The Giants have agreed to a minor league contract with free-agent first baseman Ronald Guzman, as first indicated on the transaction log at MiLB.com.
Guzman, 28, was considered one of the top prospects in the Rangers organization before making his Major League debut in 2018, but he’s yet to produce much in the Majors, slashing .225/.302/.411 with a 29.2% strikeout rate against an 8.8% walk rate in 832 trips to the plate. He spent the 2022 season with the Yankees organization, mostly playing with their Triple-A affiliate, where he slashed .255/.344/.478 (116 wRC+) in 105 games and 373 plate appearances. Guzman did receive a brief look late in the 2022 campaign as the Yanks dealt with injuries, but he logged just six trips to the plate in three games and went hitless along the way.
The depth chart in San Francisco has several players ahead of Guzman at first base, including LaMonte Wade Jr. and J.D. Davis, who could share time at the position in platoon fashion early in the 2023 season. Veteran utilityman Wilmer Flores is no stranger to the position either, having logged 1627 innings at first base, including 482 frames across the past two seasons. They’ll likely be the primary options at the position. Austin Slater could be more of an emergency option as well, given his 203 career innings at first, but he’s played exclusively in the outfield dating back to the 2020 campaign.
The Giants were lacking in first base depth in the upper minors, however, and Guzman will give them an experienced player with a track record of solid production in Triple-A. He’s spent parts of five seasons at the minor leagues’ top level, tallying 1150 total plate appearances and posting a solid .280/.360/.449 batting line with a 21.1% strikeout rate, an even 10% walk rate, 34 home runs, 61 doubles and four triples along the way.
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