Skip to main content


Showing posts from July, 2011

Giants Make Another Move, Add Cabrera

Well, I can't say I completely love this deal like I did the Beltran trade, but the Giants felt they needed to add one more hitter before Sunday's 1 PM trade deadline and Sabean apparently felt Orlando Cabrera was the best, most attainable option. Now, don't get me wrong, Cabrera is an upgrade over what the Giants are currently trotting out to shortstop each night, but only slightly, and I think they could have packaged Neal up to get someone of more value. Thomas Neal (pictured) isn't an A-prospect, but he's no slouch, and with Cody Ross, Pat Burrell and Carlos Beltran all coming off the books next year, the Giants could have used the extra insurance in the outfield. While the Beltran deal does get an A in my book, this one is more like an average C, C+ move. Cabrera's numbers are pretty identical to those of Miguel Tejada's, and his defense isn't as good as Brandon Crawford's. He's hitting a modest .244 with 4 homers and 38 RBI and was slowly l

Lincecum Strong, Giants Beat Philly Again

Well, their prized new acquisition went 0-4 with a couple of K's, but the Giants got a gutsy return performance from ace Tim Lincecum to complete their series victory over the Phillies, once again frustrating Philly fans and getting into the head manager Charlie Manuel. Although Lincecum was probably still feeling many effects from the flu that's had him down all week, he rose to the occasion Thursday night, throwing 6 shutout innings allowing just 3 hits while striking out 6. After his team was again shut down by Giants' pitching, Phillies manager Charlie Manuel called the Giants pitchers "good pitchers, not great pitchers", which to me is a comment out of pure frustration. I don't want to jump on Manuel and beat this to death cause I really don't care what he thinks about a team who all the sudden has his number, I'd rather talk about what good baseball the Giants have been playing. Especially on the pitching side of things. Pablo Sandoval and Nate S

Carlos Beltran Coming to Town

It was a deal that's been in the making for the better part of the month, and it appears to have finally come to fruition Wednesday. The Giants will send top pitching prospect Zach Wheeler to New York for outfielder Carlos Beltran, the top bat on the trade market, in a deal expected to be announced Thursday. I've been discussing Beltran here a lot in recent weeks, so you know I'm pretty pro-Carlos Beltran, I just really hoped the Giants could get the deal done with Peguero or Surkamp and could have hung onto Wheeler. I've seen Wheeler pitch, and I think he can be a #2 of 3 starter, but he hasn't dominated the minors like Cain, Lincecum and Bumgarner did and he's not really standing out in A-ball this season, so who knows when he'll be ML ready. Also, the Mets had other offers for Beltran who was the prize bat of this market by far, and the Giants made a bold move in order to ensure their spot in the playoffs and boost their chances for a repeat. Beltran shou

Beltran, Outfield Decision Looming Large

We're now just 5 days away from Sunday's MLB trade deadline, and like I said in our last post, it appears to be a 2-team race for the services of Carlos Beltran. The two favored teams happen to be starting a crucial 3-game set tonight vs. each other, and by the end of it, I'd be willing to bet that on either Philly or San Fran will make a move to grab Beltran. There is the rumor floating out there that the Braves could be in the running as well, but they'd probably jump in only if Philly or the Giants can't get a deal done and the price for Beltran drops. Either way, their is no reason for the Mets to hang onto him at this point. If they keep him and offer him arbitration, he could take them to court and win $18-20 million bucks for 2012, though chances of him not landing a multi-year deal with someone after this season he's had isn't likely. So if it came down to it, would the Giants eat the salary and sweeten the pot with a prospect like Francisco Peguero

Strong Pitching Prevails Over Brewer Bat's

It's no secret that the Giants offense cannot match blows with powerful teams such as the Brewers, so they need their pitching and defense to be on point in these types of series, and they received some tremendous outings from their starters this weekend. The Giants finished off the 3 game set on Sunday with a 2-1 win over the NL's top offense behind the arm of 21 year-old lefty Madison Bumgarner. MadBum had a rocky start in the first inning allowing a solo big fly to Ryan Braun, but that was all the scoring the Brewers would do on the afternoon. Bumgarner settled down after that and was nails, going 7 2/3, allowing just the 1 run with 8 strikeouts. Over the whole weekend set, the Giants allowed the Brewers to score just 8 runs, thanks to the starting performances by Bumgarner, Matt Cain and Ryan Vogelsong. Cain and Vogelsong didn't even have their best stuff, but Vogelsong still pitched well and won his 8th game despite some rocky control. Cain did suffer the only loss in

Brewers vs. Giants: Playoff Preview Series?

