Giants

Giants' Tyler Beede continues to open eyes during an impressive spring

Giants' Tyler Beede continues to open eyes during an impressive spring

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- A few seconds after the final pitch Thursday night, Tyler Beede emerged from the dugout, walked over behind the plate, and looked out into the seats at Scottsdale Stadium in search of someone specific. That was a change of pace. For most of the spring, all eyes have been on Beede. 

The 25-year-old right-hander was the talk of camp even before games started, lighting it up on back fields during live batting practice sessions. Beede carried that momentum into his first two appearances, and on Thursday a television audience back home got to see why the Giants are so excited about the former first-rounder's resurgence. 

Beede sat at 97 mph with his fastball while striking out three in three hitless innings against the A's. In three appearances this spring, he has given up just two hits in seven innings, with one run allowed, two walks and eight strikeouts. 

"He's just had a terrific spring," manager Bruce Bochy said. "It looks like he's on a mission to show he's put a lot of hard work in."

For Bochy, Farhan Zaidi and the rest of the staff, it's less about the numbers than it is about how Beede is getting there. He cut two pitches from his repertoire and has gone back to his roots, pumping high-velocity fastballs while also relying on a curveball and changeup. Beede went heavy with the fastball Thursday night against the A's. He threw 96 mph past Stephen Piscotty in his first inning and ended that frame by blowing 94 mph past Matt Olson on the inner half of the plate. 

Both players took awkward swings, and that's something Zaidi talked about at length a few hours before Beede took the mound. 

"It was interesting going back and watching some of his video from last year -- he was throwing 96-97 but wasn't getting the results that you would expect for someone with that kind of velocity," Zaidi said. "I just think right now he's kind of throwing his fastball with impact. Guys are getting late and uncomfortable swings as opposed to the comfortable 97. He's turned it into an uncomfortable 97.

"He's talked about getting more spin on his breaking ball and he's got a good changeup, but ultimately a guy with that kind of arm, you want to see him throw his fastball and be willing to challenge guys. I think the fastball impact for me has been the biggest thing. If he can do that, the rest of the package is going to come together really well."

Zaidi has entered the organization with fresh eyes, and that will be a boost for players like Beede, who have had some down times under the previous regime. He is inching his way up the depth chart, and behind the scenes, the Giants wouldn't be surprised if Beede works his way into the back of the rotation relatively quickly. 

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He also could become an option out of the bullpen, and on Thursday he certainly had a bit of an Archie Bradley thing going on. For now, the Giants will let Beede get stretched out and see if he can keep the momentum going. 

"He's got the equipment," Bochy said. "This guy, it's his time. He's really taking advantage of this spring and showing that he's a different guy."

Joe Panik's walk-off aided by slow Giants alertly stealing two bases

Joe Panik's walk-off aided by slow Giants alertly stealing two bases

SAN FRANCISCO — The Giants have the slowest roster in the big leagues, but they won a game Tuesday night with some speed. Or rather, by mixing some smarts with some speed. 

Braves closer Luke Jackson showed zero interest in checking on runners in the ninth and Kevin Pillar and Mac Williamson took advantage, twice stealing second before Joe Panik’s single brought them both home in a 4-3 win. The late rally came in drips, but it led to a thrilling win on a night when the Giants were absolutely flat for eight innings. 

Jackson seemed to be having issues with the signs, repeatedly asking catcher Brian McCann to run through them again. He was deliberate, and Pillar took advantage first, a few moments after his RBI single with two outs brought Brandon Crawford screaming home and cut the deficit to one. Jackson never checked on Pillar with Pablo Sandoval at the plate and he took off, sliding in just ahead of McCann's throw. 

Sandoval ended up with his 10th pinch-hit of the year, but with Pillar at first, Josh Donaldson's diving stop at third would have led to a game-ending force. Instead, Pillar eased into third as Sandoval raced to first with no throw, reaching on an infield single. Sandoval was replaced by Williamson, who also received no interest from Jackson. On an 0-2 pitch to Panik, he stole second without a throw. 

"That was huge," manager Bruce Bochy said. "Kevin, he's a basestealer and that was a huge base. Once Mac got it, now you realize it just takes a hit to win the game. That's a big base."

Panik's eyes got wide once Williamson touched second. 

"I don't have to hit a double to win the game," Panik said. "I can stay within myself, stay in the middle of the field, and you can win the game with a single."

Panik did, ending a great at-bat by pulling a curveball into right, a few feet past a diving Ozzie Albies. The only speed Panik needed was to get away from a rush of teammates waiting with kidney punches and turkey taps. But before that, he took advantage of tendencies, too. 

Panik has been as locked-in as an Giants hitter the last three weeks, and he fouled off three pitches while getting to 2-2. When Jackson threw a fastball that never threatened the plate, Panik thought back to the scouting report. 

"I thought it was a setup pitch for his breaking ball," he said.

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It was. Jackson went to his curve on 3-2 and the game was over a few seconds later. 

"That's a great comeback," Bochy said. "We looked pretty flat. We just couldn't get going offensively. Their guy (starter Julio Teheran) did a great job on us. That's a huge win.

Joe Panik gives Giants 4-3 win with two-run walk-off single vs. Braves

Joe Panik gives Giants 4-3 win with two-run walk-off single vs. Braves

The San Francisco Giants were on the verge of their 27th loss of the season.

But second baseman Joe Panik had other ideas Tuesday night.

With runners on second and third base and two outs in the bottom of the ninth inning, Panik roped a single to right field. Kevin Pillar scored from third, and pinch-runner Mac Williamson beat the throw from Braves right fielder Nick Markakis, giving the Giants a dramatic 4-3 win.

What little crowd remained at Oracle Park on a damp evening went crazy.

It was Panik's third career walk-off hit.

The Giants now are 21-26 on the season.