Thursday, October 31, 2013

Trading Sandoval?

Well, that was fun

The San Francisco Giants are no longer the World Series champs.

Congratulations to the Bosox

Pitchers and cathers report in 105 days

Let's Go Giants!!!!!!!!!

Obsessive Compulsive Giants has a fine post about the need to sign Brandon Belt to a long-term deal. here's the first part -- 

One of the things I would like to see in the off-season is for the Giants to sign Belt to a long term deal, much like they did with Sandoval, Posey, Bumgarner in recent years, and Cain and Lowry long ago. 
And why not?  He has been a good hitter for us, even though he had been hindering himself with bad mechanics, so one could say that the Giants over the past three seasons have been trying to "tame" a wild horse (giraffe?) with his benchings, which drew the ire of a part of the Belt fanbase.  And which he didn't go through much of in 2013 season anyway, he was the clear starter, I just think that some Belt fans just get a little over protective of him. 

I've been expecting him to bust out sooner than later, and I think 2014 could be the year he does it, given that he finally changed his batting grip and had such great success with it.  So I think it is imperative for the Giants to work on signing him up long term, the sooner the better, but at least before the 2014 season.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

A thing of beauty is a joy forever

Sunday, October 28, 2012 at Comerica Park (Detroit Tigers)

b10 3-4 2 --- 6,(2-2)  O DET M. Cabrera S. Romo
Strikeout Looking

Lincecum deal not crazy

Joel Sherman of the NY Post -- one of the most hysterical publications on the planet -- gives a calm, reasonable explanation why the Front Office of the Giants thinks 2 years for $35 mil makes sense. Here is some of the key verbiage -- 

5. Even pitching poorly the past two years, Lincecum went to the bullpen during the 2012 postseason and was a vital weapon, plus he threw a no-hitter this year and struck out about the same average per nine innings (8.79) as likely Cy Young winner Clayton Kershaw (8.85).
Kershaw and Adam Wainwright (each with 66 starts) were the only NL pitchers to start more often than Lincecum (65) the past two years, offsetting some of the worries his Freakish delivery would cause injury. In 2013 Lincecum had a 4.37 ERA and the Giants feel it was inflated because 12 of his inherited runners scored (the second-highest total in the majors). You may remember, for example, he left his next-to-last start, Sept. 20 at Yankee Stadium, with the bases loaded and two outs, and the score 1-1. Reliever George Kontos was greeted by an Alex Rodriguez grand slam.
6. Lincecum’s fastball has dropped 2 mph on average the past two years (from 92 to 90). But, Evans said, Lincecum came to peace he has to keep throwing it and just spot it better to make his off-speed repertoire work. The Giants’ feeling was Lincecum came to camp in better shape this year and executed better pitch-to-pitch than in the disastrous 2012 regular season (5.18 ERA). There is still work to be done, Evans explained, notably getting Lincecum to pitch down in the zone more because when the righty is up he gets beat up badly. Though the Giants do not think a Cy is returning soon, they do feel Lincecum is evolving and — in Evans’ words — “has upside and we are not sure there are many guys in this free-agent market you could say that about.”

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

the ex-dodger delivers

Monday, October 28, 2013

Tim = Greg Maddux?

A poster on the SF Chron site suggested that Tim watch Greg Maddux footage this offseason. I checked out his career -- a WAR of over 104.

Not bad advice!

In case you had forgotten, Maddux won 4 consecutive Cy Youngs from 1992 to 1995 without much of a fastball. He won the first with the cubbies, then signed a free agent deal with the Atl

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Kyle Crick coming

With the Cards having pitched three pitchers under 24 in Game 2 -- Michael Wacha, Carlos Martinez and Trevor Rosenthal -- the wisdom of developing young arms and getting them to the MLB has been underlined.

So it's good to read that Kyle Crick is delivering the goods in the Arizona Fall League. Story on the SF Giants web site identifies him as the No. 1 prospect in the system at the age of 20.

