Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Spring Training Game Wrap 3/8/2016: Giants 16 Reds 7

The Giants wore their hitting shoes to the park last night and ran up a football score on the Reds in Scottsdale.  Key Lines:

Angel Pagan LF- 1 for 2, BB.  BA= .500.  Angel makes his spring debut a success.  The shorter hair looks good on him.

Mac Williamson LF- 1 for 3, 2B.  Mac's double was a scorcher down the 3B line.  Wonder what the exit velocity was on that one?  It was not a good look to drop one on the warning track for a 2-base error, but he had just entered the game and the lighting at Scottsdale Stadium is notoriously bad.  Later in the game, Junior Arias appeared to not see a pop-up in shallow left-CF at all.

Joe Panik 2B- 3 for 4, 3B.  BA= .231.  Panik was off to a slow start to the spring, but appeared to be in mid-season form in this one, especially when legging out the triple.

Rando Moreno 2B- 2 for 2, 3B.  BA= .500.  Moreno continues to open eyes and show that last season in Richmond was not a fluke.

Jarrett Parker RF- 1 for 4, HR(1).  BA= .313.  When Parker gets those long arms extended, he generates as much bathead speed as anyone in the game.  His shot to R-CF brought back memories of last September.  Stay hot!

Kelby Tomlinson SS- 1 for 2, 2 BB, SB(1).  BA= .286.  Another gritty game from Kelby who has to be the favorite to land the backup MI job.  Doubt the Giants are going to carry 2 backup MI's.

Conor Gillaspie 1B- 2 for 3.  BA= .364.  Gillaspie continues to make his case, but can he compete with Blanks' power?  Those two are probably competing for the same roster spot.

Christian Arroyo PH-3B- 2 for 2, HR(1).  BA= .500.  Oh my!  In thinking of a future LF for the Giants, I have been assuming that Mac Williamson has more raw power while Arroyo is the better all-around hitter.  After watching Arroyo's dinger sail into the night somewhere behind the berm in LF, I'm not so sure!  THAT was a blast!  Even more impressively, Arroyo worked his way back from an 0-2 hole to 3-2 then jumped on a pitch to hit in a hitter's count.

Andrew Susac C- 1 for 1, 2 BB.  BA= .167.  Trevor Brown got the start in this one, catching Bummy.

Grant Green 3B- 1 for 3, 3B.  BA= .412.  Does Green's versatility give him an advantage in the competition for the last roster spot?  If Tomlinson can handle the backup SS duties, it probably comes down to Blanks, Gillaspie, Parker and Green for the last 2 bench jobs.  I would bet on Blanks and Parker, but Gillaspie and Green can play 3B which gives Boch more options, and we know how much Boch loves his options.

Madison Bumgarner LHP- 3 IP, 5 H, 3 R, 0 BB, 2 K, GO/AO= 5/1.  ERA= 7.20.  Bummy is a notoriously slow starter in the spring.  No worries.  He looked fine out there.

Chris Heston RHP- 2.2 IP, 3 H, 3 R, 1 BB, 4 K's, GO/AO= 4/1.  Heston was sailing along looking great until he loaded the bases with 2 outs in his 3'rd inning of work.  Derek Law came in and threw a WP for 1 run and then gave up a bases-clearing double on the pop-up that Arias lost in the night.

Josh Osich and George Kontos pitched 1 scoreless inning each.


Johnny Cueto is expected to make his spring debut today against the Rockies in Scottsdale.


Around the League:  The Cardinals may have found a secret weapon to fill in for Jhonny Peralta at SS in former Cuban bonus baby, Aledmys Diaz, who went 4 for 4 with 2 doubles.


  1. You're right Doc. Arroryo's home run at bat was a great AB. He's been impressive. It will be interesting to see how he fairs this year in Richmond. The Eastern League will make you or break you. Not only does it seem to be the place where most clubs who have teams in the EL send their best pitchers, but also the rigorous road trips and such. It's a tough go for sure. Hopefully CA can stay healthy. If so, it's going to be an interesting year for him.

