Sunday, August 09, 2009

Beat LA! Beat da Bums!

Woo Hoo! I'm up to 10 followers! I'm in double digits! ;^)

But seriously, back to topic, it's time for the Giants to take it to the D-gers, who they face next. They need to step it up this series. And they are looking good, with Sanchez, Martinez, and Lincecum pitching against Kuroda, Wolf, and Billingsley, respectively.

We have a good chance of winning with Sanchez and Lincecum, and most probably will lose with Martinez, though Wolf has had two poorer starts in his last two starts. Still, Kuroda and Billingsley are no push-overs (though Kuroda has a 5.34 ERA in his last 6 games, 5 starts, and Billingsley has a 6.14 ERA in his last 6 starts), it's going to be a tough series any way you look at it. At least the Giants have been able to bring it up a notch against the tougher above .500 teams

It's nice to dream that if we sweep, we'd be only 2.5 games back, but it is going to take somebody (Sandoval? Garko?) going crazy on the D'gers and blasting a few out of the park against them for the Giants to pull off a sweep. But with our good pitchers looking to do well again, I think a 2 out of 3 is realistic, though still will be hard to achieve.

Nobody on the team is really that hot, except for Velez, who I've covered in another post (he should come down any day now, really; but he's up to a 15 game hit streak now), and Freddy Sanchez, who has been delivering thus far, making the trade look smart. It appears that he is finally healthy and doing what he can do, and that his poor play was more related to his injury, though he might also be benefiting from not having to worry about whether the team is going to trade him or not, and knowing the Giants already are counting on him for 2010, and, most importantly of all, he's in a pennant race finally.

Garko has been doing well too since his early jitters joining the Giants. He'll need to continue that.

Rowand has perked up a little too since July 26th, hopefully he can get keep it, that will help our offense greatly.

Molina has perked it up since then too, and hopefully he too can continue, since he's our clean-up hitter.

Luckily, since his no-hitter, Sanchez has been pretty good, 3.80 ERA, .668 OPS against, 28K/11BB, great ratio, 23.2 IP, 16 hits, 4 HR, so he's actually been a little unlucky there. Plus, he has pitched better at home than on the road, and has 3 DOM starts in his last 4 (3 in the other one).

And Lincecum has been Lincecum, almost every game is a well pitched game.

And Martinez was pretty good after his rough early start, when he said that he was a bit amped up and nervous. Still, it's too early to say what he would do in his next start. He was great in Connecticut last season, but he's hardly pitched this season and just came off the line drive off his head early in the season. The good thing was that he threw a shutout in his last start in the minors before coming up.

Those all contibuted to their nice 6-1 homestand and 2-1 short roadtrip, before losing 2 of 3 to the Reds. The team could have been looking ahead to the D-gers series, it's possible, but the Reds had been on a horrific losing streak, so they were due to revert to mean and win a few games too.

In any case, this series will probably be a sign of what we can expect the rest of the way this season. I think whatever the result, there will be carry-forward momentum, either positive or negative. I think the Giants have shown this season that they have the internal fortitude to battle it out, but the question they will have to answer in this series is whether they have enough talent to do it against the clearly best team in the NL.

I think Lincecum has been a good leader and no matter what happens in the first two games, he will deliver in the third, he tends to rise to the occassion, once he's been through that occassion before. I think it will help the team relax more knowing that no matter what they do, they have Lincecum backing them up in game 3.

Go Giants!

4 comments:

  1. Billngsley looks no better than iffy to make his start right now. He's battling an injury at the moment.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Oh, that's even better if they are forced to bring up some schlub of a prospect pitcher to make a spot start. Or one of their retread starters they have in reserve, like Jeff Weaver, who is not very good in parks that are not Dodger Stadium or Comerica Park.

    That's good to know, thanks Boof!

    ReplyDelete
  3. I gotta think that Sanchez is pretty jazzed - it has to be demoralizing to play for the Pirates. I have good feelings.

    I also have thought for a while that Velez is for real - not like he's been hitting for real, but a legit starter. I think he'll stick.

    And, IMHO, the Dodgers are a team waiting to implode. Yes, they have a good record, and yes, it'll be tough for the Giants to catch them, but if any team is likely to tank, it's them. Might get quite interesting.

    Just a feeling... :-)

    ReplyDelete
  4. Given his defensive difficulties, I don't see Velez ever being more than a Chone Figgins type who sees spot starts when the manager gets a feeling in his gut to start him. Or when he is white-hot hitting like this.

    I said that about the D-gers at the start of the season but they have climbed over every road block like they are Cinderella. I thought for sure the Manny suspension would bring their downfall but Pierre did a nice impression of Manny's production in terms of OPS for about a month before somebody else hoisted themselves and did great. Their starting pitching and bullpen I thought would not be able to do it, but they just continue to do it.

    Lately they have been stumbling a little and we have crept in closer but until we actually pass them up for the division lead, I am just accepting that they have been blessed this season and not worrying about them. That's what happened with the Reds, I think in 1991, I looked over their roster and everything just went their way that season. Sometimes teams just have that type of year, and you can argue the logic against that all you want, they are the bumblebee that could.

    For example, their starting pitching seems like it's ready to have a let down. But this season, every time something appears "certain", somebody steps up big time and saves the day. So until the Giants actually catches them, I have to tip my hat off to them and just hope the Giants can pull off the miracle of winning the Wild Card spot.

    ReplyDelete

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