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Friday, September 24, 2010

Giants' Offense Puts Them Back on Top

First off, sorry for the sporadic posting schedule over the last few weeks, I was a little under the weather for a few days and then left town early this week to attend a wedding. I'll be back in town on Monday, and will resume normal posting schedules. We'll also be posting something everyday during that final week of the regular season, so do stay tuned to see if the Giants will be playing October baseball for the first time since 2003.

That said, the seesaw battle for first place in the NL West is looking more and more like it's going to carry into the final weekend of the season, when the Giants square off with the Padres at AT&T Park. That series is just 7 days away, as MLB gets set to play it's last week of regular season baseball. It's officially "crunch time" or "do or die" time, or whatever you want to call it, for all clubs pushing for playoff spots, including your San Francisco Giants, and the Giants sure answered the bell on Thursday night in Chicago. The Giants took the rubber match of the 3-game series with the Cubbies, by pounding Cubs pitching and putting up 13 runs in support of Madison Bumgarner's 7 shutout innings. Bumgarner allowed just 7 baserunners, en route to striking out 9 Cub hitters as he just continues to grow out there on the mound. Over 8 of his last 9 starts, Bumgarner has allowed 2 or less runs and his overall season numbers are starting to look a little more appropriate compared to how he's thrown. His era now sits at 3.06 (2nd lowest in Giants' rotation) and it just looks like the kid has arrived and believes he belongs now when he's out there on the mound. I think at times during spring training and early in the year in Fresno, he was trying to do too much in order to make the team, now he's relaxed, adjusted and has begun to dealt. What makes it even more impressive is that he's doing it in the midst of a pennant race.

As I said though, Bumgarner got plenty of help on Thursday as well, contrary to how things went in the first two games of the series in Chicago. The only run the Giants scored in the first two games of this series came on a Buster Posey solo shot on Tuesday night that provided all the offense needed for Matt Cain and the Giants bullpen. Wednesday night, they were just shut down by Randy Wells, allowing him to look like a young Greg Maddux as he held the Giants scoreless through 7 2/3 and spoiled a nice outing from Jonathan Sanchez, Chris Ray and Santiago Casilla. Finally on Thursday though, the bats all showed up, as pounded out 19 hits and scored 13 runs against Ryan Dempster and Co. Everyone in the Giants starting lineup reached base, and everyone in the lineup besides Aubrey Huff crossed home plate. Juan Uribe had the biggest night of all, hitting 2 bombs while driving in 6 runs, giving him 22 homers and 84 RBI's on the year (both 2nd on team). Buster Posey and Cody Ross also left the yard, and Freddy Sanchez had another multi-hit game with 4 knocks. The leadoff hitter of the night was Mike Fontenot, as he got the start at third with Pablo Sandoval resting, and he collected 2-hits. That leadoff spot continues to be the one real question mark for the Giants over this last week as they've yet to find an everyday replacement since Andres Torres went down 2 weeks back. As I said in the last post here, the Giants' playoff hopes lye on their offense, as they know they're going to get enough pitching, and that leadoff spot as about as crucial to a lineup as any.
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3 Comments:

  • At 2:19 PM, Anonymous Giant Fan Dan said…

    It's great to see them explode like that. I just wish they could do that more consitantly.

    I really am hoping the Giants are planning on bringing back Aubrey Huff and Pat Burrell. Even Jose Guillen is starting to wear on me a bit.

     
  • At 1:35 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    If the Giants had torres, they'd be in first by 3 games. Book it.!

     
  • At 10:59 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    for the playoffs you think the boch would mix up the rotation because honestly i dont trust zito and his $126 million dollar arm. maybe goes like this 1. lince 2. the cain a lang 3. dirttyyy sanchez and 4. billy madison

     

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