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Showing posts from April, 2011

Sandoval Shelved for 2 Months

Just when the "Panda" re-gained his stroke and was one of the hotter hitters in the league, the 24 year-old went down Saturday with a broken wrist that is expected to cost him up to 8 weeks. There's even a chance he may not be back until August. All we can do right now is hope for Sandoval cause he was the catalyst to this Giants offense this April. Unfortunately, I'm also still battling a bad injury to my right wrist, and won't be able to do a post today. Just wanted to give my thoughts on Sandoval who will be sorely missed both in the lineup and in the clubhouse. It really stinks too cause Pablo was off to a career start hitting .313 with 5 HR and 13 RBI hitting back in the middle of the Giants order. I'll also tell you what a good thing the Giants have a guy like Mark DeRosa now, otherwise they'd be in a mess over there. It would probably have meant Tejada at 3rd and Fontenot at short, hardly a defensive left-side you want if your Bochy . Instead, I&

Changes Could Be in Store for Giants

As the Giants get set to take on the Pirates in game 2 of their 3-game set, rumors are starting to spark around the clubhouse of some possible player movement. It's only April, but the team is simply under-performing and the front office apparently isn't happy with what it seeing. Sitting at 11-11 and on the heels of getting swept at home over the weekend by the Braves, it's really got the front office moving to figure out ways to improve the team in the near term. A few reports are suggesting what I did in the last post, and that is that Madison Bumgarner could be on a short l eash. The 21 year-old goes Wednesday night in Pittsburgh in a match-up that heavily favors him, so he's got all the odds on his side. He enters the game at 0-3 with a 7.79 era and not a single "quality start" on the 2011 campaign yet. His release point isn't staying consistent, and he's not brushing off bad starts like he should, and those are things that get young pitchers sent

Braves Get Revenge for NLDS Loss

Well, somewhere in a nice Georgia suburb, Bobby Cox had to have been smiling after seeing the team he built finally get over on the team that sent him into retirement last fall. The Braves took care of the Giants in a way that reminded me of 1996 all over again. Braves pitching was on point, as Tim Hudson and Tommy Hanson put on clinics vs. Giants hitters and kept the normally thunderous AT&T Park pretty quiet all weekend. First, Hanson made Cody Ross' return to AT&T Park miserable, handing the right fielder an 0-3 with 2 punch-outs. The Giants only mustered up 3 hits in the 7 innings Hanson threw and you could tell early on when Madison Bumgarner started losing his cool, it was going to be a long night. That start by MadBum has to re-spark talks of possibly sending him down to Frenso to work on finding a consistent release point, which has bothered him since Spring Training. However, the Giants are already short a starter with Zito shelved and aren't exactly loaded w

Short Post Saturday in Giants Loss

Short Post: One Handed- GBB Writer Trevor Cole has suffered a (hopefully) short-term injury to his right hand and cannot function properly with it. For that reason, I'll keep it simple and stick to the banter on the first two losses in the Atlanta series. The Giants had a great time on the road, and have now returned for a short weekend series with the Braves, and they've all the sudden hit a wall. Everyone was expecting the team, myself included to take off once Cody Ross returned and guys got back into their 2010 rhythm. But through 2 games, that hasn't been the case. The Giants offense was shut down by Braves' youngster Tommy Hanson, who out-dueled fellow youngster Madison Bumgarner in the win. Hanson held the Giants to just 3 hits and a run in 8 strong before relinquishing duties to right-handed, flame throwing Billy Wagner -clone, Craig Kimbrel. What was more concerning for Giants fans was the outing had by stud lefty Madison Bumgarner. The guy who had a 2.18 pos

Giants Now 3 Games Back of Rockies

Although the Rockies were able to salvage the series and win game 3 on Wednesday, the Giants won their 4th consecutive series, and are now just 3 games back of first place Colorado. If you've been watching Matt Cain throw all year, then Wednesday's start had to take you by surprise a little bit. It was Cain's roughest start of the '11 season and really his only bad start he's had since the 2011 season started. Cain gave up 6 runs over 4.2 innings, allowing 9 hits and 2 walks along with 6 strikeouts, and the Giants bullpen didn't fair much better. After Tim Lincecum and Jonathan Sanchez were so brilliant on Monday and Tuesday night, the bullpen probably grew a tad restless, cause they looked mighty rusty in Wednesday's game, especially Dan Runzler. Still though, after the Giants first two games, it's tough to get really upset about Wednesday's performance. Prior to the game, they also made a few roster moves, which I think a lot of fans saw coming, se

Giants Miss Sweep, Take 2 of 3 in AZ

The Giants have officially found their rhythm, and they still have reinforcements on the way. Although they were unable to complete the sweep of the Diamondbacks Sunday, they still took 2 of 3 from Arizona, and now head to Colorado to face the 1st place Rockies. Like I suspected, the Giants have been a completely different team since getting their rings and all of the early season festivities out of the way. The weekend didn't end exactly the way they wanted it to, but they're getting better and better as the season wears on, and still are without their best offensive player from last years postseason in Cody Ross. The right fielder was scheduled to stay behind in Arizona a few extra days after the Giants take off tonight, as he'll continue to get reps in extended spring training before heading to Fresno for a quick rehab assignment. Andres Torres, the center fielder and leadoff hitter who was hurt in the first homestand, is also progressing well from his ankle strain, and

