Johnny Doskow knows the Giants' prospects who are knocking on the door for a chance in the big leagues as well as anybody. In his 17th year as the voice of the Sacramento River Cats, Doskow takes in every moment of the Giants' Triple-A affiliate.
On Wednesday morning, Doskow joined the KNBR Minor League Podcast to talk about some of the Giants' most intriguing prospects. Here is his up-close view on four names to know.
Tyler Beede, RHP (19 GS, 6-7, 4.79 ERA, 109 IP, 83 K, 1.47 WHIP)
*Beede started the night of Doskow's interview and pitched seven scoreless innings.
"I do think that Beede is going to be really good and I think Beede's gonna have a nice big league career. He's just not ready yet. He just needs more time here in Triple-A.
"He's struggled sometimes not being as aggressive in the zone as I think the Giants would have liked and nibbling a little bit. You know, he has great stuff. It's funny, then he'll have an outing like he did against El Paso several weeks ago where he was absolutely dominant and looked like a '3.' He looked like a 3 or 4 major league starter. He's gonna have the great games and he's gonna struggle some. I just think it's one of those things where more experience against quality hitters is going to help him. We talk about this league and how challenging it is and most of the time you can't just come in and dominate this league like a Lincecum did. Lincecum came in and he just absolutely dominated the (Pacific) Coast League. As did Matt Cain. You just don't see that very often.
"I think with Beede, he's just gotta right the ship, be more aggressive in the zone and you know, it's just a matter of time. He might be a September call-up, but I don't think it would hurt him to get even more time at Triple-A next year before he does get called up. Maybe he will compete for a spot, but I just think he needs more time down here. He's only 24. He's got great stuff, there's no doubt."
Andrew Suarez, LHP (6 G, 5 GS, 3-3, 4.98 ERA, 34.1 IP, 32 K, 1.63 WHIP)
"His command, his confidence. He came in his first start and was throwing his breaking ball for a strike consistently. He came in and he was not intimidated at all by the (Pacific) Coast League. And he threw strikes right away and got hitters out."
Chris Shaw, LF (47 G, .302/.338/.533, 9 HR, 13 2B, 26 RBI, 22 R)
"He's good, man. He's fun to watch too. ...He has a really mature approach and he's learning the outfield. He's still learning how to play the outfield. It's a work in progress out there and not always smooth. But he's a guy who can hit and you've got to find a position for him. Giants fans are gonna be impressed with this guy once he does arrive.
"Who knows, maybe he's a September call-up, but he's a guy I think needs a little more time in Triple-A. He's a good one, he really is. He's a guy who uses the whole field, great power, and again, work in progress in the outfield, but he can get there. You can tell too he's learning positioning out there in left field, how to play it, so it's a matter of time for him out there in the outfield. Definitely the bat's there, no question."
Orlando Calixte, UTIL (74 G, .266/.295/.479, 13 HR, 13 2B, 41 RBI, 37 R)
"I don't know if the Giants have plans for Calixte. I know he is a treat to watch on a daily basis. Just watching his enthusiasm is infectious. He has that great energy he brings every single day. He plays multiple positions, he has a fine arm. I think he's susceptible from time to time on the breaking ball.
"A team's gonna find him. Whether it's the Giants or somebody else, he's gonna stick. He can play. If he can learn how to hit that breaking ball -- he has good bat speed, he can play the game and he can play multiple positions. I think he's a guy who can be a super-utility type. He won't be quite a Nunez, but he's a really talented player, man. Again, he brings this kind of boyish enthusiasm every day. Everybody in the clubhouse loves him; always positive, always smiling, enjoys playing the game genuinely. You watch him and he's just really enjoying it. I haven't seen him in a bad mood yet. If he goes 0-for-5, the next day he's the same exact guy. He kind of has the major league demeanor -- never too high, never too low. He's always happy. He doesn't seem to get down too much, so I think he's got that good mentality."
*All stats are strictly for the River Cats (Shaw and Suarez were mid-season call-ups, and Calixte spent time with the Giants). All stats are through July 19.