On today’s Locked On Giants podcast, host Ben Kaspick talks about the San Francisco Giants signing pitchers Shun Yamaguchi and Scott Kazmir to minor league deals with invitations to spring training. Yamaguchi signed a two-year deal with the Toronto Blue Jays last offseason, and did not have a good 2020 season. Toronto cut him loose this winter, and the Giants picked him up on a minor league deal that will pay him the league minimum if he makes the major league roster. Yamaguchi was a star closer and starter in Japan, and could be used as a starter or reliever with the Giants if he makes the team.
Kazmir is 37 years old and hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2016, but he’s still throwing in the low 90s and has always had a really good changeup. It’s a no-risk move for a guy who still has potential. In Kazmir and Yamaguchi, the Giants have added two more pitchers capable of making starts. The Giants now go at least nine deep with intriguing arms to fill out the starting rotation. They’re likely going to need that depth to cover 162 games, a year after pitchers’ workloads were severely shortened due to the 60-game season.