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Monday, April 11, 2011

Giants vs. Dodgers: Round 2

Just like everyone expected, the Giants came home and finally begun looking like the team that won the 2010 World Series. They took 2 of 3 from the Cardinals, winning both games in comeback fashion in the 9th inning or later, and now get their shot at LA again after losing 2 of 3 in Pasadena to start the season.

I think the Giants made it clear both Friday and Saturday, that they are simply a different team at home, a much more confident bunch. After the banner ceremony on Friday, they lost a late lead behind closer Brian Wilson, but stayed strong and won in the 12th. They had the same type game Saturday as once again, they failed to give Matt Cain proper run support and were down to their final strike before mounting a 2-out rally, capped by Miguel Tejada's deep drive to the left-center gap. Both times, the Cardinals had their closer, and a guy who's quietly been one of the most successful closers in the NL over the last 2 seasons, on the mound, and the Giants got to him. After the first two games, I think everyone was just waiting for the team to mount their comeback in the 9th inning of Sunday's ballgame, but the Cards held on and won 6-1. It was a game in which Bruce Bochy rested Buster Posey, Pat Burrell and Miguel Tejada, so the Giants certainly didn't have their A-team out there, but anytime you take 2 of 3 from a team like St. Louis, you have to consider it a successful series. Not too mention all the festivities that came this weekend; the flag raising, the ring ceremony and the Buster Posey ROY celebration, it was a weekend I will not soon forget. Time to bring on the Dodgers!

The only scare of the weekend for the Giants came when Andres Torres strained his achilles heel while going for a low line drive on Saturday night. Luckily for the Giants, Torres won't need to go on the DL, but likely won't be available for use in any capacity for the upcoming 3 vs. LA. Aaron Rowand has gotten off to a very nice start to this 2011 season, so I don't think anyone will mind that he'll be out in center for the next couple of games, he certainly has earned it. I'm just curious to see who Boch decides to put in the leadoff spot over these next few games? I don't think he wants to mix everybody up and move the whole lineup around, plus Rowand has a .389 average, so it wouldn't surprise me to see Boch keep the center fielder in the leadoff spot. I guess I'm also kind of curious to see how Brandon Belt is used from here on out. It's no secret he's struggling to get much going at the plate, as evident of his .163 batting average, but Belt hasn't looked bad, by any stretch. He's had some very nice at-bats, and hit a few had balls that found gloves, and is a few breaks away from hitting .300. He's also played exceptional defense and is by far the best defensive 1st basemen on the roster. Cody Ross hasn't even begun his rehab work yet, so he's probably not going to be back before late-April, but I'm just not sure the Giants will keep trotting Belt out there if his average doesn't come up. It wouldn't surprise me to see more of Huff at first base and Nate Schierholtz out in RF vs. tough right-handers.
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3 Comments:

  • At 10:52 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

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  • At 4:34 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I don't like the idea of using Belt in right field, why would they want to completey disrupt the defense like that?

     
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