Beede impresses for 6 before bats win it late

Rookie limits Marlins to one run as Giants stave off sweep in finale

May 30th, 2019

MIAMI -- In his return to the Majors on Thursday, Giants right-hander put together an impressive audition to remain in the rotation during a 3-1 comeback win over the Marlins at Marlins Park, which snapped a season-long seven-game skid.

San Francisco's No. 23 prospect, according to MLB Pipeline, allowed just an RBI single to opposing pitcher Sandy Alcantara over six innings. Though Beede didn't earn the victory -- he left the game with the Giants trailing by a run -- he recorded the best start of his young career.

"I was really just trying to attack the zone and stay calm up there," said Beede, who walked three and struck out four. "The ability to trust my stuff and know that I can come at these guys with my stuff and have success gives me more confidence. I think going out there with that mindset today allowed me to keep the team in a position to win the game."

And that he did. Giants manager Bruce Bochy pinch-hit for Beede in the seventh after 94 pitches when his spot in the order came up following Mike Yastrzemski's first career RBI, which knotted the game at 1. The Giants then took the lead in the eighth on Brandon Crawford’s two-run ground-rule double.

The 26-year-old Beede used a three-pitch mix to limit the Marlins’ bats, throwing his changeup 22 times and recording four swinging and six called strikes. Catcher Stephen Vogt said the offering was the best it has looked in his time catching the rookie.

"The fastball was electric, and he was getting some really good location with it, as well. Beede was a lot more himself today," Vogt said. "He's got one of the best changeups I've caught. It's a plus changeup with a lot of downward movement. For him, fastball command's going to be No. 1. Obviously, it always will be. The way his changeup is and was today, he's going to get swings and misses, weak contact and be able to flip the curveball, too."

That is key for Beede, a two-time first-round Draft pick who had an unwelcome introduction to the Majors in two April spot starts for the Giants in 2018 (seven runs in 7 2/3 innings). He wound up in a relief role when his struggles continued in the Minors. Upon his return to the big leagues earlier this month, it was more of the same as Beede gave up 10 earned runs in 6 2/3 innings across three games (one start).

But Beede began to find success at Triple-A Sacramento prior to Thursday's callup, posting a 2.34 ERA and 1.10 WHIP in seven Minor League starts. In his last outing with Sacramento, Beede permitted one run on three hits with eight strikeouts over seven innings. That came after five consecutive starts of five frames.

Beede cited the cliche "less is more" to explain the turnaround. He even admitted to taking a bit off of his fastball velocity -- it averaged 93.6 mph on Thursday, compared to 94.9 mph earlier in the season, per Statcast -- to adjust to the South Florida climate.

"It feels good. I want to be a guy they can count on to contribute to this rotation and team," said Beede, who felt a responsibility on the mound in the midst of a losing streak. "It's not to the point where I want to put pressure on myself and know that I've got to go out there and do something exceptional. Just know I can trust myself out there and go deep into a ballgame and contribute to the team.

"I'm confident in my stuff. I'm happy things have transferred over from Spring Training and the way I've felt. I think that gave me a strong foundation to build on and to stay confident with throughout the season. The more I can go out there and pitch, the more comfortable I'll be with what I'm doing."

San Francisco would love nothing more than to find consistency at the back end of its rotation. Nine pitchers have started for the Giants this season.

On Wednesday, when asked about the decision to start Beede over righty Dereck Rodriguez, Bochy said the club felt the latter could be of help out of the bullpen. Rodriguez and lefty Derek Holland, who have a combined 15 starts in 2019, are both pitching in relief.

Southpaw Andrew Suarez, another rotation candidate, made a promising season debut on May 20 but struggled on Saturday, surrendering nine runs (seven earned) in four-plus innings to the D-backs before being optioned. No. 4 prospect Shaun Anderson, who will get his fourth turn in the rotation on Saturday in Baltimore, has shown flashes.

Beede's effort will be rewarded with another start on Wednesday against the Mets in New York.

"It's good to see him show that kind of poise out there today," Bochy said. "You go up and down, it's not easy. You think it's a one-shot deal, but we've been trying to get him on track, and hopefully this is a big step for him."