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Friday, April 14, 2017

MadBum still winless, SF finalizes Upton deal

If you didn't think you'd ever be saying that Matt Cain would be leading Madison Bumgarner in wins again, well you'd have been wrong. The Giants enigmatic fifth starter got in the win column with a strong outing Wednesday night, but the team fell to 0-3 when their ace takes the hill as Madison Bumgarner and the Giants lost the opener vs. Colorado on Thursday.

Madison Bumgarner has gotten some pretty bad luck, as the team just isn't scoring for him when he's out there. Thursday marked the big left-hander's third start of the season, and unfortunately he fell to 0-2 after surrendering 3 runs over 6 innings to the Rockies. He definitely didn't have his type-A stuff, but pitched well enough to win most nights, but the Giants just couldn't muster anything offensively. Granted, they were without two of their better hitters, as Buster Posey is still on the 7-day concussion DL and Brandon Crawford was out of the lineup dealing with a family tragedy. Without their 4-5 hitters the Giants just couldn't sustain any sort of rally and nobody really stepped up with that big hit the team really needed. Usually MadBum helps himself out in games like these, but even he had trouble against Jon Gray and the Rockies bullpen. It really is a shame too as the Giants were primed to keep their winning ways going after Matt Cain broke through with a victory on Wednesday night, a start that probably earned Cainer another few starts in the rotation.

Speaking of Cain, he looked about as good as you'll see him these days on Wednesday and that is significant. He's been around so long that we forget he's only 32 years old, although he's pitched more like a 39 year-old the last couple seasons. That's not young in baseball terms, but 32 is certainly not ancient, and still within a players "prime years" (age 27-32). Plus with someone like Cain's track record, you have to give him a shot because you never know if and when he'll re-discover himself. Hopefully Wednesday was the start of that process, but I'm hardly ready to determine Cain as "back" like many people were anxious to do after his most recent start. It was a nice showing, yes, but he still showed is inability to get deep into a ballgame and appears to have about a 5 or 6 innin limit right now before he really loses it. That's not necessarily a bad thing though for the Giants, especially from the fifth starter and someone who's limiting the damage like Cain did Wednesday. What really reminded me of vintage Cain though was not just his outing on the mound, but his big double at the plate as well. During his best years, he was much like MadBum in the sense he could hurt you on both sides, and we saw that for the first time in recent memory Wednesday.

Giants finalize Upton signing: Speaking of offense, I have to say, I'm pretty stoked about the Giants most recent signing. On Wednesday, the Giants finalized their low-risk, potentially rewarding minor league agreement with Melvin Upton and the outfielder has reported to extended spring training in Arizona. The timing really couldn't be better for the Giants, as they've struggled to get production out of their outfield as a whole to start the year, but especially left and center field, two areas where Upton can definitely help out. The plan for the 32 year-old outfielder is to have him get some reps at extended spring training, then report to AAA Sacramento, but it wouldn't surprise me if his stay in Sac is short lived. Heck, if he tears it up in extended spring and the Giants feel like he can offer and upgrade in left then they may just bring him directly up from Arizona sometime next week.

Upton is coming off a somewhat down year at the plate last season (.238/20/61/.693 with 27 steals) but he will bring in a few things this team is in desperate need of; power, speed and defense. He won't hit for an average much higher than .250, but he's still got some explosive power in that bat, can still steal a base when needed and can still play the outfield at a gold-glove caliber level. With the Giants' struggles in left field, and Denard Span battling some recurring hip issues here early on, it's easy to see why the Giants were interested in someone like Upton. They simply haven't gotten anything, production wise, out of left and center field thus far. Between Span, Parker and Marrero, I think they're hitting in the low-.200's with a grand total of 5 RBI and zero home runs. I would definitely like to see Upton given a shot at taking the left field job sooner than later, that's for sure.
The Giants Baseball Blog


  • At 12:13 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I see they got Melvin Upton but what aabout Michael Morse and Mac Williamson? Are they done for the season or are they coming back? I haven't heard anything about them since spring training. I like Uptons glove but I don't think he has much left with the bat. I guess we'll see.

  • At 1:23 AM, Anonymous Lunatic Fringe '17 said…

    Ugh, he lost again on THursday where the Giants culd have and should have won the most recent Madbum start for sure it was sad to watch them not support him against KC. I don't get this Giant team but there is a lot of season left. But I'm just worried they lsot all these games BUmgarner is starting I think that's just a bad sign. We need a outfielder to play left and one ot play cneter. Those positions have sucked, plain and simple.

    The Giants aren't that good I don't think. They need to make some trades because they just don't have the good enough lineup and outfield to compete. I just can't believe they're geting worked by teams like the Royals and ROckies and Pads and D-backs. Those aren't great teams. Maybe if it was the Nats, MEts and Cubs and Cards and Dodgers but the Giants haven't even seen those guys yet. Its just gonna get tougher as far as the games and schedule. I'm worried they're gonna finish april like 8-18 or something and be way behind the rest of the divison already.

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