Giants

Source: Cueto decides not to test market, will stay with Giants

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USATSI

Source: Cueto decides not to test market, will stay with Giants

SAN FRANCISCO -- Throughout the second half of a disappointing season, Johnny Cueto hinted that he would return to the Giants. On Saturday it became official. 

Cueto declined to opt out of a six-year contract that he signed in December of 2015, locking him into the final four years, per a source. According to the original terms of his deal, Cueto had three days after this year's World Series to opt out and become a free agent. The deadline passed at 9 p.m. Saturday. The Giants now owe him $21 million in each of the next four seasons, with a $22 million club option in 2022 that includes a $5 million buyout. 

A year ago at this time, it seemed a lock that Cueto would jump back into free agency and try to hit a bigger payday. A lot has changed since then, for Cueto and the Giants. 

Cueto, who turns 32 during spring training, signed with the Giants after the 2015 offseason and immediately lived up to expectations with an All-Star 2016 season. The Giants always expected Cueto to test free agency after two seasons, but he dealt with blisters and flexor tendon discomfort and spent 45 games on the disabled list. When he was on the field, Cueto had just as many issues. He posted a 4.52 ERA and 1.45 WHIP in 25 starts and finished his season by giving up 12 hits over five innings in the final game of the season. 

When asked about his looming decision, Cueto consistently said he loves playing in San Francisco, but he never went as far as saying he would absolutely be back, noting that he needed to consult with his agent, Bryce Dixon, in October. The Giants were under the belief that Cueto wanted to tweak his contract in order to return, perhaps guaranteeing one final year, but they weren't inclined to make any changes after the season Cueto had. Ultimately, no changes were made to the original deal. 

Down on the Farm: Giants rising prospect Shaun Anderson makes Triple-A debut

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AP

Down on the Farm: Giants rising prospect Shaun Anderson makes Triple-A debut

In the land of I Want It Now, for some godforsaken reason we’re born to grade things the moment they happen. For sports, this is especially true with trades.

Nearly one year ago on July 26, 2017, the Giants received right-handed pitchers Shaun Anderson and Gregory Santos from the Red Sox in exchange for infielder Eduardo Nunez. And on Thursday night, Anderson made his Triple-A debut for the Sacramento River Cats. 

Anderson tossed five innings for the River Cats in Fresno in what would be an 8-7 loss in 10 innings to the Grizzlies. The 23-year-old allowed two runs — both on a two-run home run in his final inning of work — four hits, three walks, and impressively struck out six batters. 

Throughout his first outing in Triple-A, Anderson never ran into trouble. Only one batter reached second base, besides the home run, and that was due to a walk in the bottom of the first inning. A walk hurt him again in the fifth inning as he let the leadoff batter reach base on four balls before Antonio Nunez, the No. 9 hitter, followed with his two-run shot.

On the year, Anderson now has 99 strikeouts to 25 walks in 99 innings between Double-A and Triple-A. His 9.0 strikeouts per nine innings are up from 7.8 last season and his 2.3 walks per nine innings are slightly down from 2.4 in 2017. The long ball has hurt Anderson this season as he has already allowed 10 home runs this season to nine all of last year. 

Following Anderson in the River Cats’ loss were four pitchers who have all found time with the Giants this season. They didn’t fare as well as the prospect. 

Former top pick Tyler Beede relieved Anderson in the sixth inning, but his control issues hurt him again with two walks and only one out recorded. Pierce Johnson followed Beede and walked two without allowing a run. He also struck out five batters in 1 2/3 innings. The night to forget came for lefty Josh Osich. Up 6-3, Osich blew allowed four runs in the bottom of the eighth inning and now has a 5.40 ERA. Derek Law took the loss, going 1 2/3 innings before Fresno walked it off in extra innings.

In 11 days, Anderson went from pitching in Richmond for the Flying Squirrels, to Washington D.C. for the USA All-Stars in the All-Star Futures Game, to Fresno for the River Cats. Keep your grades and enjoy the summer. What matters is Anderson’s weaving road of six different teams in two years, including representing the USA, has him right on track for San Francisco. 

 

POLL: Giants Memorable Moments -- Cain's Perfect Game vs Legend of Bumgarner is Born

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AP

POLL: Giants Memorable Moments -- Cain's Perfect Game vs Legend of Bumgarner is Born

PROGRAMMING NOTE: NBC Sports Bay Area is looking back at the Giants' 60 Memorable Moments since the franchise moved from New York to San Francisco. Tune into Giants Pregame Live at 5:30pm to see the next two moments you can vote on! Then, after the Giants and A's conclude, tune into Postgame Live to see which moment will move on.

1. Matt Cain's Perfect Game in 2012 

(From Matt Cain - Giants Pitcher from 2005 to 2017)

The Perfect Game was one of the most memorable nights of my playing career. 

I had always dreamed of throwing a no-hitter. I had come so close so many times throughout my career and in my younger years, but never had one. 

The ballpark was so electric that night. We had the TaylorMade guys out hitting golf balls. Dustin Johnson hitting monster drives into McCovey Cove, and I snuck one good swing in there as well. 

Pretty surreal day. I still think back to all the plays and pitches during that game. To have every single player on the same wave length and all realizing what was unfolding is truly something special. Everyone likes to say I pitched a perfect game and I get the credit for it but I’m in debt to everyone of the guys who made a play behind me , one that still doesn’t make sense in right center field, and I owe the most to the guy who called 125 perfect pitches behind the plate. 

Thanks to all the fans that have come up to me and shared there story about that night. So fun to hear them all!!

VS.

2. The Legend of Madison Bumgarner is Born

(From Javier Lopez, Giants pitcher 2010-2016)

I remember this night for so many reasons but first and foremost was that this kid was 21! What?! Let us all just take a moment and think about this? What were you doing at 21 and better yet what were you doing on Halloween? I can only answer for myself but I was back in college not going to class but just hanging out with all my friends planning on going to a party. I was telling stories of getting drafted that past June and how tired I had gotten from backing up so many bases because everything I threw usually ended up in the gap for extra bases but I digress. Let’s get back to it. Madison Bumgarner was pitching in a World Series game! Instead of partying or trick or treating he was carving up the Texas Rangers in their park. Eight shutout innings against one of the best lineups in the MLB at that time.

I think Bum has always had supreme confidence in his abilities. His whole career he has expected to win and will teams to win and often times that’s what happened. The Rangers had only been shutout 5 times all season long and here’s Bum going right through this lineup like a hot knife through butter. 3 singles is all they could manage. 3 measly singles off this 21 year old stud.

Fearless! I remember Aubrey Huff calling him that in a postgame interview. Aubrey had hit a 2 run shot in the third and Rookie of the Year Buster Posey would add a homer of his own off Darren O’Day but it was Bumgarner’s career in the postseason that was taking shape that night. Fearless was only one of the many words used to describe this country kid from small town North Carolina. Quiet, confident, one of a kind spectacular...all those work. I remember talking to Bum and him saying he may never get another chance to pitch in a World Series game so might as well give it my all. I laughed because I had played in 1 World Series prior to 2010 and remember how hard it was to get there and to win it. Little did I know we would go on 2 more rides to the World Series together. He would lead the charge like Washington crossing the Delaware and all of us ready to do whatever it took to reach our ultimate goal. 3 for 3 isn’t bad for anyone but I think if given another chance Bum will prove yet again why he was built for October.

VOTE HERE: