Monday, April 1, 2013

It's Kershaw's Day

Matt Cain pitched well. Six innings, no runs, eight strikeouts (Game Score 71). Clayton Kershaw pitched better (Game Score 86), and he added a booming solo shot in the 8th for the coup de grĂ¢ce. The Giants cannot solve that guy. In retrospect, asking George Kontos to get more than three outs was a bit of a reach, then again, the fourth guy was, uh, the pitcher. Obviously rattled by Kershaw's bomb, he gave a up a long hit to the next batter, Carl Crawford, then Buster Posey could not field a bunt pop-up from Mark Ellis and suddenly there were runners on second and third with no outs. It was not a good day for the bullpen: Santiago Casilla wild pitched a run home while walking Matt Kemp, then Jeremy Affeldt hit Adrian Gonzalez, loading the bases. Two more scored (on outs), and the tight pitching duel ended ugly. It was a good day for Kershaw, who blew the Giants away with his ridiculous assortment, including an arsenal of impossible breaking pitches. The lefties were particularly over-matched. It took only 94 pitches total--I think he had two six-pitch innings--for him to get his third career shutout against San Francisco. If I see that same game in September, I'll expect the Giants 'pen to hold the line and take the scoreless tie into extras. The only way to win today was to get Kershaw out. He didn't let that happen and the Dodger fans go home happy.

Madison Bumgarner gets the ball tomorrow against Hyun-jin Ryu, who is making his debut.The lefty was a big star in Korea with the Hanwha Eagles, who have an orange-and-black color scheme.




Zo said...

Bad omen for televised baseball games: the inevitable sight of Magic Johnson's puffy face whenever the doggers do well. Thank goodness for radio.

nomisnala said...

I don't want to take away anything from Kershaw's game because it was a game of opening day Dodger legend, but Darling gave the guy a strike zone that made him that much better. Belt especially was brutalized by pitches called strikes that K zone showed were clearly off the plate. Despite that, he took full advantage, and stymied the giants. The overweight, elbow inflamed Sandoval had the best AB's for the giants. Pence lost a pop-up in the sun, or else Cain would have only given up 3 hits, and may have gone further in the game had that not happened. I agree that one inning out of Kontos is enough. His fastball is eminently hittable. It all just goes to show you how good Cain really is. He got Cained already this season. I hope that is not an omen for the season.

Ron said...

The take-away from yesterday is this: Only Vogelsong should start against Kershaw ... forever. What happened to Cain yesterday is similar to what used to happen to pre-2011 Lincecum on a regular basis. Pitch wonderfully against Kershaw, but get outlasted by him. Only Vogelsong in 2011 & 2012 could do a one-up on the guy.

Oh ... and pitching Kontos for a second inning, when it's the 8th inning, & you have 6 fresh guys available, is ludicrous. In the 14th inning, with one guy left, maybe you let Kontos go again. Not in the 8th inning with 6 guys left.

JC Parsons said...

Didn't Tim face Kershaw five times a couple years ago? Don't think we won any of them. Since he has been in the league, Kershaw makes everyone look a lot like a pretty good hitting pitcher (like himself!). He is probably the player you build a team around, more so than Buster even. Nah, an everyday MVP catcher trumps everything else.
Matt looked truly superb. He seemed even more studly than I remember. Is that possible? Guess I just missed seeing him.
Today is big. They unveil one of their big risks, some dude that hasn't pitched in the majors getting huge money and years. Lets hope Magic's stupid grin will evaporate.

Brother Bob said...

I was mentally prepared for Panda to hit 3 homers again, or Posey to hit another grand slam. But I got a damn pitchers duel. Which can be cool to watch also, but Cain sort of stunk in the 1st inning, so it never quite felt like he was having a good game.
All the eary offense was kind of funky, the shot between Kershaw's legs, the one that bounced off Belt to Scutaro, then back to Belt. We may have actually made that play but the ump called it safe because it was so ugly.

nomisnala said...

Indeed it was a close play at first, but two of the giants 4 hits were infield hits by Pagan. Was wishing that he would put one in triples alley, but it was not to be. I guess on opening day Bochy wanted to see if Kontos could go two innings. I hope he learned from it. Usually saving the pen, ends up in over using the pen. Just one of those baseball unwritten rules.