Why Olney believes Giants 'most dangerous' team in 2021 FA originally appeared on NBC Sports Bayarea
The Giants haven't made any big splashes in MLB free agency in a number of years, but ESPN's Buster Olney believes that could change when the 2021 offseason begins next fall.
Olney joined KNBR's "The Mark Willard Show" on Friday night, and discussed why he sees the Giants as major threats for bringing in a star from the upcoming free-agent class.
"They are going to be the most dangerous team in the marketplace starting in the Fall of 2021," Olney said. "Now because of that spending flexibility and the fact that once you have the new labor agreement in place and the current CBA is set to expire in December, once those new rules are set in place, historically, teams are much more aggressive and you will see payroll and spending go up, and you know what, no team is gonna have more available money it appears on paper than the Giants.
"The timing is also good, because next fall we potentially could have the best free-agent class of shortstops we've ever seen, there are guys also available at other positions so I think they will be in a position to take advantage of it as far as they want to."
The Giants currently have just $69.7 million committed to the roster in 2022, and certainly will be in a position go after some of the biggest fish in free agency. Brandon Crawford is set to become a free agent after the 2021 season, and could be part of an incredible collection of shortstops available as free agents next winter.
Francisco Lindor, Carlos Correa, Javier Baez and Corey Seager join Trevor Story in potentially having an embarrassment of riches available after the 2021 season. The New York Mets made a sizable investment in trading for Lindor and new billionaire owner Steve Cohen likely will shell out the cash to keep him in the Big Apple.
The Giants fell short of bringing in the biggest stars over the past few free agency periods, and especially with the Los Angeles Dodgers and San Diego Padres stacking talent in the NL West, the Giants will need to bolster the roster in order to compete.
President of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi has made shrewd moves since taking over and tried to maximize value with every signing and trade, but especially if the Giants give him the chance to open up the checkbook, we could see the Giants become major players in free agency.