SF Giants LHP Andrew Suarez Reportedly on the Move
By Jeff Young
SF Giants left-handed hurler Andrew Suarez could be on the move after a three-year stint with San Francisco.
Daniel Kim of ESPN KBO reports that the LG Twins of the Korean Baseball Organization are nearing a one-year deal with SF Giants left-handed pitcher Andrew Suarez. As Kim notes in his report, Suarez is currently under contract with the Giants, so the Twins would have to come to an agreement with the organization as well. However, since Suarez is clearly interested in the deal, the team is unlikely to stand in the way.
Suarez, originally drafted in the second round of the 2015 draft, was one of the top pitching prospects in the organization before debuting with the big club in 2018. He had a promising rookie campaign as he registered a 4.49 ERA, 4.30 FIP, 1.29 WHIP, and a 19.5 percent strikeout rate against a 6.8 percent walk rate across 160.1 innings. Plus, he was one of the few bright spots on a Giants team that finished with a 73-89 overall record.
When the season ended, the University of Miami product looked to be a potential cog in the rotation for the next several seasons, but he quickly fell down the pitching depth chart. In 2019, the southpaw recorded a 5.79 ERA in 32.1 frames while making 21 appearances, including two starts.
Suarez came up as a starter, but it seemed as if the Giants struggled to find a long-term role for the southpaw as he spent the bulk of his time in 2019 in the bullpen. The 2020 season was more of the same. He made six appearances with a 3.72 ERA across 9.2 innings, but this came with a less-than-ideal 5.36 FIP.
The 28-year-old never flashed premium fastball velocity and did not possess a true out pitch, so he relied on inducing weak contact to generate outs. On top of this, he commanded his pitches in the zone well given his healthy 3.21 SO/W ratio in five minor league seasons. It seemed like president of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi did not believe in Suarez’s ability to find success as a starting pitcher as much as the previous regime. However, he never found his footing in the bullpen either.
Former SF Giants second-round pick Andrew Suarez would have been a solid depth piece for the organization next season. Now though, he appears set to make his pro debut internationally, where he will try to revive his career in the Korean Baseball Organization for the LG Twins.