The Giants signed Jensen to a minor-league contract Tuesday, Chris Cotillo of SB Nation reports. The outfielder/first baseman spent the 2017 campaign in the Nippon Professional Baseball league with the Fukuoka SoftBank Hawks, appearing in only six games before the Japanese club released him. The 29-year-old Jensen previously saw time in the majors with the Diamondbacks in 2016, but will likely have to prove himself in the high minors before receiving another cup of coffee in the big leagues.
Jensen's rights were sold to the Fukuoka SoftBank Hawks of Japan on Tuesday. The 28-year-old utility man finally broke through to the majors in 2016 after spending seven-plus years toiling in the minors. This move to Japan gives him a more stable situation, as he would have likely spent all or most of 2017 in the minors if he stayed stateside.
Jensen went 1-for-3 with a homer, a walk and two runs against the Dodgers on Thursday. He's homered twice along with a pair of singles in 14 at-bats since being called up. Jensen racked up some eye-popping stats in Triple-A -- chiefly his 30 homers and 120 RBI -- but as a 28-year-old who strikes out prolifically, starts only rarely, and had spent his entire career in the minors until this month, he doesn't merit much fantasy interest.
Jensen's contract was selected from Triple-A Reno on Saturday. The 28-year-old journeyman outfielder will get his first career call to the big leagues this September. He took advantage of the favorable hitting conditions in the Pacific Coast League, hitting .289/.350/.546 with 30 homers and 120 RBI with Reno this year. His 30.5 percent K-rate and .373 BABIP suggest that those numbers are fairly irrelevant, with regards to how he will perform against big league pitching. Look for him to play sparingly down the stretch, primarily serving as strong option off the bench against lefties.
Jensen signed with the Diamondbacks on Monday, Matt Eddy of Baseball America reports. Jensen has never appeared in the majors, but he has flashed intriguing power in the minors, slugging 20 homers in 2015 and hitting 27 the year before. He'll likely start the season in the minors and will serve as outfield depth for the big league club.