Giants Take 2 of 3 From LA, Head to AZ

The Giants responded nicely vs. the Dodgers after their first series this season down in Los Angeles yielded just 1 win in 4 games. We all anticipated things would get better for the Giants after they came home and capped off their World Series ceremony, and it sure looked that way with the performances they put up against the Cardinals and Dodgers over the last week. The Giants had a very solid, 4-2 homestand after a rough 2-4 road trip to begin the year, and now sit at .500 for the first time since opening day, at 6-6. They've been getting solid pitching all year long, but closer Brian Wilson was a little late to get going. However, all concerns people had for the bearded closer have been swept under the rug after his last two outings vs. the Dodgers, both perfect outings in 1-run save situations. I made mention the last time we talked about Wilson, that his rustiness to start the year should be expected, since he missed so much of spring training, so I'm not really surprised

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. Afte

Giants Go 12 to Win Home Opener

It was a seasaw battle between the Giants and the Cardinals Friday at AT&T Park. It was the Giants first home game since winning the World Series last November, and in the end, they were celebrating on the field again. In a game that had a very similar feel to a 2010 Playoff game, the Giants beat the Cardinals after relinquishing a 9th inning lead behind closer Brian Wilson. It was just Wilson's 2nd appearance on the season and since mid-March, and I think it's fair to say he's still a little rusty, but the Giants picked him up in a big way. Pablo Sandoval continues to be one of the hottest hitters in baseball, and tied the ga me in the bottom of the 9th with 2-outs on a single to right. Then Aaron Rowand came up big with the bases loaded in the 13th and sent everyone home with a deep drive off the wall in left-center field. Rowand and Sandoval have both been men on a mission since opening day, driven to eliminate fan's doubts after each had rough 2010 seasons, and

Giants Head Home After Split in SD

They rebounded nicely Wednesday after a rough one Tuesday, as their ace and stopper, Tim Lincecum, absolutely dominated the Padres offense. And now they're coming come for the ring ceremony and to hopefully really right their ship. I just couldn't bear another "beating a dead horse" post after yesterday's game, so I was really hoping they'd do better today so I'd have something positive to say in today's post, and boy did they ever. The Giants survived a 9th inning scare from the Pads to hold on to win 8-4, behind the arm of their ace. Lincecum went 7 strong, allowing just a run on 3 hits, 13 strikeouts and no walks. Timmy has now gone 14 innings this year with just 1 earned run allowed, 16 strikeouts and 3 walks (notice the 0 BB's in Wednesday's start). He clearly had it from the start Wednesday, but it didn't hurt that the offense put up runs early and often for him. They got things started right off the bat in the first with a Buster Pos

Defense Costs Giants in LA

The Giants defense was their one question mark coming into the season, and it really reared up and bit them in the backside on Sunday, costing them a split of the Dodgers series that they had under control. It was a Sunday Night, nationally televised game, so I'm sure most Giants fans at least caught some portion of the contest, so I don't want to sit here and nit-pick all the little things that happened. It basically came down to the fact that the Giants couldn't catch he darn ball when it counted. I knew Aubrey Huff wasn't an ideal fit in the outfield, but I didn't know he was this bad. He butchered two pl ays that accounted for 5 of the Dodgers runs, yet the Giants pitchers get charged with earned runs. What was a pretty nice start out of Barry Zito, after a rocky first inning, was ruined on two plays that weren't routine can's of corn, but plays Cody Ross makes, and 95% of big league outfielders make. He allowed just a couple of base runners and 5 strike

Giants Get Back on Track Saturday

They followed up the opener with another ugly loss Friday night, but the Giants are finally got themselves on track Saturday, behind a strong outing from Matt Cain and an offensive explosion. They're still in the middle of play as I write this, but with a 9-0 lead in the 9th, It'd be a a tough one to blow. The Giants bats finally got going Saturday afternoon, and it started with Mark DeRosa's single to center field in the 5th. I couldn't stress enough how important DeRosa would be this season if healthy, and he showed why. Miguel Tejada came up later in the inning with a professional at-bat, driving in DeRosa with an RBI ground-out to put the Giants on the board. Tejada is such a key component to this team, it's so crucial to get him going especially. The Giants have no other options at short, so if he tanks, they're stuck with Fontenot and he was right in the middle of that rally too, with the hit that drove in Rowand. That was followed by one of Freddy Sanchez

Giants' Bats Dissapear in Opener

You have to tip your cap to Clayton Kershaw, cause he did pitch one helluva ballgame, but the product the Giants put out on the field Thursday was not the one I expected and hardly resembled a World Championship team. First off, Lincecum was a little off and wild early on, but settled in nicely and pitched fine, plenty good enough to win. It's tough to take the L when you pitch 7 strong innings and not allow an earned run, and that's what Timmy did. But he did walk 3 batters, which didn't help matters, and surprisingly, it was the defense and young Buster Posey that let him down. If Posey doesn't throw that ball into left field in his attempt to catch Matt Kemp sleeping at third, but it wasn't necessary and Pablo Sandoval couldn't come up with the short-hop. Again, Posey is still a young player, but he needs to know who's on the mound, who's at the plate and what the situation is. But back to Tim, how did Kemp get on in the first place? A walk, which I&#