San Francisco Giants: Who Will Play Left Field in 2016?

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Aug 21, 2015; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; San Francisco Giants left fielder Nori Aoki (23) crosses home plate to score a run against the Pittsburgh Pirates during the first inning at PNC Park. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

On Wednesday night, San Francisco Giants General Manager Bobby Evans, revealed the team will not be picking up Nori Aoki $5.5 million and Marlon Byrd‘s $8 million dollar options for the 2016 season. This move puts them on the market, and is a clear indication that the Giants want an upgrade in left field.

The Giants’ more dramatic need is the anemic rotation that somehow found a late season push to challenge the Los Angeles Dodgers for the National League West title. A push that ultimately came up short. What most baseball fans know is that the rotation is certainly not on par with teams of the past, and needs to be addressed with the books opening up and the free agent frenzy starting on Friday.

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If they did not want to bring back two players that had a significant impact of the team last season, it begs the question — do they have big aspirations for who will be playing left field in 2016?

The 2016 free agent class has a substantial amount of marquee players highlighted by: Zack Greinke, David Price, Johnny Cueto, Jordan Zimmermann, Yoenis Cespedes, and others who will have high price tags attached to their names. Mike Leake, who was traded to the Giants in July, finds himself looking to get his first large contract since being on his rookie deal.

Pitching, pitching, and more pitching will be the headlines this offseason as many teams will look to challenge the Giants who had a rotation that has been down in production the past two seasons. With three titles in six years, the Giants want to return to the glory days after failing to sign Jon Lester and James Shields in 2015.

Left field did not become a major focal point until the news of Aoki and Byrd’s options being declined broke. It makes fans wonder if the team is looking for the first regular left fielder since Barry Bonds.

There are three options the Giants could decide to try: they can sign a left fielder, trade for a left fielder, or promote from within the system.

Here is who the Giants could consider this offseason.

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