SAN FRANCISCO -- Tyler Beede, the Giants' first-round pick a year ago, has pitched well in his first full minor league season. But Tuesday's promotion to Double-A Richmond was about more than just Beede's numbers through two months.
General manager Bobby Evans said the Giants had to make a flurry of moves when veteran right-handers Kevin Correia, Robert Coello and Juan Gutierrez opted out of their Triple-A contracts before the June 1 deadline. Jack Snodgrass and Chris Stratton (a 2012 first-rounder) got moved from Double-A to Triple-A to fill out Sacramento's rotation. Beede was viewed as ready to fill in at Double-A even though he has made just nine starts for the San Jose Giants.
"He has done well there in San Jose," Evans said. "He's ready for the next step. We could have waited longer, but we wanted to continue challenging him."
Beede, a 22-year-old right-hander, had a 2.24 ERA in nine High-A starts and had issued just nine walks in 52 1/3 innings. He has struck out only 37 but the Giants had wanted him to focus on getting grounders and quick outs. Beeded showed in his last start that he's capable of whiffing his way to success, striking out 11 over seven scoreless innings.
For an organization that once pumped out aces, but has struggled to find the next wave, Beede could be a big piece. Of the current rotation, Tim Lincecum, Tim Hudson (likely to retire) and Ryan Vogelsong are all free agents after the season. Matt Cain and Jake Peavy have battled health issues and the Giants don't have the depth they had hoped to have at Double-A and Triple-A. Beede, through a combination of factors, is now one step closer to competing for a big league job sooner than first expected.
--- Cain flew to Arizona and will throw three innings in a rookie league game tomorrow. Peavy played catch on flat ground today.
--- Bochy said he'll likely have Andrew Susac behind the plate with Buster Posey sliding to first against left-hander Francisco Liriano. The other lefties will likely be in there. Bochy joked that he wants to get some of his regulars a day off, but "the problem I have with my lefties is they hit lefties."
--- It sounds like the Giants may be content to carry 13 pitchers for at least the start of this road trip. A move, if one happens, won't come during this series. The Giants have to decide if they want to risk losing Jean Machi just to add a bat like Casey McGehee or Travis Ishikawa to the bench. Machi has struggled, and Bochy said he sees a lack of confidence and pitches that are up in the zone. Machi is not hurt, Bochy said; he's just leaving too many pitches up.