The Giants put together a peculiar strategy at the MLB Trade Deadline, shipping away four veterans Tuesday while holding on to big potential trade chips in southpaw Carlos Rodón and outfielder Joc Pederson.
Shortly after the 3 p.m. PT deadline passed, Rodón expressed relief at knowing his status for the rest of the year. Rodón was viewed as the top remaining pitcher on the market, as the electric lefty leads MLB with a 2.29 FIP, 11.6 K/9 rate and totes an impressive 3.00 ERA.
John Shea of the San Francisco shared Rodón’s reaction from the Giants clubhouse at Oracle Park Tuesday afternoon once he learned he hadn’t been dealt.
“It’s great,” Rodón said. “I don’t have to go anywhere. Makes it easy.”
Rodón has been pitching amid swirling speculation that has only ramped up the last few weeks, as the Giants went 11-17 in July.
“It’s one of those things that as a player, it's out of your control,” Rodón said. “It’s one of things where, whatever happens, happens. Fortunately, I get to stay here with my teammates.”
The Giants signed Rodón to a two-year, $44 million contract this past offseason, but he unlocked an opt-out clause in his deal for 2023 by reaching 110 innings pitched this season. Rodón turns 30 in December and could command a nine-figure, multiyear deal in free agency, so it makes sense to assume he will opt out at the end of the season.
With 59 games remaining, it looks like the Giants can bank on about 11 or 12 more starts from Rodón before he’s out the door. Unless San Francisco makes an unlikely playoff run, the Giants could look back and lament their decision to hold on to Rodón.
The lefty is just concerned about getting the Giants to the playoffs, where he would form a strong 1-2 pitching punch with Logan Webb to begin a series. But San Francisco’s front office may have hurt the team’s chances to compete by trading away Darin Ruf, Curt Casali, Matt Boyd and Trevor Rosenthal.
“We play with what we got,” Rodón said. “It’s not gonna be easy as you know. Still no excuses, we still have a job to do. We still have games to win.”
The Giants certainly have their work cut out for them, especially after watching the San Diego Padress acquire megastar Juan Soto, elite closer Josh Hader and sluggers Josh Bell and Brandon Drury at the deadline. San Francisco finds itself 4.5 games out of the third National League Wild Card, 12 games back of the Padres and 18.5 behind the Los Angeles Dodgers.