Friday, September 17, 2010

Your 2010 Giants are 83-64: First Squeeze the Brewers

La Machine!  Since the disappointing series loss to Arizona - AT HOME - the Giants finally awoke and have won their last five series, all against NL West opponents, to finally reach first place in the NL West, alone.  I have never believed in manifest destiny, but for some odd reason I've lost the butterflies since the loss to the 'Dres on Saturday, I "know"that they are in it - but will they win it?  The Giants win of the LA series gave them the season's series, 10-8, their first since 2005, according to KNBR.

The Brew Crew, they of the bowling pin variety, come in for a series, probably still stinging from the four game sweep that the Giants handed them at their home in early July.  Being out of it too, they probably would love to play spoilers because the Giants just spanked them, outscoring them 36-7.  But these Giants have a lot of pride and poise, and they are probably still stinging from Fielder's et al bowling pin stunt last season and his unrepentant unapology this spring, as well as knowing that they need to win every series down the wire to put them in good position to win the division in the season ending series against San Diego.  Plus, they have spanked the NL Central this season, 25-11.

Strangely, we haven't heard the strains of people clamoring to trade Sanchez for Cory Hart, coming in with the Brewers, who has hit only .257/.312/.472/.784, 6 HR in 144 AB since the end of July - in other words, nothing special.  Sanchez has merely had a 2.47 ERA, 61 K in 54.2 IP, only 24 BB.  What a disaster trade that would have been!

Or how about those who have been clamoring to trade Matt Cain the past few seasons, particularly for Prince Fielder, but also for Alex Rios.  How stabilizing a force he has been this season, as both Zito and Lincecum burned brightly early but then had horrible struggles during the season, Sanchez, while good overall, has been up and down in results, and of course, there was the Wellemeyer period, and even Bumgarner was not feeling it for a while.  Cain was La Machine all season, what a disaster trade that would have been, especially considering how poorly both Fielder and Rios played after the trade rumors/speculation (Rios was released for nothing by Toronto; Fielder has been an offensive low-light this season, nothing like before, could be a cautionary tale for us Sandoval fans).

And that doesn't even include the ones who wanted to trade Lincecum for Alex Rios or those who wanted to trade Bumgarner (last three starts, 0.89 ERA) this season for any offense.  And I'm sure during the off-season they will continue to agitate for more offense by trading one of our pitchers.  What they are forgetting is that such trades are only sideway moves at best, assuming equal value is exchanged, and risk that the new player isn't all that he was advertised to be.  Just because they can't stand losing 1-0 or 2-1, when the trade might just mean that we lose 4-3 or 5-4 instead:  still a loss either way.

Game 1:  Randy Wolf vs. Bumgarner

MLB Notes:
Brewers:  Tossing eight innings and giving up just one run on a home run, Wolf thought his last outing may have been his best of the 2010 season. He'll look to continue his recent success, as he's gone 4-2 with a 3.07 ERA over his last nine starts.
Giants:  If it weren't for teammate Buster Posey, the Giants might be pushing Bumgarner for NL Rookie of the Year honors. He has thrived against National League West opponents, recording a 2.47 ERA.
Wolf has dominated the Giants the past three seasons in SF, but the caveat there is both who hasn't and the offense is different now.  Still, he has a 3.06 ERA against the Giants in AT&T.  Unfortunately, the one guy who has hit Wolf well is Andres Torres with 2 homers in 3 AB.  Renteria has also hit him well, but that's only 17 AB, and as Aubrey Huff showed last night against Billingsley - after a career, something like 4-27, he slammed a triple and HR off him - career numbers are not absolutes.

Bumgarner has been on a roll recently himself, as we all know.  And he and the Giants beat Wolf in Milwaukee, 6-1, earlier this season, so they will probably want revenge.  Should be an even game, both pitchers have been on the top of their game recently.

