Friday, March 27, 2015

Spring Training Game Wrap 3/26/2015: A's 6 Giants 4

Watched this one on MLB TV.  Tim Lincecum had an uneven start while the Giants offense had some nice hits here and there.  It wasn't enough against the A's, but at least it wasn't the usual blowout.  Key Lines:

Nori Aoki(LF)- 1 for 3, BB.  BA= .214.  Aoki looked confident at the plate and put some good swings on the ball.  He is fast too.  Between him, Pagan, Panik and Crawford, the Giants may set an all time record for team triples this season!

Joe Panik(2B)- 0 for 4.  BA= .160.  Panik made contact, but looked off balance on several of the batted balls and just did not look comfortable at the plate.  It was weak contact.  His starting 2B job is not in jeopardy and there is still time to for him to get comfortable.

Brandon Belt(1B)- 2 for 4.  BA= .354.  Belt continued to pepper the field, shift and all.

Hector Sanchez(Catcher)- 1 for 2, SF.  BA= .250.  Sanchez left early after taking a foul tip right at the top of the chest protector.  The fact he got the start with Timmy pitching and did well at the plate tells you he is, by far, in the lead to be the backup catcher over Andrew Susac.

Tim Lincecum(RHP)- 5 IP, 4 H, 4 R, 3 ER, 2 BB, 7 K's.  ERA= 6.92.  Early on, Timmy had nothing. FB 86-88.  Threw a few good splitters but hung as many.  Everything up in the zone.  He seemed to settle down over the last 2 innings and got his pitches lower in the zone.  The velocity still has to be a concern, though.

Steven Okert(LHP)- 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 K.  ERA= 2.70.  Okert throws from an odd angle. He sets up with his back foot on the extreme right side of the rubber then adds an extreme crossover step.  It's effective against RH batters, at least those who have not seen it before.  It must be a nightmare for LH batters!

Hunter Strickland(RHP)- 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 K.  ERA= 6.75.  FB was hitting 96 MPH.  Seemed to have better command of his pitches than I've seen before.  Pitched more to contact.

Sergio Romo(RHP)- 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K.  ERA= 1.93.  I think Romo faced 3 LH batters.  I don't  recall seeing him throw the slider, but it didn't matter.  Unlike last year when he was working on his 2-seamer and changeup and got hit around, he dominated batters with those pitches this time getting both called strikes and swings and misses.  As long as he can stay healthy, I expect a big season out of Romo, possibly reclaiming his closer role.

Madison Bumgarner will pitch in a minor league game today with Chris Heston traveling to Glendale, AZ to face the fearsome Dodgers.  Should be a nice challenge for Hesto Presto.


  1. Not that I'm rooting for it to happen (I am very excited about both players, obviously), but what are the chances of Duffy unseating Panik this season if Panik struggles offensively? It's not something I'd given much thought until recently, but Panik still needs to prove himself over a full season, and the Giants certainly aren't giving up Crawford's spot any time soon. I would love for Panik to hit .300 the rest of his career, but I'd be lying if I said the idea of Duffy starting at 2B for the Giants wasn't hanging around in the back of my mind.

    1. I think Panik has a long leash(it just got longer with that defensive gem against the Dodgers tonight), but it's not for the full season. If Panik is hitting below the Mendoza Line mid-June and Duffy is tearing up the PCL, we could see a switch.

  2. without pagan and pence in the lineup, giants are gonna be hard pressed to score runs


  3. Lincecum's velocity loss may or may not be anything. In 2014, his PitchFX had him peaking at 93.7 and averaging 89.6, but his low velocity was 85.6. So, maybe it's fatigue. Maybe it's Wild Timmy. Maybe his arm is shot. Maybe who knows, I sure don't... One can only hope that he's ready for opening day and can at least be a quality innings-eater.

    1. I still think it's a matter of mechanics. You can almost tell from Lincecum's body language when he feels "in sync" and when he doesn't. Velocity is less important than his command and location of his mix of pitches. When Timmeh's going good, he has confidence in several different pitches, and mixes them well. When he get's out of sorts, he tries to pound the heart of the strike zone, and the pitches get pounded back the other way.
      Just my view, but I hope he's got it working this year.

    2. Timmy's average velocity on the FB has been in steady decline for at least 5 years. I agree that command is a bigger issue, but part of his poor command may well be from overthrowing to try to get more velocity.