Thursday, July 24, 2014

29-19

That's the Giants' record on the road this year. I heard the Phils announcers mention it as the second best road  record in MLB.

So they've now had Jonathan Papalbon blow back to back games in 9th -- last night on Buster's homer and tonight on Pence's bases-loaded double. 

It reminded me of the back-to-back blown saves last month by Romo against the Rox. Anyhow, this team is playing well and winning on the road. From Henry Schulman's game story for the SF Chron --

In Wednesday night's 3-1 victory, the Giants' sixth in seven games, a fourth-inning rain delay would have created a "nightmare" for manager Bruce Bochy and his bullpen, as he put it, had it gone longer than an hour and he felt forced to replace Madison Bumgarner.
It lasted 58 minutes, Bumgarner was able to finish eight shutout innings, and a relief corps that was spent after working 15 innings the previous two nights took the night off, save for Santiago Casilla's one-inning save.
Every close umpire's call seemed to cheer the other side when the Giants were losing 22 of 32. In the ninth inning Wednesday, with two outs, the bases loaded and no score, Jonathan Papelbon threw a 2-2 curveball that appeared to nip the outside corner.
Umpire Vic Carapazza called it ball three, though, and Hunter Pence lived to win the game with a bloop double in front of right fielder Marlon Byrd that scored Gregor Blanco, Brandon Crawford and Hector Sanchez, the normally impatient catcher who walked on a 3-2 pitch to load the bases.
Stuff happens, they say, but the better a team plays, the more fortunate its "stuff" seems to be.
Bumgarner earned his 12th win, tying him for the National League lead, and said it feels as though the Giants have reached a long-sought turnaround.
"We're playing a different kind of ball now than we were when we weren't doing so good," he said.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Lincecum's First Save

Maybe the best game of the year. A ninth inning comeback homer by Buster. 

Nice game story in the SF Chronicle -- The last thing the Giants needed after the bullpen went six innings Monday was extra innings. So guess what happened Tuesday night?
The baseball gods will have their fun.
Actually, the gods had nothing to do with it. Buster Posey did. Posey, who earlier missed a homer by inches, tied the game in the ninth with a solo homer against closer Jonathan Papelbon, who had not surrendered one all year.
The game spun into the 14th inning, when the Giants won 9-6, with Tim Lincecum getting his first career save in the Giants' longest game of the season.
Brandon Crawford broke a 5-5 tie with a three-run, two-out double against Jeff Manship, a monstrously important hit for a guy who was batting .203 against right-handed pitching his year.
Posey went 4-for-7 and started the winning rally with his second double. Manship walked Pablo Sandoval intentionally before George Kontos, who won for the second straight night, sacrificed.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Dan the Man in the Orange and Black

Dan Uggla looks like he'll be yet another candidate at second base -- he got DFAd by the ATL and is now headed to Fresno. 

Will he be a French Francouer flameout or bring back memories to Pat the Bat?  

He's been on 3 All-Star teams and had two seasons with a WAR over 4.0. He's also been awful in 2013 and 2014.   

Here's some good verbiage from Chris Haft's story for mlb.com --

 
The Braves released Uggla last Friday after he hit .162 with two home runs and 10 RBIs in 48 games. But if the Giants are hoping that Uggla can recapture his past, at least it's a fairly impressive one.
He finished third in the NL Rookie of the Year balloting in 2006, batting .282 with 27 homers and 90 RBIs for the Marlins. The right-handed batter proceeded to hit 31 or more homers each season from 2007-11.
Uggla recorded his best all-around season in 2010, when he reached career highs in batting average (.287) and RBIs (105) while hitting 33 homers. But while his home run total rose to 36 the following year with Atlanta, his batting average dwindled to .233. Uggla's inconsistency persisted as he hit .220 in 2012 and .179 last year.
Uggla's statistical decline meant little to Hudson.
"I feel like this is going to be a great opportunity for him," Hudson said. "I love the guy. I thought he was a great teammate. He played as hard as anybody I've ever played with. Even though he's struggled, I feel like he handled it pretty well."

Saturday, July 19, 2014

7 for 52?

Brandon Crawford had not gotten an extrabase hit in almost a month since tripling off the Padres on June 25. Last night, he hit a 2-run homer to start the good guys on a 9-1 vic in Miami.

If I were the Giants front office, I would have asked Barry Bonds to please provide some advice.

The game story by Henry Schulman of the SF Chron notes Sabean went on the trip to figure out what to do before the trade deadline on July 31. 

In an interview before the Giants returned to first place in the National League West, percentage points ahead of the Dodgers, Sabean confessed he still does not know which trade route to travel. He is no closer than two weeks ago to knowing what, if anything, the Giants will get from Marco Scutaro or Angel Pagan, or how strong his bullpen really is.
Sabean also made it clear he does not have the resources to fix all of those problems via trade, even if the players were available.
"Obviously, you don't have enough wiggle room payroll-wise and you don't have enough prospects to plug all those holes," Sabean said. "At some point we're going to have to pick our poison.
"If we still have a question at second, still have a question in the outfield and we may need help in the bullpen, that's a tall order."

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Puig strikes out 3 times

Thanks, Yasiel, for a preview of coming attractions at last night's All Star game. Way to suck!

If you read the LA Times, there was no mention of Puig's sucking in the coverage - just Puig 3 in the box score agate under strikeouts.

He's a big bonehead. He got thrown out at 3rd with 2 outs trying to advance on a sac fly on Friday night at Chavez Latrine, ending a rally. The Dodgers lost 6-3. 

Sunday, July 13, 2014

An MLB first thanks to the Giants

That would be today's game with Posey and Madison Bumgarner getting grand slams -- the first time ever in MLB history that both members of a battery have each hit grand slams.

Duane Kuiper had an interesting reaction to Bumgarner's first-pitch slam in the 6th. "He got a first-pitch fastball and hit it as hard as he could; that's what Aubrey Huff and Pat Burrell did in 2010."

Anyhow, the Giants needed a month to get from 42 wins to 52 wins. During that stretch, they lost 22 games and got shut out six times so now they are 52-43.

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Not since Lynn McGlothen

You can call yourself a real Giants fan if you remember Lynn McGlothen, who went 2-9 in a brief stint in the Orange and Black. The Giants traded Ken Reitz to get him from the Cards and got Hector Cruz from the Cubs when they got ride of him.

How bad have the Giants gotten? So bad that Henry Schulman of the SF Chronicle went back 37 years to 1977 for a comparison.---

Marco Scutaro looked like a baseball player in his first game of 2014. Not an old player, not a player with a bad back, but a guy who can help the Giants in the final months of the season.
And once again, the Giants looked like a team that needs a lot more help that Scutaro can provide.
Four the fourth consecutive start, Ryan Vogelsong got zero runs of support in a 2-0 Diamondbacks victory, the Giants’ 16th loss in their past 21 home games and their 10th shutout defeat overall, one short of their 2013 total.
Vogelsong allowed two runs over 6 1/3 innings on an Aaron Hill solo homer in the fourth and a Hill double that turned into a run in the seventh.
During his four-game losing streak, Vogelsong has allowed eight earned runs in 24 2/3 innings, a 2.92 ERA. The last Giant to get no support in four consecutive games in the same season was Lynn McGlothen in 1977.