Game 2:  Yovani Gallardo vs. Lincecum

Brewers:  Gallardo worked seven scoreless innings Sunday for the second straight start following three in a row in which he allowed at least six runs. One of his most memorable starts was at AT&T Park last April, when he homered off Randy Johnson.
Giants:  Lincecum's awful August now is a distant memory as he has won his past three decisions. In his last outing, he held the Padres to one run and struck out nine in seven innings. In six starts against the Brewers, Lincecum is 2-2 with a 4.76 ERA.
Looks like it's ace-vs.-ace, and both are shutting down the opposition in recent games.  Gallardo has two career starts in SF, was beat bad in 2007 but shut down the Giants last season.  Lincecum has bad career results against Milwaukee, including a 6.60 ERA at home against them, but earlier this season he pitched a great game against them at their home.  Should be a good game, bring it on.

Game 3:  Chris Narveson vs. Zito

Brewers:  N/A
Giants:  Zito suffered a loss in his career-high ninth straight decision in his last start, but appears to be finding himself. Zito said he's felt better in his past two starts, and it shows as he's allowed five hits in 11 2/3 innings.
Looks like Zito finally got a break.   Narveson (Baggerly reported him as the starter in the newspaper) has a 5.05 ERA, though 4.56 ERA on the road.  He has never pitched in SF, but the team clobbered him in Milwaukee earlier this season.  Should be a Giants win if Zito can keep his recent improvement going.  

Giants Thoughts

The Giants just need to do as Aubrey Huff said recently in an interview:  win each series (DrB noted this too), don't think about sweeps, that's hard to do in any situation, let alone with the playoffs on the line.  They have done it recently, and despite the good pitchers lined up against them, they have been doing it.  They luck out with Narveson pitching one game, but face to two tough customers in Wolf and Gallardo, both of whom have pitched well in recent games, but if the Giants can grab one from one of them (like we did with Kershaw/Billingsley) then we should be in good shape in the rubber game against Narveson.

The pitchers have been on a great run in September, like a switch was turned on.  Lincecum and Bumgarner is seeing velocity that they haven't seen in a while.  Sanchez has been unflappable and vet-like in shutting down the other team even when he didn't have his best stuff.  He appears to be graduating to Lincecum/Cain status, taking his place next to them in the rotation.  Zito, well, he's the 5th starter now, he's going to have to revert to his April incarnation for the rest of the season to change that impression, but as long as he pitches to his capabilities, that is nothing to be ashamed of, there are a lot of pitchers in the majors who would be a 5th starter when the rest of the rotation is Lincecum, Cain, Sanchez, Bumgarner..

The hitters have been just doing enough, led by our young wunderkind, Buster Posey.  I was so happy that Tampa Bay passed on him in that draft, but his production this season and particularly in September with everything on the line just makes me ecstatic that we have found our offensive leader for the foreseeable future.  As Mark Purdy quoted from Will Clark, who probably is the closest in term of stature on the team in the recent past (Bonds was never a leader), "There are guys that are pretty special.  Buster is one of them."  And because the Giants didn't bring him up until late May, we get at least 6 more years of him, not 5 if he had started with the team.

And hitters are waking up.  Renteria had an amazing game yesterday (great quote from him in Chron about leading off, about taking pitches, doing whatever to get on base, for big hitters), perhaps we found our replacement lead-off hitter; Bochy is going with him again in first game.  Sanchez as been on fire for a long time.  Huff has been doing better recently before busting out yesterday.  Burrell has been steadily good.  Guillen apparently had a pain in his neck/back (and didn't report it!!! for 2-3 weeks) and after getting a shot to help with that, was a pain in the neck/back of the opposing pitcher yesterday, looking like the guy who was an offensive force for the A's when he joined them on their pennant run.  Plus the young guys, Schierholtz and Ishikawa has been contributing here and there.

