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SF Giants Prospects

SF Giants Prospects: 2021 Preseason Top 31 Rankings

Joey Bart #21 of the SF Giants looks on walking back to his position against the Arizona Diamondbacks in the top of the eighth inning at Oracle Park on September 07, 2020. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)
Joey Bart #21 of the SF Giants looks on walking back to his position against the Arizona Diamondbacks in the top of the eighth inning at Oracle Park on September 07, 2020. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)
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SF Giants top prospects: No. 22 — RHP Matt Frisbee

Age: 24
Highest Level: High-A (San Jose)
Acquired: Draft (2018)
Future-Value Grade: 40+

It’s normally pretty hard for a collegiate 15th-round pick to crack prospect rankings after just one full professional season. However, that’s exactly what Matt Frisbee did after a dominant first minor-league season in 2019.

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. Frisbee spent the following offseason preparing to work exclusively out of the bullpen.

When he returned to Giants camp, the new player development team under Farhan Zaidi 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, posted a strong 3.17 ERA, and 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. After struggling to find consistency with his changeup, Frisbee began implementing a splitter and reportedly made great strides in the year away from minor-league ball.

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.

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