Right-hander Ross Stripling He has exercised his $12.5 million player option for next season, per Danny Imerman of KNBR.com. Stripling, 34 this month, will return to the Giants for the 2024 season rather than test the open market. The move is not surprising, especially given the fact that Stripling himself announced that he expects to exercise his player option back in September.
After signing with the Giants to a two-year, $25 million guarantee last winter on the heels of a strong bench season in Toronto, Stripling has struggled mightily in San Francisco this year. The right-hander ultimately pitched just 89 innings with the Giants this year across 22 appearances, 11 of which were starts. In addition to recording his lowest full-season innings pitched total since 2017, Stripling struggled to get results. His strikeout rate dropped from 20.7% in 2022 to just 18.4% this year, while his walk rate rose from 3.7% to 4.2%.
While both rates are trending in the wrong direction, the marginal loss at K-BB is nothing compared to the massive problem Stripling faced in 2023. Despite the fact that only Comerica Park in Detroit and PNC Park in San Francisco have suppressed runs. Home Run In a higher section of Stripling’s Oracle Park, the right-hander has seen 22% of his fly balls leave the arena for home runs this year. Not only was that number a career-high in a full season, matched only by Stripling’s 22.8% in the shortened 2022 season, but it was the second-highest in the majors this year, barely bested by Phillies Christopher Sanchez’s 22.2%. With Stripling allowing more than two home runs per nine innings in 2023, it’s no surprise that Stripling’s 5.36 ERA and 5.21 FIP are the worst numbers of his career over a full season.
However, there is reason for optimism that Stripling can improve in his 2023 campaign next year. After all, he missed two months this year across two separate stints on the IL with back issues, suggesting he likely wasn’t healthy for most of the season. Better health coupled with better luck regarding the number of fly balls leaving the yard for home runs in 2024 could significantly improve Stripling’s effectiveness next year; After all, even in this rough season, some advanced metrics have viewed Stripling favorably as evidenced by his 3.98 xFIP (9% better than league average) and 4.13 SIERA.
The Giants are still awaiting selection decisions from the left-hander Shawnmania And Michael ConfortoBoth could also return to the open market instead of playing out the final year of two-year deals they signed with the club last winter. Meanwhile, San Francisco faces a decision of its own for the veteran right fielder Alex Cobb. Both Manaea and Conforto have reportedly yet to decide whether or not they will return to free agency this offseason, while Cobb, once an obvious choice for San Francisco to exercise, could be clouded by recent hip surgery that suggests… To put him out of work. Operating until opening day 2024.
“Alcohol enthusiast. Twitter ninja. Tv lover. Falls down a lot. Hipster-friendly coffee geek.”