(That would be my reaction too if I had just learned I’m getting 90 Million Dollars!)
You read that right. The San Francisco Giants have resigned Hunter Pence for 5 years at 18 Million Dollars a season. Pence, hitting .282 with a career high 26 HR and 94 RBI this season possibly could have got more on the open market, since the price for good hitters is going to be highly inflated this year, as the only guys happier that this deal got done are Scott Boras and his client Outfielder Shin Soo Choo, who is now set to receive over 20 Million Dollars, and Robinson Cano who recently asked the Yankees for a 10 year 305 Million Dollar deal…Which is just downright crazy.
This move could come at no better time for the Giants, as now they can put all their focus (and dollars) towards other important offseason moves, such as bringing in a Left Fielder such as Cuban Defector Jose Abreu, and figuring out what they want to do with Lincecum and Vogelsong, and other Free Agent Starting Pitchers. The Giants still have some money to work with, and I think the dollar amount for Pence means the end for Ryan Vogelsong in San Francisco, as he could be the odd man out if the Giants were to resign Lincecum for say, 4 years 14 Million a season.
This is the Giants first step in the road back to contention. Pence is a bona fide ball player, capable of hitting 25 HR’s a year and is above average defensively in Right Field. He’s really been the only person on the team who’s provided any sort of power this season, although, Belt has shown flashes. If the Giants can bring in a guy like Abreu out of Cuba, who can make a Puig/Cespedes like immediate contribution, then the Giants will be in much better shape. For 2014 they’d get a healy Pagan back, and a rested and ready Matt Cain, who should have a better year than this one.
I for one thing am very happy to have Pence back for next season and beyond, as I am sure he is happy to be back, and the Giants happy to have him. He provides an energy and intensity that this team has lacked. I fully expect a comeback season in 2014 if the Giants can make that long elusive impact signing with Abreu or someone else, with Cain and Pagans resurgence, and hopefully next year will be the year that Brandon Belt can put it all together. He gets a lot of flack, but he’s improved year to year. And I fully expect Posey and Sandoval to come back with better seasons as well. The road back to contention is going to be a long one with the Dodgers in our division, but the road just got a little less bumpy with Pence resigned.