Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Game Wrap 6/20/2010

The Giants offense broke through for a 5-run rally in the 6'th inning to back a Quality Start by Derek Holland and the Giants held on through a nail biter 9'th inning for the Win.  Key Lines:

Alen Hanson SS- 0 for 0.  BA= .314.  I nearly had a stroke when I saw that Kelby Tomlinson PH for Hanson to lead off the Giants half of the first inning.  Turns out Hanson fouled a ball off his knee and left the game but x-rays are negative and he should be fine in a day or two.  Whew!

Brandon Belt 1B- 3 for 4, 2B.  BA= .305.  Belt really just picked up where he left off before the appy.  He's slashing .278/.381/.500 since his return.

Hunter Pence LF- 2 for 4, SB(2).  BA= .195.  Pence got the Start in LF with Mac moving over the RF and Cutch getting the day off.

Gorkys Hernandez CF- 1 for 4.  BA= .285.  1 for 4 doesn't look like much, but Gorkys capped the 5-run rally with a 2-run single to RF that culminated a 14 pitch AB.  He started the AB going into a 0-2 hole then fouled off 8 pitches while working the count back to 3-2.  OK, I know Gorkys is 30 years old but he seems to be growing as a hitter right in front of our eyes.  Here's my take:  He is biologically 30 years old but is much younger than that as a hitter.  He still has just 780 PAs in his MLB career which is barely over 1 season's worth.  Prior to last year he had just 235 PA.  So last year and this year is the the first he has gotten semi-regular PA's at the MLB level.  He was once a highly rated prospect whose talent the Giants are finally unlocking.  And, he's had multiple minor league seasons with SLG% over .400 so the apparent newfound power is not totally out of nowhere.

Derek Holland LHP- 6 IP, 7 H, 3 R, 2 BB, 7 K's.  ERA= 4.48.  This line underestimates the strength of Holland's performance.  He allowed just 1 run through 6 innings, but then allowed the first 2 batters to reach base in the 7'th.  Tony Watson came in and allowed both of those inherited runners to score.  Holland's ERA for the month of June is 3.15 with 23 K's and 7 BB's in 20 IP over 4 starts.

Sam Dyson RHP- 0.2 IP, 4 H, 2 R, 0 BB, 1 K.  ERA= 2.94.  Dyson got the Save last night and had an easy opportunity for another with a 3-run lead.  It wasn't a Blown Save, but it was a blown Save Opportunity.  Reyes Moronta had to come in and get the last out with a K to earn his first Save of the season.  Stay tuned!

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The Win enabled the 3'rd place Giants to gain 0.5 games on the NL West Leading D'Backs who were idle.  The Giants are now 4 games out of first place.  The Dodgers lost to the Cubs 4-0 to slip to 2 games behind in 2'nd place.  The Rockies sit 5 games behind in 4'th place pending the outcome of their game with the Mets while the Padres got smacked by the A's 12-4 to fall 7.5 games off the pace.

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The Giants open a 4-game weekend series with the Padres tomorrow with Madison Bumgarner still looking for his first Win of the season facing Giants nemesis Tyson Ross.

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Down on the Farm: 6/19/2018

AAA  New Orleans Babycakes outscored the Sacramento River Cats 9-8:

Steven Duggar CF- 2 for 5.  BA= .284.
Eury Perez LF- 2 for 4, Sac.  BA= .294.
Chase d'Arnaud RF- 2 for 5, HR(9).  BA= .283.
Ryder Jones 3B- 2 for 4, HR(6).  BA= .293.
Orlando Calixte SS- 2 for 3, 2 BB.  BA= .286.
Austin Slater 1B- 1 for 1.  BA= .340.

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AA  Richmond Flying Squirrels vs Altoona Curve postponed by rain.

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A+  Cal League North All-Stars destroyed the South All-Stars 9-1:

Jalen Miller PH/2B- 1 for 5, 2B.
Johneshwy Fargas PH//CF- 2 for 2, 3 SB.
Logan Webb RHP- 1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K.
Sandro Cabrera LHP- 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 K's.

