MLB rumors: Giants, Dodgers not ruling out Will Smith trade before deadline

MLB rumors: Giants, Dodgers not ruling out Will Smith trade before deadline

Plenty of the same names remain, but this isn't the same old -- no pun intended -- Giants.

The product looks similar to previous seasons, however everything is different with president of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi at the helm. That could become even more clear at the July 31 MLB trade deadline, when the Giants are expected to see significant roster turnover.

Zaidi even could be on the phones with his former employer, which just happens to be the Giants' biggest rival.

MLB Network's Jon Morosi reported Tuesday morning that the Giants and Dodgers haven't ruled out a trade that would send San Francisco closer Will Smith to Los Angeles.

Smith, who turns 30 in July, could be one of the top targets on the trade market. The left-hander is a perfect 20-for-20 in save opportunities this season, owns a 2.01 ERA over 32 appearances out of the bullpen, and has 47 strikeouts to seven walks in 31.1 innings pitched.

"Right now, we'll play hard for the orange and black, and whatever happens, happens," Smith said less than two weeks ago when asked about trade rumors. "We'll cross that bridge when we get there."

The closer we get to the trade deadline, the louder the rumors will become. Just last week, MLB Trade Rumors released its list of the top 50 trade candidates. The top two names both were Giants pitchers, but it was Smith, not ace Madison Bumgarner, who topped the list.

Smith is on a cheap one-year, $4.23 million contract. He's been one of the best relievers in baseball this season and could be exactly what a contender needs for a playoff run. 

As far as the Dodgers go, Zaidi is plenty familiar with the state of that franchise, since he served as general manager from 2014 through 2018. He knows the team's farm system, which ranked seventh entering the season, inside and out, and should be able to target the type of players the Giants need to bolster their minor league system.

[RELATED: Marco Luciano receives rave reviews from Farhan Zaidi]

“If we do end up in a position where we’re selling and looking to get some future talent, you actually want to be trading in the division because you want to weaken your rivals in future years, and you want them to push more chips into the present," Zaidi said on KNBR at the beginning of the month when asked about a possible trade with the Dodgers. "In a way, it actually benefits you more."

The Giants and Dodgers last traded with each other in 2007. With Zaidi running the show, though, anything is possible -- even if that means helping his rivals now for a better future in San Francisco.

Giants tie pitching record in 15-inning win over Red Sox at Fenway Park

Giants tie pitching record in 15-inning win over Red Sox at Fenway Park

Caught in the Mike Yastrzemski mania at Fenway Park on Tuesday night was a Ferris wheel of pitchers taking their turn in the Giants' 7-6 win over the Red Sox in 15 innings. 

Around and around they went. 

Logan Webb started on the hill for the Giants and went five innings before Andrew Suarez took over. Nathan Eovaldi was the first man up for Boston before they went with Colten Brewer. And that was just the start to the marathon of pitchers stepping on and off the mound. 

In total, the Giants and Red Sox combined to use 24 pitchers, tying an MLB record, according to ESPN Stats and Info. The Giants broke their franchise record by using 13 pitchers in one game, which tied an MLB record as well. 

Giants manager Bruce Bochy had a little fun with the news of his team's new record after the win, too. 

"I wanted to get my 10,000 steps in," Bochy joked with reporters. "I was a little behind."

Bochy's career is coming to a close as he'll retire at the end of the season. The win put win one victory away from 2,000 for his career, and he's sure to remember this one. The legendary skipper has been known to make multiple calls to his bullpen, but that won't be the case in the future for whoever the Giants' manager is next year. 

Starting with the 2020 season, MLB is implementing a three-batter minimum rule where a pitcher will have to either face a minimum of three batters in an appearance or pitch to the end of a half-inning. The days of the LOOGY (lefty one-out guy) seem to be over. 

Bochy admitted after the game that he never wants to use 13 pitchers in one game, but when rosters expand in September, he always has tried his best to get call-ups on the mound. The rule is another attempt to speed up baseball and it's sure receive plenty of give and take with the good and bad next season. 

[RELATED: Yaz homers at Fenway -- just like Grandpa -- in Giants' win]

It might not be celebrated, but Bochy, the Giants and the Red Sox could have their names in the record books for a long, long time thanks to next season's new rule. 

Here's a tip of the cap to Bochy and his non-existent Fitbit, and perhaps the real hero of the night, catcher Stephen Vogt, who caught all 294 pitches on the night.

Mike Yastrzemski's homer in Fenway Park debut highlights Giants' win

Mike Yastrzemski's homer in Fenway Park debut highlights Giants' win

No one could have scripted it any better.

Giants outfielder Mike Yastrzemski, playing his first game in grandfather Carl's old stomping grounds, did what the Red Sox legend did so many times: He manned left field, just in front of the fabled Green Monster, and launched a home run at Fenway Park in his team's victory.

The special moment came in the top of the fourth inning of the Giants' series opener against the Red Sox, when Yastrzemski blasted a 3-1 fastball off Boston starter Nathan Eovaldi 401 feet to dead center.

Yastrzemski, who finished 2-for-7 with the homer, one double, one walk and two runs scored, led off the game and received a standing ovation from the Fenway crowd ahead of his first at-bat. He ended up striking out, but he got the better of Eovaldi the next time they faced each other.

"It was incredible, just being able to be in front of family and friends," Yastrzemski told NBC Sports Bay Area's Amy Gutierrez immediately after the Giants' 7-6, 15-inning win, "and I couldn't have asked for a better welcome from the entire crowd. That was special."

Alex Dickerson's pinch-hit sacrifice fly in the 15th eventually ended the marathon, but all the postgame attention was on Yastrzemski, who was born in the Boston suburb of Andover. Tuesday's homer increased Yastrzemski's season total to 20, giving the Giants two outfielders -- Kevin Pillar being the other -- with 20 or more for the first time since 2006, when Barry Bonds and Moises Alou accomplished the feat.

[RELATED: Younger Yaz soaks up first Fenway visit as a player]

Perhaps most impressive of all, Yastrzemski's 20 homers have come in just 97 games with the Giants, who acquired the Baseball Hall of Famer's grandson in a trade with the Baltimore Orioles in March.

Not too shabby for a 29-year-old rookie.