If Sandoval can get out of his most recent funk (which is not to be unexpected, after dealing with such an emotional issue like a divorce, there will be ups and downs afterward, it is only human), the offense should be pretty good for the stretch run.  Even if he is not, the offense has been good enough with our pitching to win a lot of games.  Bochy appears to be platooning him now, which works if Renteria can continue hitting like this, as he would play SS and Uribe 3B against LHP.

2 comments:

  1. Nothing much to add, except.....Go Giants!!!!!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Is there anyone over 20 that is upset about nothing, or rather the Fielder walk off? I suppose Righetti, so maybe I should add spiritually over 80.

    ReplyDelete

Labels

1984 Draft (1) 2007 Draft (15) 2007 Giants (52) 2008 Draft (22) 2008 Giants (53) 2008 season (6) 2009 Draft (18) 2009 Giants (87) 2009 season (24) 2010 Decade (10) 2010 Draft (11) 2010 Giants (137) 2010 NL ROY award (1) 2010 season (19) 2010's (3) 2011 Draft (9) 2011 Giants (84) 2011 season (8) 2012 Draft (11) 2012 Giants (93) 2012 season (11) 2013 Draft (3) 2013 Giants (39) 2013 season (5) 2014 (1) 2014 draft (5) 2014 Giants (76) 2014 season (16) 2015 Giants (4) 2015 season (1) 25 man roster (7) 3B (1) 40 Man Roster (5) 49ers (1) 6-man rotation (1) 89 Quake (1) 89 World Series (1) A's (6) A-Ball (1) A-Gon (1) A-Rod (3) AA-Ball (1) Aaron Rowand (25) accomplishments (1) ace pitcher (1) Adalberto Mejia (4) Adam Duvall (3) AFL (4) Alex Hinshaw (3) Alex Pavlovic (1) All-Star Game (1) almost perfect game (1) Amphetamine (2) analysis (6) Andre Torres (14) Andres Torres (2) Andrew Susac (5) Andy Baggerly (2) Andy Sisco (1) Angel Joseph (1) Angel Pagan (10) Angel Villalona (29) Anniversary (1) appendicitis (1) Aramis Garcia (1) Arbitration (12) Armando Benitez (5) Armando Gallaraga (1) art of failure (1) assessment (1) At the Rate They Are Going (1) ATT Park (1) Aubrey Huff (20) Award (4) BABIP (2) Barry Bonds (29) Barry Zito (77) Baseball America (2) Baseball Prospectus (2) Baseball Prospectus Bias Against Giants (3) baseball strategy (5) Baseball Study (14) baserunning (2) batting peripherals (1) batting stance analysis (1) batting title champion (1) Beat LA (6) bench players (1) Bengie Molina (14) Benjamin Snyder (1) Bert Blyleven (1) best manager (1) Beyond the Box Score (1) Bias Against Giants (1) Big 6 (7) Bill Hall (1) Bill James Handbook (2) Bill Mueller (1) Bill Neukom (21) Billy Beane (2) Blog Philosophy (2) Bob Howry (2) Bob Mariano (1) Bobby Evans (1) Boston Red Sox (1) Brad Hennessey (5) Brad Penny (2) Brandon Bednar (1) Brandon Belt (38) Brandon Crawford (18) Brandon Hicks (1) Braves (5) breakout (1) Brett Bochy (3) Brett Pill (9) Brian Anderson (1) Brian Bocock (2) Brian Cooper (1) Brian Horwitz (3) Brian Ragira (2) Brian Sabean (42) Brian Wilson (14) Bridegrooms (2) Bruce Bochy (23) Bucky Showalter (1) bulllpen (1) Bullpen (23) Business Plan (13) Buster Posey (93) Byung-Hyun Kim (1) Cained (4) call-ups (3) Candlestick Park (1) Cards (13) Career Prospects (3) Carl Hubbell (1) Carlos Beltran (4) Carlos Gomez (1) Carney Lansford (2) Carter Jurica (1) catcher injury (4) catching (1) CC Sabathia (1) censorship (2) CEO (2) Chad Gaudin (5) Charles Culberson (5) Charlie Culberson (3) Chase Johnson (2) Chillax (1) Chris Brown (1) Chris Gloor (1) Chris Heston (3) Chris Lincecum (1) Chris O'Leary (1) Chris Ray (4) Chris Stewart (4) Chris Stratton (8) Christian Arroyo (3) Christmas (1) Christopher Dominguez (4) Christy Mathewson (1) Chuckie Jones (2) Clay Hensley (3) Clayton Blackburn (5) Clayton Tanner (3) Closer (7) closer by committee (3) Coaches (3) Cody Hall (1) Cody Ross (8) Col (1) Comeback Award (1) Commissioner (1) comparison (1) competitiveness (1) Conor Gillaspie (22) contender (1) contract negotiations (2) contract signing (4) Cory Hart (1) Craig Whitaker (2) cuts (1) Cy Young Award (5) D-backs (14) D-gers (31) D-Rocks (3) D-Rox (16) Dallas McPherson (1) Dan Ortmeier (11) Dan Otero (2) Dan Runzler (6) Dan Uggla (1) Daniel Slania (2) Darren Ford (1) Dave Roberts (11) David Aardsma (1) David Huff (2) David Loewenstein (1) Decade of the Giants (10) decline (1) Defense (8) Deferred Money (1) deleted comment (1) Derek Law (5) Detroit Tigers (1) DFA (3) DH (2) Dick Tidrow (1) dictionary (1) Dirty (1) DL (1) dodgers (6) Donald Snelten (1) Draft (3) Draft Analysis (8) Draft Bonus (7) draft list (1) draft signing (3) Draft Strategy (11) Draft Study (2) Draft Success (2) drafting (1) Dres (16) DRS (1) Edgar Renteria (13) Edwin Escobar (5) Ehire Adrianza (15) Eli Whiteside (4) Elimination game (1) EME (2) Emmanuel Burriss (18) epic season (6) Eric Byrnes (1) Eric Surkamp (6) Erik Cordier (1) Eugenio Velez (12) evaluation (1) extension (6) fanfest (1) Fielding (4) Fielding Stats (4) finger injury (1) first post-season press conference (2) Francisco Peguero (4) Fred Lewis (3) Freddie Lewis (17) Freddie Sanchez (4) Freddy Sanchez (7) Free Agency (6) Free agent possibilities (18) Free agent signing (5) Free agent signings (21) gamer-tude (1) Gary Brown (23) Geno Espinelli (1) George Kontos (3) Ghosts of Giants Drafts (1) Giants (2) Giants blogs (2) Giants Chat (3) Giants Defense (1) Giants Draft (7) Giants Drafts (2) Giants Farm System (29) Giants Franchise record (2) Giants Future (62) Giants GM (4) Giants Greats (2) Giants hitting manual (1) Giants No-Hitter (4) Giants Offense (23) Giants Offseason (21) Giants Pitching (1) Giants Strategy (34) GiDar (1) Gino Espinelli (1) glossary (1) good will (1) Graphical Player (1) Gregor Blanco (13) Gregor Moscoso (1) Guillermo Moscoso (2) Guillermo Mota (2) Guillermo Quiroz (1) Gustavo Cabrera (3) Hall of Fame (7) Hall of Shame (3) Hank Aaron (5) Happy Holidays (2) Hate mail (1) heart-warming (1) Heath Hembree (8) Hector Correa (1) Hector Sanchez (9) Henry Sosa (8) HGH (1) high expectations (1) high school focus in draft (1) Hitter's League (1) Hitting (15) Hitting Coach (1) hitting mechanics (3) hitting pitchers (2) hitting streak (1) Hitting; (1) Home Run Career