Saturday, August 16, 2014

Game Wrap 8/16/2014: Giants 6 Phillies 5

Michael Morse and Joe Panik peppered the alleys of AT&T Park and the Bullpen shut down the Phillies for 5 innings to lead the Giants to an exciting much needed come-from-behind win.  Key Lines:

Hunter Pence- 1 for 5, HR(16).  BA= .284.  After looking pretty bad last night against Cole Hamels, Pence got the game off to a great start with a blast to left-center and an early 1-0 lead for the Giants.  It was the only hit of the game for Pence, who still looks a bit over-caffeinated at the plate of late.

Michael Morse-  3 for 3, 2 2B, 3B, BB.  BA= .281.  When Morse's bat is hot, he is an undeniable asset to the lineup.  He definitely seems to be back in a groove now, smoking the ball to the alleys.  He looks like he is having fun out there again too.

Joe Panik- 2 for 3, 3B, BB.  BA= .274.  Is there anybody out there who still thinks this was a bad draft pick for the Giants?  I mean, this kid has great AB's, gets himself into great hitters counts, stays within himself and does not try to do too much.  He appears to have solved the Giants problems at 2B for the next 6 years at least!  Right now, I find myself looking ahead in the lineup to see when Panik is going to hit so I don't miss any of his AB's.  He's that great to watch at the plate!

Gregor Blanco- 2 for 2.  BA= .243.  Blanco had a pre game heart-to-heart with the Manager and got the game-winning hit, driving in Panik after the triple for the winning run off a big lefty throwing gas.

Brandon Crawford- 0 for 2.  BA= .225.  Crawford came out in the bottom of the 4'th inning on a double switch with a right-hander on the mound for the Phillies.  That tells you something.

Matt Duffy- 1 for 3.  BA= .208.  Kruk and Kuip mentioned something I did not know:  Duffy came up from the minors with a reputation for killing fastballs.  He promptly hit a single to CF off a 97 MPH FB off Phillies LHP reliever Diekman.

Tim Hudson- 4 IP, 8 H, 5 R, 3 BB, 3 K's.  ERA= 3.03.  Huddy was elevating his pitches and the Phils were hitting them like they were placed on a T.

Bullpen- 5 IP, 5 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 4 K's.   The peripherals aren't too impressive, but once again the bullpen held an opposing team at bay for multiple innings enabling the Giants to get back in the game and eventually win it.

Joe West- West can be a real jerk and I don't think he is a very good ump, especially when he's behind home plate calling balls and strikes, but he can be entertaining at times.

Incident 1:  Michael Morse walks up to the plate with a lot of pine tar way up the barrel of his bat.  West asked for the bat and proceeded to us the knob to tamp down some loose dirt just behind the plate then handed the bat back to Morse.  Morse looked a bit non-plussed.  Jon Miller thought West might have been checking the pine tar, but then decided he just wanted to tamp the dirt down.  Still, very strange.  Even stranger, after the count got to 2-2 or 3-2, Morse called timeout and went to the on-deck circle and scraped all the pine tar off his bat!  I still have no idea what happened there, but I have a feeling Joe West was doing more than tamping dirt down.

Incident 2:  The Phillies have had Diekman warming up in the bullpen for over an inning.  After Panik's triple off Bastardo, catcher Wil Nieves goes out to talk to Bastardo.  Joe West was not having it.  He marched out to the mound less than 2 steps behind Nieves all the way and before Nieves could even say anything, tapped him on the shoulder and animatedly told him to get back behind the plate.  Sure enough, just as West got back to home plate, here comes Ryne Sandberg in to make the pitching change.  No reason at all to delay the game there.  Joe West had it right!

The Dodgers lost to the BrewCrew with Clayton Kershaw on the mound so the Giants deficit to the Dodgers in the NL West was cut to 4.5 games.  The Cardinals and Pirates both lost too, so the Giants now lead the Pirates by 0.5 games for the second Wild Card playoff spot and trail the Cards by 1 game for the first spot.

Tim Lincecum goes for the series win tomorrow facing David Buchanan.  Timmy has struggled of late.


  1. We'll be able to comp Joltin' Joe to a myriad of similar guys: the Pads took Corey Spangenberg 10th overall, that's looking horrible. Cards took Kolten Wong 22nd, he drew praise where Panik drew scorn. Levi Michael one after Joe, and then a bunch of youths: Jake Hager, Brandon Martin and Trevor Story. Some circles of Giants prospect hounds love that shiny youth and went bitter on the Gints for Panik big time. And then the bitter Nuclear Wasteland commentary immediately followed by Joe's promotion. Hilarious timing.

    Panik has the 6th most PAs in the 1st and supplemental round. He's got the best BA in class. Javier Baez will of course get the most hype of SS's. He's K'ing up a storm as he does it. We'll see if the Gigantes sneaky look at contact rates will pay off. Could it possibly be that they actually crunched data to identify a underutilized area and combined it with old fashioned scouting? Possibly? These guys?

    1. A lot of the same folks who were contemptuous of Panik, are the same ones who have had longstanding mancrushes on Brandon Belt because of Belt's supposed plate discipline. The difference between Belt and Panik is Belt took a lot of walks out of timidity. He let a lot of hittable pitches go by and still swung at a lot of garbage. Panik, on the other hand is spitting on stuff outside the strike zone while looking to do damage to stuff in the zone. He's getting himself into great hitters counts and then jumping on good pitches to hit. The difference when you compare what Panik is doing now with what Belt was doing at the same stage is night and day. Not that I am not a Belt fan myself, but I'll take Panik's approach any day.

    2. Interesting too that Belt got a couple of years of lineup yo-yoing and Panik gets brought up and put in. Could it be that a disciplined plate approach is what Bochy/Bam-Bam are looking for? Hummmmnnn, pulling on gray beard.

      I think the book is still out on Belt as a consistent force (I know no one can predict Scoots coming up for 1 week and beaning your 1st baseman), but he has only shown month-long flashes so far. Must agree with DocB here, Panik is stepping in and stepping up big time so far.

      The Giants are still in this thing, so Timmy please don't crap the bed today. PLEASE.

    3. Panik has a short swing. Like we said, his contact rates would carry him. K/BB is excellent, he has elite skills. From what we've seen, his power is playing at a major league level. Will MLB pitchers start challenging him more? That'll be interesting.

      Giants are in this thing, for sure. But they have to catch fire. Lackluster Timmy needs to check out.

  2. And he comes from Richie A's alma mater. Love it.

    Richard in Winnipeg

    p.s last weekend at this time I was sitting down at Kauffman in KC, and watching the Royals sweep us.
    While unhappy with the results, it was fantastic to finally see them live.
    Yes Timmy, behave and keep the ball down.