The San Francisco Giants, owners of the best record in MLB, made one of the splashes of the trade deadline back in July when they acquired third baseman Kris Bryant from the Chicago Cubs in exchange for two prospects.
Bryant is actually a jack-of-all-trades in the sense he can also defend, quite adequately, left field and first base.
His versatility and potent bat have taken the Giants’ lineup to the next level, improving an already solid unit as it is primed to make a playoff push.
With the Giants, Bryant has been solid, if unspectacular: he has a .273/.342/.477 line with six homers and a .820 OPS.
Kris Bryant introduces himself to San Francisco with his first home run as a Giant. pic.twitter.com/UX9xCUocxU
— John Shea (@JohnSheaHey) August 1, 2021
That’s not too far off of what he did in Chicago: .267/.358/.503 with 18 round-trippers and a .861 OPS.
A Good Fit In San Francisco
Overall, his stint in San Francisco has been a good one, as he provides a potent bat capable of playing three different positions, and that versatility is needed especially since the Giants, like every other National League team, can’t play a designated hitter.
However, has it been so good that we can now start considering San Francisco as Bryant’s home for the long-term?
Bryant is slated to hit free agency after the 2021 campaign ends: that’s mainly the reason why he was traded by the rebuilding Cubs.
Perhaps the chronic injuries he has suffered over the years and the fact he is approaching 30 somewhat diminish his value in the open market.
It’s also important to note that he shouldn’t be paid as the former MVP he was back in the day: his .850 OPS for the season as a whole is very good, but MVP candidates this year are approaching 1.000.
However, Bryant has a solid track record of being successful at the plate and good on the field, too, and because of that (and his World Series pedigree), he will get paid.
How much and for how long?
It’s difficult to know at this point because it will depend on his market, the new CBA negotiations, and many other things besides the obvious on-field performance.
To answer the question at hand: yes, the San Francisco Giants are now a possibility for Bryant to stay beyond 2021.
Could He Sign An Extension And Can The Giants Afford Him?
Even an extension is a possibility: When asked about if Scott Boras, his agent, will let him sign one (he is often against his clients inking extensions), he replied that he runs the show.
He does, indeed: The final decision on Bryant’s next destination won’t be Boras’.
He fits perfectly in the organization, too, as a capable bat and versatile defender.
The problem, in this case, may be the Giants’ offseason.
They are still on the hook for a year of Evan Longoria at $19.67 million, but players such as Buster Posey, Brandon Crawford, Brandon Belt, and Kevin Gausman will all hit free agency, and the Giants may need to choose among them.
They have a $22 million player option for Posey, but they may not have enough money to sign them all.
That, of course, could affect Bryant’s future.
It remains to be seen if Bryant decides to take some kind of discount, but it’s unlikely.
Based on everything Kris Bryant has said the last two days and the Giants history of going after High priced stars( Stanton and Harper)…I see kris staying in SF
— Syndergaard'sMjolnir (@hereonin75) August 2, 2021
All we know at this point is that the Giants’ offseason will be very interesting.