Category: Baseball

Dodgers and Giants make no trades on July 31st

Per Hank Schulman, the Giants made no deals and per Tim Brown, the Dodgers also made no deals. The teams look the same, and will dig through the waiver wire to get in on a possible deal for another player, which they can do through the rest of the regular season, but only players picked up in the month of August will be eligible for postseason play.

The Giants were linked to players like Emilio Bonifacio, Alex Rios, Bartolo Colon, and Chase Utley but were not linked to the likes of David Price, whom was traded to the Detroit Tigers today in a three-team trade, first reported by Ken Rosenthal.

The Giants resume baseball games on Friday as they go up against the New York Mets, whose field I heard was attack by some shark tornado.

Almost three hours to go, no Giants trades yet, but Athletics have made a couple

So far, the only trade the San Francisco Giants have been able to pull off in this trade season involved Jake Peavy and cash for Edwin Escobar and Heath Hembree. With the optioning of Tyler Colvin and the possible release of Dan Uggla looming, and no obvious helpful solution within the organization to fill those spots, you would expect the Giants to make a move or two to fill those spots as they look to compete with the Wild Card spots as well as the NL West crown. The Dodgers are only three games up, and it is not beyond the Giants to sweep the Dodgers, but they’re going to need to fill some holes. Some ideas of the directions the Giants could be going:

Alex Rios:

Emilio Bonifacio, Gordon Beckham, Daniel Murphy, Asdrubal Cabrera could be possibilities: 

With the Tampa Bay Rays inching closer to being in the race, I’m not so keen on the Rays selling, but rather standing pat or even buying. However, maybe they get the best value for their players now and they decide to deal. Important to note the second part of Joel Sherman’s tweet that the Giants still expect to make a move in August as long as they feel they are still in it. Sherman said the Giants aren’t in on a SP, but Jon Heyman mentioned the Giants as a possibility for winners in the Bartolo Colon sweepstakes, but we’re under the impression the Mets would have to take on money for 2015.

In other news, Billy Beane and the A’s were busy this morning, trading with two teams. To sum everything up, here’s what they got and what they sent away:

A’s get:

LHP Jon Lester

OF Jonny Gomes

OF Sam Fuld

$650,000

Boston gets:

OF Yoenis Cespedes

Competitive Balance Pick

Twins get:

LHP Tommy Milone

So the A’s further strengthen their rotation with Lester for 2014, create a LF platoon, give away a disgruntled employee in Milone as well as one of the faces of the franchise in Cespedes. The Cuban outfielder is signed through 2015 and the Red Sox will not be able to give Cespedes a qualifying offer. The Red Sox were not done re-structuring their outfield, as you’ll see in the next paragraph.

As for the Dodgers, nothing has been done yet, and John Lackey has just been traded to the Cardinals for Joe Kelly and Allen Craig, paving the way for Oscar Taveras to start full-time with St. Louis. Expect the Dodgers to go after bullpen help as opposed to getting someone for the rotation, like Joaquin Benoit. Should they land David Price this season, I would find that to be a huge surprise, and just about everyone would stamp their ticket to the postseason as a result.

More to come as the 1:00PM PST trade deadline continues to come at us fast. Very much expect the Giants to get at least one move done.

Tuesday morning’s breaking news via @cwnevius: Mike Krukow battling a degenerative muscle disease

San Francisco Giants fans will certainly take great interest in this morning’s article from C.W. Nevius that is no doubt spreading like wildfire throughout the baseball and Giants community. The article goes into detail talking about inclusion-body myosotis, IBM, the generative muscle disease that Giants broadcaster Mike Krukow was diagnosed with eight years ago. Nevius relays that “IBM causes progressive weakness in the muscles of the wrist and fingers, the front of the thigh, and the muscles that lift the front of the foot. There’s no cure and no solid theory for what causes it.” Krukow said he noticed something might be going on when his drives while golfing weren’t what they used to be. His doctor told him that he would have to use a cane, then a walker, then would need a cart to get around, and currently will use a golf cart to get around the stadium as even a nudge could send Krukow for a spill. In April, as the article notes, Krukow stumbled off the team bus in Colorado that resulted in a torn rotator cuff. Broadcast partner Duane Kuiper says Kruk’s the same guy, and partner Dave Flemming shares similar sentiments:

Another question Giants fans would probably have is if this will affect the desire of Krukow to continue his broadcasting career.