Well, we're still over a month away from Postseason play, but as things currently stand on July 22 nd , this Brewers-Giants match-up could very well be a preview of a possible postseason series , with an atmosphere sure to match that of October baseball. Right away we get a playoff caliber pitching match-up Friday night between All-Star's Matt Cain and Shawn Marcum . Cain has really been terrific all year for the Giants, as evident by his 2.99 era and 1.09 WHIP. His walks are way down this year and it's allowed him to go deeper into games and factor into more decisions. In his 2 starts since the All-St ar break, Cain has thrown 12 innings, allowing just 1 earned run on 8 hits with 13 strikeouts. After Cain, the Giants will trot out fellow All-Star Ryan Vogelsong vs. Randy Wolf and then Madison Bumgarner vs. Yovanni Gallardo in game 3. Needless to say, all 3 should be fine pitching matchups , but at home with the three arms the Giants are set to throw at the

Brandon Belt Makes Splashy Return

Just before he got beamed on the wrist and missed about a month of action, Brandon Belt was quietly heating up and appeared primed to break out at the Major League level. Now that he's 100% healthy again, he's picked up right were he left off. Belt carried the Giants on Tuesday night, going 2-4 with with a homer, his 2nd, and 3 RBI to back another strong effort by Madison Bumgarner. Belt got the start at first base in place of the struggling Aubrey Huff, and got the start their in Wednesday's game as well. It should be interesting to see what Bochy and Sabean do now that Belt is back and playing effectively. I doubt the Giants will turn Aubrey Huff into a bench player and keep throwing Belt out at first base, so that means one of them will likely need to move to the outfield for more at-bats. I think we'll eventually see Belt out in left-field, but again, if he's getting regular playing time in the outfield, that means that either Cody Ross or Nate Schierholtz would

Giants Stay Hot, Take 3 of 4 in San Diego

Some fans were a little worried about how the Giants would start the 2nd half, that they may flatten out a bit after the All-Star break, but if this first series is any indication, this team looks just as good as they did in the first half, and have reinforcements on the way! Matt Cain pitched brilliantly Sunday, just a day after Barry Zito struggled through his roughest start since his return from the DL last month. Cain went 6 strong innings, allowing just 1 earned run on 3 hits and 2 walks to go with 9 strikeouts. However, he didn't factor into the decision because two other un-earned runs crossed the plate while he was on the hill and he actually departed with the Giants down 3-2. Like they do so often in tight games though, the Giants wouldn't go down without a fight, and had a couple of un-likely heroes come through for them in the late innings. Andres Torres, who's shown some signs of life since the 2nd half started, had the game-tying single in the 8th inning, then

Bumgarner Strong in 2nd Half Opener

Well, the formula that worked very well for San Francisco in the first half won them the first game in their unofficial 2nd half Thursday night. They got a great starting performance and great relief work, but were shutout through 8 innings until finally tying the game in the 9th and winning in the 11th. Madison Bumgarner got the nod to kick off the 2nd half, his first start since July 6th, and he was brilliant. He allowed just 1 run and 7 hits with no walks and 4 K's over 6 innings vs. the Padres, but didn't get a decision because the Giants failed to give him any run support. It's something that Bumgarner has gotten used to by now, so even though he's not getting great run support and despite his 4-9 record, the 21 year-old hasn't let it faze him whatsoever. He just keeps on going out there and throwing quality ballgames and his wins will certainly come in due time if he keeps it up. All-Star Pablo Sandoval kept his hitting streak alive with a 2-hit night with 2 R

Revisiting the Draft With Brian Foley

As promised, we caught up with Brian Foley, the College Baseball guru and host of College Baseball Daily , and asked for his thoughts on the Giants draft last month. Here you go: Q1) What are your thoughts on Joe Panik, and how long do you think before we see him in San Francisco ? He's already started off red hot with their Single-A team, showing power and average, and kind of reminds me of Stephen Drew. Do you think he'll be a Buster Posey-type, sort of overnight success, or does he still have a few years of development to undergo? B.F.) Panik was the best shortstop I saw with my own eyes this season. I was extremely impressed with his hitting while he is a solid defender but will not win any gold gloves though. Panik seems to do all the little things right from moving players over and coming through in the clutch. Video: College Baseball Daily Joe Panik Scouting Video Q2) Would you have selected

