clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Giants vs. Blue Jays, 5/15

Shaun Anderson (ML debut) vs. Edwin Jackson (seriously!)

Tampa Bay Rays v San Francisco Giants Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

The big news today should be the debut of the Giants’ top pitching prospect, Shaun Anderson, but as Julie Parker noted yesterday:

First of all: congratulations to Edwin Jackson for accomplishing this feat. This means that nearly half the teams in the league have deemed him worthy of a roster spot. It means that he’s managed to accrue 12+ years of ML service time over the last 16 seasons.

A pro sports career that lasts a decade or more really is noteworthy. It’s tough to maintain an elite level of performance. Jackson caught on with the A’s last season and wound up being one of their most consistent starters. In 92 innings, he had a 3.33 ERA / 4.65 FIP, which isn’t great, but seven quality starts in his 17, including four of his first five.

Backing him up will be:

2B — Brandon Drury
3B — Vladimir Guerrero Jr.
1B — Rowdy Tellez
CF — Randal Grichuk
SS — Freddy Galvis
LF — Teoscar Hernandez
RF — Billy McKinney
C — Luke Maile
SP — Edwin Jackson

Meanwhile, Shaun Anderson will be another new Giant to appear this season. The only wrinkle here is that he’s currently rated as the organization’s top pitching prospect.

He absolutely does not carry the same cache as Matt Cain, Tim Lincecum, or Madison Bumgarner once did, nor does he appear on MLB Pipeline’s top 100 prospects across baseball, so this isn’t a marquee matchup we’re seeing. It’ll be much more in the Andrew Suarez / Tyler Beede mold.

As of yesterday morning, his 37 strikeouts (in 35 innings) made him 11th in the PCL’s strikeouts pitched list. In 7 starts with Triple-A Sacramento, he’s posted a 4.11 ERA with a 37 K : 11 BB ratio and just three home runs allowed, a really impressive feat when you consider the historic home run rate afflicting that league this season thanks to the introduction of MLB’s new balls.

Last year, Brian Sabean revealed that the organization wasn’t quite sure where Shaun Anderson might fit on a roster. They for sure saw him as a major league caliber talent but didn’t quite know if he was best suited for the bullpen or rotation.

You know, I think so, but the only reason I didn’t mention Shaun is that he’s a unique individual, period. Because, he came into professional baseball as a closer in the amateur ranks and then Boston — who we were able to get him in trade from when we did the Nunez deal — converted him to a [starting] pitcher.

And, I think we may be a house divided whether his quickest path to the big leagues and, perhaps, best suited role is probably split between starter

This could have everything to do with times through the order. He’s averaging just five innings per start in Triple-A this season, so his stuff might be quite as effective 2+ times through a batting order and that’s where the conflict came up last year.

The new front office might prefer a five inning start with the versatility to pitch out of the ‘pen. It gives the team options and doesn’t lock in a precious roster spot to a single role.

If you haven’t read Doug’s interview with Anderson yet, go take care of that!

Will his debut be like Tyler Beede’s last season (4 IP, 2 ER, 5 BB, 3K ) or can he do something in the Andrew Suarez range (5.1 IP, 4 ER, 0 BB, 7K)? Can he stop the first inning’s reign of terror over the franchise and its fans and give this lineup a chance to get an early lead?

2B — Joe Panik
RF — Steven Duggar
3B — Evan Longoria
1B — Pablo Sandoval
LF — Mac Williamson
SS — Brandon Crawford
CF — Kevin PIllar
C — Aramis Garcia
SP — Shaun Anderson