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Low A  SAL South All-Stars beat the North All-Stars 9-5:

Manuel Geraldo SS- 3 for 5, HR.
John Gavin LHP- 1 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 0 BB, 0 K.
Joey Marciano LHP- 1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K.

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Short Season  Salem-Keizer Volcanoes blanked the Trip-City Dust Devils 4-0:

Kyle McPherson 2B- 1 for 2, 2 BB, SB(2).  BA= .462.
Diego Rincones DH- 1 for 3, SF.  BA= .474.
Dalton Combs RF- 2 for 4, 2B.  BA= .250.
Kevin Rivera 2B- 2 for 3, 2B, SB(1).  BA= .364.
Keaton Winn RHP- 2 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 K's.  ERA= 0.00.
Solomon Bates RHP- 2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 4 K's.  ERA= 0.00.
Alex DuBord RHP- 2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 K's.  ERA= 0.00.
Alejandro De La Rosa RHP- 3 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 2 K's.  ERA= 0.00.

3 top 10 round 2018 draft picks make successful pro debuts.

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Rookie AZL  Athletics defeated the Giants Black 8-3:

Kwan Adkins RF- 2 for 4, BB, SB(1).  BA= .500.
David Villar 3B- 2 for 5.  BA= .400.
Cody Brickhouse C- 3 for 4, HR(1).  BA= .750.
Jose Maita RHP- 1.2 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 2 K's.  ERA= 0.00.

David Villar should not hang around long in Arizona.

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DSL  Tigers2 edged out the Giants 5-4:

Luigi Pichardo LF- 2 for 4, SF.  BA= .171.
Andrew Caraballo 2B- 1 for 3, 3B, 2 BB.  BA= .208.
Randy Rodriguez RHP- 4 IP, 1 H, 2 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 7 K's.  ERA= 3.75.

Game Wrap 6//19/2018: Giants 6 Marlins 3

Dereck Rodriguez navigated his way through a beanball war to give the Giants 5 solid innings while the offense and bullpen took care of their business for a Giants Win.  Key Lines:

Buster Posey C- 1 for 4, HR(5), HBP.  BA= .289.  Buster went deep in the first inning to get the Giants on the board first.  Then things go weird in the 2'nd inning.  With 1 out and runners on 2'nd and 3'rd and the pitcher due up next, Dereck Rodriguez used the open base to hit Lewis Brinson with an obvious purpose pitch.  The ump immediately warned DRod and both benches.  Don Mattingly went nuts and stormed out to argue the warning.  As he was turning to go back to the dugout, he looked over at Buster Posey who appeared to be minding his own business just squatting behind the plate and pointed.  The lip readers finally figured out that Mattingly said "you're next!"  Sure enough, next time Buster came up Straily hit him up on the arm despite knowing that both he and Mattingly were going to be hitting the showers early.  That seemed to end the feud....at least for this game.

Alen Hanson SS- 3 for 4, 2 2B.  BA= .313.  Hanson played SS in place of Brandon Crawford who is on paternity leave and continued his hot hitting.  Where would this team be without Alen Hanson?

Gorkys Hernandez CF- 3 for 4, 2B, HR(8).  BA= .286.  If I told you at the beginning of the season that Gorkys Hernandez would be tied for 3'rd on the team in HR's and have 3 more than Buster Posey by the middle of June, I don't think anyone here would have believed me.  Wow!  What a transformation!  Goes to show how much difference a nagging injury will make.

Dereck Rodriguez RHP- 5 IP, 7 H, 3 R, 0 BB, 6 K's.  ERA= 4.56.  On his final batter of the game, Young Dereck just rated back and threw a 94 MPH FB right by him.  Nice job by the kid to work his way through the craziness an finish his start off with an emphatic statement.  Dereck Rodriguez and Andrew Suarez have taken some of the sting out of Tyler Beede's struggles.

