Thursday, April 27, 2017

Welcome back, Michael Morse

So the last time Michael Morse was in a Giants uniform, it was Game 7 of the 2014 World Series. He drove in Pablo Sandoval twice. 

Then came tonight. Pretty good deadline story in the SF Chronicle by Henry Schulman --

Michael Morse had to laugh at the ridiculousness and the improbability of what he did in the eighth inning at AT&T Park on Wednesday night.
“We could have all gone to Vegas ...,” Morse said, not having to finish the sentence inside a Giants clubhouse that finally had something to celebrate, a 4-3 victory against the Dodgers that ended on Hunter Pence’s no-out, bases-loaded sacrifice fly in the 10th inning.
In the midst of a horrible 2017 start, 2014 broke out.
Morse, the once and brand-new Giant who began his comeback after more than a year out of major-league baseball, pinch-hit with one out in the eighth and homered off Pedro Baez to tie the game 3-3.

That was the same score, in the same inning, that Morse created with his pinch homer off St. Louis’ Pat Neshek in Game 5 of the 2014 National League Championship Series, which the Giants won on Travis Ishikawa’s three-run homer in the ninth.
Ishikawa was not around Wednesday, so the Giants had to rely on Pence, who won the game on the 10th pitch of his plate appearance against Ross Stripling. Pence had the dugout howling over how many two-strike fastballs over his head he fouled off before lifting a ball deep enough to left to score Gorkys Hernandez, whose single started the rally.
Starter Johnny Cueto laughed and said it seemed Pence was swinging at pitchouts. Manager Bruce Bochy said Pence took a “thou-shalt-not walk” mentality to the plate.
Pence perfectly summarized the improbability and importance of the homer his bromance partner hit to tie a game the Giants had trailed 3-0 — Morse’s first big-league hit since 2015.
“That was quite an energy jolt right there,” Pence said, “just the emotion and history and excitement of having him back. And to do that, it’s one of those special moments that can change a season.
“Morsey being Morsey, the stadium, just him walking up, the fans getting rowdy. It was one of the coolest moments of the season so far.”
Speaking of cool moments, Christian Arroyo — remember him? — brought the Giants out of an athletic coma when he followed a Buster Posey single in the seventh inning with his first big-league homer. Arroyo sent a Sergio Romo slider into the left-field seats to trim the Dodgers’ lead to 3-2.
Arroyo’s homer, in his 11th big-league at-bat, breathed oxygen into the dugout after Alex Wood did not allow a hit until the sixth, a Drew Stubbs single.
“It just brought life to the bench,” Bochy said. “We were down three. Now we’re down one. We just were not doing anything off Wood.”
After Steven Okert and Hunter Strickland combined for two of what would be four shutout innings from the bullpen, Bochy sent Morse to the plate in an obvious spot, with one out and nobody on against Baez. It was clear from the first two fruitless swings that Morse had one thing in mind, just as in 2014: Tie the game.
Morse got another fastball at 97 mph and blasted it into the bleachers in left-center.
He extended his arm exultantly after he dropped his bat, pumped his fist around first base and smiled the rest of the way around the diamond. When he crossed the plate, he screamed and pounded his hands together.
The hero’s welcome he got in the dugout looked a lot like 2014, too.
“To see the kid hit his first home run, and me coming up to pinch-hit and doing that, it almost felt like the magic we had in ’14,” Morse said. “It shows the team that we can win, no matter how.”

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Ty Blach is here to stay

Much as I hate losing to the dodgers, Ty Blach showed a lot tonight, holding them to 2 runs in 5 innings and doubling and scoring the only run. Zo at Raising Matt Cain has the recap 

Giants against doggers.  Another 2 - 1 game.  This time, the good guys lose. To Kershaw.  He's a very good pitcher.  Lacking Madison Bumgarner, we threw youngster Ty Blach against him.   Remember last year, when Ty Blach was a stud against Kershaw at the end of the season?  Ty Blach was a stud against Kershaw tonight. 
Ty's line:  5 IP, 4 hits, 2 runs, 1 BB, 2 K.  He did what he could to keep the doggers in check.   Kershaw gave up 6 hits, one of them was a double to Ty Blach.  Ty Blach scored, for the Giants only run of the game.  He now has 3 hits against Clayton Kershaw.  That is the most by any pitcher not named Bumgarner.  Kershaw's line: 7 IP, 6 hits, 1 BB, 7 K.  Brandon Crawford might be hurt, he pulled up with a groin tightness in 8th rounding first after singling Buster Posey to third to produce a great, yet unrealized, chance for the Giants to score.  They had a few of those.

Some other thoughts. 1)  If Buster Posey is behind the plate, the game goes into the 5th inning tied.  Yeah, the throw was low, but it also wasn't scooped out.  Buster does that.   2) Christian Arroyo, batting second, got a hit.  Off of Clayton Kershaw.  His first major league hit.  How may people would like to say they got a hit in a major league baseball game off of Clayton Kershaw, even if they never got to play major league baseball again?  I'd say at least 240,000,000.  3)  The Giants played tough.  That's nice.  It would be nicer to play tough and come up with a W.  4)  Ty Blach has the capability of being a starting pitcher in the major leagues.