I am a big advocate of getting guys to the MLB ASAP.

Tim Lincecum made it at age 22. 

And Madison Bumgarner made it at age 20  

So did Matt Cain

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

No one understands Timmy's deal

Fine with me. I bet it works out better than the Zito deal. Fangraphs is a little perplexed but contends that what it REALLY means is that ERA is no longer valued as much as a metric.One commenter had an optimsitic interpretation -- 

There are sixteen starting pitchers with at least 380 innings pitched over the last two years who also struck out more than 380 batters. Tim Lincecum is one of those pitchers.
Of those, 10 are under 30. One is Lincecum.
There are eight qualified starting pitchers who make batters swing and miss on at least 11% of all their pitches. Tim Lincecum is one of those pitchers.
Giants relievers allowed over 60% of the runners Lincecum left on base to score. The league average is 28%.

Thanks, Dodgers!

The NY Times had a decent story today about the World Series, noting that last year's trade Bosox- Dodgers trade enabled the Bosox to rebuild its team with deals for SEVEN free agents -- Uehara, Ross, Drew, Gomes, Napoli and Victorino. They took $260 mil off the books and then paid no more than $39 mil for any of the free agents.

The NYT also mentioned that the loss of Pujols to the Angels gave the Cards a compensatory 1st round pick in Michael Wacha and gave them the bucks to sign Beltran and re-sign Molina and Adam Wainwright (who pitched like garbage tonight).

dodgers in disarray

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

The big bet on Tim's evolution

So says John Shea of the SF Chron --who brings up the leverage that Tim has because the Dodgers would have been willing to overpay for Tim. I can;t think of  anything that would be tougher to take than seeing Tim in a Dodger uni -- 

Here's the key part --


They were convinced Tim Lincecum will return to real-deal status, that his fastball, despite dipping to the low 90s, will be effective enough, accompanied by his usual assortment of sliders, changeups and curves, to upgrade his performance in 2014 and 2015 over 2012 and 2013.
The Giants were so convinced of this that they agreed on a $35 million contract over two years (pending a physical) to keep Lincecum in the rotation along with Matt Cain and Madison Bumgarner and two pitchers to be named.
One won't be Barry Zito. One might not be Ryan Vogelsong. Or Chad Gaudin or Yusmeiro Petit.
So the Giants were working from a position of desperation to some extent. Desperate to fill rotation spots, desperate to benefit if/when Lincecum returns to elite form, desperate to keep their two-time Cy Young Award winner from the Dodgers.
Don't discount the Dodger angle. After losing the National League Championship Series with Brian Wilson as their setup man, the Dodgers could have targeted another colorful Giants pitcher, among a cast of thousands, in their pay-at-all-costs bid to win it all.

Timmy's back for two years

I think it's pretty good news. I'm hoping that the improvement in 2013 over 2012 will continue.

Henry Schulman of the SF Chron points out that this relatively short deal is in line with Tim's preference   

John Heyman of SI just tweeted that it's a $35 mil deal -- so he'll get $5 million less than he did for the past two years.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Dodger owners out of their minds

ESPN reports that the dodgers offered Clayton Kershaw a 10-year $300 million deal earlier in the season. This is the same pitcher who got bombed Friday night by the Cards.  

Here's some background on the biggest contracts -- 

Earlier this year, Felix Hernandez agreed to a seven-year, $175 million contract with the Mariners, and Justin Verlander agreed to an extension that results in the Detroit Tigers paying him $180 million for the 2013-19 seasons. CC Sabathia signed a seven-year, $161 million deal with the Yankees after the 2008 season. 

Matt Cain's deal is for 6 years and $127.5 million 

Saturday, October 19, 2013

It's about damn time

ESPN's Buster Olney is reporting that MLB is likely to change the rules so that psycho dingbats like Scott Cousins can no longer maim catchers like Buster Posey and then claim they were playing according to the book.

It's about damn time.