Record (7) Home Run Hitting Contest (1) Hunter Pence (20) Hunter Stickland (1) Hunter Strickland (3) Idea (4) improvement (1) Indictment (1) injury (2) instant replay (2) instructor (1) Interesting Question (1) International Free Agent Pursuits (3) International Signings (5) interview (3) Investment (1) Ivan Ochoa (2) Jack Taschner (4) Jackson Williams (2) Jacob Dunnington (1) Jacob McCasland (1) Jake Dunning (1) Jake Peavy (13) Japanese Starters (1) Jarrett Parker (5) Jason Heyward (1) Jason Stoffel (1) Javier Lopez (5) JC Gutierrez (3) Jean Machi (1) Jeff Kent (1) Jeff Suppan (1) Jeremy Affeldt (11) Jeremy Shelley (1) Jerome Williams (1) Jesse English (2) Jesse Foppert (1) Jesus Guzman (4) Joaquin Arias (9) Joe Panik (12) Joe Torre (1) Joey Martinez (2) Johan Santana (1) John Bowker (22) Johneshwy Fargas (2) Johnny Bench (1) Johnny Monell (1) Johnny Rucker (1) Jonah Arenado (1) Jonathan Mayo (1) Jonathan Sanchez (48) Jose Canseco (1) Jose Casilla (1) Jose Guillen (3) Jose Mijares (3) Jose Uribe (2) Josh Osich (3) JT Snow (1) Juan Perez (5) Juan Uribe (9) Juggling Monkey (1) Just Say No (1) Kendry Flores (1) Keury Mella (1) Kevin Correia (2) Kevin Frandsen (22) Kevin Pucetas (10) Kung Fu Panda (30) Kyle Crick (10) Larry Baer (2) Larry Ellison (1) Lead-off (2) left-handed (1) Lew Wolff (1) LHP (1) Lineup (17) lineup construction (1) Lineup position (1) Long-Term Contract (21) long-term planning (3) luck (1) Luis Angel Mateo (2) Mac Williamson (5) Madison Bumgarner (138) Mailbox (1) Malcolm Gladwell (1) management change (3) management issues (5) managerial value (3) Manny (1) Marc Kroon (2) Marco Scutaro (11) Mark DeRosa (8) Martin Agosta (6) Marvin Miller (1) Masahiro Tanaka (1) Mason McVay (1) Matsuzaka (1) Matt Cain (131) Matt Downs (2) Matt Duffy (1) Matt Graham (1) Matt Holliday (1) Matt Morris (2) Mechanics (4) Media (15) Media Bias (17) Media Trade Idea (3) Medical (1) Mediocy (10) Mediots (4) Melk-Gone (1) Melky Cabrera (14) memories (1) mental (1) Merkin Valdez (8) Message in a Bottle (1) Michael Main (1) Michael Trout (1) Miguel Cabrera (2) Miguel Tejada (5) Mike Fontenot (3) Mike Ivie (1) Mike Kickham (9) Mike Matheny (1) Mike Morse (9) milestone (1) minor league (1) minor league contract (1) minors (11) mismanagement (1) misnomer (1) mistakes (2) MLB (2) MLB stupidity (2) MLB Success (6) MLB Trade Rumors (1) MLBAM (1) MLBTR (1) MLE (1) Mock Draft analysis (4) MVP (2) Natanael Javier (1) Nate Schierholtz (45) Nathanael Javier (1) Nationals (1) Naysayers (1) Negotiations (1) Nick Noonan (26) Nick Pereira (1) Nick Vander Tuig (2) NL Champions (2) NL West (21) NL West Division Title (16) NL West Future (1) NLCS (22) NLCS MVP (2) NLDS (7) Noah Lowry (14) non-roster invitees (1) non-tenders (1) NPB (1) Oakland A's (4) OBP (1) oddities (1) Offense (3) offensive era (1) Omar Vizquel (3) one-run games (1) Opening Day (4) opening day pitcher (1) opening day roster (4) Optimism (1) Osiris Matos (2) Outfield (1) Ownership (7) Pablo Sandoval (91) Panda (6) Pandoval (1) passing (1) Pat