Saturday, April 22, 2017

"I may never be back in the big leagues"

I've been trying to find something to post -- what with Bumgarner's injury. After all, the name of this blog is "Giants Win" and that hasn't happened very much this season -- and found a nice Q and A with Marc Melancon, who found himself sent to the minors five seasons ago. As far as your own career, you go from the Yankees to the Astros and things go well. Then, you go to Boston. Did you feel your career was getting sidetracked? As far as your own career, I mean you go from the Yankees to Houston, right?
Melancon: Yeah, it was such a weird path for me. You know, I got sent down in 2012 after just a really bad month. That is another part of my career that now I'm so thankful for, because I got put in my place and sent down to Triple-A to where I told myself, 'If I don't really figure it out and get going, I may never be back in the big leagues,' and that was after I'd closed for a year in Houston. I had some success with the Astros. So to get sent out, that time in my life was tough, and it made me so much stronger. If it wouldn't have happened, I don't know if my success would have been the same. So, instead of a bitterness, there is a thankfulness that you got the wake-up call?
Melancon: It was an unanswered prayer type thing. Then you go to Pittsburgh and things take off.
Melancon: Pittsburgh was obviously a great part of my career, and a lot of people there helped me. Just a fun three and a half, four years. Didn't you at one point say you would have liked to stay in Pittsburgh because you felt you owed them something?
Melancon: I definitely felt like I owed them a lot. They gave me so much opportunity, and, you know, the ability to do what I did. It is a great city, great fans and good people in the organization. When you go out on the free-agent market, you had some conversations with the Rockies?
Melancon: There was definitely some conversation there. I would have liked to see it come down to the wire, but San Francisco was just there for the entire time. Colorado came in a little bit later and said it would like to do something. We just didn't feel like it was as realistic as San Francisco. You are one guy who has never been afraid to pitch at Coors Field.
Melancon: Growing up in Colorado helped. I didn't know any different. You just don't worry about it.

Friday, April 21, 2017

Whining at the front office

Hey Larry Baer -- did you really think that starting Aaron Hill and Gorkys Hernandez in left and center is a way to win games?

Please go to Bill Johnson and get him to buy a left fielder, OK, not some has-been?

Here's what Zo at Raising Matt Cain wrote yesterday -- 

In this short 2 game series, we held Kansas City to 3 runs in 23 innings.  That's decent pitching and defense.  Unfortunately, we could only win 1 of those games.  Boo.
Madison Bumgarner on the hill.  He was far from dominant but seemed to be finding a way to get it done and held Kansas City scoreless though most of his 7 innings.   He had several rough innings, though, and KC pushed a run across in the 5th.  It was enough.  Madison lasted 7, gave up 7 hits, walked 1 and struck out 4.  For the Royals, Jason Vargas was on the hill.  He spent most of the last couple years dealing with Tommy John surgery.  He was only throwing his 3rd start in 2017, but has only given up 1 run in his previous 2 (13 2/3 IP).  After 7 tonight, his ERA is 0.44.  The Giants got 4 hits only.

Gosh, I feel like I typed this before.......not very long my mind going?   Oh wait, here's why.  Last time Madison was on the mound, the Giants scored 1 run and lost.  The time before that, the Giants scored 1 run, and lost.  Tonight, they exceeded their previous crappiness, scored none and lost 1 - 0.  That sucks.  Our lineup featured Aaron Hill in left and Gorkys Hernandez in center.  They were hitless.  Should there be a tag that supercedes "anemia offensivia?"  "Offensivia horribilis?"  After a day off tomorrow, they show up in Colorado, where they need to score closer to 1 run an inning, not 1 run every other game.

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Cain, Bumgarner, Posey

Those are the only three Giants left who were on the 2010, 2012 and 2014 teams. I'm bringing this up because of Cain's great vic last night.

Cain had last won a game on August 6. He's been on the team since 2005. Here's a good story by Barry Bloom of --

SAN FRANCISCO -- Matt Cain earned a stay of demotion on Wednesday night in a 6-2 win over the D-backs at AT&T Park, but at this stage of his career, there's no doubt he's going from game to game.
Manager Bruce Bochy admitted there have been ongoing discussions about what the Giants plan to do with the fifth spot in their rotation, but as long as Cain is competitive, he'll remain in that role.
Cain pitched into the sixth inning, allowing one run on five hits with three walks and six strikeouts to win his first game since Aug. 6. Despite it all -- despite the recent seasons filled with arm injuries and disappointment -- he said he doesn't feel like he's pitching to save his job.
"If I'm thinking about that, I'm in the wrong frame of mind, big time," Cain said.
There's no one more to loyal to the guys who won for him than Bochy. Cain, Madison Bumgarner and Buster Posey are the only players left who played for all three World Series-winning teams in every even year from 2010-14.
Cain, in his 14th season, has the longest tenure of all of them, coming up in 2005 near the end of the Barry Bonds era. That means a lot to the man most people simply call "Boch," who gave a lot of rope to Barry Zito, Tim Lincecum and Jake Peavy before those pitchers reached the end of the line.
"I think it's something that he's earned," Bochy said about Cain. "Look at what he's done for us. We have those championships because of this guy. He's the longest-tenured Giant, and some guys earn a certain thing. I'll go back to Barry Zito. He had his ups and downs, and we stayed with him and he helped us win a World Series there [in 2012].

Sunday, April 09, 2017

Second win of 2017?

Good Lord. What a way to start the season by splitting the first two games, then losing 4 in a row.

Let's Go, Cueto !!!

Wednesday, April 05, 2017

First win of 2017

After a horrible opening day, the Giants spanked the Dbacks tonight 8-4; five big innings from Johnny Cueto, followed by 4 shutdown innings from the pen. 15 hits in all. Plus the dodgers got buttkicked, throttled, SHUT OUT by Clayton Richard of the Padres at Chavez Latrine

I've been a fan of Raising (Matt Cain) for many years and now I discover that Jon Parson is posting Vlogs. Here's his take on tonight -Click Here.

Brandon Crawford crushed his first homer -- Click here.

Sunday, April 02, 2017

My fault

I listened to the top of the 9th as the Giants could not get a run home with the bases loaded and one out and then again in the bottom of the ninth when I turned it on and heard the annoying Dbacks score their last two runs. I kept telling myself to turn it off

My bad