I’m nothing if not petty about being hungry for acknowledgment from our community when I’m out ahead of something – it’s a terrible result of my insecurity. So like a petulant child I’ve been YELLING on Twitter that all last July and August I was calling for the Starting Pitcher to hit in the 8-slot.
I was tweeting we should do it well before Maddon did so successfully when the Cubs swept us out of Wrigley, taking four games last August on their way to the DS.
I mention this to say that our flavor here at GBC is basically avant-garde.
We propose all kinds of things, some of which aren’t popular (like when we wanted to start Peavy against Pittsburgh in ’14, for fear of not being able to use MadBum twice or even thrice in the division series) and some of which become implemented to success (like in 2010 when we pushed Bochy to let the new guy Javier Lopez share some of Affeldt’s outings), and some of which get implemented to failure …
but generally we are looking ahead.
So I LOVE this move by Bochy and am thrilled we’re starting the season with this as a protocol, from which to develop the concept against competition all year long. I hope we stick with it long enough to get a decent sample-size.
I am SUPER-FREAKING-EXCITED to finally see Madison Bumgarner hit in the 8-slot on Opening Day and to see Peavy in that position in the opener against The Nemesis at the yard this year! Peavy moves over runners against Kershaw? Yes, please.
The Giants play a day/night double today with Peavy on the mound taking on Mat Latos (now throwing for the White Sox) in the day game and Ty Blach, a 6’2″ and 200lb, 25-year old, pitching the night game against De La Rosa of the Snakes. But let’s get to the Reader:
Brisbee projects his starting lineups for Opening Day with the recent round of departures for various layers of the organization
Brandon Belt went 4-4, homered and drove in four runs against the Rockies!
Here’s AlPav on the game March 18, when the Giants had it all working … from his piece:
“With every starting position player on the field for the first time this spring, the Giants beat the Padres 15-6 and scored 10 runs in the first two innings. When manager Bruce Bochy started pulling starters in the top of the fifth the Giants had 12 runs on 13 hits.
“There’s always some electricity the first time everybody gets out there together,” Buster Posey said. “It was nice to score some runs like we did. Hopefully it’s a sign of good things.””
Jeff Samardzija is riding out the idea that Cactus League is for working shit out. It definitely worries me a little, but it’s true these games don’t mean anything. Anyway, Here’s Haft on the Shark’s attitude given his poor outings in terms of results.
Since we are back up and running it’s probably a good idea to drop a post every day or two to keep us all connected. The Giants won game one out in Scottsdale by the score of 4-1 over the Angels. Samardzija started and Posey played and Tomlinson and Lollis and Arroyo all looked good.
I’m not going to write a lot because, honestly, every single second is being chronicled in triplicate by Schulman, Pavlovic and Baggs, and analyzed ad nauseum by the clowns at Comcast and KNBR, so it’s unnecessary to repeat what everyone already knows.
Here is a link to Haft’s Nice Wrap of our first Spring Training Game though.
Excited for the season. I have concerns about Angel Pagan and it looks like we will get to see him play today – and Matt Duffy, whom Jake Peavy called his favorite Giant in a twitter chat hosted by the Giants earlier this morning.
It was pretty cool to hear the likely Opening Day Starter’s thoughts on all kinds of things. I am looking forward to seeing him pitch in Game One at the yard on April 7th.
Go out and have fun.
It’s a shame the season turned out like it did, but not really.
After a weird-bad opening we OWNED May, June swooned, badassed July, and had the bottom fall out in August – injuries.
But there are so many reasons to be proud.
Cubs fans, I like your team and your young talent Kris Bryant. I’ve admired your new manager for many years. In fact, I’m excited for your run. But there’s one award you guys don’t get this season, and that’s National League Rookie of the Year.
Before we even begin discussing statistics, I want to be clear why Matt Duffy is the NL ROY.
Simply put, he is the Rookie of the Year because among all rookies Matt Duffy has the most command of baseball’s five tools:
1) Hitting for Power
2) Hitting for Average
3) Fielding Ability
4) Throwing Ability
Hitting for power among national league rookies belongs to Kris Bryant. It’s undeniable.
