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Giants laud rookie Susac's catching skills

Giants laud rookie Susac's catching skills play video for Giants laud rookie Susac's catching skills

SAN FRANCISCO -- Wary of making a rookie mistake in his first Major League start, Andrew Susac hesitated before jogging to first base Tuesday night.

"I made sure of what he called before throwing the bat and looking like an idiot on my first day," the smiling rookie said after the game of his post-ball-four delay.

Statistically, the walk (his first time reaching base safely in the Majors) was the highlight of his night. It was his work behind the plate with batterymate Tim Hudson that stood out most to his teammates.

"I thought he was great," Hudson said. "He did a great job mixing it up, he receives really well. It was a good game plan. He did really well. I was pleasantly surprised with him."

Buster Posey has caught Hudson all season and offered a similar review of Susac, whom MLB.com ranks as the organization's top-rated position player prospect.

"I thought he did really well," Posey said. "He looked relaxed. Even before the game, he seemed really calm. We were just talking about how much easier it is to see in the big leagues than in Triple-A. The lights are so much better."

Susac agreed: "Oh god. It's like a day game. I don't know if it's the height or the quality. You can actually see the seams on the ball."

The rookie's solid showing earned him a spot back in the Giants' lineup for their homestand finale Wednesday afternoon. He's been a Major Leaguer for less than a week, but his confidence and composure have been evident in the clubhouse and on the field, for which Joe Panik deserves some credit, according to Susac.

Panik, a grizzled veteran of one Major League month, has helped Adam Duvall and Susac -- two players he progressed through the Giants' farm system with -- assimilate to life as a pro.

Hector Sanchez will likely miss at least one more series as he recovers from a concussion, so Susac should have a couple more opportunities to make his mark with the big club. Maybe he'll be with the Giants long enough to get team catching gear.

"The all-black," Susac said when asked about the generic catcher's gear he wore Tuesday. "I've contacted Nike. Hopefully I'll get some colorful gear up here."

Chris Haft is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Haft-Baked Ideas, and follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat. Ryan Hood is an associate reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @ryanhood19. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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