Farhan Zaidi

Why Zaidi ‘can't imagine' Giants trading top prospect Harrison

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While the Giants whiffed on stars Shohei Ohtani and Yoshinobu Yamamoto in MLB free agency, San Francisco might utilize the trade market to address the team’s needs.

However, landing big-name players to improve the roster and excite fans likely would require the Giants to give away one of their promising young players like pitcher Kyle Harrison, who president of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi intends to keep.

In a conversation with The Athletic's Tim Kawakami on "The TK Show" podcast, Zaidi explained why he’s reluctant to offer Harrison in trade talks.

“I can’t imagine any plausible scenario where we would move Kyle,” Zaidi told Kawakami. “I mean, he’s everything that we are. He kind of embodies what we’re hoping to be the next few years. 

“Your young players who not only have a clear path to the big leagues, but actually are on the roster, and are, in prominent and important roles on the roster like someone like Kyle, feels a little bit like robbing Peter to pay Paul if you trade someone like that.”

At 22 years old, Harrison is San Francisco’s top prospect. 

In seven appearances with the big league club during the 2023 MLB season, Harrison tossed 34.2 innings and had a 4.15 ERA with 35 strikeouts and a 1.154 WHIP. 

San Francisco likely could deal Harrison for a proven star, but Zaidi revels in the idea of developing Harrison into one. The left-hander is on the right track, as he’s spending his offseason perfecting his craft alongside Giants ace Logan Webb.

“He’s a local guy,” emphasized Zaidi. “He’s a homegrown talent drafted and developed in our organization. Has gotten to the big leagues, is a great kid, is a great competitor, has All-Star and Cy Young potential in our minds, works really hard. And again, those are the kind of guys that we want to build around 

“I think any team in the situation we’re in where we’re looking to compete where we're looking to get better in 2024, when you start looking at your prospects who are either a year or two away or maybe blocked to some degree in the big leagues, those are probably the guys that, even though have to swallow hard, you’re most willing to trade.” 

The Giants definitely are interested in upgrading their pitching staff, but Zaidi doesn’t want to offer away a potential homegrown star.

Harrison, a Bay Area native, is one of San Francisco’s most promising pitching prospects since Madison Bumgarner.

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