And if you can’t think deeper than that one aspect of the game, I can see why you might think Bryant should be the ROY. Bryant has more HRs, more RUNS, RBI and a better OPS, SLG (slugging percentage) and fWAR.
But back on August 20th, Sports Illustrated’s Chris Corcoran in a piece called Awards Watch had more to say about measuring the two players with adjusted stats.
“Based on the raw stats … you might think Duffy should rank behind Kris Bryant … but Duffy’s stats are depressed because he plays in an extreme pitchers’ park.
“Looking at park-adjusted OPS+, the two are in a virtual tie in terms of production (Duffy is at 125 to Bryant’s 128, with 100 being league average).
After power-hitting, it looks considerably less convincing for Kris Bryant as a candidate for NL rookie of the year.
Hitting for average belongs to Matt Duffy. He has more doubles, more triples, more hits, and a better average by almost 40 points than Bryant. But it’s Duffy’s average with RISP that should surprise and enlighten Cubs fans.
Avg. with RISP Matt Duffy .378
Avg. with RISP Kris Bryant .311
It shows Duffy to have been as clutch as Bryant. In fact, despite lagging in RBI, perhaps more so.
In terms of base running, Duffy has shown an awareness rarely seen by rookies. Recently scoring from first with heads-up alertness on a deep single, The Duffman consistently shows a keen knowledge of base running and how to use his speed. Duffy has never been caught stealing.
To his credit Kris Bryant has stolen four more bases, but he has been caught stealing four times and, like all power hitters, is much more susceptible to striking out.
Duffy’s better efficiency at the plate is clear in a comparison of the two young men’s walk-to-strikeout ratio.
While displaying massive power and great clutch-hitting skills, Kris Bryant is not performing defensively like Duffy, and what the Duffman has done is what puts him over the top.
Bryant has played outfield in 26 games, preventing him from having to play position defense. But as a result Bryant and Duffy have each played 123 games in the infield allowing a fair comparison … and statistics are clear.
When playing 3rd base, Bryant has committed 17 errors – seven more than Duffy at that position, and five more than Duffy overall. Bryant’s fielding percentage is 20 points lower than Duffy’s. Duffy’s dWAR exceeds Bryant’s significantly.
Corcoran agreed, back on August 20th:
“Beyond that, Duffy is a better fielder at the same position and has arguably contributed more with his legs (he has taken the extra base 12 times to Bryant’s nine, reached on an error eight times to Bryant’s four and is five-for-five in stolen base attempts, while Bryant is 12-for-15).”
Both these young men have been great rookies this year. Their clutch performances, poise and consistency over the course of the season have been a blast to watch and root for.
But since a decision has to be made, and towering home runs aren’t a single reason to award the Rookie of the Year in the National League, it should be awarded to Matt Duffy for his fullness as a player and for his impressive command of the five tools of baseball.
Welcome Back to Giants Baseball Corner, I’m MTK. In case you don’t know us, here‘s the way you might, mine’s the first voice you hear in that episode.
Another roller-coaster first half but this year ending with a sweet streak that runs well into July. Buster being Buster leads the G-men in HRs, RBIs and average. But the thrilling surprise is the sustained excellent play of Matt Duffy, Joe Panik and Brandon Crawford – particularly at the plate in light of the loss of Aoki and Pence for weeks.
Our starting five pitchers, with Cain and Peavy back, show intense potential – only Hudson’s wear-and-tear cause concern. Chris Heston just keeps rolling. The rookie no-no hasn’t been seen for the Giants since way back in the last century and he shows consistent command. The idea of Petit, Vogey and Lincecum as long relief is just laughably great.
The bullpen was rocky but we discovered Josh Osich amidst that, too – a big lefty who is cool under pressure, his debut start – first batter! – was Bryce Harper with runners on in the 8th inning and he and Susac popped him up. (Go Beavers!)
I HAVE A DREAM
I HAVE SEVERAL DREAMS
My first dream is
That the bats and defense just mentally decide that they are going to win all the rest of Madison Bumgarner’s starts, helping him to go 21-5.
