Pitching In the System
You’ve focused almost exclusively on position players so far. Is that the clear strength of the system?
It depends. The top of the San Francisco Giants system definitely leans towards hitters, and even more so now after going with Hunter Bishop and Logan Wyatt at the top of the 2019 draft class. However, from top to bottom, the system is much deeper on the pitching side of things.
That pitching depth is part of the reason why they took such a hitter-heavy approach to this year’s draft. While many of the arms in the system are more floor than ceiling, there are a number of prospects who profile as mid to back-of-the-rotation starters.
So who are the names to know on the pitching side?
I’d say for starters, guys like Tyler Beede, Shaun Anderson, Derrick Rodriguez, Andrew Suarez, and Ty Blach are already pretty close to finished products.
As far as prospects, Sean Hjelle has an extremely high floor. He was maybe the surest bet of any player picked last year to be a big-league starter. Behind him, fellow 2018 draft picks Jake Wong, Keaton Winn, and Blake Rivera all have starter potential as well.
Left-hander Connor Menez is another guy making noise at Triple-A. He works off deception, command, and an above-average slider, but he’s led the minor leagues in strikeouts over the past couple of seasons and that’ll get you noticed. Fellow lefty Garrett Williams continues to flash moments that give scouts hope he could remain a starter.
Logan Webb remains the highest ranked pitcher, even though he’s in the midst of an 80-game PED suspension. For what it’s worth, Webb is adamant the results are false. He has the stuff to be a mid-rotation arm, and while some worry his motion will force him to a bullpen role, I see a young Jeff Samardzjia profile.
Gregory Santos, who was acquired along with Anderson from the Red Sox in the Eduardo Nunez trade, has the highest ceiling of any pitcher in the system. With two potential plus-pitches, he has legitimate top-of-rotation upside. His command still needs work, but he’s made the smart adjustment of not pitching for strikeouts. With that being said, he missed time early in the season with a shoulder injury and has yet to pitch above Single-A.
Meanwhile, Seth Corry hasn’t quite mastered the don’t pitch for strikeouts mode of pitching just yet, but his stuff is hard to ignore.
The 2017 third-round pick has been racking up strikeouts for Single-A Augusta with 91 in 65 innings. However, he has also issued 43 walks. Corry’s numbers are actually very similar to Kyle Crick’s first full-season action, but I do think Corry is better prepared to stick in the rotation.
He’s shown signs of taking a step forward with his control of late. Over his last four starts, he’s allowed just 10 hits and seven walks while striking out 22 in 19.2 innings.
There’s no elite pitching prospect in the system, but there are a lot of quality arms.