Monday, August 27, 2012

On to the Eighth

I'm a little tardy with my innings post. No excuses, lads. Here we go:

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

The Giants stood at 71-55 (.563) after beating the Braves in the first two games of the series. Nothing like a five-game win streak to make an inning look good. As you can see, it's the second time the team has gone 12-6 over the 18 games. The club looked bad, however, in the final two games, and start their penultimate inning with two losses.

8th inning: 0-2 with 16 to play.

With 34 games to go, the Giants are up in the NL West by two over the Yankees Dodgers. The mega-spenders have crashed the party, and gone "all-in" on 2012. I'm not too concerned about the rest of the haul, but Adrian Gonzalez is the real deal. He improves their lineup quite a bit. They now have serious mashers at four spots. One thing the Giants don't do is hit home runs, and that is a major weakness. Josh Beckett goes tonight for LA in Colorado. There was a time when he was an elite pitcher and World Series hero. He hasn't been that guy lately. If he turns out to be "the diamond in the rough" it will give them a huge boost. Let's hope his poor form continues.

The Giants, right now, are playing just shy of .555 ball. If they stay on that pace, that's 19 more wins or a 90-72 record. The Dodgers would have to go 21-13 (.618) to match that. It's going to be close. Very close. The Giants have to stick to what they do best and that's pitch well. They have to be strong in the field as well. It would be nice to get more home runs from Hunter Pence (and Pablo Sandoval). All they need is one good month from the FNG. And some good starts from Tim Lincecum, too. In fact, he could be the difference-maker. If he can deliver half a dozen solid outings from here on out I think the Giants will wrap it up before the final series in LA. If not, figure on the first week of October deciding the 2012 season. I'm not planning anything for those three days and I hope you aren't, either. I know the 'pen has looked a little shaky, but I think we have the guys to do the job. They just have to deliver. They know the stakes, and it is time for everyone to kick it up a notch. Kruk said on TV "you can't buy chemistry." True, but you can buy talent. LA has done that. Now we'll see if the Giants cup runneth over with intangibles.




nomisnala said...

Dodgers are not immune from the effects of Denver humidor manipulation. Its about time the Rockies help us out for once. My guess is, that if the bums pick up a decent pitcher or two in the off season, they will be the favorites for 2013. It will be up to Sabean to really do his job. Not easy to do, when this year all that money tied up in Zito, Lincecum, Rowand, Huff, and Freddie Sanchez. Of all those guys we only have a fraction of positive WAR for Zito, I think. Maybe not. But he is 10-8 and serviceable as a 5th starter. On the other hand Timmy Cy Young Lincecum has just 9 quality starts in 27 attempts. I think the league needs to make him give back one of his Cy Young awards. He needs to date one of those Russian Gymnasts so he can get his flexibility back. With flexibility comes control.

M.C. O'Connor said...

I dunno, man, those Russian gymnasts are like 14. Not good.

Timmy can still do the job. He has the goods, he just has to get the focus back. Maybe the urgency of the pennant race will be just what he needs.

Rowand is done after this season. He frees up $13.6M for 2013.

M.C. O'Connor said...

Rox 10, Dodgers Zip. They are 2-1/2 back, 69-60, 33 games left.

Giants 71-57, 34 games left. Giants have three off-days left (6th, 13th, 24th of Sep). Dodgers have four: 6th, 10th, 17th, 24th.

Head-to-head six remain: 3 in SF, 3 to end it in LA.

Crunch time!

Zo said...

Rowand and Sanchez come off the books next year. Huff is off the books, but may be owed $2 mil for a buyout of his option. Also, Affeldt, Cabrera and Pagan are free agents next year. Those guys, like Sanchez, are $5 - 6 mil.

Shankbone said...

69 Miiillllion Dollars for our starting rotation next year. Sandoval for 5.7MM, Lopez for 4.5MM. Arb for Pence, Posey. Arb for Wilson, Casilla and Romo. And Hensley. I hope Sabean gives the crusher negotiation on that one. He always likes to hardball the fringe guys.

Rowand, Sanchez, Huff, Affeldt, Melky, Pagan are 44MM off the books. Huff is owed 2, and Pagan and Affeldt will most likely get offers. Scutaro made 5MM as well this year, he will be a question, as will the offer for the Beard.

I am wondering if they dust off and look hard at Josh Hamilton. There are a ton of reasons why it would not work, but if his price is beat up at all, there might be a kick tires situation. Depends on how patient they can be. I think he might linger a bit, not as much as beltran, but a bit of lingering, and the patient team might get a bargain.

Sweatin the Houston series much? Come on Pence, get well where you grew up!