Then we would demand they give him the NL Cy Young because he is the most feared pitcher in all of baseball and it’s the only award he doesn’t have yet.
My second dream is
That the San Francisco Giants end the season with FIVE guys hitting over .300
At the moment Aoki, Posey, Panik, Pence, Crawford and Pagan are in the mix.
My third dream is
We Seize The Division from the nemesis and avoid the play-in game.
I figure if we go 44-20 from here out and especially sweep the brew crew this week, we can get ahold of first in the NL West and never let go.
You may say I’m a dreamer … but I’m not the only one.
Let’s Go Giants
#SweepTheBrewCrew #MopUpTheBeer #SeizeTheDivision #BeatLA
Haven’t had time to keep up with the blog, but the Cincinnati series just ended and the Giants continue to impress on the road. They took two of three from the Reds, after taking two of three from the Cards last week.
We lost the first game of each series, this week it was because of what would normally have been called a Lincecum implosion, but it was really slightly different from the other ones.
Timmy settled down after giving up runs in the first, but then got frustrated and distracted by base runners – particularly the speedy Billy Hamilton, who is right behind Dee Gordon in steals in the NL. Though a distraction to Timmy, he provided a defensive highlight: it was pretty cool to see Buster Posey gun him down at third in this game. But then came the Lincecum implosion.
The Giants and Lincecum lost 8 – 3.
Game two was a Vogelsong gem as he threw a quality start and had nine strikeouts. That’s the most K’s Vogey has ever had in a regular season game. You may remember he had nine in the 2012 WS year on the road in St. Louis.
Michael Morse boomed a homer in this one and then Juan Perez followed suit later in the game to give the Giants a 3-2 lead they never yielded. Romo got the save.
Morse homered again in the third game of the series, the rubber match this morning. And the Giants won 6-1 after Brandon Crawford blew it wide open with a three run homer.
The Giants look really good. The road trip was 4-2 and we return now for a ten game home stand. Looking forward to thrashing the Mets this weekend.
This was the game where I began to wonder if we might have this. We might have the division because we are a real team … built from good guys.
I was worried because St. Louis is a baseball town and they’ve won the most titles in the National League, and their … culture, their actual baseball culture is so much better than ours – I don’t mean our best versus their best, I mean our current fans versus their perennial ones.
[I am not DONE complaining about this, you people need to CHANGE].
But this team shows a flexibility and a stick-to-it-iveness that is quite impressive. Giants came from behind twice with power from Morse (doing what we hired him to do) and Pablo Sandoval – wow, the cowboy boots shift is turning crazy now – who hit for an RBI for the 9th consecutive time, with a homer, which has brought comparison to Barry Bonds from everyone.
It is interesting to remember that Bonds arrived in SF from Pittsburgh at the age of 28. Pablo Sandoval will be 28 this August. What if Pablo’s “Barry Years” lie ahead?
(Just tweeted the shit out of that line)
Vogelsong pitched well, the ‘pen continues to impress and Romo continues to be a little shaky. He gave up a run in the ninth and had runners on who, crossing the plate, could cost the game. He wrestled his way out, inducing a pop up to end the game and I tweeted:
Moments later Ray Woodson tweeted he would spend the post game show trying to calm down the Romo Angst. My reply was:
TWEET by @giantsbaseballcorner : “Romo angst is typical of the non-baseball playing bandwagonning dumbasses who now occupy our park claiming to feel “tortured”
and I still feel that way this morning.
But it did lead to a discussion for me about the word “torture” and why it offended me when taken on as a badge after Krukow said it. It was true when Kruk said it about 2010.
It was “Torture” for the fans who have watched for five decades as the G-men kept getting close and failed to win the World Series in San Francisco. It was torture for anyone who watched ’02 …. ’93 …. ’89 … ’62.
But after we finally won, the word for the first win in SF was “RELIEF”
See, it can’t really be “TORTURE” again until 2068.
If we don’t win the World Series until 2068, that summer would be torture. Use of the term before then is insulting to long time fans – well at least to me.