Giants Take 3 Game Lead Into Break

Well, is it me, or did that first half kind of fly right by? It seems like it was only yesterday that the players were getting their rings on the field during the ceremony, and all the sudden we're at the All-Star Break. Either way though, we're here, and if you told the Giants they'd be 3 games ahead in the NL West and without Buster Posey and Freddy Sanchez, they'd take it in a heartbeat. The Giants started off the weekend series with Brian Wilson blowing the save Friday night, but he got chance for redemption Sunday, and he cashed in to give the Giants the series win and seal the 8th victory for fellow All-Star Matt Cain. As good as Cain was in tough situations Sunday, and as well as everyone pitched all weekend, the man who really stuck out in this series for me was Nate Schierholtz. Nate had 2 more RBI and 5 more hits in Saturday and Sunday's game, including a 4-4 day Sunday to raise his average up to .293 after being in the low-.260's 10 days ago. The kid

Brian Blows Another One

Well, Brian Wilson has had a very up and down last couple of weeks, starting with the water cooler incident and ending with the most recent struggle last night with Wilson allowing 2 runs in a tie game. The Giants lost that game after being shut down by Francisco Rodriguez in the bottom half of the inning and lost a game on the D-Backs in the NL West, who enter Saturday now just 1 game back of the Giants. The Giants two All-Star pitchers weren't particularly sharp Friday night, as Ryan Vogelsong only allowed 2 runs but labored through 7 innings, allowing 5 walks and 7 hits while striking out just 2 Mets batters. He did manage to get out of tough situations and kept the Giants in the game, but he'd be the first to tell you he wasn't on his game Friday night. The same can be said for closer Brian Wilson who's now either lost or blown a game in 3 of his last 5 outings. Wilson came in in the top of the ninth trying to preserve a tie game and get the Giants back up to bat, w

GBB's All-Star Selections, Giants Notes

The AL and NL All-Star rosters for July 12th's mid-summer classic were released Sunday, and as usual, there were many snubs and guys left off that were absolutely deserving while guys who weren't as deserving managed to sneak onto the teams. So here is the way we'd fill out each team's 32-man roster, including 6 replacement options for each team (3 position/3 pitchers): American League All-Star Team Lineup: CF Jacoby Elsburry Bos LF Curtis Granderson NYY 1B Adrian Gonzalez Bos RF Jose Bautista Tor 3B Alex Rodriguez NYY SS Asdrubal Cabrera Cle 2B Robinson Cano NYY C Alex Avila Det P Jered Weaver LAA Reserves: 1B Miguel Cabrera Det 1B Paul Konerko Chi 3B Adrian Beltre Tex 3B/OF Alex Gordon KC OF Adam Jones Bal SS Johnny Peralta Det OF BJ Upton TB OF Adam Lind Tor IF Michael Young Tex C Victor Martinez Det C/1B Carlos Santana Cle Pitchers: SP Justin Verlander Det SP James Shields TB SP Michael Pineda Sea SP Gio Gonzalez Oak SP C.C. Sabathia NYY SP Scott Baker Min S

Giants Just Miss Sweep of Detroit

The Giants had more than a fair shot at sweeping the Detroit Tigers Sunday, and returning to AT&T Park Tuesday a season-high 13 games above .500. However, something that rarely happens, became a recurring theme on this road trip; the Giants bullpen imploded. It's tough to say in hindsight, but I'm convinced that had the Giants bullpen been on their game like they have most of this season, the Giants could have went 6-1, if not 7-0 on this mid-west road trip. Brian Wilson had his share of struggles in the Motor City, as we all know by now, but luckily the Giants prevailed in both those games . They couldn't do it a third time on Sunday, however, after providing their season's best starter a 3-1 lead into the 6th inning and things were looking right on point. Ryan Vogelsong wasn't bad, but like in Chicago, he again didn't have his A-stuff out there, as evident by his 4 walks in 6.2 innings. He's normally uncanny with his command and control around the stri

Panda Saves Wilson's 2nd Straight Blunder

After a really weird series in which the Giants dominated the Cubs on Tuesday and swept the double header with ease, only to go on and get shut down in the final two games of the Series to split, and Friday nights game was very similar to that of one of the last 2 Cards games, only the Giants came out on top of this one. Both offenses were really irrelevant, though the Giants collected 11 hits and Detroit 7, they only scored 3 runs between them, with the Giants taking it, 2-1. It certainly wasn't an easy journey though, to say the least. Like against Ryan Dempster and Carlos Zambrano, the Giants lineup was unable to string together hits. They got some hits, but they spread them out, then hit into a double play and really were unable to come up with that big hit with a runner in scoring position. All except for Pablo Sandoval that is (2 RBI on the night). They did carry a 1-0 lead into the 8th but Brian Wilson blew save #2 in as many days and looks a little over-worked and desperate