Joey Bart

Zaidi believes Bart, Ramos still could be options for Giants

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SAN FRANCISCO -- A day after the trade deadline, Giants president of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi spent most of his afternoon watching Triple-A Sacramento's game. Zaidi has pulled from the River Cats' roster often when holes have opened up in the big leagues, and he expects to do it the rest of the season, too. 

But when Mike Yastrzemski went down and the Giants needed a short-term fill-in who could potentially turn into more, they made a trade for the right-handed-hitting AJ Pollock rather than turn to their farm system. Why Pollock instead of someone like Heliot Ramos, who was already in the organization? On Thursday's Giants Talk Podcast, Zaidi provided an answer. 

"I think Heliot could still get that opportunity. Anything can happen the last two months, especially if he continues to play the way he's playing," Zaidi said. "For us, with Yaz going down, being able to fill the void with somebody who had an established Major League track record and we felt comfortable could fit for us in terms of what we're looking for on the field and in the clubhouse, (Pollock) was just an easy and obvious fit."

Ramos played nine games for the Giants earlier this season but he missed two months with an oblique injury after he was sent back down. The at-bats have been better in recent weeks, with Ramos posting a .317/.352/.646 slash line in July with five homers, but the Giants still want to see more before they give him another shot. In an organization that values plate discipline above just about everything else, it certainly stood out that Ramos struck out 25 times and walked just four times in July.

"He's done a nice job in Sacramento. We're just kind of looking for a little bit more consistency," Zaidi said.

The Giants are hopeful that Pollock can turn his season around and stick on the roster even after Yastrzemski returns in two to three weeks, although if everyone stays healthy, the outfield will get crowded. Mitch Haniger is expected to return at some point in August. 

The Giants weren't really buyers at the deadline, but they didn't sell, either, even though they have several young players in Triple-A who are blocked right now. Joey Bart's name came up before the deadline and the Giants got calls on the young catcher, but like Ramos, he's still in Triple-A. Zaidi said the Giants view Bart as being instrumental, even though Patrick Bailey and Blake Sabol are locked in at the big league level.

"At this time of year, for a team that's a playoff contender, having three catchers is absolutely paramount," he said. "Three guys that you trust, three guys that your pitching staff is comfortable throwing to, so he's a huge part of this picture, even if he's not here right now. We're just happy to see him getting at-bats, working on his game offensively, and just continuing to develop relationships with pitchers that could wind up here before the end of the season. He's very much a part of the picture. 

"We couldn't be happier with the three catchers we have, including him, that we can rely on getting through the stretch."

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