Wednesday, June 24, 2015

4th inning: 8-10

Just finished Game 72 which is 4/9 of the season. The Giants have been in a swoon this June, last night's loss made them 8-12 for the month. The seasonal innings breakdown so far:

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

Overall they are 38-34 and a game back of LA in the West. Their .528 win percentage is the 12th-best in baseball and the sixth-best in the NL.

What's hurting the club right now is the home record. They just don't score enough runs in San Francisco. They are 17-19 at AT&T Park with 107 runs scored (and 120 allowed). That's just a hair under three runs scored per game. That's not a winning formula. You have to score four. You especially have to if you are allowing three (three-and-a-third to be exact). So Giants, I expect you to start scoring more runs at home. Can we get a memo out to everyone on this, please?

On the road the Giants are a different animal. Check out the record: 21-15. They've scored 184 runs in away games, that's a little over five per game! They've allowed 161, or about four-and-a-half. Note that the team has played half its games in away parks.

Overall the Giants have a league-average offense at 4.04 runs per game. It's a goofy offense, oddly adept at clogging up foreign basepaths, weirdly inept on domestic ones. I have to believe those things will even out a bit, that is they will get a little better at home and a little worse away from home. They've only a +10 difference (RS v. RA) overall at this point. We know they aren't hitting at home, but is also seems like the starters other than MadBum have not performed at a consistent enough level home or away. The 'pen, as a result, is getting overworked. Right now the team FIP is 3.87, right in the middle of the pack.

The good news is that two guys we thought would be delivering quality innings earlier this year are finally healthy and ready to return. That's Jake Peavy and Matt Cain. The bad news is that two mainstays in the lineup are now out. That's Hunter Pence and FNG Nori Aoki. Other than a few cockamamie baserunning moves, Aoki has been terrific. We are going to miss him the next few weeks. Pence--well, it's hard to say. We aren't used to this guy being on the DL. Let's hope he can be fully ready by the All-Star Break, if not sooner.

The bright spots have been the youngsters Joe Panik and Matt Duffy. Panik looks like a polished veteran. His fielding prowess is damn-near Crawfordian, and his hitting has been superb, a .302/.371/.458 line for a 135 OPS+ and a .362 wOBA. He's worth about 2.5 WAR. Not many guys come straight out of AA and play championship ball for half a season and follow it up with All-Star level production without missing a beat. This is a special player, rarely do you see him make a mistake. His infield cohort Duffy is not as fully-formed, but he's showing me a lot so far. I like his presence in the box, he's not intimidated by big-league stuff, and I like how quickly he's learning the nuances of his position. And speaking of Brandon Crawford he's still my MVP despite his recent struggles.

Changes are a-comin' for the rotation, I think we all know that. Let's hope they can find that elusive consistency. Two great innings (23-13) and two crappy ones (15-21) does not a champion make. Vogie gets the nod tonight.



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