SAN FRANCISCO (AP) Right-hander Johnny Cueto is staying with the San Francisco Giants.
Cueto had the option to opt out of his contract that runs through 2021. The team said Sunday the pitcher had decided to remain with the Giants.
The 31-year-old Cueto was hampered by injuries this season, going 8-8 with a 4.52 ERA in 25 starts. Manager Bruce Bochy and general manager Bobby Evans both had been optimistic that Cueto would stick around.
Cueto had the choice to leave after the second year of his $130 million, six-year contract he signed before the 2016 season.
”It’s great to see Johnny wants to continue his career as a Giant,” Bochy said by text message Sunday. ”Considered one of the best starters in the game, we are glad that he will be helping us bounce back in 2018.”
Left-hander Madison Bumgarner and Cueto make a tough 1-2 left-right punch at the top of the Giants’ rotation.
Cueto dealt with what he called troublesome spots on three fingers – insisting they weren’t true blisters – in July after previous issues before the season began and in May. As he worked his way back in late July in rehab games, he experienced forearm tightness and didn’t pitch again until Sept. 1.
Bumgarner missed nearly three months following an April 20 dirt bike accident on an off day in Colorado.
”We have the makings of one of the best rotations in baseball still,” Bochy said at season’s end. ”We took a pretty big hit with our 1-2 guys. The silver lining their workload was a lot lighter. I really expect those two to come back with a vengeance.”
After high expectations coming out of spring training, San Francisco (64-98) finished last in the NL West and just avoided the franchise’s first 100-loss season since 1985.
On Monday, the Giants plan to announce the hirings of former Athletics and Red Sox pitching coach Curt Young to replace longtime pitching coach Dave Righetti. Also on deck is new hitting coach Alonzo Powell, who was Houston’s assistant hitting coach. Powell replaces Hensley Meulens, who has been promoted to bench coach.
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