Wednesday, May 21, 2014

One win, two losses

Matt Cain looked good in Colorado this evening, spotting the fastball and snapping off some curves and whatnot. He got in three hitless innings, well 'hitless' isn't quite right, he did hit a batter, but the other guys were making outs with alacrity, but then Matty was out of the game. The official word is 'hamstring strain' and I suppose there's a glossary of baseball injury-jive that I need to download, because that don't mean much. Yet. Here at RMC, Matt Cain starts are like the fecking sunrise--regular, steady, predictable. Maybe not so much in 2013, and this bipolar 2014 so far, but Cainer is Mr. Consistency, Mr. Steady, Mr. Reliable. And the Giants are haulin' heapin' wads o' cash his way as well, and you have to figure they are counting on the Tennessee Stud to be, well, studly. He's mortal, I suppose, and kind of an old man in baseball years, with nearly 1800 innings logged on the hill over ten seasons.

But I could live with that, an injury is an injury and even Matty can get injured. But the pyrrhic potential victory turned to nightmare when Santiago Casilla injured his hamstring running to first base. It was a grand old time watching him bat--he actually worked the count to full and put a ball in play. But when he fell down on the way to first, I thought he was clowning. Bitch-slap me, bros, I did indeed think that. But then it was clear he was grimacing, not grinning, and it all got stupid pronto. Christ! Run to first! Don't run yourself on to the DL! Weird. Ugly. Bizarre. Coors Field.

So I suppose I should make a sober analysis of the situation. Sorry, no can do. Have to be sober, you see. Yusmeiro Petit came in and nailed down another nine outs, that's a good thing. The boys muscled up with some big flies--I particularly liked Brandon Crawford's moon shot. He followed that with another ridiculous play which initiated a double play with a fine barehand grab-and-throw from Brandon Hicks. Very nice.

Matt Cain walked off the field under his own power. Santiago Casilla had to be carried off. DL for the latter and not for the former, eh? We'll see.




Zo said...

It is tough for me to see how we could replace Casilla easily - I think of so many times he has come in and done more or less what he did in the eighth - send the other team back to the field with nothing to show for their efforts. That is a blow. Casilla was getting a lot of instruction before his at bat, I guess they didn't tell him to go down the line 3/4 speed.

ogc obsessivegiantscompulsive said...

Actually, Bochy noted in his post-game interview - plus players noted for the beat reports - that Casilla was told not to swing or run hard, and he was surprised as hell to see him run like that. Pavlovic connected the dots best, noting a prior discussion of this when Machi ran down the line, Casilla bragged that he could beat Machi. Once he made contact, he probably didn't even think and just started charging down the line.

As big a blow as this was, I think Machi can effectively replace Casilla, he has a lot of closer experience in the VWL and has been very effective too, period.

And with Kontos called up to replace Casilla, I think he can come in where Machi has been coming in, mid-game, and do well there. He has great stats in AAA so far this season, and that brings back memory for me of his 2012 season when he pitched great for us and helped us win it all.

And where this helps is that probably at some point the Giants will want to go back to 13 position players, and Kontos can be sent back down because he still has an option this season, leaving Huff and Gutierrez to hold off the middle innings.

And if Cain is out 15-DL, I can see Petit becoming the starter in his stead again, with Huff taking over the long man job that he was competing for in spring, again freeing the Giants to bring up a position player, perhaps Ishikawa since he's been hitting very well since returning from DL.

M.C. O'Connor said...

Casilla has been a beast and it's definitely upsetting to lose him. Though Machi could step up--he's been very tough lately. That forkball of his is deadly. I always liked Kontos, it would be great if he can find his mojo again. And Petit was superb in the emergency relief stint, he ought to be good as a spot starter until Cain comes back.

Other than the injuries, that was a great goddamn win last night.