The Giants have placed right-hander Johnny Cueto on the 10-day disabled list due to a sprained ankle he sustained in a workout over the weekend, as Alex Pavlovic of NBC Sports Bay Area writes. The move is retroactive to April 7. Left-hander Steven Okert is up from Triple-A to give the team an extra arm for tonight’s game against the D-backs, and southpaw Andrew Suarez will be promoted tomorrow to make his Major League debut in what would’ve been Cueto’s spot in the rotation.
While Cueto’s injury doesn’t sound serious, it’s nonetheless the latest blow in a series of rotation injuries that have hindered the Giants early on in the season. Madison Bumgarner has yet to pitch this season due to a fractured finger that he sustained in Spring Training, while Jeff Samardzija has also yet to make his season debut owing to a pectoral injury. Pavlovic does relay some good news for Giants fans, as Samardzija is slated to make a rehab appearance on Saturday and should be activated for his next turn in the rotation after that.
In many respects, Cueto is off to a solid start to the 2018 season, having yielded just one run on nine hits and two walks through his first 13 innings. However, Cueto’s velocity has dipped from an average of 91.3 mph last season to just 90 mph thus far, and he’s managed to strike out just five batters while posting an uncharacteristically low seven percent swinging-strike rate.
Suarez, meanwhile, was the Giants’ second-round pick back in the 2015 draft. The University of Miami product has made just one Triple-A start this season but impressed there in 2017, tossing 88 2/3 frames with 8.1 K/9, 2.7 BB/9 and a 49.2 percent ground-ball rate following a promotion from Double-A, where he’d also impressed. San Francisco is already turning to its top pitching prospect, Tyler Beede, to make his MLB debut tonight, and they’ll follow him with another of the farm’s most promising young hurlers in Suarez — giving fans a potential glimpse of the future. MLB.com ranks Suarez as the Giants’ No. 10 prospect, calling him a high-floor prospect who should at the very least settle in as a back-of-the-rotation starter.