Giants use Meetings to gather information

Club doesn't make any acquisitions in Nashville, but moves could come in future

Giants use Meetings to gather information

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- The Giants obtained nothing but knowledge during the Winter Meetings. For them, that was as useful an addition as any player.

As the Meetings concluded Thursday, Giants general manager Bobby Evans acknowledged that the parameters for engineering free-agent deals or trades became more defined as the week at the Opryland Hotel progressed.

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"There's a lot of information that's been exchanged here that'll give us a pretty good sense of what our options would be," Evans said.

Winter Meetings highlights
Below were the biggest moves of the Winter Meetings in Nashville, Tenn.
12/9: D-backs acquire RHP Shelby Miller from Braves for OF Ender Inciarte, RHP Aaron Blair, SS Dansby Swanson.
Mets acquire 2B Neil Walker from Pirates for LHP Jon Niese.
Astros to acquire RHP Ken Giles from Phillies for RHP Vincent Velasquez, LHP Brett Oberholtzer, others. Not official.
White Sox acquire IF Brett Lawrie from A's for two Minor Leaguers.
Mets to sign SS Asdrubal Cabrera to 2-year deal. Not official.
Mariners acquire 1B Adam Lind from Brewers for three Minor Leaguers.
12/8: D-backs sign 6-year deal with Zack Greinke.
Cubs sign 4-year deal with 2B Ben Zobrist.
Yankees acquire 2B Starlin Castro from Cubs for RHP Adam Warren, PTBNL.
Cubs sign 2-year deal with RHP John Lackey.
Cardinals acquire 2B Jedd Gyorko from Padres for OF Jon Jay.
12/7: Dodgers near 3-year deal with RHP Hisashi Iwakuma. Not official.
Mariners acquire LHP Wade Miley, RHP Jonathan Aro from Red Sox for RHP Carson Smith, LHP Roenis Elias.
Royals sign 2-year deal with RHP Chris Young.
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Evans indicated that the Giants hadn't issued concrete offers to any starting pitchers or outfielders, two areas they're seeking to upgrade, but the club would be poised to act quickly if the time came to intensify the bidding for a free agent.

"Our timing is not, per se, urgent. We want to be opportunistic," he said.

The Giants declined to escalate the bidding for outfielder Jason Heyward, one of the most prominent remaining free agents who was rumored to be ready to select a team. The Giants believed that staying in the thick of the Heyward market would require submitting a lucrative, stunning proposal.

But if Heyward's suitors were to drop out, the Giants could be ready to capitalize.

"I don't want to rule out Heyward," Evans said.

The progress of the holiday season could assist San Francisco's player-acquisition efforts.

"A lot of players like to get into Christmas knowing where they're going," Evans said.

Evans reiterated that with a full complement of starting pitchers and close to a complete contingent of position players, the Giants felt no urgency to make deals simply to add bodies to the roster. But he affirmed that the Giants, who have signed Jeff Samardzija this offseason, will be proactive in trying to improve the club. The National League West appears to be as balanced and competitive as ever, particularly with the D-backs adding formidable right-handers Zack Greinke and Shelby Miller to their starting rotation.

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"There's a really good core within each club -- that makes our work that much more challenging -- to make sure that we are putting ourselves in the best position to compete in our division," Evans said.

Giants still looking for starter

Deals done
None. Evans expressed belief that the Giants could afford to be patient, given the depth of talent available in free agency and on the trade market.

Rule 5
The Blue Jays plucked right-hander Joe Biagini from the ranks of San Francisco's unprotected pitchers in the Major League phase of the Rule 5 Draft. Biagini, 25, finished 10-7 with a 2.42 ERA in 23 games (22 starts) for the Giants' Double-A Richmond affiliate this year.

Goals accomplished
None, unless -- as the Giants always have -- you count setting the stage for future deals as an accomplishment.

Unfinished business
Everything. The Giants hope to upgrade their starting rotation by adding a proven pitcher -- free agent Mike Leake remains a strong possibility -- and intend to add a left fielder who ideally has the aptitude to play center field in case injuries again strike Angel Pagan.

GM's bottom line
"It gets a lot of information teed up as to where you're headed." -- Evans, defining the value of the conversations conducted during the Meetings.

Chris Haft is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Haft-Baked Ideas, follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.