The San Francisco Giants get better in two ways Tuesday. The team not only hired Farhan Zaidi as its next head of baseball operations, but it took talent away from its biggest rival.
Zaidi will leave his post as the Los Angeles Dodgers general manager to join the Giants, according to Hank Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle. The team is expected to announce the move Tuesday night.
The 41-year-old Zaidi is known for embracing statistics. He got his start with the Oakland Athletics, working his way up to assistant general manager in 2013. Zaidi joined the Dodgers in 2014, and had been with the team for four seasons. The Dodgers made the postseason all four seasons, falling twice in the World Series.
After four years under Andrew Friedman, Zaidi will get his shot to run the show in San Francisco.
Generally speaking, the head of baseball ops sets the direction and has final say on signings, drafts, trades, etc.. The GM runs the day-to-day operations of the front office, makes lots of decisions on the minor-leagues, works on trades and free agents. It's a collaboration. https://t.co/nfI4N8HCLg
— Henry Schulman (@hankschulman) November 7, 2018
Zaidi will be tasked with completely overhauling the team’s farm system. Over the past five seasons, the Giants have ranked no higher than No. 19 on Baseball America’s annual organizational rankings list.
He’ll have to do that while keeping the major-league team competitive. Giants president and CEO Larry Baer has expressed a desire to remain in contention while strengthening the farm system.
Completing both goals won’t be easy. The Giants won just 73 games in 2018 with an underperforming veteran roster. Zaidi will have to identify which players can bounce back and supplement those pieces with smart free-agent adds. While he’s doing that, he’ll have to trade what he can to bolster the farm system and hit on draft picks.
Getting the Giants back on track will be difficult, but Zaidi has a strong reputation within the game. It was only a matter of time before he got to run a team.
Unfortunately for the Dodgers, that team happened to be their biggest rival.
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