Friday, April 17, 2015

Giants Mount Comeb....oh, never mind

The Giants came back in the 9th to tie the game, only to give up a home run in the 10th.  They came back in the 10th to tie the game, only to give up two in the 12th.  They came back in the 12th, but not back enough.  They lost again, 7 in a row.

Madison Bumgarner was on the mound.  Madison threw 94 pitches and 71 of them were strikes.  That usually means a good game from Maddy, 70%+ strikes, but a couple, at least, were very hittable strikes.  He gave up 4 runs on 2 home runs, a solo shot to Mark Trumbo in the 2nd and a 3 run bomb on a fattie in the 5th to Paul Goldschmidt.  Madison gave up a total of 6 hits and walked 1, but those hits did a lot of damage.

The Giants scrapped.  Matt Duffy had 2 hits, including a single to score Blanco in the 9th and a double to score Belt in the 12th.  Joe Panik, dropped in the batting order, had 3 hits, including a triple to score Buster and tie the game in the 9th.  Brandon Crawford hit a 2-run bomb.  Ultimately, though, it was another L.  Arizona used all their relief pitchers, so maybe they are worn out a bit.  One can only grasp at straws.  Peavy up.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Back End Tim

Playing like a team in the midst of an impressive death spiral, the Giants dropped their sixth in a row as they lost to the Rockies, 4-2.  We have it all going on right now: shoddy defense, inept offense and largely inadequate pitching. One can only hope that this stanky stretch will finish up soon; this team needs to feel some love.

Tim Lincecum pitched like a pretty bad number 5 starter.  He gave up a healthy lead right away and really put his team in a big hole. He never hit over 90 mph (that I saw) and seemed to average around 88.  It wasn't a complete implosion - 5 innings, 6 hits, 4 runs(3 earned), 1 walk, 4 SO -  but it sure was nothing to get excited about. Yep, Timmeh looked like exactly what he is; an end of the rotation guy.

The offense was largely forgettable once again.  Matt Duffy hit an 8th inning homer and Angel Pagan had a three hit night but everything else is a bunch of meh.  I must admit I'm getting very tired of watching Hector Sanchez  play baseball. Susac, anyone?  And how much longer does Joaquin Arias take up a roster spot? It is not like those guys are to blame for this spell of sh*t baseball, it just feels better to blame someone and then chop their heads off!

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

A bit of a disappointment today

My crew and I had a lovely time in the City by the Bay but unfortunately the Giants could not conjure up an offense this afternoon and the boys lost the Home Opener to the Rockies. Rookie Chris Heston pitched beautifully but got Cained by the pesky Coloradans. Brandon Crawford put on another display of fielding wizardry--he really is something to watch in person--but it was not enough as the purple-clads left the field as 2-0 winners.

Madison Bumgarner got to ride a horse with the 2014 championship flag and that was a lot of fun. The celebration at the Park was relaxed and subdued but the fans certainly enjoyed what fol-de-rol there was. W expected more of the home squad as they had opportunities aplenty in the first few frames but squandered them with some unfortunate impatience and bad luck. It was a gorgeous day in San Francisco but the Giants could not put together a winning sequence.

I realized that I said we'd be in View Box 321; alas, I made a typo, we were in section 327. So if you came by to say "hi" you would have missed me. My bad--put it down to road weariness and intoxication. Otherwise it was fun to reconnect with old friends and share some time at the yard together.

There's always tomorrow.

GO GIANTS!

--M.C.

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Home Opener Tomorrow

Jake Peavy is healthy, that is at least a takeaway from this afternoon. And Brandon Belt. He's back on the field as well; I'm happy about that. Otherwise it was a rockin' time for Padres fans as they got to have a boatload of unwarranted dinger love this afternoon. I want to be pissed off about today's outcome, but I'm not. Hell, it's April. Let's all just take a fookin' Quaalude and relax, OK? (At first I thought is was Qualuude, but thank God for Google, it's two "a's" and not two "u's".) Anyway--I feel like there will be a lot of "anyways" in these posts--we are all here and ready to party for tomorrow's Opener. My good pals Rick, Nancy, Jon, and Betty are here in San Francisco (we are in my suite at the Donatello) and enjoying the spectacular weather as we decide where else to go for this evening's entertainment. We had a fabulous time at the Mikkeler drinking the outstanding brews and gobbling the delicious sausages, but I've got a hankering for some raw fish and sake, shouldn't be hard to find here in the Union Square area.

Anyway, the Padres are "serving notice" and I say "good for them" and "bring it on." A championship means a hell of a lot more when there is a dogfight to get there. They want a three-team race with LA for the West title? Hell yeah, so do I!

Anyway, we will be in Section 321 seats 13-20 row A tomorrow. That's View Box, upper deck down the left field line. If you are reading this tonight and will be at the game please come by and say "hello". I would love to meet any RMCers who are in town for the festivities. I'm sporting a beard and long hair (I'm working on the "full Bumgarner") these days and will be wearing the blackest jeans you have ever seen and a white 2014 championship cap.

GO GIANTS!

--M.C.

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Uuuu - gleee

If you want to know how long it has been since Madison Bumgarner only lasted 3 innings, you have to look back at least to before 2012.  He lasted 4 in the first game of 2014, and had a few 4  or 4+ inning games in 2012, but nothing more recently.  It's too bad, too, because I was all set to write about how good the pitching has been to start the season.  The Giants piled up 37 hits in Arizona.  In three games in San Diego, they have 16.  San Diego, however, has 32 (20 of them tonight).