“Kuip says he wants to do this until he is 80,” Krukow said. “So do I.”

Wife of Mike, Jennifer, says the best thing for Giants fans to do to support Mike is to “treat him like you normally would.”

We are all shocked and surprised to hear about this, and we hope this disease does no more to Krukow and that soon a cure is found for IBM.

NL West trade news: Padres make another trade with Angels, this time trading Huston Street

The Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim have added another Padres reliever to their roster, once trading for Ernesto Frieri, now getting Huston Street and another pitcher for four minor league players in the Angels system. Jim Bowden was first to report, and gave these details:

Reliever Trevor Gott is now rated by MLB.com as the #15 prospect of the Angels with an above-average fastball. High-A SS Jose Rondon and Triple-A 2B Taylor Lindsey are now rated #9 and #10 respectively in the Padres’ system. RHP R.J. Alvarez is a reliever at Double-A and Elliot Morris has been a reliever at the High-A level. You can read more reports about them in MLB.com’s article.

Street was present at last night’s Padres game, so though it looked like there was an agreement in place before the game started, fans were probably on hug watch. Street has thirty-four strikeouts in thirty-three innings pitched with only seven walks. Those numbers are similar to what Street has been able to do career-wise against the Giants, but has allowed two home runs in four innings against them this year. Street will reportedly be the closer for the Angels while Joaquin Benoit, whom has also been the subject of trade rumors, steps into the closer role for the Padres.

The second-half arrives: 67 games left for the Giants and 65 left for the Dodgers

One game in the standings separates the two, but the Dodgers have two more wins than the Giants and the same amount of losses at forty-three. I broke down the Giants schedule in 2014 in a post before the season started to remind all of us what they have upcoming. Sixty-seven games left with thirty-nine of them away from the friendly confines at AT&T Park. Below is what the Giants have left this season, including twenty-nine games with the NL West. Nine of those come against the Dodgers.

July 18th-September 4th: All over the place and a sixteen-game stretch

3 @ Miami

4 @ Philadelphia

3 vs. LA Dodgers

3 vs. Pittsburgh

Day Off (comes on the same day as the trade deadline)

4 @ NY Mets

3 @ Milwaukee

3 @ Kansas City

Day Off

2 vs. White Sox

Day Off

3 vs. Philadelphia

Day Off

3 @ Cubs

3 @ Washington

4 vs. Colorado

3 vs. Milwaukee

3 @ Colorado

Day Off

I didn’t know how to break this one up (I’m sure you could tell), but this is another part of the schedule where the Giants will have a chance to play over-.500 ball against teams like the Marlins, Brewers, ChiSox, Rockies, Mets, Phillies, and the Cubs. Teams like the Dodgers, Royals, Nationals, and Pirates could make things tense and for make for possible Sunday Night Baseball material.

September 5th-September 28th: The Tigers and the NL West

3 @ Detroit

Day Off

3 vs. Arizona

3 vs. LA Dodgers

3 @ Arizona

Day Off

3 @ San Diego

3 @ LA Dodgers

4 vs. San Diego

So, if the road seems relatively easy for the Giants, it’s because by win-percentage, it is:

The Giants have a birth to the playoffs put on a silver platter for them, and the question is are they going to trip all over themselves, not stay healthy, or get close to the team that was putting on a 107-win pace? As Angel Pagan was winding down his first-half, the Giants were starting to trip all over themselves, then not be healthy, and then at the end of the first-half (arbitrary endpoints warning) they were able to put together a 5-4 ending — a winning stretch they hadn’t gone through since the home series against the Nationals had finished in early June. The Giants are reminding themselves they can win games, now can they keep those ways consistent and even become more dominant in the process as the season winds down? It doesn’t matter how the Giants get in to the playoffs if they get there, it’s a matter of if they get hot in October, and if they get some breaks to go their way as they work towards their third parade in five years. Here are some questions I have about the Giants as the season continues:

When will Angel Pagan return and how will his return help the Giants? 

