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Farhan Zaidi Made Trade Deadline Magic by Offloading Mark Melancon's Contract on Braves

MIAMI, FL - MAY 29: Mark Melancon #41 of the San Francisco Giants throws a pitch in the seventh inning against the Miami Marlins at Marlins Park on May 29, 2019 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images)
San Francisco Giants v Miami Marlins | Mark Brown/Getty Images

There's no doubting that the Atlanta Braves, as things are presently constructed, are the favorited threat to dethrone the Los Angeles Dodgers in the National League. The club is built to win now and general manager Alex Anthopoulos flexed his muscles ahead of Wednesday afternoon's deadline by acquiring a handful of relievers.

One of those hurlers is former Giants right-hander Mark Melancon, who enjoyed an impressive first three months of 2019 in the Bay Area prior to his offloading. What some might not realize, however, is that the three-time All-Star is owed a hefty $18 million in 2019 and 2020, on a $14 million base salary.

And in a genuinely shocking revelation, the Braves are taking on all the remaining money owed to the 34-year-old vet.

We hate to tell you this, Mr. Anthopoulos, but Giants president of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi absolutely duped and hoodwinked you in this particular transaction.

Of course, Melancon originally joined San Fran on a four-year, $62 million contract in 2017 after spending the previous campaign with the Nationals.

Though he's been a formidable piece of Bruce Bochy's pen over the last 12 months, most skeptics and pundits will admit that the University of Arizona product is far-too erratic and injury-prone to be earning $18 million on an annual basis.

Zaidi was really out here exploiting Anthopoulos' dire need to acquire bullpen arms, a ruthless, brilliant strategy that inclines us to believe that the Giants' exec excels at chess.