The Giants have a big issue to address this winter.
As they head into the 2018 season, what do they do about their outfield?
Hunter Pence and Denard Span have both seen big dips in their overall offensive and defensive production. And both are getting up there in age. Pence turns 35 next April, while Span will turn 34 in February.
According to FanGraphs, Span is just a 0.7 Wins Above Replacement (WAR) player this season. That is the worst among qualified MLB center fielders.
The numbers don't get any better with Pence. FanGraphs has him as a minus-0.2 WAR player. Only Toronto's Jose Bautista and Colorado's Carlos Gonzalez have been worse among qualified MLB right fielders.
With both of them under contract for the 2018 season, do you continue to ride with them or make changes? Giants broadcaster Mike Krukow has some thoughts on the two outfielders.
"As you go forward, next spring is going to be really interesting, because the way that [Hunter] Pence and [Denard] Span are right now, you might think about platooning them. Because of their age, keep them fresh. So you're going to have to develop guys who can come in and do that. I think there is a need for a better defensive player in center field. I think they've pretty much told Span that. There are guys out there that are talked about that could solve problems in center field," Krukow said Monday on KNBR 680.
According to MLBTradeRumors.com, there are no center fielders under the age of 30 on the free agent market this season. But Jarrod Dyson (Mariners) and Lorenzo Cain (Royals) are available and rank fourth and fifth, respectively, in Defensive Runs Saved among MLB center fielders. Span ranks dead last.