The Giants' big offseason acquisition turned out to be a smashing success in Year 1 of the six-year deal. Johnny Cueto turned in ace-like numbers with a 2.79 ERA, 1.09 WHIP and a 4.4 K/BB ratio while earning early Cy Young contender mentions after starting the season 13-1. His strengths lie in his pinpoint control and ability to hit both sides of the plate with all three of his fastballs. While his crafty pitching style and excellent command could offset an eventual drop in velocity, the 30-year-old was still dialing up his four-seam and two-seam fastballs in the low-to-mid 90s, similar to his prime years in Cincinnati. There is no reason to think that Cueto can't repeat his success with the Giants in 2017, making him a safe high-end pitcher to invest in.
Cueto gave up three runs on seven hits while walking two and striking out five Wednesday. He did not factor into the decision in a walk-off win over the Dodgers. Despite Wednesday's game taking place in the pitcher-friendly confines of AT&T Park, the Dodgers -- who hit righties significantly better than lefties -- presented a tough matchup for the veteran. The 31-year-old was looking sharp through five innings, but Corey Seager led a three-run rally in the sixth that ended the righty's night. While he earned a quality start, Cueto's April has been anything but quality, as he finished with a 5.10 ERA and 1.40 WHIP in five games. His velocity is on par with his marks during last year's All-Star campaign, but his 1.80 HR/9 is the glaring outlier, likely due to a career-high 18.8 HR/FB ratio. Cueto has posted HR/FB ratios below 10 percent over his previous two seasons, so his current mark should regress to the mean, which should reveal the Cueto we are used to seeing as the season progresses.
Cueto was hammered for six runs on eight hits over five innings Friday. He walked two and struck out just one in a loss to the Rockies. The 31-year-old went into Coors Field and did what most pitchers do who visit the Rockies: get hit hard. The majority of the damage was done on a grand slam off the bat of Trevor Story, the first grand slam surrendered by the veteran ace in his 10-year career. Cueto has now sandwiched two strong performances with two poor ones. It isn't surprising to see that both of his rough outings have come in arguably the two toughest ballparks to pitch in across the majors (Chase Field and Coors Field). Cueto will look forward to returning to the friendly confines of AT&T Park when he faces the Dodgers on Wednesday.
Cueto (3-0) picked up his third win of the season Friday, going seven innings while giving up two runs and striking out six against the Rockies. The Giants spotted Cueto with a four-run lead early on, allowing him to cruise to an easy victory against a potent Colorado lineup. After an inauspicious 2017 debut, the All-Star pitcher has gone seven innings in both of his last two starts, bringing his ERA back under 4.00 in the process. With the Giants having two scheduled off days before his next start, Cueto won't take the mound again until next Friday against these same Rockies, but this time, his start will come in hitter-friendly Coors Field.
Cueto (2-0) allowed two runs on five hits while walking three and striking out seven in seven innings in Sunday's 5-3 win over the Padres. The chief blemish on his line was a two-run home run to Wil Myers in the sixth inning. Otherwise, he pitched to expectations in this one against a weak-hitting San Diego lineup. Cueto is a fantasy ace that has gone 200-plus innings in four of the last five seasons, and he consistently induces weak contact. He should have another fine season in San Fran as the second starter behind Madison Bumgarner.
Cueto (1-0) picked up the win in his season debut Tuesday despite allowing four runs on six hits and two walks over just five innings. He struck out five. Fortunately for Cueto, the Giants jumped all over Arizona's questionable pitching, obscuring the fact that he struggled through his five frames, throwing 94 pitches. Of course, Cueto's a perennially reliable -- and often underpriced -- fantasy starter, so there's no reason to worry over the results of his first start of the year.