A day before the start of the Cactus League season, the Giants shipped an infielder out of town. Conor Gillaspie was traded to the Chicago White Sox in exchange for right-handed pitcher Jeff Soptic.
Soptic is a 21-year-old who has a 5.09 ERA in 30 relief appearances over the past two seasons. But, as they say in the game, he’s projectable. Baseball-Reference lists him at 6-foot-6, 210 pounds, and according to Baseball America, Soptic had the best fastball out of all White Sox minor leaguers. He was a third-round pick in 2011 out of Johnson County Community College.
Soptic walked 29 in 43 1/3 innings last year, so there’s some work to be done. But never hurts to get a hard-thrower in your organization, especially when the player you’re giving up wasn’t going to contribute. Gillaspie likely wasn’t going to make the club and is out of options, plus this clears a spot on the 40-man roster.
Gillaspie was the organization’s sandwich pick (37th overall) in the 2008 draft. He was a .287 hitter in the minors but had just 37 homers in 514 games. He’s memorable for making his MLB debut 96 days after being drafted, which ranks as the fastest debut by a Giants draft choice. In 29 Major League games, Gillaspie hit .205 with one homer and four RBIs.
Giants trade Gillaspie for relief prospect
San Jose Mercury News | Feb 22