Sunday, July 30, 2017

The beauty of Blach

Ty Blach managed to keep the Giants in the game today in LA. He's about the only positive development this year.

He's got a 1.1 WAR value on Baseball Reference, the same as Jeff Smardizja and Madison Bumgarner. Cueto and Strickland have a 1.4 WAR and Gearin has a 1.3. Posey has the team's top WAR at 3.4, followed by Brandon Belt at 2.7. No other batters have above 0.5 and Pence is -0.8

Here's the bottom part of Henry Schulman's story for the SF Chron --

 
The Giants surely have gotten calls on Ty Blach, but the Giants have to hold onto him if only because he has the Dodgers pegged.
Blach faced Los Angeles for the fifth time Saturday, his first career start at Dodger Stadium, and held L.A. to two runs in seven innings. He has allowed five runs in 30 innings against the Dodgers, for a 1.50 ERA.
Saturday, Blach was staring at an early knockout. But with one out in the first inning, a run in, the bases loaded and Yasiel Puig at the plate with a 3-2 count, Blach threw a changeup that Puig chopped toward the mound. The onetime minor-league Gold Glove pitcher leaped to spear the ball and threw home to start a double play.
Blach could be around for a long time. So could the Dodgers’ Corey Seager and Cody Bellinger. They could spar for years, to the benefit of this ancient rivalry. Blach would like that.
“For sure,” he said. “Facing the best of the best, that’s always the goal as major-league players. Knowing these guys are up and coming and going to be around for a while, it’s going to be fun to compete against them.”
Seager had been 0-for-5 against Blach before a three-hit game Saturday. His doubles in the first and third innings led to the two Dodgers runs.
The Giants’ only run came on Pence’s fourth-inning home run against Rich Hill. They had only three other hits, Gomez’s and Crawford’s singles in the ninth off Jansen and a Gorkys Hernandez single in the fifth off Hill.

Sunday, July 23, 2017

The Panda is back

After flaming out in Boston, Pablo Sandoval is back with the Giants. OK, it's the San Jose Giants but it seems like a low-cost risk for the club until Christian Arroyo is ready. Here's the top of the SF Chronicle's story --

It was Christmas in July at San Jose Municipal Stadium on Saturday night, and the San Jose Giants’ festive red-and-green jerseys weren’t the only attention-grabbers on the field.
Pablo Sandoval, one of the pillars of the San Francisco Giants’ championship runs in 2010, 2012 and 2014, was back in the minor leagues for his former major-league team. Hours after expressing regrets at how he handled his abrupt departure from the Giants, Sandoval’s redemption tour continued 50 miles south as the designated hitter for the Giants’ California League affiliate.
Wearing a jersey with his familiar No. 48 — adorned with Christmas trees on this promotional evening — Sandoval received loud cheers from the crowd as he stepped up to the plate for his first at-bat against the Rancho Cucamonga Quakes. He singled and later drove in a run on ground out, finishing 1-for-4 with a walk in San Jose’s 5-4 loss.
“It’s a win-win for everyone,” said Bruce Gatjen of Sunnyvale. “The fans and organization have nothing to lose. I’m happy he’s back. We need help at third base, and we just had recorded our first non-sellout game (at AT&T Park) in years — this could be what the team needs.”
A handful of fans were proudly wearing their Panda hats, and a scattering of his old jerseys dotted the crowd. One fan even bid the maximum $700 to win Sandoval’s Christmas jersey in a pre-game auction.

Win number 38

I was disgusted when Matt Moore gave up a 4 spot to the pathetic Padres in the 2nd inning. But that was all the Padres got for the next 10 innings. Nick Hundley got a walkoff single in the 12th. 

Here's the top of mlb.com's story --

 Starting in place of All-Star catcher Buster Posey certainly comes with expectations. Nick Hundley met those -- and then some -- when he looped a single to the left-field wall Saturday afternoon, giving the Giants a 5-4 walk-off win over the Padres in 12 innings.
San Francisco's fifth walk-off win of the season resulted in an enthusiastic infield celebration. It was Hundley's first walk-off hit since joining the organization this season.
"I had to go in the fetal position," Hundley said. "It just didn't stop. They were all over it. It was good. You like those days."

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

WIN NUMBER 36

Eduardo Nunez just drove in the winning run to win the game 2-1.

Here's the top part of Henry Schulman's game story for the SF Chronicle --

 

Not that it matters much anymore, but midway through the game at AT&T Park on Tuesday night the out-of-town scoreboard revealed a 1-0 Dodgers victory against the White Sox, Los Angeles' 30th win in 34 games.
The Giants needed to snap their latest losing streak and beat the Indians or else lose their 60th game and fall 30 ½ behind the Dodgers. On July 18.
The Giants spared themselves the indignity with a 2-1, 10-inning win against he Indians spearheaded by a guy who had something to celebrate the moment he woke up.
Conor Gillaspie, on his 30th birthday, pinch-hit for Sam Dyson against closer Cody Allen and started the 10th by lining a double off first baseman Edwin Encarnacion's glove and into right field.
Denard Span was asked to sacrifice and dropped a beautiful bunt to nobody for an infield single that sent Gillaspie to third. Eduardo Nuñez then won it with a single through the right side that got pinch runner Kelby Tomlinson home.
The win tied the series and was played before a second consecutive non-sellout crowd of 39,151.
Ty Blach, pitching on 12 days rest since he beat the Tigers on July 5,

I'm back with a 1-1 tie

I have not posted in over a week since before the All-Star Break. The team won its first game after the break on Friday, July 14 and then lost three in a row.

