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The Brewers swept the Giants out of Milwaukee with home runs. The discrepency on the road trip was 15-2. That’s fifteen home runs by the Brewers and Cubs to two (Pence, Crawford) by the Giants on this road trip to Chicago and Milwaukee – and both Giants homers were in garbage time or playing long catch-up.
Matt Cain and Barry Zito got blasted and the team ERA of the starting pitchers for the Giants exploded. It’s so early in the season that it isn’t that worrying, but that said, starting pitching – which was our centerpiece, our greatest strength – is suffering profound lapses of quality in recent days. Andrew Baggarly, Kruk and Kuip ask what’s up.
It’s crazy to me that our greatest weakness right now is starting pitching! I am reminded of the Phillies vaunted staff Halladay, Lee, Oswalt, and Hamels (that we beat in 2010) who struggled as they got older, too. But they were in their 30’s. Our eldest guys, Matt and Tim, aren’t 30 yet.
It is good news that other aspects of the team – bullpen, hitting, defense – are really pretty tight for April. Not a lot of errors. Giants showing fight and effort every night.
The Brewers hit well in their park and basically broke open two of the three games early, making it exceedingly difficult to catch up, which emphasizes what we have been saying – we have to pull these pitchers earlier; it changes up the game.
Ugh. Not a good series. Even Vogelsong who pitched well, got beat.
The relievers getting innings is one upside to a series like this and Kontos, Casilla, Lopez and Mijares got minutes in the absence of Jeremy Affeldt. Mijares could grow into a middle reliever in his absence. Kontos and Casilla looked good, except poor Santiago got set up for the loss last night and allowed the single that ended the game. Rough situation to walk into: down 7 or down 8 or 9 … let’s see what happens with the bullpen at home.
Brandon Crawford, Brandon Crawford, Brandon Crawford – another homer, lots of hits and moving all around the order now – Brandon is looking great. Everybody, even The Big Kahuna, is talking about his WAR. Unfortunately he did have another error which was quite costly, but his work at the plate and in the field continues to impress and that was an anomaly.
Crawford and Sandoval have 10 game hitting streaks coming into the home stand against the Padres this weekend. Hunter Pence and Pagan are hitting well. Blanco is hot and cold after a day of horribly bad luck on Tuesday in Milwaukee. Torres, after impressing initially has cooled some.
Nick Noonan is a gamer. Though he struggled against Milwaukee, he continues to show big-league ability at the plate.
Not much else to say you can’t read elsewhere so I will wrap it up.