SF Giants Top 31 Prospect Rankings: 2020 Midyear Update
By Marc Delucchi
SF Giants top prospects: No. 27 — RHP Matt Frisbee
Highest Level: High-A (San Jose)
Acquired: Draft (2018)
Future-Value Grade: 35+
It’s normally pretty hard for a collegiate 15th-round pick to crack prospect rankings after just one full professional season. Matt Frisbee flashed the kind of consistent dominance to put him in the conversation.
A starter for his entire career at UNC-Greensboro, Frisbee was immediately moved to the bullpen for his pro debut in 2018. In 20 relief appearances at Salem-Keizer, Frisbee struck out 36 batters and had a 2.96 ERA. In a conversation with Around the Foghorn last season, Frisbee discussed how he spent the following offseason preparing to work exclusively out of the bullpen.
When he returned to Giants camp, the new player development team had a different thought process. After a couple of relief appearances at Augusta, he was back in the rotation.
Frisbee became the second pitcher from the San Francisco Giants 2018 draft class to receive a promotion to High-A. In the California League, a hitter-friendly environment, Frisbee threw 116.1 innings, walked just 22, struck out 131, and posted a strong 3.17 ERA. Following the season, Frisbee earned San Jose’s Pitcher of the Year award.
His fastball sits in the 91-93 mph range and has touched 95 mph. It projects as a 50-grade pitch. His slider is his most developed secondary offering and projects as another 50 or possibly 55 offering. Moving forward, his changeup will play a pivotal role in his big-league potential. According to one source with the team, “[Frisbee] added a split, which should really help [him stick as a starter].”
That repertoire is enough to make him a competent 4 or 5 starter if his command continues to develop. Without premium swing-and-miss stuff, Frisbee probably won’t be able to move to a high-leverage bullpen role if he’s unable to stick. However, he seems to be an ideal candidate for a Yusmeiro Petit or 9-12 out swingman role.