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Giants call up Clayton Blackburn

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The 23-year-old right hander will get his first taste of the major leagues after a rocky start to his Triple-A season.

Rob Tringali/Getty Images

The Giants made a surprise move to bolster their pitching staff, calling up Clayton Blackburn from Triple-A Sacramento. The corresponding roster move is ... unknown, for now, according to the Giants' official Twitter account.

Edit: It was Jarrett Parker who got sent down.

Blackburn was 1-3 for the River Cats, with a 5.68 ERA in 31⅔ innings, allowing five home runs, walking 10, and striking out 23. He gave up three of those home runs in his last outing, which was one of his worst of the year. The good news is that he was already on the 40-man roster, which means the corresponding roster move shouldn't be too complicated.

That's it. That's all I got for the good news.

Well, that, and Blackburn was mostly excellent last year, overcoming a sluggish start to post one of the best ERAs in the Pacific Coast League. The scouting reports have remained consistent for Blackburn since he was drafted out of high school, with aptitude, command, and pitchability being his greatest asset. Hopefully the slow start to this season was a hiccup, too.

Really, this is almost certainly a placeholder move until George Kontos returns, giving the Giants an extra, fresh arm in a tough hitter's park after a pair of 13-inning games at home. With any luck, the Giants won't need a reliever to pick up four or five innings in another extended game, but if they do ...

If I had to guess, it would look like Albert Suarez would be the odd pitcher out, having thrown four innings in four days, and probably not being available for a lengthy outing for at least a couple more days. Angel Pagan is already 10 days removed from being too disabled to play, not disabled enough to be put on a list, who could possibly have seen this coming? That means the Giants can't retroactively put him on the DL for longer than 10 days. So unless he's really taken a turn for the worse, it's likely that a pitcher will make room.

Edit: Unless it's Jarrett Parker! Really, once Pagan and Kontos are healthy, which should be soon, it's likely that Blackburn will get sent back down, unless he impresses the powers to be more than Suarez.

Note: The Giants will announce who is really making room right when I hit the publish button, so look forward to some lightnin' fast edits.

Welcome, Clayton Blackburn! May you pitch your first major league game when the Giants are leading by 12 runs, instead of behind by 12 runs.