6 3 0 0 5 2
I know my readers come to RMC for wit, insight, and hard-hitting analysis that they can't get anywhere else. After Matt Cain's gritty outing, you expect a unique and original take. And here it is: M.C. is one gnarly mo-fo! How else do you explain the improbability of walking five guys--three in one inning--and throwing 114 pitches to 24 batters yet putting up six shutout innings? Not only did Matt deliver a studly RBI hit, he survived two, yes two, RVODs!! Twice Coach Righetti brought his Doom Visit to the mound, and twice Matt survived. That's gnarly.
Sure, I can give the young infield--Frandsen, Velez, and Ishikawa--a nod for fine fielding (especially Travis' 3-2-3 DP!), and I can give a hat tip to Sandoval and Señor Slow for some good hitting. I can even say M.C. was the luckiest SOB on the field tonight. But I'm not. Matt Cain had Gamer-ade for breakfast, and his pluck and perspicacity were totally responsible for the six zeros. Dare I say he showed VSC? After all, this is his fifth season in the bigs, so he's a veteran now, and he gets credit for savvy and clutchness.
MCain(GMF) .362 WPA 63 GSc
MPelfrey .050 WPA 52 GSc
If you split the 162 game season into 9 "innings" of 18 games apiece, tonight was the first game of the third set, or number 37. Our first "inning" we finished 9-9, recovering from a 2-7 start. Our second "inning" we finished 18-18 after reaching a high of 18-14 (.563). Two-ninths of the season is behind us. Our 54th game--one-third of the season--will be Saturday, June 6th in Florida. Let's hope we are still a .500 ballclub. If more guys embrace the power of GMF-ism, we just might be.
When David Wright was walked in the 8th, the WE for the home team stood at 67.7%. Affeldt got the DP from Pagan, and the WE shot up to 93.8%. That was the biggest play of the game in terms of a WE swing. Great work from Howry as well, bailing Cain out by getting three outs in the 7th. When you walk a lot of guys you aren't going to last. Wilson finally got it done and saved the win for M.C. Way to go, Giants!
UPDATE 0653 Monday: Andrew Baggarly suggests the nickname "The Tennessee Stud" for Matt Cain. (Hat tip to Big D at Giants Win.) According to Wikipedia, Matt was born in Alabama but "graduated from Houston High School in Germantown, Tennessee, where he earned the nickname Big Sugar."