Bullpen- 4 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 5 K's.  Ty Blach seems to have found a home in the bullpen with 2 ER allowed in 14 IP since moving there on 5/29.  Mark Melancon still doesn't look quite right but got through his inning.  Will Smith was lights out again with 3 K's in 1.1 shutout innings.  Fantasy Alert:  Sam Dyson got the first Save opportunity with Hunter Strickland hitting the DL for good long time.

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The Giants gained a game on the NL West leading D'Backs, who lost to the Angels 5-4, and now trail the leaders by 4.5 games.  The 2'nd place Dodgers split a twin bill with the Cubs and are 1.5 games back.  The Rockies topped the Mets 10-8 and are 5 games behind in 4'th place.  The Padres lost to the A's 4-2 to remain 7 games behind in last place.

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Derek Holland tries for a series Win tomorrow afternoon facing Jose Urena.

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As several people mentioned in the comments today, Hunter Strickland broke his hand punching a wall after last night's 9'th inning meltdown.  Frankly, the news was not slightly surprising to me.  Strickland has shown himself to be a hothead on multiple occasions.  Last year, his reckless HBP of Bryce Harper ended Mike Morse's season and possibly his career.  Now he has all but ended his own season with another demonstration of poor judgement.

Pierce Johnson gets called back up to replace Strick in the bullpen.  Bruce Bochy announced that Tony Watson and Sam Dyson would share Closer duties for now, but as mentioned above, Dyson got the first Save Opportunity.  Bochy has never gone without a set Closer for long.  Bet on Sam Dyson.

Down on the Farm: 6/18/2018

AAA  New Orleans Babycakes defeated the Sacramento River Cats 7-4:

Steven Duggar CF- 1 for 4, 3B, BB.  BA= .282.
Gregor Blanco RF- 2 for 5.  BA= .276.
Austin Slater 1B- 2 for 4, 2B, HR(5).  BA= .337.
Chase d'Arnaud 2B- 2 for 4, 2B.  BA= .280.

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AA  Richmond Flying Squirrels were idle.

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A+  San Jose Giants were idle.

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Low A  Augusta Greenjackets were idle.

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Short Season  Tri-City Dust Devils blew away the Salem-Keizer Volcanoes 8-2:

Jose Layer CF- 2 for 3, HBP.  BA= .455.
Kyle McPherson 2B- 1 for 3, 2B, HBP.  BA= .455.
Doug Still LHP- 2.1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 2 K's.  ERA= 0.00.
Matt Frisbee RHP- 1.2 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 1 BB, 0 K's.  ERA= 5.40.
Sidney Duprey LHP- 2.1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 2 K's.  ERA= 0.00.

Looking over the Volcanoes roster, things could be rough until the top draft picks start playing.  I believe Matt Frisbee is the first 2018 draft pick to make an appearance.

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DSL  Giants beat Colorado 5-3:

Robinson Batista CF- 0 for 2, 2 BB.  BA= .261.
Luis Toribio DH- 2 for 4, 3B.  BA= .318.
Ismael Alcantara 1B- 1 for 2, 2B, BB.  BA= .176.
Rodolfo Bone C- 2 for 3, 2B.  BA= .500.
Ivan Armstrong RHP- 4.1 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 3 BB, 1 K.  ERA= 3.65.
Jose Cruz RHP-- 1.2 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 K.  ERA= 1.17.

Rodolfo Bone indeed has a grade 80 name and is swinging a big stick at the plate so far.

Game Wrap 6/19/2018: Marlins 5 Giants 4

A 9'th inning meltdown by Closer Hunter Strickland ruined an otherwise terrific game by the Giants.  Key Lines:

Buster Posey C- 2 for 4, 2B.  BA= .290.  Buster's leadoff double started a 3-run rally in the second inning.  He scored on Joe Panik's single and Panik came home on Pablo Sandoval's HR.

Mac Williamson LF- 1 for 3, BB, Assist(2B).   BA= .238.  Mac hit an RBI single in the 3'rd inning and later drew a walk in what I thought was a nice AB.  I still think if Mac can avoid injury and the Giants give him the reps in LF, he'll turn into a major force in the lineup.