Here's part of the report --  "At this point, I don't know who would argue to keep it, or what their argument would be," said one team official who believes general managers will address the topic at their meetings next month. "There is no reasoned argument to keep it [in the game]."

Friday, October 18, 2013

Another 9-0 closeout to the NLCS

The Cards embarrassed the dodgers tonight 9-0 -- the same score that the Giants managed last year in the final Game of the NLCS.

It was AWESOME to see Yasiel Puig and Clayton Kershaw GAG all night long. Maybe these guys' arms  were worn out from patting themselves on the back all year.

I think we can count on the dodgers continuing to play Kirk Gibson's 1988 homer over and over and over next year, too.

It was 24 years ago today

Actually, I missed by an hour. It was 24 years ago yesterday when I was at The Stick for Game 3 of the World Series when the Loma Prieta quake hit. Holy smokes.

The Stick withstood the 7.8 quake but will soon disappear. I saw Game 1 of the 1962 playoffs, Game 4 of the 1989 NLCS, Game 3 of the 1997 NLDS, Game 4 of the 1987 NLCS, Willie Mays' 2999th and 3000th hits in 1970, John Tamargo's opening day homer in 1979...

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Good manners matter - Barry Zito

A nice gesture for sure by Barry Zito, buying a full page ad to thank the fans for their support.  My guess is that Barry hasn't read my posts on Giants Win about his lousy pitching. At one point in 2009, I believe I was contending that the righteous thing to do would be to retire.

My takeaway is that Zito's sense of public relations was always far better than his pitching. Well, except for the end of the 2012 season. He certainly deserved the World Series ring.

I guess that the price of a full-page ad in the SF Chronicle is small when you've been paid $126 million for seven years of pretty mediocre pitching. To his eternal credit, Zito always took the high road, which can be a lonely place.

Craig Calcaterra at Hardball Talk had a good observation -- But to the extent Zito struggled in San Francisco, he never felt abandoned by fans. 

Hey, Barry -- how about giving some pitching tips to the Cards????

Remember last year, Cardinals

I would bet that the Cards have not forgotten being up 3 games to 1 last year, then losing to BARRY ZITO. Come to think of it, that really was a Bruce Bochy mind trick. "Man, we've got it in the BAG," they must have thought.

Close them out, Cards!!!!!!!!!!!

Put the dodgers out of their misery

Monday, October 14, 2013

Let's Go Cards

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Back to World Series Game 6, 2002

Eleven years ago, Dusty Baker and the Giants were 9 outs away from a World Series in Anaheim with a 5-0 lead. We all know what happened after that - a 6-5 loss.

The Bosox duplicated that game tonight in the role of the Angels, overcoming a 5-0 deficit to win 6-5.

I heard on the postgame show that teams with a 5-run lead in postseason games have won 459 of those games and now lost 15 of them.

Larry Baer's letter to season ticket holders

The Merc-News posted this a few days ago ....

The following is the letter sent to Giants season ticket holders by team president and CEO Larry Baer:

