The Pirates have claimed right-hander Tyler Beede off waivers from the Giants, reports Jason Mackey of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Twitter link). San Francisco had designated him for assignment last week. Pittsburgh later announced the move, designating Beau Sulser for assignment to clear space on the 40-man roster.
Beede, who turns 29 later this month, is a former first-round pick and highly-regarded prospect. The Vanderbilt product reached the big leagues in 2018 and got his first extended look in the rotation the following year. Beede allowed a 5.08 ERA over 24 appearances (including 22 starts) in 2019, posting roughly league average strikeout, walk and ground-ball numbers but struggling with the longball. The Giants no doubt hoped he’d cement himself as a long-term starting pitcher in 2020 and beyond, but that didn’t wind up being the case.
Unfortunately, Beede required Tommy John surgery in March 2020. That cost him the entire season and kept him out until the following July. Beede spent the bulk of last season with Triple-A Sacramento, struggling to a 6.66 ERA with a massive 18.4% walk rate at the minors’ top level. Much of that came while he was still rehabbing from the Tommy John procedure, and his season ended in mid-August when he landed back on the IL because of a lower back strain.
Beede exhausted his final minor league option last year, meaning the Giants had to keep him on the active roster or expose him to waivers this season. They’d transitioned him to relief but he struggled over six outings. Beede allowed five runs in 9 2/3 innings, walking six batters while striking out just four. Devoting an active roster spot to a pitcher still battling control woes proved too much for a win-now Giants team, but that’s an easier dice roll for a rebuilding Pittsburgh club. Beede is averaging nearly 96 MPH on his heater this year and won’t reach arbitration eligibility until after the season, so there’s a chance he sticks around long-term if the Bucs can help him regain his control of the strike zone.
Sulser, 28, got his first MLB call last month. He made four appearances, allowing nine runs (albeit just four earned) in 9 2/3 innings out of the bullpen. The right-hander had an excellent three-start run with Triple-A Indianapolis to earn his first call-up and still has all three minor league options remaining. It’s possible another club takes a shot on him via small trade or waivers within the next week.