    1. You know, with regard to the Arroyo vs Williamson line of thinking in LF, it's also prudent to keep in mind that in2 years Hunter Pence's contract will have expired - right about the time that Arroyo is projected to be coming around ready to take over a starting gig - if the kid continues.

      If Williamson can deliver, his defense & arm are well suited to RF in AT&T, where Arroyo could then move into Left. With a SS-level arm, kid should be able to deliver average defense in left, with Williamson & Span both above average at their respective positions.

      The way the Arroyo story is developing is a whole lot of excellent right now.

    2. It was 12 pitches. He took 0-2 to 12 pitches and a home-run. That was amazing.

  2. If it were any other pitcher than Bumgarner struggling in Spring Training I'd be more worried.

    The Giants seem to taking hard looks at Parker and Williamson this year. They're playing more innings and earlier in games than in the past. So I will not be surprised if I see Parker or Williamson on the opening day roster. And that's with the caveat that I think Williamson is still a far better bet to go to AAA until injury-call-up or roster expansion. Right now, I think only Hernandez (CF being a premium defensive position) could keep one of them from that 5th OF position with Blanks being a dark-horse.

    Also, I liked Parker's hit last night. Parker, like Pence, has the speed to beat what would otherwise be close double-plays and create infield hits. So while it wasn't much of hit, it was the fact he had the wheels to keep it from being a double play that made it enjoyable.

    I'm really glad to see Panik hit last night. I won't say I was getting nervous that he was never going to hit again, I was just concerned about how long it'd take him to getting his hitting back-up after the back-injury and long lay-off.

    And, of course, Spring Training is trying to get all over-excited about a bunch of guys who, honestly, have little chance of making the club and worried about guys who I shouldn't worry about... But, still, it's fun and I enjoy it.

  3. Here's a question:

    Should the Giants trade Kontos to make room for Gearrin? This makes the most sense to me, as it also provides space for the G's to rotate upcoming relief prospects, if in fact Gearrin cannot keep it up in SF. Plus, Kontos probably has decent value.

    I don't like the idea of loosing high-upside relief pitchers to the waiver, just in order to keep mid-bullpen veterans with higher price tags and vanishing upside. Law, Okert, Black, Smith, Broadway are all ready to step into that rotating spot, but they all sputter if there's no slot to give the kids a chance.

    1. Except Gearrin hasn't exactly been all that and a bag of chips through his minor league development and his stints in the majors. So while his stint in Sacramento was nice, I'm not sure a sinker-ball pitcher hovering between 85 & 89 on the radar is worthy of displacing a guy who has played as well as Kontos. Plus, it's not like you're trying to harness the next Strickland, Black or Chapman as his fastball peaked at 92 so it's not like he's got over-powering stuff.

      Meanwhile, Kontos has been reasonably good 4 of the past 5 years.

  4. First, since three vets--Casilla, Romo, and Lopez--have contracts that expire at the end of this year, the Giants will very soon have bullpen flexibility to achieve the mix of vets and young arms that they think best. Second, if the Giants have so many able contenders to make their pen, the loss of one of them, on waivers or otherwise, becomes less important. Third, if one proposes that the Giants trade X, whom should they be aiming to get, realistically? The weaker the return for X, in terms of the organization's needs, the closer the loss of X becomes to simply surrendering him (or whoever is at the bottom of the depth chart) on waivers. What might Kontos bring that the Giants need, and who would add enough value to Gearrin, who would now be retained, that the Giants would be better off for the trade?

    1. Some good points. I'm always wishing for Prospect-for-Prospect trades, which might allow us to swap Mejia+Kontos+Slater for a high profile CF prospect or high upside SP arm.

      Other than that, yeah, wow, I've never had such a hard time contemplating where the Giants need help - either for this year OR next...