Thank you.
For years we have admired and appreciated the enthusiasm and loyalty of our fans.
This season I was awestruck.
No team in baseball has what we have. Not even close.
As we dropped in the standings after our World Series Championship season, you stuck with us. Game after game, you fired up grills in the parking lots. You wore your Panda and Giraffe hats, your Angel halos, your Gamer Babe T-shirts. You brought your gloves and your babies, your blankets and your scorecards. You showed up in such great numbers on the road that sometimes it seemed that every game was a home game.
And even during the roughest stretches, you brought such energy and optimism that our players — your players — poured everything they had onto the field. The day we were mathematically eliminated from contention, Brandon Belt hit a walk-off single in extra innings that had his teammates mobbing him on the field as if the pennant hung in the balance. Three nights earlier, Giants newcomer Yusmeiro Petit came within one pitch of a perfect game — a gritty, electrifying performance that pulled all of us out of our seats. In Los Angeles a week later, we took three of four from the first-place Dodgers behind Hunter Pence's jaw-dropping five home runs and 12 RBIs.
I could not have been prouder of how our team faced the setbacks and disappointments of this long and difficult year. There isn't a more competitive, hard-working and close-knit collection of players in the game. To the end, they were driven and focused. They pulled together. They played, as Tim Lincecum said, "with a purpose every game regardless of the standings." That purpose in the final weeks: Preparing themselves for 2014.
The same has been true for the front office and coaching staff. The baseball operations department -- coaches, scouts, administrators — is already examining what we could have done differently and what we can learn moving forward. Was there a way to mitigate the impact of losing our leadoff hitter for 84 games, our fifth starter for 69 games, two key relievers for a combined 113 games and our All-Star third-baseman for two different stints on the DL? Could we have rushed minor-leaguers onto the roster to plug those holes without compromising their long-term development? Was there a better way to support players fatigued from shortened off-seasons two of the last three years and, for some, a shortened spring training?
We are fortunate to have fans who understand the complexities of a baseball season. To field a contender year after year, an organization has to fill immediate needs while developing young players through the farm system. General manager Brian Sabean and his staff do a superb job at both. They have acquired key players through trade and free agency. And no staff has been smarter or more consistent in preparing prospects for the Major Leagues. We have more homegrown players on our roster than almost any team in the Major Leagues: Posey, Cain, Bumgarner, Romo, Lincecum, Sandoval, Crawford, and Belt. And there are more in the pipeline: This season our seven minor-league teams finished No. 1 among all MLB teams in overall winning percentage.
We're thrilled that Hunter Pence will be a San Francisco Giant for the next five years, keeping together a strong, young core of players that includes All-Stars Buster Posey, Madison Bumgarner, Sergio Romo, Matt Cain and Pablo Sandoval. And we're working hard to keep Tim Lincecum and Javier Lopez.
I won't pretend our road will be easy in 2014. The competition in the NL West is as formidable as it has ever been. In response to our two World Championships, our division opponents have stocked their rosters. As vigorously as we're working to bolster our lineup for next year — filling spots in our starting rotation and the outfield in particular — we won't change who we are. Giants' baseball is team baseball, look-into-each-other's-eyes baseball. We'll battle our division rivals inning-by-inning, game-by-game, with the smartest manager in baseball, Bruce Bochy, calling the shots.
We have one goal: To contend for the championship every single year. The loyalty of our season ticket members is integral to that goal. Hunter perfectly captured the unusual, powerful relationship between our players and our fans in accepting his Willie Mac Award. "I'm not going to say you're the best fans in the world. You're more than that. You're a part of the heart and soul of this team."
Again, thank you. We will keep you posted about moves and signings during the off-season. And we'll see you at Giants gatherings during the winter and on February 1 at Fanfest to kick off a new season, a new start.
Laurence M. Baer
President & CEO

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Yankees of the West gag

What do I mean by that headline?

The dodgers basically said "we are going to buy our way to a pennant" this year --- and screw the cost

And then it blew up in their face tonight. Michael Young, who used to be pretty good, hit into not one but two double plays tonight in the 10th and 12th. 

Young is getting $16 mil this year but he's no damn good any more.

Dylan Hernandez of the LA Times wants to blame Don Mattingly but these are the players the front office got ....

If the Dodgers fail to win the National League Championship Series, this 13-inning, 3-2, walk-off defeat in Game 1 will be remembered not for Greinke's performance, but the incompetence that was exhibited at Busch Stadium.
For starters, the Dodgers were one for 10 with runners in scoring position and stranded 11 men on base.
Then, there was the decision-making of Don Mattingly, which will undoubtedly reignite speculation about his future as the Dodgers manager.
While the Cardinals used closer Trevor Rosenthal in the ninth and 10th innings, Mattingly refrained from calling Kenley Jansen out of the bullpen until there were two men on and one out with Carlos Beltran at the plate in the 13th inning. Beltran singled to right, driving in Daniel Descalso for the deciding run.
Perhaps even worse, Mattingly replaced cleanup hitter Adrian Gonzalez with pinch-runner Dee Gordon in the eighth inning.
The decision resulted in the Cardinals intentionally walking No. 3 hitter Hanley Ramirez to face 36-year-old Michael Young with men in scoring position in the 10th and 12th innings. Both times, Young, who was acquired late in the season for his bat, hit into inning-ending double plays.
"We can look back at every decision," Mattingly said dismissively.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Guest letter to dodger fans

