SACRAMENTO — There has been no shortage of chatter surrounding the Giants’ offseason.
San Francisco was expected to be a major player at the top of MLB’s free-agent market, and while there have been a few intriguing moves made, the Giants still swung and missed at their top two offseason targets in two-way superstar Shohei Ohtani and Japanese pitcher Yoshinobu Yamamoto.
But it wasn’t for a lack of trying. At least on starting pitcher Logan Webb’s end.
As one of, if not the only, undisputed stars on the Giants’ roster, the organization has leaned on Webb and franchise-icon-turned-part-owner Buster Posey to represent the franchise from a player’s perspective in its negotiations with free agents.
Webb was involved in helping recruit multiple free agents this offseason, including flamethrowing right-handed pitcher Jordan Hicks, who the team signed to a four-year, $44 million contract, and Yamamoto before he ultimately signed a record-breaking 12-year, $325 million contract with the rival Los Angeles Dodgers.
The young ace joined Giants representatives on a Zoom call with Hicks, but confirmed to NBC Sports Bay Area at Giants Fan Fest that he was in attendance for the meeting with Yamamoto at Oracle Park.
“He was a really nice guy,” Webb told NBC Sports Bay Area. “He’s got a full posse with him. He’s got like seven or eight guys. He was awesome, he’s a great guy. I hate seeing him go to the Dodgers, but I think he was planning on that the whole time. I think he grew up a Dodger fan. It was interesting to hear about his free-agent visits, there were like six Dodgers players there. It’s unfortunate, but like I said, you can’t dwell on those things.”
While Webb was involved in the Giants’ pursuit of Yamamoto, he confirmed that he was not involved in the Ohtani pursuit. At least not officially.
Webb followed Ohtani on Instagram earlier this offseason, and much to the excitement of him and Giants fans, received a follow back. Webb confirmed that he ended up messaging Ohtani, offering his support in answering any questions the two-time AL MVP might have about the city of San Francisco and the organization.
Ohtani replied to Webb and simply thanked him for reaching out. After that? Radio silence.
Webb is eager to help recruit, whether he’s called upon or not. And his work this offseason might not be done. With a handful of star free agents still available, including reigning NL Cy Young Award winner Blake Snell, outfielder Cody Bellinger, left-handed pitcher Jordan Montgomery and third baseman Matt Chapman, Webb has been in contact with some of the many available free agents and has done his part by reaching out as they continue to weigh their options.
“Recruiting is weird, because I don’t know I’m recruiting unless they ask me to help out,” Webb shared. “I had no clue about the Jung Hoo Lee, I had no clue about Tom Murphy, had no clue about some of these guys. If they need my help I would love to help out. I am friends with some of the free agents that are out there now, so I’ve done my part in just me, personally, telling them. I don’t know if they’re actually talking to people. I try to reach out.”
Even though the Giants missed out on Ohtani and Yamamoto, Webb is excited by the moves the team has made this offseason, and they might not be done.
“I think we’re super excited to get some of the guys that we got,” Webb said. “Jung Hoo Lee and Jordan Hicks. Obviously, you watch him throw 104 mph, not many people can do that, so we’re excited about him. Robbie Ray I think is awesome. Being able to meet him the last couple weeks, just excited to pick his brain. He was a Cy Young winner.
“Obviously Tom Murphy, you get a guy like that behind the plate, a veteran guy who’s been around. We’re excited about all those guys, but I don’t know if we’re completely done making moves. I’m excited to get back to spring and get together.”
While Webb and the new-look Giants are gearing up for spring training, president of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi is not done bolstering the 2024 roster.
And if there’s another big move to be made, Webb is ready and willing to do whatever he can to help push another deal across the finish line.
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