Arizona Fall League

How seven Giants prospects performed in the 2017 Arizona Fall League


How seven Giants prospects performed in the 2017 Arizona Fall League

The Arizona Fall League came to an end for seven Giants prospects on Thursday as the Scottsdale Scorpions (12-17-1) came up short from playing in Saturday's championship game. 

Let's take a look at how these seven names fared against some of the top young talent in all of baseball. 

The Hitters

As the Giants are linked to trade targets in center field like Billy Hamilton and Jackie Bradley Jr., a young in-house option only helped his case in the desert.

Steven Duggar likely would have seen the AT&T outfield this season, but his season was hindered by injuries, keeping him to only 44 games between three levels. With the Scorpions, Duggar took advantage of his opportunity with more at-bats. 

Duggar left Arizona with a .263/.367/.421 slash line over 20 games. The speedy lefty also stole nine bases and hit three home runs. Even if the Giants go for an experienced glove in center field this offseason and keep Duggar, the 24-year-old has also played 135 games in right field during his minor league career. 

For the second straight year, the Giants sent catcher Aramis Garcia to the AFL. And he's sure to be coming home much happier this go around with an up-and-down campaign.

Splitting time behind the plate with three other catchers, Garcia appeared in 13 games and slashed .259/.293/.333 and hit one home run. Garcia struggled to get one base with only one walk to 10 strikeouts, but showed his natural ability to drive runs in with 10 RBI. 

Rounding out the Giants' trio of bats they sent to Arizona is arguably their top prospect, but his time in the AFL was cut short. Chris Shaw only played in five games and hit .158. He dealt with a sore shoulder.

The Pitchers

The Giants sent two starting pitchers (Tyler Beede and Joan Gregorio) and two relievers (Tyler Cyr and D.J. Snelten) to the AFL. 

Pitching for the first time in nearly three months, Beede showed exactly why he's the Giants' top pitching prospect. Beede went 0-1 with a 4.50 ERA in four starts, but his final three show the potential he's full of -- 14 innings pitched, three earned runs, a 1.93 ERA, 10 strikeouts and only one walk. 

Gregorio, who was suspended this season for Performance Enhancing Drugs, pitched in eight games (three starts) for Scottsdale. He left with a 1-0 record and 5.87 ERA. In Triple-A, Gregorio went 4-4 with a 3.04 ERA this year over 13 starts. The 25-year-old presents an interesting arm that can help sooner than later in the bullpen. 

Cyr's stats don't look pretty (0-1, 5.63 ERA, 8 IP), but he's catching some attention. The right-hander was named to the Fall Stars Game and is most likely to start 2018 in Triple-A after converting 18 saves at Double-A in 2017. 

Snelten, a 6-foot-7 lefty, impressed in eight appearances out of the bullpen. He didn't allow an earned run until his final outing of the fall, bringing his ERA from a perfect 0.00 to 2.25 in 12 innings pitched.

After combining for a 2.20 ERA to go with an 8-1 record between Double-A and Triple-A in 2017, Snelten is a name to know as the Giants look to find more lefties for their bullpen.

Healthy Tyler Beede shows why he's Giants' top pitching prospect


Healthy Tyler Beede shows why he's Giants' top pitching prospect

Tyler Beede had one goal in mind when he found out he would pitch in the Arizona Fall League: stay healthy. 

"That will be my big goal for the Fall League," Beede told NBC Sports Bay Area on staying healthy back in late August. 

Beede's season in Triple-A with the Sacramento River Cats was cut short due to a groin injury. He stepped back on the mound in the AFL on Oct. 25 for the first time since July 19. Coming out of the gates, Beede showed rust in his debut as he allowed five earned runs and walked three in two innings pitched. 

Then, Beede found his groove and ended on a high note with his final start on Tuesday. The Giants' top pitching prospect went five innings and allowed two earned runs with no walks and one strikeout in a no decision. Beede also rolled seven ground-ball outs and threw 44 of his 71 pitches for strikes (62 percent). 

"I was hoping to be able to pitch in the Fall League, because my thought was I was missing so much time at the end of the season I would have to make it up somehow, some way, and I wanted to so I could keep my arm in a strong position to potentially pitch more innings next year," Beede said in the same previous interview.

He did exactly that with 16 innings in the desert. Beede's shortened 2017 campaign ended at 109 innings, his lowest since the six games he pitched in after the 2014 MLB Draft. 

"It's not so much about statistics out here as it is a matter of getting more innings," Beede said Tuesday to "I'm feeling comfortable with where I finished up, which is exciting, for sure."

In Beede's final three starts, he pitched 14 innings and allowed three earned runs -- good for a 1.93 ERA -- and struck out 10 batters to only one walk. Take away that first start coming off injury and both Beede and the Giants have plenty of reasons to be excited about statistics too. 

Two key Giants prospects making noise in the Arizona Fall League


Two key Giants prospects making noise in the Arizona Fall League

Baseball Rumor Twitter is here and it’s only going to get worse. The good news: there’s still a little over one week of real baseball left in the Arizona Fall League. With time winding down, two Giants prospects that should play a role in the team’s near future one way or another, are putting together numbers to notice. 

Tyler Beede took the mound for the third time in the AFL on Tuesday night and was nearly perfect outside of giving up a moonshot to Brewers prospect Monte Harrison. Beede pitched five innings (his longest outing of his three starts), allowed four hits and one run. The 24-year-old also struck out five (the most of his three starts) and walked one batter.

For the second straight start, Beede pounded the strike zone. In his 63 pitches, 46 were thrown for strikes, good for a 73 percent strike rate while sitting between 90 and 95 miles per hour with his fastball. After a rough debut in which Beede walked three and allowed five earned runs in two innings pitched, Beede has now struck out nine to one walk in nine innings pitched his last two starts.

Before looking at possible trades, the Giants’ first four spots in their rotation seem locked up for the second straight season, with the fifth and final spot being the big question. Ty Blach has proved worthy the last two season and Chris Stratton earned a long spring training look with his time in San Francisco this year as well.

But, if Beede’s last two showings carry over to the spring, the team’s top pitching prospect and former first-round pick, will add his name to the competition in the starting staff. 

Steven Duggar goes deep

Brian Sabean recently made it clear the Giants’ three main positions in need of an upgrade are center field, third base and the bullpen. The team will be linked to free agent options in center field — Lorenzo Cain (doesn’t make sense) and trade options — Billy Hamilton (makes sense) and Jason Heyward (already debunked by the Giants), but their top young in-house option is showing the skill set he brings to the table when healthy in the AFL. 

Steven Duggar hit his first home run in the desert while going 2-for-4 and stealing a base for the fourth straight game on Monday. The speed has always been there and is an area of need for the Giants, but the power is really encouraging. 

Duggar stands 6-foot-2 and 195 pounds. In three minor league seasons, he’s hit 17 home runs. There’s more power in him than those numbers suggest. 

The Giants have already started working on Duggar’s bat path and it’s evident in his deep blast to right-center field. Duggar is now on a five-game hitting streak where he is batting .450 (9-for-20). Overall in 15 games, Duggar is slashing .286/.388/.375 with nine stolen bases. 

San Francisco needs to get younger and more athletic. Duggar is tied for the lead in stolen bases in the AFL and has the athleticism to play in AT&T Park’s huge outfield. Instead of once again paying aging outfielders, project ahead with fleet feet running the show.