Burrell (15) Pat Misch (5) Payroll (8) Pedro Feliz (12) PEDS (10) Perfect Game (2) perjury trial (1) Personal Reminiscence (2) Pessimism (1) Pete Rose (3) Peter Magowan (2) Phillies (7) Phoenix Theory of Rebuilding (1) Pitch Count (3) pitch value (1) Pitchers League (1) Pitching (14) Pitching Rotation (59) pitching staff (1) plate discipline (1) Play Ball (1) player budget (2) player development (2) playoff (2) playoff hopes (25) playoff roster (2) playoff rotation (3) Playoff Success (18) Playoffs (33) postmortem (1) PQS (72) press conference (1) pressure (2) priorities (1) Projected Record (4) projection (2) promotion (1) prospect (2) prospect analysis (1) Prospect of Note (3) prospect study (1) Prospects (42) questions (1) Rafael Rodriquez (8) Rajai Davis (2) Ralph Barbieri (1) Ramon Ramirez (3) Randy Johnson (9) Randy Messenger (2) Randy Winn (14) Rangers (5) Ranking (4) raspberry (1) Ray Durham (5) re-sign (2) Rebuilding (4) Rebuilding Myths series (1) rebuttal (1) Reds (5) Relocation Concession (2) Research (2) resource scarcity (1) Retired (3) Retirement (1) return (1) RHP (1) Rich Aurilia (7) Rick Peterson (1) Rickie Weeks (1) Ricky Oropesa (3) right-handed (1) risk mitigation (2) risk profile (1) Rod Beck (1) Roger Kieschnick (13) Roger Metzger (1) Ron Shandler (2) Rookie of the Year (1) Roster (4) ROY (2) Royals (3) Rule 5 Draft Pick (3) rumors (9) runs support (1) Russ Ortiz (11) Ryan Garko (2) Ryan Klesko (4) Ryan Rohlinger (2) Ryan Theriot (3) Ryan Vogelsong (76) Ryder Jones (2) Sabean Naysayers (4) Sabermetric Thoughts (5) sabermetrics (3) Salary speculation (3) SALLY (1) San Jose Giants (1) San Jose Relocation (3) Sandy Rosario (1) Santiago Casilla (8) Scott McClain (2) Scott Shuman (1) Scouting (1) Sergio Romo (15) SF Giants (2) Shilo McCall (1) Shooter (1) shutouts (1) Signature Song (1) signing (12) Silly-Ball (3) South Atlantic League (1) South Bay Rights (1) Spring Training (15) standings (1) starting lineup (14) starting pitching (54) statistics (2) STATS (1) Steroids (5) Steve Edlefsen (4) Steve Johnson (3) Steve Okert (1) Sue Burns (1) sunk costs (1) superstition (1) Team Speed (1) Team Support (1) Thank You (1) The Giants Way (1) The Hey Series (15) Thomas Joseph (3) Thomas Neal (9) Tigers (4) Tim Alderson (17) Tim Hudson (26) Tim Lincecum (168) Todd Linden (3) Todd Wellemeyer (6) Tommy Joseph (3) top prospect list (4) Trade (9) Trade Analysis (15) Trade Idea (7) Trade PTBNL (2) Trade Rumors (28) trading (1) training staff (2) Training Tool (1) Travis Blackley (1) Travis Ishikawa (44) turning point (1) Ty Blach (2) Tyler Beede (2) Tyler Horan (1) Tyler Rogers (1) Tyler Walker (2) umpire mistake (3) Umpires (3) USA Today (1) Voros McCracken (1) Waldis Joaquin (5) walks (1) WAR (1) Warrior Spirit (1) Wendell Fairley (10) What-If Scenario (3) wild card (1) wild card race (1) Will Clark (1) Willie Mac Award (1) Willie Mays (1) Winter League (1) winter meetings (1) World Series (26) World Series Champions (11) WS Ring Bling (1) Yusmeiro Petit (26) Zack Wheeler (9)