Giants Win is happy to provide a forum for exchange of anti-Dodger points of view -- specifically this letter that arrived in my inbox a day ago .... 
Dear dodger fans,
Recently I have referred to you as "The Yankees of the West."  Your denials of this are ridiculous.
1. Your payroll is upwards of $200 million.
2. You lord said payroll over every other team.
3. You overpay for talent (see "Grienke, Zack").
4. You have resources many other teams simply lack.
5. Your arrogance. I don't know of any other team that refers to its style of play in a way such as "The dodger way to play baseball."  There are no trick plays in baseball, so I don't know where you get this. You haven't won a thing since 1988, so cut it out.
6. Your fans are the least knowledgeable, most self-entitled and lamest in the game. You are more interested in batted beachballs that batted baseballs. You arrive in the third, leave in the seventh, and act like you're all celebrities. I have never seen a bigger bunch of front-running morons in my life.
In short, you and your fans suck. Always have, always will.
the rest of baseball.

Monday, October 07, 2013

Right on the money, Henry

Here's how Henry Schulman of the SF chronicle puts it well and much better than I did -- mainly because he doesn't call Fredi Gonzalez a dumbass -- 

The #Dodgers are going to the the NLCS because they are
the better team, but partly too because Mattingly went out of his comfort zone and pitched Kershaw on short rest for the first time ever, while Fredi Gonzalez refused to leave his comfort zone and ask his closer to to get six outs in the postseason in a do-or-die moment.

Let's go Cards/Pirates!

The dodgers become the first team to make it the championship round, thanks in no small part to horrific managing by Fredi Gonzalez. Listen dude -- you HAVE to win this game, so why do not bring in Craig Kimbrell? Why do you let David Carpenter stay in the game in the 8th -- a game that you're ahead 3-2??

thanks for gift-wrapping this one to the dodgers, you stupid dingbat. And what kind of name is Fredi anyhow? .

Sunday, October 06, 2013

Another Abreu in the Orange and Black?

That would be Jose Dariel Abreu. The Marlins web site has a story about how the club is pursuing the Cuban power hitter and mentions that the Giants are interested --

The Marlins certainly aren't alone in their interest.
In the National League East, the Mets also had a large representation.
The Giants, White Sox, D-backs and Rangers also are said to have serious interest.
As a recruiting tool, the Marlins are hopeful Abreu will be attracted to Miami's large Cuban community. Marlins Park is located in the Little Havana section of Miami.
And the team has two Cuban natives on its roster, All-Star pitcher Jose Fernandez and shortstop Adeiny Hechavarria.
Upgrading their offense is the Marlins' top off-season priority. The club finished last in the Majors in most significant statistical categories, including runs (513), home runs (95) and batting average (.231).
Abreu draws comparisons to former big league slugger Andres Galarraga, a big presence with plenty of power and not a lot of mobility.

Tony Abreu actually got in 147 plate appearances this season for the Giants and was no damn good. 

Friday, October 04, 2013

Dodgers lose!!!!!!!!!!

I love it!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Dee Gordon can whine all he wants about how he was safe in the 9th. Call the Wambulance, Dee -- you shouldn't be in the MLB in the first place.

Baseball Reference says you have a -0.7 WAR in 669 plate appearances. That's pretty damn lousy!

Choo and/or Beltran in the Orange and Black?

Thursday, October 03, 2013

Wright in the postseason?

Tuesday, October 01, 2013

"We didn't have enough depth"