Giants make first major league addition of offseason, add former Tigers outfielder

Outfielder Mike Gerber is the first addition of the Farhan Zaidi era

  • Mike Gerber #13 of the Detroit Tigers poses for a photo during photo days on February 20, 2018 in Lakeland, Florida. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

  • Mikie Mahtook #8 of the Detroit Tigers celebrates with Mike Gerber #13 of the Detroit Tigers and Victor Reyes #22 of the Detroit Tigers after a 78-2 win over the Chicago White Sox at Comerica Park on August 23, 2018 in Detroit, Michigan. The teams are wearing their Players Weekend jerseys and hats. (Photo by Duane Burleson/Getty Images)

  • The baseball hits the wall as Detroit Tigers center fielder Mike Gerber gives chase on a double fly ball by Minnesota Twins’ Jorge Polanco in the fourth inning of a baseball game Sunday, Aug. 19, 2018, in Minneapolis. (AP Photo/Jim Mone)

  • Detroit Tigers’ Niko Goodrum (28) is greeted by Mike Gerber (13) after they scored on Goodrum’s two-run home run during the ninth inning of a baseball game against the Minnesota Twins, Saturday, Aug. 11, 2018, in Detroit. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)

  • Victor Reyes #22 and Mike Gerber #13 of the Detroit Tigers collide when Gerber caught a ball off the bat of Kole Calhoun of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim at Angel Stadium on August 6, 2018 in Anaheim, California. (Photo by John McCoy/Getty Images)

  • Marcus Semien #10 of the Oakland Athletics fumbles the ball as Mike Gerber #13 of the Detroit Tigers slides safely into second base in the first inning at Oakland Alameda Coliseum on August 5, 2018 in Oakland, California. (Photo by Lachlan Cunningham/Getty Images)

  • Mike Gerber #13 of the Detroit Tigers hits a RBI double in the eighth inning in front of Tucker Barnhart #16 of the Cincinnati Reds at Comerica Park on July 31, 2018 in Detroit, Michigan. Detroit won the game 2-1. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)

  • Mike Gerber #75 of the Detroit Tigers poses for a portait during a MLB photo day at Publix Field at Joker Marchant Stadium on February 19, 2017 in Lakeland, Florida. (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)



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LAS VEGAS–During the first two months of the offseason, the Giants slowly whittled down their 40-man roster, dropping several contributors from last season’s club.

At the beginning of Major League Baseball’s Winter Meetings, new president of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi finally made the first addition to the team, claiming former Tigers outfielder Mike Gerber off waivers.

Gerber, 26, debuted with Detroit in 2018 and struck out 21 times in 42 at-bats. A 15th round draft pick of the Tigers in 2014, Gerber owns a career .814 OPS in five minor league seasons and was a 2016 Rawlings Minor League Gold Glove Award winner.

A left-handed hitter who has 65 career minor league home runs, Gerber has the versatility to play all three outfield positions and was college teammates with Giants pitcher Ty Blach at Creighton. Gerber also played alongside outfielder Mac Williamson with the Scottsdale Scorpions in the Arizona Fall League in 2015.

The Giants entered the Winter Meetings with just four outfielders on their 40-man roster and a desire to add depth at all three outfield positions. Gerber joins Williamson, Steven Duggar, Austin Slater and Chris Shaw on the roster, but Zaidi is expected to continue building depth by acquiring at least one corner outfielder who projects as a regular starter.

After claiming Gerber, the Giants have five open spots on their 40-man roster.

With a number of holes to fill, the Giants should be one of baseball’s busiest clubs at this year’s Winter Meetings. Zaidi has expressed a desire to find additional contributors in the outfield and build out San Francisco’s starting rotation.

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