Sunday, April 2, 2017

2017, Meet 2016

Blown saves.  I think Giants fans had seen quite enough of those last year to last well into this year.  Sigh.

Great game though 5 innings.  Madison Bumgarner on the hill for the Giants, Zach Greinke for the dbacks.  Madison was perfect through 5 - didn't allow a baserunner and was making it look easy.  The Giants, on the other hand, made Greinke work.  Baserunner in the 1st, a manufactured run in the 2nd thanks to Nunez and Panik.  Then, a bit of history as Madison Bumgarner tied the Giants' record (15) for home runs by a pitcher in the 4th with a solo shot.  That was fun.  In the top of the 6th, the Giants added one, with Nunez singling home BCraw.  Then, it turned into a baseball contest.  Madison gave up a triple, then a single to break the shutout, then a home run to tie the game. 

They went into the 7th inning tied.  Greinke had been pulled after the 5th, Andrew Chafin pitching.  Madison broke that tie with another solo shot, this one way up in the left field stands.  Man, the guy has a stroke when there is a ball over the plate, and now leads all Giants pitchers with 16 home runs.  So the Giants went into the 8th with a 4 - 3 lead facing the dbacks 5th pitcher of the day.  No more runs, though, as the Giants sent Derek Law to the mound to hold the lead.  He had nothing, giving up a run on 3 hits to tie the game and leaving Blach and Strickland to get 3 outs.

So, again a tie game going into the 9th.  Fernando Rodney pitching for Arizona.  Joe Panik tripled to lead off the inning!  Gillaspie, in reserve for just such a role, sacrificed him home for a 5 - 4 lead.  In spite of wild pitches and a walk, though, the Giants entered the bottom of the 9th with just the one-run lead.

And then.  What was Melancon's story, that he didn't allow a single run all spring?  2 quick outs and then a loss - a blown save for Law and one for Melancon.    Giants lose a heartbreaker, 6 - 5.

2 hits for Span, 3 for Nunez, 2 for Crawford and 2 for Madison, who now is leading MLB hitters in the home run category.  But the Giants open with a loss, spoiling a fine effort.  Arizona can be Coors Field-like, but the bottom line is, you pitch in the late innings, you need to get outs.  Didn't do that today.  Is it too early for existential angst?  No, it is not.


M.C. O'Connor said...

A pratfall for the New & Improved Bullpen, to be sure. The baseball gods are reminding us of their capacity for cruelty, rubbing our noses in the festering wounds of last year's final game.

Then again, there are 161 more chances to do a better job. I've already forgotten what happened, I'm ready for Tuesday.

Zo said...

You're getting older. The memory goes.

M.C. O'Connor said...

I'm still ready for Tuesday.

Ron said...

What a disaster. Santiago Casilla could have done that. Shocked & disappointed. Plus, in another recurring theme, we squandered numerous chances to open the Game up. One big positive was Blach getting a DP out of Lamb in a big situation.

M.C. O'Connor said...

Not much to like about the result, but I do like these:

BOCH (via Baggs):

As the Giants headed into a day off Monday, manager Bruce Bochy said he wasn’t concerned about any residue from the loss.

“Opening day? No, not at all,” Bochy said. “They’re men in there. I think you’ve seen how they handled things. It’s one game. We’ve got 161 games. If we start thinking about this too much, that’s going to compound the problem.

“No, I don’t worry about them at all. About Mark, or the club, or anybody. We’re pros and part of it is being resilient. We’ll put this behind us.”

MELANCON (via Baggs):

“It’s never fun to try to process these games, but it’s part of the job,” said Melancon, who blew just four of 51 save chances with the Pirates and Nationals last year. “You have to have a short term memory. I’m sure I’ll go over it 100 times and keep the good and get rid of the bad.”


I'm trying to learn to be more like a manager or a ballplayer and less like a fan when it comes to these ugly losses. It's a looooooong season. Gotta stay positive!

nomisnala said...

There were a few momentum shifts in the game. One was the Nunez steal of 3rd, giving the giants a man on third and one out. But then the new play came in. the slow motion out on a steal, that was never an out before replay came into being. Yes, if the guy significantly overslid the bag, and then was tagged, that was an out, but the slide into the bag with the original missed tag, and then the body off the bag for a millisecond was not an out in the past 100 plus years of baseball. Even with the replay, I could not tell that the tag, actually touched him during that millisecond off the bag. They overturned it. Then another momentum shift was the Span pick off. I thought they might overturn that one too, but they did not. Giants then lost both slow motion momentum shift plays. With bases loaded and one out with Posey and Crawford coming up the giants could not score. Posey a weak fly out to right, and Crawford's dribbler, I thought actually hit Crawford in the batters box and was a foul ball. Everytime I play it back, it looks the same. Giants still had a one run lead going into the bottom of the ninth. Then, Melancon gets two outs, one on a good play by Panik. Then, with hitters not as famous as Posey, or Crawford, against one of the best closers in the game, the Dbacks put together 4 straight hits. Some of them with weak contact. If we do not make the playoffs by one game at the end of the season, remember this game. Bumgarner, to me is now Babe Bumgarner. Move over Babe Ruth. Maybe we did not need another right handed pinch hitter, with this guy looming on the bench on days that he is not pitching.

Brother Bob said...

I liked the first half of the game plenty, with Madbum dominating and hitting a homer. Nothing's better than that. But I now have serious trust issues r/t the Giants bullpen. All 4 of the old standbys are now gone. That's so sad.

campanari said...

Of course three of the four old standbys were sadly gone in 2016 before they were gone gone, off the roster. Seems a bit precipitous, doesn't it, to hang one's bullpen faith on one outing? Or to have lurid deja-vu from one bad game after so much capable ST play?

Zo said...

Unlike Mark, it took me a while to process this. Too much Madbum luv, I guess. Melancon comes with a pedigree, he will be OK, I'm sure. Unfortunate outcome, and I'm sure no one is harder on him than he is, in spite of all the "relief pitchers have to have short memories" chatter. Bob has a point, though. Law, Strickland, Okert, etc, do not come with pedigrees. They have had some success, and hopefully they will again. But you can hardly call them veterans. What was Law's problem? Adrenaline? He had absolutely nothing. The Giants will be in a number of close games this season, and they have to have guys in the bp who can get outs. Consistently. And keep in mind that, except for Madbum, the Giants chased Greinke but scored all of 3 runs. In Arizona. Flailing against Arizona (and Colorado!) is not a recipe for success in the NL West.

nomisnala said...

the only problem I had with the loss during the Madbum start, is that the giants continue to have too many losses of this type. Games like this we need to win most of the time.