Wednesday, December 11, 2019
MLB Trade Review: Giants acquire Cozart
The San Francisco Giants have acquired IFs Zack Cozart and Will Wilson from the Los Angeles Angels in exchange for cash and a player to be named later.
The basis of this trade is that the Giants are getting a recent top pick to take on a bad contract. But, with the Giants not expecting to be good in 2020, the contract is not terrible. Before the 2018 season, Cozart signed a three year, $38 million deal with the Angels. However, in the two years since, Cozart has played in a combined 96 games. The Giants have just one year of Cozart, and will pay him $12.66 million for 2020. Will Wilson was drafted 15th overall in this past draft. He was the Angels' 4th best prospect, according to MLB Pipeline. With the Giants having a much better system, Wilson will drop down to their 10th prospect spot. In 2019 for North Carolina, Wilson hit .339 with 16 home runs. Playing for the rookie league Orem Owlz, Wilson hit .275 with five home runs in 46 games.
The Angels are in the center of a big offseason. While they missed out on top starting pitchers Stephen Strasburg and Gerrit Cole, they will be in the market for Madison Bumgarner, Hyun-Jin Ryu and maybe Anthony Rendon. They will likely spend a lot of money, so they needed to shed salary. While they gave up Wilson, it could lead to a much better player. Cozart was a big disappointment. A .254 hitter with 82 home runs in parts of seven seasons with the Reds, Cozart hit 40 home runs combined in 2016-2017, including a 2017 all-star appearance. In two years with the Angels, Cozart hit .190 with five home runs. He hit .124 in 38 games with no home runs in 2019. The Angels will likely have David Fletcher starting at third base, unless a Rendon or Josh Donaldson comes to town.
Cozart might not be as much as a risk for the Giants as it seems. He will probably be hurt at some point, and his production could lack. But if he can at least hit 10 home runs and hit .250, the Giants will be happy.