Giants Sign Moises Alou

The San Francisco Giants signed outfielder Moises Alou to a one year deal with an option for the second. The career left fielder will take over in right field for the Giants.

Moises Alou, 38, signed to play with his father, Giants manager Felipe Alou, for the second time in his career. Moises also played under his father while Felipe managed the Montreal Expos from 1992 to 1996. The Alou family has strong ties with the Giants, with all three brothers of the elder generation, Felipe, Matty and Jesus, playing for the San Francisco Giants in their careers. Moises also has historical ties to the Bay Area, starting his career in baseball playing for Canada College in Redwood City.

The contract is for one year, with a player’s option for a second year. The deal will be worth $13.25 million if Moises plays for both years. There are also performance bonuses of $250,000 each year based on plate appearances.

“I'm very thankful and glad to be going to San Francisco for a lot of reasons," said Moises. "With the new tradition there, I've always wanted to be a part of that. I went to junior college there from 1984 to 1986, and I have a lot of friends there…I've always been excited to play there and now I'm even more excited to play in San Francisco on a daily basis."

Moises represents the ‘big bat’ many Giants fans have desired to bat behind Bonds since Jeff Kent left via free agency after the 2002 season. He hit .293 in 2004 with the Chicago Cubs, with 39 home runs and 106 RBI. The home run total was his career high, but he has hit at least 20 each year since 1996 except for 1999, when he missed the season with injury, and 2002, when he hit 15 and was dealing with injuries for much of the year.

Moises has played for the Expos, Marlins, Astros, Cubs and Pirates over his 15 year career. He was briefly a teammate with Barry Bonds in Pittsburgh in his rookie season of 1990. Alou was fielding offers from Astros, Dodgers and Mets, but reportedly took less money to sign with the Giants and play for his father. If the Giants win the World Series in 2005, he has indicated that he will retire. He already has won one ring, as part of the 1997 Marlins world championship team.

Giants management and ownership seem very happy with this signing. Owner Peter Magowan called this team one of the best of his term owning the Giants. Saying “I'd compare it to our 2000 team and 2003 teams…We have a strong bullpen, a lot of run-scoring ability in the lineup and a good defensive team. I expect to have a great year in 2005."

General Manager Brian Sabean, meanwhile, is thinking of nothing less than a championship. “This signing was momentous to the Giants. To put him in the middle of the lineup -- he's one of the top five most dangerous hitters in the National League. He's a gamer and I think we'll all take great joy [by earning] a World Series ring. "

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