had Tommy John surgery on April 13 and won’t return to a mound for about another year.
The Giants are betting the arm is worth the wait. They optioned Delaplane to Triple-A Sacramento’s roster but ultimately they'll likely stash him on the 60-day IL, paying him the MLB minimum to rehab. The Giants had an extra roster spot to play with Monday, as they put Scott Kazmir on the restricted list as he deals with a personal issue back home.
Delaplane was DFA'd by the Mariners last week and had not pitched yet this season. He reached Double-A in 2019, posting a 0.49 ERA in 37 relief innings and striking out 58 batters to just nine walks. Delaplane then played in the Arizona Fall League, where he struck out 15 of the 31 batters he faced.
In other words, it very much seems that he will be worth the wait and modest investment.