Halfway through the 2017 season, we’ll take a closer look at some of the San Francisco Giants top minor league prospects.
Andrew Suarez is listed as the 10th best San Francisco Giants prospect by MLB.com coming into the 2017 season.
He was drafted out of the University of Miami in the second round of the 2015 MLB Draft. He was actually drafted in 2011 (ninth round) by the Toronto Blue Jays and 2014 by the Washington Nationals (second round). But decided to wait until the San Francisco Giants selected him … or so we like to think.
The left-handed pitcher was sent to Arizona in 2015 after being drafted and gave up just 1 run in 5 innings with 6 strikeouts. Then he went to Low-A where he had a 1.40 ERA in 5 starts and 19.1 innings. And then he moved up to High-A and posted a 1.80 ERA in three 3 starts (15 innings) with 16 strikeouts.
Last year he started back in San Jose with the San Francisco Giants High-A team. He continued to impress with a 2.43 ERA in 5 starts (29.2 innings) with 34 strikeouts. That quickly earned him a promotion to Double-A.
At Richmond he had a 3.95 ERA in 19 starts with 90 strikeouts in 114 innings pitch. He also had a WHIP of 1.34 at Double-A.
He was invited to spring training as a non-roster invitee before 2017. He pitched in just two games and didn’t have great results. He gave up 3 earned runs on 5 hits and 5 walks with 2 strikeouts in 1.2 innings pitched.
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Suarez was sent back to Double-A where he began the 2017 season. He quickly got back on track with a 2.96 ERA in 11 starts with 55 strikeouts in 67 innings and a 1.30 WHIP.
That earned him a promotion to Triple-A. He’s once again struggled at a new level with a 4.01 ERA in 4 starts (24.2 innings) with 24 strikeouts and a 1.54 WHIP.
He’s 24-years-old and stayed through his senior year at college, so it’s not much of a surprise that he’s a little bit behind in his development.
Still, he’s been able to figure it out at each level and has moved up pretty quickly.
If he’s able to string together some good starts at Triple-A, I think he gets a shot in the big leagues this year. He’s not on the 40-man roster though, so the San Francisco Giants would have to make a move to promote him.
If the San Francisco Giants trade a starting pitcher or two at the deadline, I think they should give Suarez a chance this year. I don’t expect big things from him in 2017 at the major league level, but I think it sets him up to adjust and have a breakout season with the San Francisco Giants in 2018.