Giants Prospects

Baer explains how ‘north star' guides Giants' roster building

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When it comes to roster building, the Giants are guided by one major principle.

Giants CEO and president Larry Baer joined The Athletic's Tim Kawakami on the latest episode of "The TK Show" podcast, where he was asked how important it is for the organization to pursue top free agents in an effort to give fans a star to root for.

The Giants, as they proved last offseason in their pursuits of Aaron Judge and Carlos Correa, are willing to spend the money for a big name, but would prefer to develop their own superstars.

"It's always on the radar, but I wouldn't say it supersedes the combustible pieces, the combustion you can generate from multiple guys coming through the farm system," Baer said. "That is kind of the north star, if we can get that dynamic going, then signing a superstar -- yes, there's fan appeal ... you kind of have to look at where you are."

The Giants are in the process of developing and establishing their next homegrown core. So far, starting pitcher Logan Webb, closer Camilo Doval, infielder Casey Schmitt and catcher Patrick Bailey have formed a foundation that likely will add top pitching prospect Kyle Harrison, outfielder Luis Matos, and shortstop Marco Luciano, among others, in the future.

Ideally, San Francisco would construct the heart of its roster with homegrown talent instead of relying on the free-agent and trade markets as they have in recent years.

"We've got a lot of guys and let's just see," Baer added. "That's the north star if we can go that way. And certainly, free agents, as we demonstrated in the offseason, are not off limits or out of bounds ... we're not averse to it, we're certainly not allergic to it. It's really an art and a science."

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Ever since the homegrown core of Buster Posey, Madison Bumgarner, Tim Lincecum, Matt Cain, Brandon Crawford and Brandon Belt helped deliver three World Series championships in 2010, 2012 and 2014, the Giants' farm system has struggled to produce many everyday players that fans can support for years to come.

Baer and the Giants hope that Schmitt, Bailey and the other top prospects expected to see time at the MLB level this season serve as foundational pieces for years to come.

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