Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Your 2018 Giants: No-Hitter Hesto Returns!

Brief news that the Giants signed Chris Heston to a minor league deal recently.

ogc thoughts

Welcoming back to the fold, old Giants prospect and owner of a rare Giants no-hitter (he's up there with Ed Halicki) Chris Heston was signed by the Giants to a minor league deal.  He will be competing with Stratton, Blach, Beede, Suarez, Gregorio, and whoever else they sign to minor league deals this off-season.  No news on what type of contract, but given he hasn't done much of anything, he's not going to push the Giants over the CBT penalty threshold.

This adds to the Giants inventory of potential starters that the Giants can stockpile for SP depth in case anything happens to the MLB rotation.  With Stratton and Blach still question marks (though if Stratton just continues to do what he did in his MLB starts so far, he'll be pushing Samardzija for the third position in the rotation soon enough) and Beede and Suarez even more unproven, and Gregorio just not really close because of his drug suspension, Heston can be a safe choice for the rotation should the need for a 6th starter come into play. 

Heck, he and Blach are probably the two biggest competitors, at the moment, for the #5 starting rotation spot and the long relief spot in the 25-man roster.  Beede would need to wow by a lot to win the rotation spot (they are not going to throw him into long relief, as they want him starting in 2018, especially after missing a significant part of 2017 on the DL, if nothing but to build up his arm strength and see if he can handle MLB hitters).  Suarez is my dark horse to win the last starting rotation spot (again, Stratton was elite last year in spin rate, which is a key component of his dominance in his last 9 starts, as his velocity is just average, at best), but otherwise he's starting in AAA and getting ready for a promotion mid-season should any starter falter (similarly for Beede, they will be pushing each other, most probably, for who gets promoted first). 

So, at the moment, until the Giants sign other SP with minor league deals, Blach is likely competing with Heston over the #5 and the long-relief spots.  With the loser getting the long role.  However, I expect the Giants to invite at least one other former MLB SP to battle with the two of them for one of these two roles.

I like the deal, but what's not to like?  He's a known quantity, he's not that far gone from when he was good, the team needs SP depth, especially to fill in the MLB roster, and he's cheap.  I'll be rooting for him to make his comeback, maybe he can pull a Vogie out of the cap.  He was a good story before, and even better one if he can make a comeback with us.

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