Saturday, August 15, 2015

Game Wrap 8/14/0215: Giants 8 Nationals 5

The Giants offense roasted Max Scherzer to pick up another shaky start by Matt Cain and the bullpen shut it down over the final 4.1 innings.  Key Lines:

Gregor Blanco- 3 for 5, 2 2B, SB(10).  BA= .294.  So, who says Gregor Blanco can't bat leadoff?  In 71 PA's this season, he is slashing .381/.458/.619 out of the leadoff spot which pretty much proves the point I have made in the past the Blanco's apparent struggles leading off were mostly sample size driven.

Matt Duffy- 3 for 3, 2B, HR(10), BB, SF.  BA= .309.  What a night for Duffy!  He did commit a couple of errors at 3B, but neither resulted in an unearned run so no harm, no foul.  He certainly was not intimidated by facing Mad Max Scherzer!

Hunter Pence- 2 for 4, HR(8).  BA= .289.  Not much to say about this one.  Fairly typical game for Pence.

Matt Cain- 4.2 IP, 6 H, 5 R, 1 BB, 3 K's, 2 HR Allowed.  ERA= 6.05.  Much of Cain's success early in his career was due to an uncanny ability to limit his HR/FB ratio.  The statheads would say it's just the law of averages finally catching up with him.  I say he's never completely gained command of the breaking ball.  As he's relied on it more, he's also hanging more and the hangers are getting hammered. Although, I think the blast he gave up to Harper was on a high fastball.

Jeremy Affeldt- 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 K, HBP.  ERA= 5.40.  After seeming to hit rock bottom against the Cubs on 8/7, Affeldt's last tow appearances have been much more encouraging.  last night, he got 3 fairly routine GB outs.  His ERA over his last 7 appearances is 3.86 with a WHIP of 0.86 and a K/BB of 6/2 in 7.1 IP.

Josh Osich- 1.1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K.  ERA= 0.84.  Osich was brought in to face Bryce Harper who he retired on a soft liner to Blanco in CF, but it was what he did to the RH batters he faced that really showed what this kid can become.  He struck out Ryan Zimmerman on a gorgeous changeup on the outside corner that put Kruk and Kuip into a state of ecstasy!  And just look at his stuff:  97 MPH FB, 96 MPH cutter(that's right, 96!), 85 MPH Change up with fade and sink.  This kid is going to be huge down the stretch!

The Win enabled the Giants to keep pace with the Dodgers, 2.5 games behind the NL West leaders after the Dodgers topped the Reds 5-3.  The Giants remain 4.5 games behind the Cubs in the race for the final Wild Card playoff spot after the Cubbies edged their crosstown rivals the ChiSox 6-5.

Jake Peavy tries to extend the Giants winning ways at home tonight facing Gio Gonzalez.


  1. I checked on Cain's stats this AM and his HR% is 14.5%, about double his career HR%, as he continues to struggle with his command.

    And since that was so depressing, I did some comparison-performance work on Matt Duffy. I went back to 1987 and computed how many ABs it took each quality/qualified 3rd baseman to generate one WAR. The results were surprising, though there's so much more of Matt Duffy's career to occur before it's anything but an 'intriguing potential' that may be just a flash in the pan:

    1. Matt Duffy generates 1 WAR per 126 ABs
    2. Kevin Mitchell generated 1 WAR per 135 ABs.
    3. Matt Williams generated 1 WAR per 141 ABs.
    4. Pablo Sandoval generated 1 WAR per 174 ABs.

    I'm not sure if FanGraphs did catch all the WAR for Williams and Mitchell. But if what they got out there is correct, Duffy, has out-performed every third baseman as a total-player we've had since the 1987. The major caveat to this is that career averages are vastly different than individual years and he's young and hasn't had to deal with so many things that could slow that rate down. So I'm not reading anything into this.

    1. Duffy is off to a fast start to his career, that's for sure. I don't think he will follow the same career trajectory as Mitchell and Williams just because I don't think he's ever going to have their power. On the other hand, if you go back and look at his minor league track record and peripheral stats, I don't see why he can't sustain what he is doing now.

    2. Fun info with the WAR stuff on SF 3Bs Moses. Duffy is such a great story because of the 18th round selection. We're just not quite sold on it. I don't think people wonder the same things for Panik because he was a first-rounder.

      It's been a great half year for Duffy, who by the numbers, is the NL ROY. Right now, he's the guy I want at the plate when the game is on the line right now. Very, very solid ABs.

    3. My post was getting too long so I took out the power/defense differences. So, yes I agree. He won't have their power. Especially Mitchell's barrel-chested power. But as a 'whole player' he's really playing well at this early stage.

  2. A quote from ESPN

    "Nationals infielder Dan Uggla, currently on the disabled list with a back issue, was presented with a World Series ring by the Giants on Friday night. Uggla appeared in four games last year with the defending champions, going 0 for 12 with a run scored and a walk."

    And somewhere Ernie Banks sheds a quiet dignified tear.

  3. I recall in the 2011 draft Osich fell quite a ways. Not sure if he was ever considered a 1st rounder, but he was up near there earlier in his college career. I think he had injury problems that dropped him into the 6th round. I was pretty happy to get him relatively late in the draft.

    1. Definitely a first round talent who fell due to injury concerns.

  4. Compare stats of Matt Duffy 2015 v. Joe Panik 2014. At this stage each had exactly 116 hits in 375 / 376 plate appearances.

    Intriguing to say the least.

  5. Duffy is getting better as the year goes on. I haven't even come close to trying to make sense of his power. If he could gain about 15 lbs. without losing any of his elasticity, he just might have more power than everyone anticipated. It is his mental stature that impresses me. I just have this feeling we haven't seen the best of Mr. Duffy, as in like a batting title?TBox

    1. Agree on Duffman's mental approach. I'm pretty sure he has shared his ideas with Kelby Tomlinson with amazing results. I'm thinking Duffy has a lifetime job as a hitting instructor waiting for him after he retires, hopefully a long time from now.