Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Game Wrap 7/24/2017: Pirates 10 Giants 3

A key throwing fielding error by Eduardo Nunez led to a 4-run second inning by the Pirates and the Giants offense was never able to catch up despite getting 15 batters on base.  Key Lines:

Denard Span CF- 0 for 2, 3 BB.  BA= .282.  Span's career BB% is 8.5.  It's 6.5 this year.

Eduardo Nunez 3B- 2 for 5.  BA= .307.  The BA keeps climbing, but the other parts of Nunez' game remain shaky at best.  He could not get a handle on a 2-out groundball that should have ended the second inning.  A couple of batters later, Andrew McCutchen took Matt Cain deep to cap a 4-run inning with a 3-run dinger.

Buster Posey C- 2 for 5.  BA= .321.  Posey's great season continues.

Brandon Crawford SS- 2 for 4.  BA= .232.  Arbitrary Starting Point:  Crawford is hitting .292 since July 7.

Matt Cain RHP- 4 IP, 6 H, 6 R, 2 ER, 1 BB, 1 K, GO/AO= 9/0.  ERA= 5.45.  Cainer probably deserved better than giving up 6 runs and probably not as much credit as 2 ER would indicate.  In addition to Nunez' error, Manager Bruce Bochy got the thumb for arguing that the ump was squeezing Cain.  Kruk and Kuip seemed to agree.

Albert Suarez RHP- 2 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 3 K's.  ERA= 0.00.  2 more strong innings from Suarez who has spared an exhausted bullpen.

Josh Osich LHP- 0.2 IP, 5 H, 4 R, 0 BB, 0 K.  ERA= 4.83.  Just when you think Osich is getting on a roll, he lets out a stinker like this.

Kyle Crick RHP- 1.1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 2 K's.  ERA= 2.03.  Crick seems to be establishing himself as a guy who can reliably go more than 1 inning out of the bullpen.  Those guys are becoming user-valuable in today's game.


Madison Bumgarner tries to get the Giants back in the Win column tonight facing Jameson Taillon.


The Padres shipped their bullpen off to the Royals.  Mighty neighborly of them to wait until after the Giants series....not.  Gotta say, the return the Padres received seems a bit light to me.


  1. Another game lost due to stranding runners on base and pitching woes. This season is borderline Greek tragedy. Stars getting hurt and having bad seasons ( Almost everyone but Posey.), rookies getting hurt (Slater), and prospects getting hurt/suspended/regressing. The MLB has just updated the top 100 prospects and the Giants top 30. Their are some head scratchers in it, especially in the Giants top 30. But the biggest is ranking the Dodgers 1st round pick Jeren Kendall at #86 in the top 100 and not ranking Heliot Ramos at all.

  2. Seems like any of the three guys the pads traded should have brought back that return.

  3. What Núñez giveth, Núñez taketh away.
    He can make a spectacular play, he can hit over .300, and he can still hinder the Giants winning a game with mental and physical errors!
    OTOH, 3-12 with RISP may be good for the Giants this year, but it's likely to win less than 40 games out of 100.
    Buster is the best Giant, and he might reach 4.9 WAR for the year, but under 5.0 will only be his 5th best year, and he'll continue to suffer with no one behind him for protection. When he has an opportunity to drive home runs, he usually gets nothing to hit (and may press in those situations) because the next guy is hitting .250 or less. It is enlightening to look at his splits situationally: his results this year (bases empty, runners on, RISP) are the opposite of 2012, when he had Melky ahead of him and Sandoval plus a hitting Pagan behind him.
    If the Giants don't address that they will continue to fail -- and a basher would be nice but a good contact hitter would go a long way.
    Could it be a healthy and fit Sandoval?

  4. ONce again, I'm so perfectly happy to have to eat crow when it comes to Crick. The way he was constantly regressing in AA I really thought he had no chance and Giants were foolish to keep him. And while he may never become the starter we'd hoped for, he's been doing really well in the bullpen and that's better than most prospects ever do.

  5. On May 2, Rotograph's Ben Kaspick, in an article "Another Reason to Avoid Giants Hitters," noted that the Giants were hitting ground balls more, while the rest of the league was hitting them less, and that grounders produced a lower wRC+ than fly balls. Since 2014 the Giants had a wRC+ of 45 on grounders and 119 on fly balls despite the capacious outfield at AT&T, where flies are more likely to be catchable. In 2017, till Kaspick's article, the league's ten top groundball percentage batters had a median wRC+ of 79, with none over 100, while the guys with the lowest groundball percentage had a median wRC+ of 119, with six over 100.

    At the time of this article, early in the year, Giants with power, such as Posey, Pence, and Belt, were increasing their gb percentage. Kaspick speculates that the Giants teach their hitters to hit that way because their home park is so large, but shows, he thinks, that they shouldn't. This grounder/fly stat, if what was true early in the year has remained true, suggests why the Giants have declined: their penchant for grounders has held back their ability to score while their ragged outfield defense has had more work to do with the larger number of flies from their opponents, and has let more runs score. If the rest of the league has been teaching its players to hit the ball in the air, and that has historically been more productive, then presumably the Giants can do that. Their needs in the outfield, we already knew about.

    I assume that hitting the ball in the air is something that players with little power can learn to do by changing the swing angle, a technique that we know is now in vogue because it has led to more homers. But apparently, from Kaspick's data, it leads to more run creation generally.