Saturday, September 23, 2017

Two

The Giants magic number is 2.  That is, 2 wins will allow them to avoid 100 losses for 2017.  Today, in Los Angeles, was win number 61.  The Giants won 2 - 1.

2 runs.  That was enough to beat the doggers, tonight.  Madison Bumgarner on the mound, and he threw one of his best games of the year.  It took him 55 pitches to get through 5 innings, although it took him 44 more to get through another 2 2/3.  He gave up 5 hits, struck out 5 and walked 1.  1 of those hits was a home run.  It was a mistake, too much plate and it left the yard.  Isn't it funny how the Giants' mistake pitches leave the yard and the Giants' opponents mistake pitches put men on base, but the Giants don't manage to score?  Yeah, that happened, too.  Madison Bumgarner has pitched in 17 games this year.  In 11 of those games, the Giants have scored 2 runs or fewer.  Not just for him, in the whole game.  Tonight was the first game among those that resulted in a Giants victory.  Which means he did something right.  Hunter Strickland got 1 out in the 8th and Sam Dyson got a save for pitching the 9th.  Madison Bumgarner is now 4 - 9.  It only feels like this is only his 2nd win.

Come on Giants, 2 more wins!  Hyun-Jin Ryu started for the doggers, and took the loss.  He suffered a forearm contusion from a ball batted by Joe Panik.  Joe Panik has the highest batting average for the month of September of any major league baseball player.  The game ended with Yasiel Puig being thrown out trying to steal 2nd base.  He apparently got hurt running, limped off the field and apparently ran of his own volition.  Dave Roberts was not making happy faces.  Chris Stratton pitches tomorrow against Clayton Kershaw.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Giants Blank Rockies

SF 4  COL 0
The Giants have managed only FOUR shutouts this season. To see how anomalous this is, check out the totals for the previous eight seasons:

2009: 18
2010: 17
2011: 12
2012: 14
2013: 13
2014: 12
2015: 18
2016: 11

This is a pitching-based team and I expect it will be a pitching-based team next season. That means we need to see more zeroes! Matt Moore put up six this afternoon and the bullpen (Okert, Gearrin, Strickland, Dyson) added three more. You have to like that. The lineup had only seven hits but five were for extra-bases (three doubles, one triple, one homer). Another thing to like. And Nolan Arenado was 0-for-8 in the two games! When's the last time that happened? Giants finish with a  7-12 record against the Rockies.

Matt Moore will be on the club in 2018 as the Giants exercised their $9M option. He joins a long list of Comeback Player of the Year candidates. Speaking of comebacks, Joe Panik is killing it in September.

Giants are off tomorrow and go to LA for three and thence to Arizona for three. They'll finish at home on the final weekend against San Diego. Can they get three more wins out of those nine chances?

--M.C.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

We are Spoilers, Yippee!

Col 3 SF 4 

In a game that meant nothing to the Giants, and quite a bit to Colorado, Hunter Pence came up big with a walk-off sac fly.  Earlier he crushed a 440 foot 2 run homer, so I guess it is safe to say Hunter was the offensive hero.  On the pitching side, JohnnyC (8-8) gets the nod with 6.2 solid innings, giving up 2 runs and 7 hits.  He looked shaky at the start once again, and, once again threw a million pitches early.  That is about three starts in a row like that.  Kinda hard to watch but he settled down and gotta couple big double plays.

Cute Moment:  Hunter was subjected to the slowest ever home run trot.  Cueto was on first ahead of the mammoth blast and took his sweet time rounding the bases.  Pence nearly caught him at third but JohnnyC waved him back.  It made a nice visual.  Cueto is good at that, isn't he?


Sunday, September 17, 2017

.333

SF 7  AZ 2
The Giants finally wore out a Diamondbacks pitcher and even continued to score against their 'pen and picked up a win after four straight losses. The lineup resurrected the old "death by a thousand paper cuts" offense: infield single, walk, infield single, sac fly; single, single, single, walk, sac fly, fielder's choice. That's four runs! Panda added a homer, then we got single, walk, walk, sac fly, fielder's choice. Hey, whatever works. Giants win one of the three against Arizona after winning one of three against Los Angeles. At this rate they will win four of the final eleven (.364) and finish 62-100. Chris Stratton had a good outing today (6 IP, 2 R) and four relievers combined for one hit and no runs over the final four frames. Off-days tomorrow and Thursday; Rockies in town Tuesday and Wednesday.

Go Giants!

--M.C.

Saturday, September 16, 2017

2 Hits

I came to Portland to get a different perspective on the Giants.  From here, they still stink.

Friday, September 15, 2017

Death Ray

AZ 3  SF 2
The Diamondbacks young southpaw Robbie Ray whiffed ten in his seven innings of work and kept the Giants from doing much. That's not saying much, I know, what with this lineup. His performance overshadowed some solid work by the Giants Jeff Samardzija, who not only went eight innings but struck out seven and walked none. He also chipped in a hit and scored a run. But good teams gobble up the minnows and that was the case in San Francisco tonight. The 2017 Giants are minnowesque, to be sure, or would that be minnovian? No matter. The Giants lost another game. Marquee matchup tomorrow with Greinke and Bumgarner.

--M.C.