Odd, but probably telling, that last season the Giants season crumbled when he left (hello, outfield depth), and now again things were not the same after he left for an extended time only to be put on the DL anyway. The Giants are not blessed with having four starting MLB players on their roster and one in the MiLB like the rival Dodgers are, so they’ve dealt with Gregor Blanco, Tyler Colvin, and Juan Perez all getting time. Gregor Blanco when hot can be a decent replacement for Pagan, but that’s not who he is. Pagan at the top will extend the lineup, which the Giants apparently really need.

Do the Giants trade for someone or someones?

I have no doubt that GM Brian Sabean can get a reliever or some bench help by the deadline if he needs a guy, finding a second baseman or a starter will be predictably more difficult. Trying to pull Daniel Murphy or even get Ben Zobrist will not be easy, and the Giants probably won’t be taking on too much money after this 2014 season from a trade.

Does Sergio Romo find his form and what if he doesn’t?

Manager Bruce Bochy has proclaimed his faith in Romo that he’ll be back to work, but if Romo can’t adjust at the pace the league has adjusted to him, the Giants higher-leverage bullpen depth takes a hit, and all of a sudden the holes in the ship get larger. Does Heath Hembree or Derek Law find their way on to the big club to save the day? May not be reliable to have Jean Machi continue his high leverage spots, that wave of hot Machi may have calmed.

How does Marco Scutaro hold up?

Can he do four days a week? Three? Five? What are we talking? As the beat writers have pointed out, the front office wants to see how Marco does through the next week so they have an idea of whom to target at the deadline, if anybody at second base.

Those are my biggest questions as we head into the second half. I think the Giants can and will make the Postseason. Perhaps that’s optimistic, but I don’t think it’s unrealistic. The Giants are almost back to full-strength and about to embark on a schedule that is not the most threatening, but will still have its challenges. I’m not expecting an insane finish like that insane beginning, but I believe the Giants will pull be able to make the playoffs, even if it’s as a Wild Card team, that’s still something.

The Los Angeles Dodgers are in first place all by themselves. The Giants are in second.

Just thought you should know. The Dodgers beat Cleveland 1-0 and so the Giants are now in second by a half game. The Giants have played three fewer games than the Dodgers. The Dodgers are 16-7 in their last 23 games while the Giants are 8-15, so it shouldn’t be a big mystery how the Dodgers all of a sudden caught up in June. This is the first time the Giants have been in second since April 23rd.

Just thought you’d like to know.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

June was awful.

Reliever readings on Jean Machi of the big club and Steven Okert (@steven_okert) of the baby Giants

The off-day and Friday morning has provided some reading on a reliever that’s taken the long road to get to the Majors in Jean Machi, and a San Jose Giant out of Oklahoma University in Steven Okert. Both have shown the ability to give fans faith they can handle high-leverage duties, especially for Machi when Sergio Romo struggled against the Rockies. On the farm, Okert has been used to close games in San Jose, collecting nineteen saves for the baby Giants. Of course, Machi’s lack of saves shouldn’t be what keep you from worrying if he can handle the high-leverage roles, as you might prefer to see some of his peripherals instead. Enough of me though, you came for the links.

  • Scott Stranberg of Rotographs wrote about Okert and some of his peripherals and his BABIP in this article that should get Giants fans excited there’s a high strikeout reliever in the system
  • Wednesday’s article from MiLB that detailed Okert’s outing in Wednesdays’ California-Carolina All-Star Game and the championship belt he sported afterwards
  • This is the only Baseball Prospectus eyewitness account on Okert for your reading pleasure
  • This is Alex Pavlovic’s report on Machi, and here is MLB.com’s Ryan Hood’s on the 32-year old Venezuelan having the biggest season of his life thus far

Nice to see good stories on players in the Giants systems. Of course, we hope they continue their success with the big club for years to come.

The Giants begin their weekend series with the Arizona Diamondbacks in Phoenix tonight at 6:40 PM PST.