Giants

'Underpants,' 'Last Name' and 'Tone Ranger' highlight Giants' 2018 Players' Weekend nicknames

'Underpants,' 'Last Name' and 'Tone Ranger' highlight Giants' 2018 Players' Weekend nicknames

Joe Simpson's favorite weekend of the year is back. And by "favorite," what we really mean is that Simpson probably hates the upcoming Players' Weekend.

Baseball's biggest curmudgeon will have to look at players wearing jersey's featuring their nicknames. He might be asking for the weekend off.

This is an event that MLB started last season. It was such a success that they brought it back. Players will don the special jerseys from Friday, Aug. 24 through Sunday, Aug. 26.

Here's the list of nicknames the Giants players will wear:

Brandon Belt: "BOB"
Ty Blach: "THE PREACHER"
Ray Black: "BLACKOUT"
Madison Bumgarner: "MAD-BUM"
Brandon Crawford: "DJ BC RAW"
Johnny Cueto: "EL JUCHO"
Chase d'Arnaud: "CHEETAH"
Sam Dyson: "PSSST"
Steven Duggar: "DUGG"
Julian Fernandez: "BILLETE"
Alen Hanson: "EL CHAMAQUITO"
Gorkys Hernandez: "CAZADOR"
Derek Holland: "LAST NAME"
Nick Hundley: "HUNDO"
Pierce Johnson: "P.J."
Derek Law: "D-LAW"
Evan Longoria: "LONGO"
Andrew McCutchen: "ZOOM"
Mark Melancon: "MEL"
Reyes Moronta: "EL TIBU"
Joe Panik: "J.P."
Hunter Pence: "UNDERPANTS"
Buster Posey: "BUSTER"
Dereck Rodriguez: "D-ROD"
Jeff Samardzija: "SHARK"
Pablo Sandoval: "PANDA"
Will Smith: "SMITTY"
Austin Slater: "MAYOR"
Hunter Strickland: "STRICK"
Andrew Suarez: "ANDY"
Tony Watson: "TONE RANGER"

Which one is your favorite?

MLB rumors: Mike Fiers on Giants' free agency radar; competition high

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AP

MLB rumors: Mike Fiers on Giants' free agency radar; competition high

Mike Fiers' stay in the Bay might not be done after all.

The 33-year-old right-hander, whom the A's surprisingly non-tendered earlier this offseason, has drawn interest from the Giants, among other teams, per MLB.com's Jon Morosi.

While Fiers' most recent stays were in the American League (Oakland, Detroit, Houston), he's no stranger to the National League, having started his eight-year career with the Milwaukee Brewers and pitching four-plus seasons for them. Fiers is known for giving up a lot of homers -- 141 in 898 innings -- but spacious AT&T Park could help mitigate that.

NBC Sports Bay Area's Alex Pavlovic reported last month that the Giants would like to add to their rotation, and Fiers certainly makes sense at the right price. With so many teams in the mix, though, you have to wonder if the cost would rise past the Giants' comfort level.

If not, and Fiers comes on board, he could be a solid piece behind Madison Bumgarner and a mentor-like presence for young starters Dereck Rodriguez and Andrew Suarez. And with AT&T Park holding in those long fly balls that would be homers in smaller ballparks, the Giants might have a pitcher who can give them 150-plus innings with an ERA around 4, as he's mostly done the past four seasons.

Sources: Giants interested in Kevin Pillar trade with Blue Jays

Sources: Giants interested in Kevin Pillar trade with Blue Jays

SAN FRANCISCO — The Giants still do not consider themselves anywhere near the Bryce Harper chase. Over four days in Las Vegas, they added two outfielders to their 40-man roster, both of whom are just prospects potentially fighting for bench roles.

There’s a middle ground between Harper and the recent additions, though, and the Giants have been active in that market while exploring trades. One name discussed by the front office, according to multiple sources, was Toronto Blue Jays outfielder Kevin Pillar, who is interesting for a number of reasons.

Pillar, 29, is a defense-first center fielder who would seem to be an odd fit at first since the Giants already have a young version of that profile in Steven Duggar. But Pillar is a right-handed hitter who always has hit lefties better, and president of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi would like to find a platoon partner for left-handed-hitting Duggar, at least early in his career. 

Beyond that, the Giants are intrigued by the idea of occasionally playing two center fielders at the same time in their massive ballpark. Both prospects picked up this week — Mike Gerber and Drew Ferguson — can play center field, and Pillar is known as one of the top true center fielders in the game. In those discussions, the Giants imagined an alignment that occasionally could have Pillar in center and Duggar in right. 

[RELATED: Why Duggar wants to bring bunts back to life for Giants]

“Right field at our place is just as hard as playing center field,” one source said. 

It’s unclear if the Giants gained any traction in talks for outfielders this week. Zaidi believed he might have a couple of deals in place next week, although he could go in a number of directions as he looks to fill holes. 

Pillar has not been widely known to be available. Still, the Blue Jays are rebuilding in a tough division, with plenty of young talent on the way, and that’s the type of team the Giants have targeted at times. 

The Giants are not fully rebuilding on their own. They prefer to add minor pieces to the lineup and find platoon advantages, and Pillar — or someone similar — is the type of player who makes sense for a team that hopes to be somewhat competitive next season.