At this point, I'd like to avoid a 100-loss season. The won on July 5 and have gone 1-7 since then.

The Giants are tied 1-1 going into the bottom of the 8th


Sunday, July 09, 2017

The Shark is now 4-10

Jeff Samardzija could lost 20 games this year.

He was his usual ineffective self tonight as I pondered what was the point of giving this guy a five-year deal?

He's got an 11.1 WAR after 10 years in the bigs. Last year was his best at 2.8.

Here's the SF Chronicle's coverage --

Years from now, there will be a lot of Jeff Samardzija Shark Snow Globes available at garage sales. OK … it might be months from now.
The globes were handed out to thrill-seeking Giants fans Saturday night, and after a few shakes, they had to sit and watch the right-hander pitch. That can be very frustrating, as “The Shark” pumps impressive 95 mph fastballs that are sometimes returned even faster.
The Miami Marlins cruised at AT&T Park for a second straight night, rapping out eight hits for four runs in the first five innings and holding on for a 5-4 win. The Giants scored one in the ninth on a walk to Brandon Crawford and singles by Conor Gillaspie and Joe Panik, but Hunter Pence struck out to end the game. 


Samardzija fell to 4-10, with a 4.58 ERA. He also walked his first batter since June 16 — only his fourth free pass in his past 13 starts (as opposed to 12 home runs).
“He wasn’t quite as sharp, but he’s so competitive, he gave us seven innings,” manager Bruce Bochy said. “He’s such a horse. He gave us a chance to win.”
Justin Bour launched a home run deep into the center-field bleachers in the fourth inning, but that wasn’t even the hardest-hit ball of the evening.
It might have even been third, if you count the screamer that Martin Prado hit off Samardzija’s backside in the sixth inning.
The winner was Giancarlo Stanton, who in the fifth inning, made Giants left fielder Gorkys Hernandez look like a third baseman the way he reacted to a line drive. There was loud crunk — as opposed to a crack — and Hernandez no sooner responded to the sound than he leaped in vain at the ball rocketing by him.
“Think he missed it a little bit,” Samardzija deadpanned.
Statcast had the ball traveling 118 mph off Stanton’s bat, the hardest-hit ball against the Giants since the high-speed tool was introduced to stadiums in 2015. The previous record was held by Stanton, the hulk who delighted the crowd in batting practice by driving balls off the Coke bottle beyond the left-field seats.
That was before Samardzija was shook up and the sharks started circling. Wait, that’s the snow globe. … But it’s also representative of Saturday’s game, as he gave up two runs in the first inning. Dee Gordon singled, Christian Yelich doubled and Marcell Ozuna singled them both home to give Chris O’Grady a nice cushion in his major-league debut.
The left-hander was having his dream come true, only three months after the Angels cut him when he was in Double-A, five years after drafting him. O’Grady credits finally finding a grip that worked for a change-up, after nine years of trying. That and right-hander Edinson Volquez going on the 10-day disabled list with left knee tendinitis.
He had a grip on the Giants through the first three innings, but would have trouble with, of all people, left-handed hitters Brandon Belt and Crawford. Belt hit a double to left-center in the fourth, and would score on an opposite-field single to left by Crawford.
That made it 3-1, and after Stanton’s missile led to a run in the fifth, the Giants cut the lead to 4-3 in the bottom of the sixth. Buster Posey doubled when Ozuna couldn’t make a diving catch down the right-field line, and Belt got him in with another double, this one to left. Belt would score on an infield dribbler by Crawford.
The Marlins added an insurance run in the ninth on a George Kontos wild pitch.
“Early, we didn’t hit a lot of balls hard,” Bochy said. “We just came up short in the end.”

Wednesday, July 05, 2017

Sam Dyson to the rescue

The Giants are now 34-52 
It looks pretty awful but consider that it was 27-51 a week ago and the Giants record looks a lot better than it was. They just beat the Tigers in Detroit - Sam Dyson got his third save in five games. He needed seven pitches to do a 1-2-3 ninth and preserve a 5-4 win for the Good Guys.

The bullpen is where the Giants fell apart last year so it's heartening to see something finally go right in that area. I've been wondering if Dave Rightetti had lost his touch....

Here's the mlb.com coverage -


 
DETROIT -- Hunter Pence drove in three runs, two of them on a fourth-inning triple, as the Giants built a lead that withstood a furious Tigers comeback for a 5-4 victory on Wednesday night at Comerica Park.
A day after the Tigers rallied late to take the series opener, they nearly topped that feat, coming within a hit of erasing a 5-0 deficit in the seventh inning. But the Giants' bullpen held onto the advantage built against Daniel Norris (4-7), who gave up five runs in defeat for the third consecutive start, and was chased by the fifth for his second straight outing.
Ty Blach (6-5) took a shutout bid into the seventh before a procession of four relievers tried to extinguish the Tigers' rally. Victor Martinez had a two-run single as part of four consecutive hits to open the inning, then hit an eighth-inning double to bring the potential tying run back into scoring position with two out before Mikie Mahtook struck out to end the frame.
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED Three-Pence bit: Pence drove in the game's first run on a comebacker that left Norris shaken and unsure whether to throw home for what looked like an easier play. Pence's fourth-inning drive to the out-of-town scoreboard in right-center, by contrast, left little confusion about the outcome, clearing runners from the corners and building a 5-0 lead after Brandon Belt's RBI single. It's just the fourth triple for Pence since 2015.