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Sunday, September 16, 2012

Vogelsong Losing Grip on Postseason Spot

The Giants had to be pleased with the way their road trip was going heading into Sunday's finale in Arizona. However, Ryan Voglsong was the one guy who couldn't get going this week and it cost the team two games.

After a really exceptional game on Saturday night, the Giants couldn't carry it over to Sunday's get away game vs. the D-Backs. Ryan Vogelsong's struggles carried into a 7th consecutive start, as the right-hander managed to strike out 5 of the first 6 outs he recorded, but his pitch count again hiked up over 60 by the third inning and finished up at 88 in 3.1 innings. Again, the 33 year-old again hit a wall right around the 50-60 pitch plateau and it's been the same thing that's been haunting him in his recent starts. He looks crisp to start games, with his fastball in the low-90's with movement, but after he gets into his stretch, it's a whole other story. His ERA is now up over 10 in his last 7 starts, and it this point, with only a couple starts left in the regular season, the Giants may be asking themselves if he's worthy of a postseason roster spot. I never thought I'd be saying it, but with the way Zito has thrown in September, and the way he's come through in big games for San Francisco this year, he may have the upper hand at being that 4th starter should the Giants reach postseason. I mean, just look at the last two games, were we saw Zito shut down the D-Backs and out-duel Wade Miley, compared to the way Vogey struggled vs. the very same lineup the following day. These last few starts will be telling, but I don't think you can ask Vogelsong to take the ball in a playoff game with the way things have been going for him.

Despite not being able to get Vogey back on track, the Giants will certainly take the 4-2 roadie. They didn't get Xavier Nady back in time for the Arizona series, but it didn't really matter, as the offense just continues to step up in big situations. They got one real big swing off the bat of Hunter Pence in the opener Friday night, a grand slam that was part of a 2-3 effort from the Giants new right fielder. I know he hasn't hit for quite the average we were hoping for after the trade, but there hasn't been a better Giant at getting runners in from scoring position than Pence since he dawned the Orange and Black. In Saturday's game, it was Buster Posey who came up with the big two-run jack to put the Giants ahead, and we all know what happened after that. Game two ended up being one of the better games I've watched in a while, as both Zito and Miley where on their games and pitching beautifully, and it took a near perfect effort in all areas by the Giants to pull that one out. They got the big hit from Posey, the excellent start out of Zito and some terrific defense down the the final out. No, they weren't able to get Vogelsong back on track this trip, but just about everything else went the Giants' way.

Now, with their lead in the West at 7.5 games, the Giants embark on their final home stand of the regular season, and I know San Francisco fans are hoping they can celebrate a division win at AT&T Park. They'll have a pretty good shot at doing it too, as they get the Rockies for four, the Padres for three then the D-Backs again for three. Despite their loss, the 'magic number' in the West fell another game Sunday, thanks to St. Louis beating LA, so if LA keeps tumbling and the Giants keep surging, they could have this thing locked up by next weekend.
The Giants Baseball Blog


  • At 11:38 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Vogelsong needs to be kept out until June next season cause this has happened 2 seasons in a row now when he slows down during the last month.

  • At 9:51 PM, Blogger Isaiah Abramson said…

    Obviously they need to keep putting him out there, at least until the end of the regular season, because of their 7.5 game lead in the NL West.

    I think like I heard Mike Krukow say, the large number of innings he had at the beginning of the season could have hurt him.

    I think Vogelsong can turn it around before the postseason because he has shown before that he is capable of bouncing back (when he struggled in MLB and went to Japan and then came back).

    Even through this, I feel responsible for his struggles because his poor run recently started the start after I published this article http://www.ikasports.com/2012/08/ryan-vogelsong-most-underrated-pitcher.html.

    The Giants really need Vogelsong because you never know what you will get from Lincecum or Zito.


  • At 11:45 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I think Vogey is just having some bad luck. His fastball is still solid and his breaking ball is good. Just a few rough breaks.

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