Pablo Sandoval 3B- 1 for 4, HR(6).  BA= .271.  Pablo's shot was hit RH, a relative rarity for him.  TV said he had gone something like 41 RH AB's without a dinger.

Andrew Suarez LHP- 6.1 IP, 5 H, 2 R, 1 BB, 7 K's.  ERA= 4.70.  The big silver lining in this game was Suarez' performance. He had his strikeout pitch going and carried a QS into the 7'th inning.  This was just his 3'rd QS out of 11, yes, he's had 11 starts this season!  But he's pitched in some bad luck and has 57 K's against just 12 BB's in 59.1 IP.  That adds up to an FIP of 3.58 and xFIP 3.28.

Sam Dyson RHP- 1.2 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K.  ERA= 2.51.  With Hunter Strickland looking increasingly shaky, a strong case can be made for Dyson to move into the Closer role, at least until Mark Melancon proves he's healthy for good.  While closer by committee has never worked well, I don't think Closer should be a "sacred cow" position and should almost always come with a short leash.

Hunter Strickland RHP- 0.1 IP, 3 H, 3 R, 2 BB, 0 K.  ERA= 2.84.  This kind of turned ugly when Strick buzzed one up around Lewis Brinson's head.  Kruk did not think it was on purpose, but when Brinson hit a long single to RF to tie the game, Brinson was barking and gesturing as he ran down the 1B line leading to some serious stank-eye out of Strick.  After relinquishing the lead on the next batter, Strick got in some final words at Brinson on his way to the dugout.  We'll see if those two face each other again this series, but if not, Strick has proven he has a very long memory.

Me?  I tend to believe the chin shaver was a purpose pitch by Strick, not necessarily to send a message so much as to back Brinson off the plate, which brings up pitch selection.  After the head buzzer, Strickland got strike one with a heater on the outside corner and another with a heater on the inside corner.  I thought Brinson was set up for bounced slider or two, but the next pitch was another heater on the outside that wasn't far enough outside which is right where Brinson likes them.  He reached out and poked it into R-CF for the game-tying single.

While Strick had not allowed an ER since May 28, he had allowed a couple of unearned runs and his K/BB is an unsightly 5/5 over his last 7 games and 9/8 over his last 15.  This was his 4'th Blown Save of the season.  Probably time to shuffle the Closer deck for Bochy.

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The Loss dropped the 3'rd place Giants to 5.5 games behind the D'Backs in the NL West after the Snakes beat the Angels 7-4.  The Dodgers were idle and are 2 games back.  The Rockies and Padres lost and are 6 and 7 games off the pace respectively.

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Dereck Rodriguez tries to even the series tonight facing Dan Straily who broke Evan Longoria's hand with an HBP in his last start.

Monday, June 18, 2018

Down on the Farm: 6/17/2018

AAA  New Orleans Baby Cakes blanked the Sacramento River Cats 3-0:

Mike Connolly RHP- 6 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 3 K's, GO/AO= 9/4.  ERA= 0.00.
Tyler Beede RHP- 1 IP, 3 H, 3 R, 1 BB, 1 K, HBP, 2 WP.  ERA= 7.10.
Manny Parra LHP- 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 2 K's.  ERA= 3.55.

Mike Connolly gets the promotion from AA.  His AA line was 3-2, 3.99, 38.1 IP, 14 BB, 38 K, GO/AO= 1.32.  He was the 27'th round draft pick out of Univ. of Maine in 2013.  It took him awhile to get out of short season ball but finally worked a full season for Augusta in 2016 with a 3.05 ERA over. 135.2 IP.  His results last year in the hitter-friendly Cal League were not as good with a 4.85 ERA in 94.2 IP.  I've never read a scouting report on Connolly, but from his minor league record, I would guess his stuff is similar to Chris Heston and he's a guy who an be effective when his command is on with a ceiling of 5'th starter in MLB.  Another rough game for Tyler Beede who made a relief appearance.

