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Thursday, October 04, 2007

Evaluating '07

The negatives certainly outweighed positives for the Giants in 2007 as they finished in last place in the NL West for the first time since 1996. Here is an evaluation of the San Francisco Giants' 2007 season.

Starting Pitching
: Matt Morris carried the staff early, then Noah Lowry and Tim Lincecum emerged and ended up having very good years. Lincecum, Lowry and Matt Cain give Giants fans reason to be optimistic about the future. Cain pitched well enough to win 15+ games if he had gotten proper run support and relief help. The team also got a very good contribution out of Kevin Corriea as a starter and he could be in line for the 5th spot next year. The only negative this season was Barry Zito. He pitched a lot better towards the end of the season, but the 126 million dollar man was struggling so bad at one point that Bruce Bochy used him in relief a few times to give him extra work. Regardless, the Giants starting pitching is the best thing they have going for them and will be even better next season.
Grade B+

Offense: The Giants were inconsistent with the bats from start to finish this season. I knew this wasn't going to be an offensive powerhouse, but I did expect better than this. They had one streak in May when they were scoring regularly, but other than that, I can't remember a more stagnant Giants offense than what I saw this season. Dave Roberts did not provide the leadoff spark that the Giants where hoping they'd get when they signed him last winter. Ray Durham and Rich Aurilia were counted on being major contributors to this offense after what they did in 2006 but both of them struggled badly after getting multi-year contracts. The only hitters that held their weight were Barry Bonds, the team mvp Bengie Molina, and to a certain extent, Randy Winn. Dan Ortmeier and Nate Schierholtz provided some spark in September, but the Giants offense is going to be a work in progress and is likely going to take a few years to build back up.
Grade: D

Bullpen: The bullpen was once again a mess for most of the first 4 months of the season and they were the main reason for the teams struggles this season. Brian Sabean paid no attention to it in the offseason and it really came back to hurt him during the season. Things got a little better when Brad Hennessey took over as the closer, but not much. I hope I never have to watch Vinny Chulk pitch another game with the Giants and my patience is wearing thin with Jack Tacshener. As a matter of fact, there are only 3 people from this years' bullpen who I want to see on the team next year and they are Brad Hennessey, Brian Wilson and Tyler Walker. Wilson looks like he could be the closer that the organization was hoping he'd be, but the pen still needs depth and experience.
Grade: D

Defense: The defense was solid this season. Pedro Feliz and Omar Vizquel made up one of the better left-sided infields in the national league. Vizquel played well enough to win another gold glove. Rajai Davis also made some impressive plays after being brought over from Pittsburgh and he proved to be the Giants best defensive outfielder. Barry Bonds' range wasn't great in left field, but he played a lot better out there than I thought he would. The only guy who scared me defensively with this team was Dave Roberts. He makes the most routine plays look tough and it seems like he has trouble judging fly balls, especially during afternoon games. Roberts is best suited for left field and may move there next year with Bonds out of the picture.
Grade: B

Coaching/Management: Although he didn't have much to work with, I didn't agree with some of Bruce Bochy's decisions early on in the season and wasn't too impressed by him overall. The fact that he didn't have much to work with is Brian Sabean's fault. He was the one who decided to fill the lineup out with average-below average offensive players like Pedro Feliz and Rich Aurilia. He also set Bochy up with a very unreliable bullpen. I've never been too impressed with Dave Righetti and I don't think he challenges his pitchers to be aggressive enough in the zone. Matt Cain especially. The team underachieved, but the management did not do a great job in putting them in a position to succeed.
Grade: F
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3 Comments:

  • At 6:45 PM, Anonymous Kelsdad said…

    The Giants have already improved themselves for 2008...they told Barry to go fuck himself.

     
  • At 8:53 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    The Giants shouldn't sign anyone and dedicate next year to playing all the youngsters. They are going to be bad for a few years anyway, why not try and grow some talent.

     
  • At 1:55 PM, Anonymous J-Bill said…

    I'm excited about the whole pitching staff for next year. I think the bullpen is getting better and like you said, the sp is going to be even better. hopefully they keep the staff intact.

     

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