Madison gave up 5 runs, all earned, on 10 hits in 3 innings.  He was, to be kind, not sharp.  Ryan Vogelsong and was slightly more successful, giving up 5 runs, 4 earned, on 9 hits lasting 3 2/3 innings.  George Kontos was called in to clean up this Cubs-mens-room of a game and performed admirably, surrendering no runs in the remaining 1 1/3 inning.  Joaquin Arias hit a home run.  Why?  Because Casey McGehee seems to have hurt himself swinging.  Kinda sloppy defense, too.  Final score 10 - 2.  The Giants are now 3 - 3 on the young season, as are the San Diegans.  I really wanted to post about the Giants' great pitching.  Let's see what Mr. Peavy brings tomorrow.

Friday, April 10, 2015

Happy Tim

Yesterday's extra inning loveliness was a gift from the baseball gods but those of us that follow this crazy game know that things always seem to balance out in the long run. Well, it turns out the long run was one day later as the pesky Padres squeaked by our boys, 1-0.  Jeez, I love a good pitchers duel, but these scores are starting to remind me of the World Cup!
A tough loss for sure but the performance of Tîm Lincecum sure makes it a whole lot easier to take. Seven very solid innings with 4 hits, no runs, 3 walks and 5 strikeouts. Great work, no doubt. Tim seemed to be very much in control but more than that, he seemed to be having fun. I saw a few big grins; many more than I remember from last year. That has to be a good thing, right? I can tell you it sure felt good to me. There is nothing better than watching a happy Tîm. Perhaps he and Sanchez are really settling in and getting comfortable with each other.  
Very sad throw from Panik; cost us the run and almost broke Hector's arm off.  Yuck. 
Aoki sure does make things happen...some of it is pretty scary, but he sure stirs the pot!

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Giants outlast Padres

The Giants put on a pitching-and-defense clinic tonight in San Diego and came away with a 1-0 win. The bullpen picked up the theme from starter Tim Hudson and worked 5-2/3 scoreless after his 6-1/3 and that gave the club a chance to get a winning hit. Justin Maxwell finally delivered in the 12th and Santiago Casilla closed the door for the victory. Huddy walked five and gave up five hits but four double plays saved the day.

Tim Lincecum takes the hill tomorrow.

GO GIANTS!

--M.C.

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

All Hail Heston

Rookie Chris Heston stepped up tonight for a short-handed (short-armed?) Giants squad and delivered six solid innings to lead the team to a victory in Arizona. The sinker ball specialist generated nine ground ball outs along with five punch-outs and allowed only three hits in his second ML start. The Giants had bashed a dozen hits but were clinging to a slim 3-2 lead when FNG Casey McGehee launched a two-run homer in the 8th to seal the deal for the good guys. McGehee was fourth in the NL last season with 691 plate appearances but managed just FOUR long balls. Tonight though he cranked up the big fly when the team needed it most and the Giants took the series from the D-Backs.

With Matt Cain on the DL and Jake Peavy hurting the team needed some help on the hill and the 2009 12th round draft pick from East Carolina University answered the bell. Let's hope the youngster can keep it going until the oldsters can get back to full health.

Other FNG Nori Aoki had three hits to bring his 2015 total to six which leads the team. Rookie Matt Duffy got a start and chipped in two. FNGs and rookies--a deadly combo!

Ian Kennedy and Tim Hudson in San Diego tomorrow night.

GO GIANTS!

--M.C.

AAA Fever in Sac Town

As you all know, the Giants' AAA affiliate is now in Sacramento instead of Fresno. Goodbye Grizzlies, hello River Cats. Local interest is high because normal people love the Giants and hate the A's .
Once I attended a River Cats game and they happened to be commemorating the '89 World Series. Many retired players were there, including "Hindu" Henderson, Dave Stewart and bunch of other fucking A's. Imagine my delight.
But baseball is baseball, so I've been going to a few games a year ever since I moved to Sac County 14 years ago. I'll have a beer and a Polish and cheer for the dopey minor league antics between the innings, stay to the end if there's going to be fireworks, otherwise head for the exits whenever the spirit moved me, because I didn't really care about the score. But from now on I'll be paying attention and actually rooting for the home team.
So it's my intention to take the AAA "beat" for RMC and share the occasional observation. It's hard to say exactly who is a River Cat and who isn't. For example I thought I'd include Chris Heston but he's pitching in Arizona as I write.
Andrew Susac and John Bowker are local guys so they get a little extra press. And the roster includes Juan Perez and Hunter Strickland, who along with Susac will be receiving championship rings soon.
The notorious Angel Villalona is still lurking about. The Giants need right-handed power. Who knows?
More later (don't hold your breath)

Monday, April 6, 2015

One In The Books

I guess the diamondbacks won't be serving beer this season.  They lost their opener.  I don't know, maybe they can pop bottlecaps by sliding the roof over them somehow.  Anyway, they don't seem to have enough fan support to open during the day.  The Giants won.  Not by much, as it turned out.  Madison Bumgarner, hero of 2014 and all around cool guy, was on the mound.  He pitched well, very well.  Seven strong, 93 pitches, 1 run and 6 hits.  3 strikeouts.  The Giants got a bunch of hits!  3 for Panik and Pagan.  2 each for Aoki, McGehee, and Crawford, and Matt Duffy pitched in 1 in a pinch hitting role.  The defensive side of the 8th was a mess, as we sent 4 pitchers to the plate and gave up 4 runs.  Santiago Casilla pitched damn well for the save.  Giants win, 5 - 4.