Top 10 Prospects (2017): San Francisco Giants: Is There Upside In A Fairly Underwhelming System?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

The Giants have never been afraid to trade away prospects in order to strengthen their Major League roster.  While those moves haven’t left them void of potentially impact talent, the system isn’t as deep as it could’ve been (and you have to wonder who will be the next prospect to be jettisoned).  Who is left that is worth our attention?  Is there anyone who can truly make an impact?  Let’s take a look:


1) Tyler Beede – Right-Handed Pitcher
Grade – B+
ETA – 2017

Beede spent the year at Double-A (147.1 IP), posting a 2.81 ERA and 1.28 WHIP in the process.  The underlying skills were also impressive, giving a sense of hope:

  • Strikeout Rate – 8.25 K/9
  • Walk Rate – 3.24 BB/9
  • Groundballs – 1.06 GO/AO

The big growth was in his control, after posting a 4.35 BB/9 over 72.1 IP at Double-A in ’15.  At the same time his groundball rate took a big step backwards (1.46 GO/AO over his minor league career), so that’s something we’ll have to keep a close eye on.  If he can get that mark back up (and as a sinker ball pitcher it’s something that should be expected) with the other skills he showed, he has the potential to be a force in the San Francisco rotation.  Time will tell, but he has the upside.


2) Chris Shaw – First Baseman
Grade – B
ETA – 2017

A 2015 first round pick, Shaw’s best asset is his power as he combined for 38 doubles, 4 triples and 21 HR in 502 AB between High-A and Double-A last season.  While playing in San Francisco could cap his upside, and the presence of Brandon Belt is surely going to slow his arrival, we know the Giants are not afraid to move prospects in order to bolster their MLB roster.  Shaw could ultimately be a prime trade chip, especially having kept his strikeout rate in check at each level last season:

  • High-A (305 PA) – 23.0%
  • Double-A (256 PA) – 21.5%

Power plus a solid contact rate should make him a strong asset.  Don’t discount him based on the position.


3) Heath Quinn – Outfielder
Grade – B
ETA – 2018

Selected in the third round of the 2016 draft, Quinn saw time at three levels (227 AB total), though the bulk of his time came in Low-A (205 AB).  That said, regardless of where he played he was impressing as he posted a .344/.434/.567 slash.  He showed ample power, with 21 doubles, 1 triple and 9 HR, and at 6’2” and 190 lbs. there’s reason to buy into potential further growth.

The question comes with his strikeout rate, posting a 20.9% mark at Low-A.  Given the level it’s an eye-opening mark, as we’d expect it to increase further as he advances.  He did show a good eye, with a 10.9% walk rate, so there is hope that he can cut down on the strikeouts as he gains experience.  That will be the key, because if he can he has the potential to be an impact corner outfielder in the Major Leagues.  He could potentially reach Double-A this season, and his production there will be telling.


4) Christian Arroyo – Shortstop
Grade – B
ETA – 2017

Arroyo doesn’t possess one standout tool, and the numbers at Double-A were hardly impressive as he hit .274 with 3 HR and 1 SB.  That said he does make consistent contact (13.9% strikeout rate), and is a career .294 hitter in the minor leagues.  He also added 36 doubles and at 21-years old (he’ll turn 22 in May) he should add a little bit more power, meaning he could develop into a .290/10 HR type middle infielder.  That’s solid, though unspectacular.


5) Andrew Suarez – Left-Handed Pitcher
Grade – B-
ETA – 2017

The southpaw owns a minor league career 1.7 BB/9 and 1.25 GO/AO over 183.0 innings of work (including 114.0 innings at Double-A).  He does struggle missing bats, with a 7.9 K/9 (7.1 at Double-A), and that will obviously limit his upside potential.  Could he learn and take another step forward?  Potentially, but at 24-years old it’s not something we’d be willing to depend on.  He could be a prototypical “light” throwing southpaw, and a successful back of the rotation option, but he’s not much more than that.


The Rest:

6) Bryan Reynolds – Outfielder (Grade – B-)
7) Ty Blach – Left-Handed Pitcher (Grade – B-)
8) Joan Gregorio – Right-Handed Pitcher (Grade – C+)
9) Rodolfo Martinez – Right-Handed Pitcher (Grade – C+)
10) Sandro Fabian – Outfielder (Grade – C+)

Sources –,, Fangraphs, Baseball Reference

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Grading System:
Grade A – Elite Prospects (aka potential future perennial All-Stars)
Grade B – Above Average Prospects (aka above average Major Leaguers, could develop into a potential All-Star)
Grade C – Average Prospects (aka solid, though unspectacular)
Grade D – Nothing More Than Roster Filler
Grade F – Move On

Make sure to check out all of our 2017 Prospect Rankings:

AL EastAL CentralAL West
Baltimore OriolesChicago White SoxHouston Astros
Boston Red SoxCleveland IndiansLos Angeles Angels
New York YankeesDetroit TigersOakland A's
Tampa Bay RaysKansas City RoyalsSeattle Mariners
Toronto Blue JaysMinnesota TwinsTexas Rangers
NL EastNL CentralNL West
Atlanta BravesChicago CubsArizona Diamondbacks
Miami MarlinsCincinnati RedsColorado Rockies
New York MetsMilwaukee BrewersLos Angeles Dodgers
Philadelphia PhilliesPittsburgh PiratesSan Diego Padres
Washington NationalsSt. Louis CardinalsSan Francisco Giants

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