Giants Re-Sign Matt Yourkin, Andrew Kown

According to a source, the San Francisco Giants have re-signed Triple-A starters Matt Yourkin and 2011 PCL All-Star Andrew Kown.

UPDATE: I’ve received confirmation that the team has, in fact, re-signed the two right-handers. They should show up on the Giants’ list of non-roster invitees for Spring Training.

Yourkin, 30, has pitched with Fresno over the past couple seasons. In 2011, he posted a 4.69 ERA in 167 innings over 29 starts. For his career, he owns a 4.19 ERA, 8.2 K/9, and 3.3 BB/9 in over 600 innings.

Kown, 29, also spent 2011 with Fresno, where he posted a 4.48 ERA across 25 starts, with a K/BB of 1.98.

Angel Pagan, Giants Agree to One-Year Deal

According to the Associated Press, Angel Pagan and the Giants have reached agreement on a one-year deal worth $4.85MM. The contract reportedly includes a total of $150K in performance bonuses ($50K for 550, 600, and 650 plate appearances). This is right around what Pagan was expected to make, as he was projected to earn $4.7MM. All things considered, it’s a pretty reasonable deal.

As for Pagan, I’m feeling pretty good about the prospect of having him as a starting centerfielder for the 2012 season, as I wrote here.

And as for remaining arbitration-eligibles, this leaves: Sergio Romo, Nate Schierholtz, Melky Cabrera, Pablo Sandoval, Santiago Casilla, and Tim Lincecum. Lincecum’s case will be of particular interest, given its proportions.

Ryan Vogelsong Agrees to Two-Year Deal

The Giants have signed Ryan Vogelsong to a two-year deal with a club option for 2014, according to their official Twitter account. This confirms what was initially reported by Mychael Urban.

Jon Morosi tweets that the deal is worth $8MM:

Source: #SFGiants’ deal with Ryan Vogelsong is two years (plus option) at $8 million.

Vogelsong was pegged for something in the range of $3MM to $4MM, though Matt Swartz’s arbitration projections had him at $2.5MM. In any event, his case was clearly a bit unusual.

Vogelsong was awesome this year, and there’s no denying that. In 179.2 innings — 28 starts — he allowed 62 runs, posted a 132 ERA+, and racked up 3.7 wins above replacement. His peripherals (18.5 K%, 8.1 BB%) weren’t quite as stellar, but he did rate fairly well by most of the defensive-independent pitching metrics: 3.67 FIP/3.85 xFIP/3.97 SIERA, and 2.4 wins above replacement by Fangraphs’ FIP-based implementation.

Chances are, Vogelsong won’t be posting a sub-3 ERA again. In fact, there’s a good chance he won’t stay below 4 in 2012. For what it’s worth, ZiPS projects him for a 93 ERA+ over 153 innings in 2012. Given that Vogelsong is coming off of his only year of success in the majors, and that he wasn’t in the majors the four years preceding 2011, he’s still somewhat of an unknown. In other words, he’s harder to project over the next couple years than the average pitcher, given his unique progression.

If he does hit those projected ZiPS figures though, he’ll more or less be paid what he’s worth in 2012, and then overpaid thereafter (but nothing that would cripple financial flexibility). If he manages to repeat his 2011 success, or just be a slightly above-average starter over the course of a full season in 2012, it could turn out to be a pretty nice thing to have him under contract in 2013. I’m guessing the Giants think there’s a decent shot that Vogelsong will be a pitcher worth keeping in 2014, but right now, I don’t expect they’ll be picking up that option.

Anyway: not a bad deal, not a bargain. Just an okay deal. I would have preferred a one-year deal with, say, an option for 2013, but oh well. I don’t have too much to complain about here.

Giants Sign Adam Thomas, Yusmeiro Petit

Catching up on the Giants’ transactions: a little late to these, but the Giants have made a couple more minor-league signings…

According to Matt Eddy of Baseball America, the Giants signed right-hander Adam Thomas. He didn’t pitch at all from 2008 to 2010, but he posted a 1.73 ERA (4.08 K/BB) in 57 innings of relief in the Atlantic League this year. He’s 32 years old.

