The Giants face up difficulties due to injuries and the COVID-19 pandemic. They had to utilize their backup catcher Curt Casali to take grounders at first base before Friday’s game since the Giants’ lineup is thin. The Giants finally sought some temporary support on Saturday by making another trade with the Seattle Mariners to acquire Infielder Mike Ford after receiving Kevin Padlo earlier.
Mike Ford, an infielder, was acquired from the Seattle Mariners in exchange for financial considerations. The Mariners designated Ford for assignment earlier this week. The Giants, like they have done on numerous occasions recently, made a cash transaction to jump the line because they do not have a good trade priority.
Following the 2013 draft, Ford was signed as an undrafted free agent out of Princeton University, where he had attended. Although he was not taken in any of the first 40 rounds of the 2013 draft, it is an incredible accomplishment that he has progressed to the level of a major league player.
The 29-year-old infielder rose fast through the minors, reaching Triple-A by 2017. Having played in the minor league for nine seasons, he hit .268/.368/.452 with 138 doubles and 105 home runs. This score includes a 15.4% strikeout to a 13.2% walk rate.
Ford made his MLB debut in 2019 and hit.259/.350/.559 with 12 home runs, 25 RBI, and 30 runs in 163 plate appearances. He temporarily became a major league sensation in New York, blasting 12 home runs in only 50 games in 2019. Still, he has struggled since then, hitting just.134 with five home runs in 51 games.
Since then, the lefty has recorded a 46 OPS+ in 156 plate appearances, with only five home runs, in the following two seasons. The Yankees were looking for more consistent output because of his primary position at first base.
Giants testing Ford
Despite his struggle to maintain the same production level as in 2019, Ford has shown some positive trends against major league pitching, including an exit velocity of 91.5 MPH, an average barrel rate of 8.5 percent, a strikeout rate of 21 percent, and an average walk rate of 11 percent. Giants’ scouts are keeping an eye out for these kinds of trends to develop this hitter further.
Although Ford has only played first base in the Major Leagues, the Giants are already experimenting with him at third base as part of their defensive rotation. He has some experience at third base in the major leagues, so it is not an entirely new position. This indicates how the Giants intend to employ him if he remains on the roster for an extended period.
New guy getting in work at third base.
Ford, a LHH, primarily plays 1st but Kapler said they’re comfortable with him at 3rd too. pic.twitter.com/qsyVVAZ50x
— Evan Webeck (@EvanWebeck) April 30, 2022
The Giants have welcomed several newcomers to the team and dealt with a COVID outbreak. Both occurrences are likely connected because the COVID injured list temporarily removes players from the 40-man roster. The front management appears to be taking advantage of this opportunity to bring some intriguing new players to the franchise.
On Saturday, Ford was added to the Giants’ active roster, although he did not appear in the team’s starting lineup. The Giants optioned outfielder Ka’ai Tom to Triple-A to make room on the roster. It is expected that they will continue to change the roster in the coming days while they await the return of players.
The Giants and Mariners made a trade today, with IF Mike Ford joining the Giants organization in exchange for cash considerations. Ford (#70) will be active for today’s game.
OF Ka’ai Tom returned to Triple-A Sacramento.
— Maria I. Guardado (@mi_guardado) April 30, 2022