Jim Callis calls Melvin Adon's slider best in Arizona Fall Stars Game


Jim Callis calls Melvin Adon's slider best in Arizona Fall Stars Game

Melvin Adon is known for his fastball. The Giants prospect has hit 102 mph, but another one of his pitches is earning praise in the Arizona Fall League. 

Jim Callis,’s lead draft and prospect writer, calls Adon’s slider the best in the Arizona Fall Stars Game. Adon will represent the Giants on the East squad in Saturday’s game featuring the Arizona Fall League's top prospects.

On Adon’s slider, Callis writes “his upper-80s slider has had more bite and consistency than in the past.” The big right-hander throws a slider that sits at 87 to 89 mph while consistently touching upper-90s with his fastball and surprising nobody when he reaches triple digits.

Here are two views of Adon striking out Nationals prospect Daniel Johnson with his slider.

The sharp, sweeping breaking ball clearly can be a nasty strikeout pitch. What’s even more impressive is that the slider remains a work in progress. Former Giants reliever Aaron Fultz, who is Adon’s pitching coach in the AFL, said the prospect is working on a changeup and a slider, and both pitches have wowed him at times.

"One day I see his changeup where it’s like, ‘Wow,’ and one day I see his slider, and it’s the same thing,” Fultz said in a phone conversation with NBC Sports Bay Area

Adon already had a naturally powerful arm when he arrived in the desert. The goal for the 24-year-old was to work on command and his secondary pitches. Both goals are being accomplished. In 9 2/3 innings out of the bullpen with the Scottsdale Scorpions, Adon has 19 strikeouts to two walks this fall. He has only allowed one earned run. 

The 13th annual Fall Stars Game will start at 5 p.m. PT on MLB Network. 

MLB rumors: Stephen Strasburg, Nationals agree to seven-year, $245M contract

MLB rumors: Stephen Strasburg, Nationals agree to seven-year, $245M contract

The World Series MVP is staying home. 

MLB Network's Jon Heyman reported Monday that star free-agent pitcher Stephen Strasburg is returning to the Nationals. ESPN's Jeff Passan later reported the contract is worth $245 million over seven years. 

The massive contract is the largest in MLB history for a pitcher, and breaks the record for average annual value. The figures also are the same that the Yankees reportedly offered Gerrit Cole in recent days. Cole's deal with his future new team could now reach the heights of $300 million. 

With one ace off the market, the race to sign longtime Giants hero Madison Bumgarner could speed up. 

Bumgarner reportedly wants to stay in San Francisco, but according to USA Today's Bob Nightengale, the Giants have "shown no inclination to keep him." In recent days, the Cardinals, Twins and White Sox all have been linked to the left-hander. 

“Obviously, he has roots in other parts of the country that may be attractive to him,’’ Giants president of baseball operation Farhan Zaidi said during a recent Q&A at Oracle Park, via The Athletic. “It’s his decision. That’s the beauty of free agency for players. But we are going to be involved in that process.”

The Yankees and Dodgers also were briefly connected to Strasburg, and could shift their focus to Bumgarner, especially if they miss out on Cole. Both franchises are sick of falling short of a World Series ring, and seem primed to make a big move this offseason. 

Nightengale also reported Monday that teams are being told Bumgarner is looking for a deal worth at least $100 million over five years. That seems increasingly likely with Zack Wheeler joining the Phillies on a $118 million contract. 

[RELATED: What to watch for as Giants head to MLB Winter Meetings]

With Strasburg's reported contract and the giant wads of cash Cole is about to receive, Bumgarner could be seen as quite the discount for teams. Expect rumors to ramp up regarding MadBum at the Winter Meetings currently being held in San Diego.

Hang tight Giants fans, this could get emotional.

New MLB jerseys for 2020 feature distracting Nike swoosh logo on chest


New MLB jerseys for 2020 feature distracting Nike swoosh logo on chest

Billy from "School of Rock" said it best: "You're tacky, and I hate you." 

We're all thinking the same thing looking at Nike's new MLB jerseys for the 2020 season. An agreement in January was announced between MLB, Fanatics and Nike, making Nike league's on-field partner and official uniform provider. 

Nike's first installment of jerseys have begun trickling out, and, my god, talk about being pretentious. The jerseys feature a distracting swoosh logo right across the upper right chest.

A's and Giants jerseys will remain the same outside of the Nike logo on the chest.

It's a stark difference from Majestic, MLB's previous jersey provider. In years past, a small logo was placed on the left sleeve. 

But Paul Lukas of Uni-Watch says MLB sold the chest space to Nike for a higher price. 

[RELATED: Why Yankees offering Cole $245M is good for Giants, A's]

Some fans rightfully are upset about the changes while others are ambivalent, but it shouldn't be a surprise. The NBA began placing sponsorships on their jerseys starting in the 2017-18 season. The NFL does the same for their practice jerseys. 

While baseball is one of the most "traditional" sports and often behind the times, don't be shocked if sponsors soon find their ways onto MLB jerseys.