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

The Streak Ends Here

LA 5 SF 3

So, if you are a sucker like me, you probably had dreams of our boys continuing to help the doggers along their historic slide.  Nope.  This year's model keeps finding ways to disappoint.  They put up a bit of a fight, including some ninth inning drama, but it really was never as close as the score indicates.

Johnny Cueto (7-8) was a well deserving loser.  He seemed to have an especially nasty change up but his pitch count was ridiculous.  Every inning, and he didn't make it out of the fourth, was stressful.  Meanwhile, Kershaw was pretty much what you expect.  He only went 6 innings but it was plenty good enough for win # 17.   This game was just what the blue goo needed.  Win #93 for them.

Loss #90 for us.  That's embarrassing.

Rookie Parade

Weird weather in the Bay Area.  I can probably count on one hand the number of times I've seen lightning living in San Francisco.  Last night there was a bunch.  It would rain, then stop, then thunder, then lightning, then rain for a couple minutes, on and on.  And it would rain at the stadium when it was dry here, then the announcers would talk about how it stopped just when it was coming down here.  Real rain, too, enough to soak the garden.  After a summer of drips from the watering system, I'm sure the roses were loving it.

The game started after a 50 minute delay.  Chris Stratton struck out LA's lead-off hitter Curtis Granderson on a sharp curve.  Then they called another rain delay.  It was almost 11:00 pm by the time the second batter came to the plate.  The Giants replaced Stratton with Ty Blach.  He threw until a bunch of singles and a walk in the 4th inning gave the doggers 4 runs, which included a pinch hitter for their starter, Kenta Maeda.  That tied the game, thanks to a 2-home run in the 1st from Denard Span, a solo shot in the 2nd from Jarrett Parker, and a Joe Panik rbi single in the 3rd.   Puig put the doggers ahead with a solo home run in the 5th, Span and Posey had rbi's in the bottom of the 5th to put the Giants back on top 6 - 5.  LA tied the score thanks to Justin Turner in the 6th, but Hunter Pence had an rbi single to again take the lead, 7 - 6 in the bottom of the 6th and Buster Posey added a run in the 7th to make the final score 8 - 6, Giants.  Phew!

Chris Stratton got 1/3 of an inning to start the game.  Ty Blach got 3 1/3, gave up 4.  Kyle Crick gave up 1 in 1 1/3, and Derek Law got the W in 1 inning in which he gave up 1.  Steve Okert went 2/3, Cory Gearrin went 1/3, Hunter Strickland went 1 and Sam Dyson earned a save for pitching the 9th.  LA used 6 pitchers after Maeda left, Pedro Baez got the loss.  The fans who stayed certainly saw an entertaining game and got their money's worth.  The time of the game was 3 hours and 22 minutes, about 3 hours and 20 minutes of which occurred from about 10:55 pm onward.  I did not stay up to see all this.  If you were in London, though, you could have had your tea and scones for breakfast and caught nearly the whole game.  Cheerio!

Sunday, September 10, 2017

Ineptitude, Thy Name is Giants

I don't know why, at this point in the season, that I still get upset at Giants losses.  I expect them to lose, and then they do, and I am still upset.  The Giants put Madison Bumgarner on the mound today and lost to the White Sox, 8 - 1.

Madison's opponent for the Sox was Carson Fulmer.  This was his third major league game this year, and his career stretches all the way back to last year, when he appeared in 8 games, none as a starter.  Even the broadcasters mentioned the fact that the Giants struggle against nobodies.  But they struggled against James Shields yesterday, too.  In two games, the Giants were outscored by the White Sox (who own the worst record in the American League) by a total score of 21 - 2.

Madison gave us 5 innings, he gave up 10 hits, walked 1 and struck out 4.   He gave up 6 runs, and Albert Suarez, in relief, gave up 2.  Jarrett Parker, playing DH today, hit a solo home run in the 2nd inning.  Jose Abreu, who hit for the cycle yesterday, had to content himself with 2 hits.  They were both home runs.

As I type this, the Rockies are ahead of the doggers, 8 - 0 in the 9th inning in LA, the Cardinals won and so did the Brewers (over the Cubs) to leave both they and the Cardinals within 2 games of first place.  Some things in the baseball world go well, just not for the Giants.  The Giants play the doggers in SF for 3 games starting tomorrow.  The Giants are now 56 -  89, which means their magic number is 7.  That is the number of games they have to win to avoid losing 100 games.  Can they win 7 before they lose 12?  Seems do-able, but then other modest goals, such as playing .400 ball or getting out of last place, have eluded them this season.  So don't put any real money on it.  I just hope the Giants are not the medicine that makes LA all better again, because that would really suck.

Saturday, September 9, 2017

8th inning: 6-12

1st inning: 6-12
2nd inning: 6-12
3rd inning: 10-8
4th inning: 4-14
5th inning: 8-10
6th inning: 7-11
7th inning: 9-9
8th inning: 6-12

Jeff Samardzija and the Giants got smacked around in Guaranteed Rate Field tonight, ending the 8th seasonal inning very poorly with a 6-12 mark. Eighteen games left, my friends, and our ordeal will be over. 56-88 isn't the worst record in baseball, but it's damn close.

In this inning there were two three-game losing streaks and one four-game losing streak. I'm going to drink some whiskey.

--M.C.