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AA  Harrisburg Senators outscored the Richmond Flying Squirrels 6-5:

Luigi Rodriguez RF- 1 for 5, HR(6).  BA= .362.
Miguel Gomez 2B- 3 for 4, 2B, BB.  BA= .304.

Luigi! and Miguel Gomez were the only two players in the Squirrels starting lineup hitting over .250.

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A+  San Jose Giants defeated the Visalia Rawhide 7-1:

Wander Franco 3B- 2 for 5, 2B.  BA= .294.
Heath Quinn DH- 2 for 3, HR(4), BB.  BA= .344.
John Riley 1B- 2 for 3, 2 2B, BB.  BA= .368.
Brandon Van Horn SS- 1 for 4, HR(4).  BA= .221.
Raffi Vizcaino RHP- 6 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 3 BB, 5 K's.  ERA= 4.55.
Nolan Riggs RHP- 2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 3 K's.  ERA= 3.03.

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Low A  Augusta Greenjackets outlasted the Asheville Tourists 5-4 in 10 innings:

Heliot Ramos CF- 1 for 4, 2B, BB, SB(4).  BA= .243.
Shane Matheny 2B- 2 for 4, HR(4), BA= .230.
Tyler Brown LF- 3 for 3, 2 2B.  BA= .219.
Jason Bahr RHP- 6 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 2 BB, 9 K's.  ERA= 2.75.

Heliot Ramos has a 6 game hit streak with an XBH in each of his last 5 games, all doubles.  He is 9 for 24(.375) in that span.  3 of his 4 SB's have come in his last 4 games.

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Short Season  Tri-Cities Dust Devils blew away the Salem-Keizer Volcanoes 11-0:

Jesus Tona RHP- 1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 K's.  ERA= 0.00.

Looking at the S-K roster, things may be a bit rough until reinforcements from the draft start arriving.

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DSL  Giants were idle as usual on Sundays.

Sunday, June 17, 2018

Game Wrap 6/17/2018: Giants 4 Dodgers 1

The Giants scored on a pair of 2-run HR's by Brandon Belt and Nick Hundley, and that was all Chris Stratton and the bullpen needed to salvage a Win out of the weekend series with the Bad Guys.  Key Lines:

Brandon Belt 1B- 1 for 3, HR(12), BB.  BA= .302.  The Big Guy needed 1 game to get warmed up and came out doing his thing:  Taking walks and hitting dingers.  Great to have him back in the lineup.

Nick Hundley C- 1 for 3, HR(8), BB.  BA= .257.  Seems to me Nick Hundley could be a starting catcher for several teams.  Since his BA hit a nadir of .067 on April 12, he has hit .287 with 8 HR's and a SLG% of .602.

Chris Stratton RHP- 6 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 3 K's.  ERA= 4.22.  Stratton seems to have found his groove again.  This was his 3'rd QS out of 4 in June.  He has a 2.35 ERA in that span.

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With the Win, the Giants pass the Rockies for 3'rd place in the NL West after the Rockies were outscored by the Rangers 13-12.  The leading D'Backs lost to the Mets 5-3 so the Dodgers remain 1.5 games behind the D'Backs while the Giants are 4.5 games back. The Rockies trail by 5 games and the Padres lost to the Braves 4-1 to remain 6.5 games back in last place.

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The Giants now return home to begin a return series with the Marlins tomorrow night with Andrew Suarez facing lefty Caleb Smith.

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Brandon Crawford is expected to take a paternity leave for the birth of his 4'th child this week.  Not sure which day that starts.

The Giants have signed Joey Bart with a signing bonus of slightly over $7 M.  It's the largest bonus ever for a position player draft pick.  Is that right?  The Giants have reportedly signed their top 16 draft picks and 23 of their top 25.  The highest unsigned pick is Ryan Olenek at #17.  Kiley McDaniel of Fangraphs seems to be under the impression he is not likely to sign.  Overall, the Giants have signed 32 of their picks.