According to @beisbolporgotas and noticiaaldia.com, the Giants have also signed right-hander Yusmeiro Petit. Petit, 27, has 36 major-league starts under his belt, though he hasn’t been terribly impressive (82 ERA+, 5.44 FIP). Of particular concern is his home run rate — he’s allowed 50 home runs in 229 career innings at the major-league level. Anyway, he last pitched in the majors with Arizona in 2009. He spent last season in the Mexican League with the Guerreros de Oaxaca, where he posted a 5.60 K/BB in six starts/37 innings.

By my count, the Giants have now signed 13 players to minor-league deals:

 

Giants Sign Eric Hacker

Via Andrew Baggarly (per Sosnick Cobbe Sports), the Giants have signed right-handed pitcher Eric Hacker to a minor-league deal:

RT @SosnickCobbe RHP Eric Hacker has signed a Minor League deal with the #Giants. Hacker won 16 games for Triple-A Fresno in 2010.

Hacker, 28, posted a 6.10 ERA/4.85 FIP in 135 innings with the Twins’ AAA affiliate in 2011. He tossed 165.2 innings in Fresno the year before, and was similarly mediocre (4.51 ERA/4.67 FIP). Like Brian Burres, who signed with the Giants yesterday, Hacker will serve as starting pitching depth.

Giants sign Brian Burres and Emmanuel Burriss

The Giants reached a couple of agreements today with players of similar sounding names.

Emmanuel Burriss will reportedly have a larger role in the 2012 season as the Giants try to groom him as a potential super utility guy. Hank Schulman of the SF Chronicle speculates that the deal will be close to the league minimum. By signing now the Giants and Burriss avoided an arbitration hearing.

The Giants also signed Brian Burres to a minor league deal with a spring training invite. Burres was drafted by the Giants and was once ranked #22 in the system by Baseball America, one spot ahead of Jonathan Sanchez. He will likely be rotation depth at Fresno.

Giants Sign Eli Whiteside

According to John Shea, the Giants have signed Eli Whiteside to a major-league deal. It comes as no surprise that the Giants have re-signed him, as they had indicated that they were planning on bringing him back in some capacity, but it’s a bit of a head-scratcher that they gave him a major-league deal.

Whiteside, 32, has hit .218/.274/.339 (67 OPS+) in limited time at the majors, and hit just .197/.264/.310 (62 OPS+) in 2011. In addition, he had his fair share of defensive struggles behind the plate. I’d figured the Giants would go with Chris Stewart as the backup in the beginning of 2012, with Hector Sanchez eventually supplanting him.

Giants Sign (Former) Five-Tool Talent

The Giants lost a Joaquin to the Nationals yesterday. Waldis Joaquin was designated for assignment about a month ago, so Washington just swooped in and signed him to a minor-league deal. Joaquin put up a 1.17 K/BB in 50 innings in Fresno. So the Giants did what any clever organization would do. They went out and got a better Joaquin: Joaquin Arias. Well…maybe he’s better.

Arias was once a five-tool talent. He was once a top-100 prospect. This one time, he was traded along with Alfonso Soriano for one of the greatest players of all time. That was all about seven and a half years ago, though.

More recently, he was traded straight-up for Jeff Francoeur. And that really says all you need to know about how he’s progressed in these past seven and a half years. Jeff Francoeur.

But Arias, interestingly enough, is still only 27 years old.

Here’s what I know about the Arias of Christmas Present, from an Amazin’ Avenue post that was written one year ago:

  • He’s probably not a major-league shortstop
  • He’s still got some speed
  • He doesn’t have much power
  • He can’t walk

Miguel Tejada hit .239/.270/.326 this year. Joaquin Arias hit .232/.272/.353. The only problem — aside, of course, from the fact that this is awful production — is that Arias put up those numbers in Triple-A.

The shine from his semi-elite prospect status has long worn off, but Arias remains one of the more intriguing signings the Giants have made in the past two offseasons. Unfortunately, that says more about the utter boredom that is an early 2010s Giants offseason than it does about Arias. At least he’s more interesting than, say, Jeff Suppan.

Two months ’til pitchers and catchers report…