Friday, April 7, 2017

Game Wrap 4/7/2017: Padres 7 Giants 6

Brandon Belt hit 2 home runs including a grand slam, but it wasn't enough to overcome more poor pitching as the Giants lost for the 4'th time in 5 games to start the 2017 season.  Key Lines:

Joe Panik 2B- 2 for 4, 2 2B.  BA= .412.  Thank goodness Bochy got Gorkys Hernandez out of the leadoff spot.  Panik filled in just fine.

Brandon Belt 1B- 2 for 4, 2 HR(3).  BA= .286.  Is this the year Brandon Belt finally breaks out?

Matt Cain RHP- 4.1 IP, 6 H, 4 R, 3 BB, 3 K's.  ERA= 8.31.  According to PitchFx, Cain's FB averaged 88 MPH, topping out at 90.6.  His changeup averaged 83 which is simply too small a separation to fool anybody.  If he can't get that FB average up to 90, he's going to continue to struggle.

Neil Ramirez RHP- 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K.  ERA= 7.71.  Ramirez seemed to pitch in a bit of bad luck in Arizona.  He recovered today.

George Kontos RHP- 0.2 IP, 2 H, 3 R, 3 BB, 0 K.  ERA= 10.13.  Kuip seemed to know what was coming when Kontos walked the first batter he faced in the 7'th inning.  Indeed, it went downhill from there.  The frustrating thing with the early season bullpen struggles is the inconsistency.  It's a different guy blowing up each day.  It's awfully difficult to replace the entire bullpen on the fly.

Derek Law RHP- 1.1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 1 K.  ERA= 3.86.  Law was blowing 96 MPH smoke by hitters and looking like he should be the setup man, at least today.


The Loss dropped the Giants record to 1-4 and into sole possession of last place in the NL West, 3 games behind the Rockies who topped the Dodgers 2-1.  The Dodgers are 3-2 and the Padres are 2-3.  the 3-1 D'Backs are leading the Indians in interleague play 7-3 in the 6'th inning.


Madison Bumgarner tries to ge the Giants back on the winning side of the ledger tomorrow against Jhoulys Chacin who got bombed by the Dodgers on Opening Day.


Matt Cain(Cont.):  There are pitchers who can be at least average MLB pitchers with FB's that average 88 MPH.  I am not sure Cainer is one of them.  If the FB was a great sinker, or if he had 1 or 2 great secondary pitches, maybe, but Cainer has always been a high FB pitcher.  Although he throws more two-seamers now, the sink is not tremendous and his secondary offerings have never progressed beyond pedestrian.  Cain has never had great command of the FB within the strike zone either.  He's always depended on velocity and movement rather than location.  As the velocity has declined, he has not been able to compensate with the improved command we sometimes see from veteran hurlers.


  1. I really wish they'd just move on from Cain. He's just a pathetic shell of what he was and he's not going to add anything that a younger arm with the possibility of development and upside can't add.

  2. I was looking very closely at Cain last night. His body language and facial expressions showed no sign of confidence from Cain.

    Richard in Winnipeg

  3. Agree with MosesZD - Cain cannot offer anything a younger arm can't, plus a younger player can develop. Cain's 89mph fastball is just too fat too often. After watching the game, I'm surprised there wasn't more damage done against him.

    Outside of Bumgarner and Cueto, I think we can assume that Starters #3-#5 will, with relative regularity, tax the bullpen. I think DrB is 100% correct - the real problem is that everyone in the bullpen has had a hiccup and we haven't (outside of Melancon) determined roles. This needs to get ironed out, and fast. If anything else, I think everyone, in retrospect, should realize and be grateful for guys like Affeldt, Lopez, and Romo. Despite their hiccups as they aged, we pretty much knew what to expect...

  4. Not totally ready to give up on Cain yet but I think there needs to be a different approach than trotting him out there every 5th day. Put him in the pen to work on his secondary pitches in mop up situations or see if he will take an assignment in the minors to figure it out. In some ways he has better stuff to turn it around then Zito or Timmy had, he just has to refine his approach.

    Billy Baseball

  5. Moore and Samardjiza should go deeper innings, especially back at home - no confidence in Cain, it's painful to watch. Would rather see more of Blach and/or Beede and keep Okert as LOOGY in the pen. Cain goes away and sits...on a bench in Sacramento or Richmond? Mentor some younger RHPs down on the farm and Giants get some lasting value from his contract..

  6. What do you think of the Giants picking up BJ Upton?

    1. It's a minor league deal and they are very thin in CF, so good deal. I think Upton is more likely able to help the Giants than Drew Stubbs.

  7. Upton deal makes a lot of sense under the current circumstances. Their outfield in general, with perhaps the exception of Pence, is somewhat of a question mark so adding Upton to a low cost deal for security was a no brainer IMO.