Bats and Wood combined to force Logan Webb out of the rotation.
Alex Wood will enter the Giants’ rotation this weekend, starting Sunday in Miami and pushing Webb to the bullpen, Gabe Kapler announced before Wednesday’s series finale with the Reds at Oracle Park.
Anthony DeSclafani will start Friday and Aaron Sanchez Saturday, the latter holding onto a spot for now after a solid if not spectacular first two starts with San Francisco.
Webb continues to shows glimpses of dominance and has swing-and-miss stuff but also has posted a 5.23 ERA in two starts. Among the Giants’ top six starters competing for spots, the 24-year-old is the only one with a contract that extends to next season.
The Giants’ rotation is filled with injury risks, including to Wood, who built up in Sacramento after an ablation procedure to his lower back. Webb will be needed again as a starter this year.
“I think there are ways to keep a guy like Logan stretched out and in the pen and prepared because at some point we’re going to need a starter, or something’s going to happen, and we’re going to have a need to have him step into the rotation,” Kapler said over Zoom.
For the moment, Webb will enter a bullpen that now has three right-handed pitchers and Wood a rotation that now has one lefty. The Giants just saw how potent a piggyback can work, as Cincinnati’s Wade Miley and Tejay Antone combined to throw 8 2/3 scoreless innings Monday, and it’s possible the Giants employ Webb as a long man who can take down three or four effective innings.
Kapler said Webb was “an absolute pro” in learning about the transition Tuesday night.
The 30-year-old Wood, meanwhile, will make his Giants debut after signing a base $3 million pact this offseason following being a weapon for the Dodgers (when healthy) last year. He reportedly threw four innings and allowed two runs to the A’s alternate site on Tuesday.
For the first time this season, the Giants’ rotation is not all-righty.
“I think the special value in having a left-hander available to start a game is: If and when the time comes that we bump up against a lineup that calls for a left-handed starter, we may be able to shuffle things around a little bit,” Kapler said. “I think one of Wood’s biggest strengths is his deceptiveness against left-handers and right-handers, but in particular against left-handed hitters.”