Sunday, May 21, 2017

Game Wrap 5/20/2017: Giants 3 Cardinals 1

The Giants and Cardinals matched goose eggs for 12 innings.  Then Christian Arroyo broke it up with a bases loaded, 2-run double in the 13'th to propel the Giants to an epic extra-inning win.  Key Lines:

Eduardo Nunez LF- 2 for 5.  BA= .272.  Nunez was the only Giant with 2 hits in the game.  He also made an adventurous play in LF when he misplayed a Matt Carpenter drive off the wall, then hustled to chase it down as it rolled back toward the IF and threw out Carp trying to stretch it into a triple.  Whatever else you think about Nunez, the guy hustles and plays like he's having fun out there.

Christian Arroyo 3B- 1 for 5, 2B.  BA= .221.  Arroyo has his challenges at the plate, but he already seems to be showing a knack for getting the big hit.

Jeff Samardzija RHP- 8 IP, 5 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 8 K's.  ERA= 4.57.  Shark has given up 19 ER in 3 Disaster Starts, and 12 ER in 43.1 IP in 6 other starts for a 2.48 ERA.

Derek Law RHP- 1.2 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 K's.  ERA= 2.53.  Osich faced 2 batters and got 1 out.  Law came in and shut things down for the next 5 batters.

Hunter Strickland RHP- 2 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 3 K's. ERA= 1.10.  2 huge innings for Strickland who is quietly having a great season.

Mark Melancon RHP- 1 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 0 BB, 0 K, Save(8).  ERA= 2.84.  Well, it's not exactly how you would draw it up, but hey!  He had a 3 run lead to work with!


The Win helped the Giants gain a game on the NL West leading Rockies. They now trail the leaders by 8 games.  They are 6 games behind the Dodgers for the 2'nd Wild Card playoff spot.


Matt Cain goes for the sweeeeep agains another veteran RHP, Adam Wainwright.


  1. What a game. Outstanding pitching from both sides to make this one a nail biter. Almost had a playoff feel to it. Sharks had great movement and control on his pitches. How can someone who pitches this good pitch so bad for a stretch of games? Strickland is definitely not the same pitcher anymore. His fastballs are not as flat and have more life to then. Got to give props to Nunez for the hustle to get Carpenter out at 3B, but he was like 5 feet to the right of the ball when they both hit the wall. Arroyo = Clutch!

    1. These two teams have been going after each other for how long? I guess you could go all the way back to Jeffrey Leonard and "one flap down", but definitely since the beginning of this decade.

    2. Don't forget the Will Clark/Ozzie Smith fight where Candy Maldonado laid Smith out. I wouldn't be surprised to see Mike Matheny have one of his pitcher bean a Giant hitter today, because of Shark accidentally hitting Piscotty last night. That seems to be the Cardinal way.

    3. This is after Sunday's thrashing by StL, but you gotta like BB's managing of the pitching: all 8 BP guys had some work, all but Osich and Gearrin had some success. Peaked for the Cubs, Blach, Cueto, Moore, and Shark, a ready BP, and a rested Posey.
      It could be worse.
      Matt Cain gets Atlanta at home next Friday, he must shake this off with an acceptable performance.
      The OF remains a ship wreck: it's time to thank Mike Morse for being a fun guy and bring up Slater or Heathcott.
      And Williamson should not be sent down to make room for Gillaspie or Hill. Giants don't need no more stinking infielders! Bat .300+ in the minors for 5 games then come knocking.
      Or for Pence --bon voyage Ruggiano! Or Gorkys, but not the future.
      AND, don't mess with Arroyo!

  2. Nunez was lucky it was the Cards who have a huge number of unforced errors on the basepaths this year. This is what Bernie Miklasz (ESPN 101 and formerly for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch), who is a pretty reasonable and even-handed guy, wrote in the middle of this week:

    "3. Is it Possible For the Cardinals To Be Smartly Aggressive on the Bases Without Being Stupidly Aggressive On the Bases?

    Overall, the team’s base-running has improved from last season, ranking 10th in the majors with a +1.8 Base Running Runs according to the metrics at Baseball Prospectus. That’s positive, but I can’t help but think how much capable the STL offense would be if the runners stopped giving away so many outs with foolish decisions or avoidable carelessness. Going into the weekend the Cardinals have lost 35 runners through unforced errors on the base paths this season — the most in the majors. Please cut down on the mental base-running errors. That’s all we’re asking."

    So, thanks to the Cards we dodged a bullet. But Nunez is a serious defensive liability out there and sports an abysmal .767 RZR. (Career .797 so it's not like we should be expecting growth at this point.) Even Pagan, as he was collapsing into a range-limited defensive-liability, sported an .889 (2015) and .881 (2016) RZR for the Giants. And he was, rightly, considered a poor, range-limited fielder as he racked up a -6 DRS in LF. Nunez is already third of the way there (-2 DRS) and it's still May.

    Anyway, I'm not a fan of Nunez in the OF. He just doesn't have a feel for it. Actually, I'm not a fan of Nunez at any position. He's #34 in fielding (FanGraphs) of all 3B with 1,000+ innings since 2014. His B3 range is terrible. Even CAsey McGehee was a better defender (with a larger range) during that time period. And he's certainly no Matt Duffy who is one of best fielding 3B in MLB (#1 UZR/150!, #7 in range).

    Anyway... I'm getting ranty... So I think I'll just try to enjoy the win as a hard-fought pitchers duel and try to put Nunez out of my mind...

  3. Good game last night. That was a great 12 pitch AB by Arroyo to come with the game winning hit! That had to make Bochy proud. I tend to cut Nunez some slack because OF is not his regular position. The Giants need to find a Left fielder, hope Mac ends up being that guy. It's great to see Law develop that quick pitch to the plate thanks to Cuetos influence.Being from Hawaii, it's nice to see former UH products Greg Garcia and Kolton Wong contributing with the Cardinals. Go Giants, let's get a sweep!


  4. Since the come-from-behind turnaround win in New York, the Giants have gone 8-2.
    Playing 9 of those 10 games, Nunez is 13-38, .342, scoring 6 runs and driving in 8.
    In the last 6 games, the Giants are 5-1. Nunez is hitting .417, 6 runs, 8 RBIs.
    His misadventures in left field have overshadowed a few good plays that he has made.

    1. I agree. Let's everyone cut Nunez some slack. His base running, timely hitting and flexibility out weighs his gaffes in my books.

      Richard in Winnipeg

  5. N till this year has played fewer than 150 innings total of LF in MLB, so citing stats as though they were meaningful is misleading. One has a small sample from a relative novice. Further, he improved markedly as a 3Bman once he came to the Giants last year, lifting his defensive fWAR from a negative to positive 2.3 in the half season with us, despite his having to adjust to new conditions. This year he has been less good at 3B, as his attention has been divided, but the statistical maneuver of citing career averages is misleading, since it ignores patterns of development and (with the Giants) expert training. Given that N improved as a Giant at 3B last year, and given that we have too little evidence about his potential in LF, where he's still learning the position, it's way too early to assert that he's not going to become a highly competent left fielder.