Denard Span is the underrated pickup of the offseason.*

That’s not to say that there weren’t better outfielders that were available in free agency.  Jason Heyward was a hell of a pickup by the Cubs.  Dexter Fowler is a very good outfielder, right on Span’s level.

But Span is notable because he is a perfect fit for the San Francisco Giants.*

At his best (which was 2 years ago), Span hits for average, draws walks, steals 20+ bases a season and plays excellent center field defense.  His downsides mostly consist of a lack of power, and being 32.  And recovering from hip surgery.

But the Giants don’t need power.  Wait, hold on, they need power hitting, they just don’t need it from him.

Span is a slap hitter, and that fits the Giants to a T.  He’ll join with (likely) Joe Panik and Matt Duffy at the top of the lineup, all three good singles hitters who can pull off doubles.  Span gives them that, plus speed, and thus an ability to get triples.

That is where that perfect fit comes into play.  Span will be inserted into the lineup in the perfect spot, with other hitters like him, and in a ballpark where his speed can put up a very nice number of triples.  Oh, and he brings back some excellent outfield defense, it’s also a perfect fit for a team that tripled down on signing pitchers for the long term, and pitchers need good defense.

Plus, he allows Angel Pagan to relax a little in left field, and hopefully get healthier.  A healthy Pagan can still be a good offensive player.

I don’t think Span is going to be an All-Star contender, the way Nori Aoki was looking early on last year.  But Span is a perfect fit for what this team is doing, and Giants fans are going to enjoy him this season and the next few.

And maybe even the seagulls will enjoy tormenting him.

(I see a SFGiants commercial remaking “The Birds” coming.)

*-If Healthy.  This is always true, but especially always true with Span.