SAN FRANCISCO — It’s unclear when the Giants will be able to resume their preparations for the start of the 2020 season, but when they do, they’ll be without promising right-hander Tyler Beede.
President of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi said Beede will undergo Tommy John surgery in Texas on Friday, a procedure that will likely sideline the 2014 first-round MLB Draft pick for the next 12 to 18 months. The surgery will be performed by Dr. Keith Meister.
Beede, 26, departed his second Cactus League appearance of the spring on March 3 after experiencing tightness in his right elbow. An MRI exam subsequently revealed a sprained ulnar collateral ligament and a strained flexor tendon, though Beede was initially optimistic that he would be able to avoid Tommy John surgery.
Beede sought out the opinion of several doctors before it became clear that his best option would be to opt for the surgery rather than try to rehab the injury.
“As Tyler consulted with multiple doctors on this, in-person visits and also providing his scans, that was kind of the increasing consensus of the group of doctors that we were consulting, that surgery was advisable,” Zaidi said during a conference call with reporters Thursday. “Rehab continues to be an option, but for somebody at his age, the feeling was even if he was able to rehab successfully, it might only be a matter of time before he starts having symptoms again.”
While baseball is currently on hold due to the coronavirus pandemic, Zaidi said the delay did not factor into Beede’s decision to undergo surgery.
“I think that was already Tyler’s strong lean and the organization certainly supported him,” Zaidi said. “I think it was headed that way, even independent of the layoff we're in right now.”
Beede had entered camp as the favorite to win the fifth starter spot and flashed his tantalizing potential by hitting 98 mph with his fastball in Cactus League play. The timing of the surgery is a cruel blow for Beede, as he appeared poised to take another step forward in his development after logging a 5.08 ERA over 117 innings for the Giants last season.
The Giants have closed both their Major League and Minor League facilities in Arizona, but they plan to remain in touch with rehabbing players and will be on hand to help guide Beede through the long, arduous road ahead.
Now that Beede is unavailable, right-handers Logan Webb and Trevor Cahill will likely be the frontrunners to join Johnny Cueto, Jeff Samardzija, Kevin Gausman and Drew Smyly in the Giants’ rotation.