After a 12-8 drubbing last night, the Giants decided it was time for some moves!
Shakeup today. Ramirez DFA’d, Pill optioned. RHP Dunning, H Sanchez coming up from Fresno #sfgiants.
— Henry Schulman (@hankschulman) June 13, 2013
Not only was Pill not playing, but with H.Sanchez back, Posey is an option to start at 1B again.
— Andrew Baggarly (@CSNBaggs) June 13, 2013
Odd that after all this time Pill is going back down, didn’t play to the narrative we hoped we’d never see. In 19 games, Hector put up a .320/.370/.460 slash line in the hitter’s league that is the Pacific Coast League.
Newbies land at 6:30
— Henry Schulman (@hankschulman) June 13, 2013
That would be a little less than an hour before game time.
Dunning is a converted SS from Indiana U. He’s got a 1.75 ERA at Fresno and was on the 40-man. His first call-up.
— Andrew Baggarly (@CSNBaggs) June 13, 2013
No doubt his 20.3 K% and 6.5 BB% in Fresno will be a point of discussion when he finally takes the mound for the Giants.
Tonight’s #SFGiants lineup: Blanco CF, Crawford SS, Posey C, Pence RF, Belt 1B, Torres LF, Arias 3B, Noonan 2B, Cain RHP
— Alex Pavlovic (@AlexPavlovic) June 13, 2013
You’ve probably heard today’s the anniversary of Matt Cain‘s perfect game. Where was I? At a graduation for most of the game, came home (drove safely, of course), then ran to my residence where my wife had the game on, and there was much happiness.
Easy it is to get sucked in to the Madness in March and forget about things like America’s pastime in the midst of a lengthy pre-season. The lull of mid-March about ten days before the regular season wears on everybody, so we have to find ways to keep ourselves interested, and hyped for what’s to come, like in this definitely not-bad video featuring plenty of stars like Justin Verlander, Robinson Cano, and Buster Posey, to name a few:
When I heard people promoting this video with Posey in it I was wondering how it could be that good because most of the Giants-produced commercials I don’t feel that much of a bond towards. Case-in-point, this fan & Ryan Vogelsong commercial:
Vogey is obviously the star of this commercial, and he doesn’t really even do anything except be mad. Meh.
Some injury news and scares from the outfield, first from Arizona, the home of grit and gamers:
— Arizona Diamondbacks (@Dbacks) March 22, 2013
The loss of Adam Eaton for that much time means the insertion of Gerardo Parra into center. Good for Parra that he’ll get regular playing time, and then probably force a logjam in the outfield when Eaton gets back from his injury… at least that’s what I expect to happen, unless Jason Kubel or Cody Ross get injured sometime in May/June. Sucks for fantasy baseball owners that have drafted Eaton already expecting some help in the runs and stolen bases department.
In a Spring that has been less than ideal for the Dodgers with Hanley Ramirez having had to go through thumb surgery and be out for two months (the surgery went successful on Friday, by the way), then the Dodgers press box people are going nuts because
Yasiel Puig is down in center field
— Eric Stephen (@truebluela) March 22, 2013
Especially for the people that think Yasiel Puig belongs on the 25-man roster, this caused a reasonably-sized panic. However
Puig just got the wind knocked out of him.
— Dylan Hernandez (@dylanohernandez) March 22, 2013
so that’s all over and nobody has to fret over that. Puig told Hernandez (and others, I’m sure) he thought he could play tomorrow.
In other Giants news and notes, Ramon Ramirez and Wilson Valdez were released from the club and Nick Noonan was recalled, so… so much for that immediate 2010 reunion of everybody on the 2013 Opening Day roster, I guess. Brandon Belt also destroyed baseballs of his own today, and Bochy says he might even bat the more awkward Brandon third or fourth in the lineup when Posey’s sitting. Progress! The bench situation still looks pretty bad for the Giants, so know that Brian Sabean and his team are looking for acceptable options for Bochy to use for late inning subs, pinch hitting opportunities, and spot starts.
The job-less life leaves me to do whatever I want, when I want. Naturally, I’ve set up a routine to do the things I want to do, when I want to do them. I’m in a phase now where I exercise at the same time cable television decides to air their Japanese TV dramas, because where else am I going to get my language practice these days (put your hand down, internet). So today, after my usual set of things, I assume nothing happened in baseball, and especially nothing with the Giants when all of a sudden:
Ramon ramirez agrees to deal w/ SFGiants
— Jon Heyman (@JonHeymanCBS) February 5, 2013
Of course he did. Re-live the old glory, maybe he’ll get a 2012 WS ring for being a part of the Pagan trade. Speaking of…
— John Shea (@JohnSheaHey) February 5, 2013
Ha! Take THAT Sandy Alderson. Now the Giants have Angel Pagan for 4/40, Andres Torres for a year and $2MM, and now a non-major league deal for Ramon Ramirez, what do you got to sa–you know what, let’s move on. I don’t need you mentioning anything else from here about what you hav–
— Adam Rubin (@AdamRubinESPN) February 5, 2013
ISAIDSTOP! Always with the Wheeler wheminders.
Nineteen pitchers and twenty-three offensive guys threw pitches or had at bats for the Giants in 2010, so with the gang “all back together,” you might be wondering how many 2010 guys are still sporting some black and orange. Assuming we answer that using Jason Martinez’s projected 25-man roster for the 2013 Gigantes, the answer is twelve. Twelve out of the forty-two 2010 players are still there for a whopping 28.6%, with nine of them coming from the pitching side of things. Can’t remember which starter from 2010 still isn’t there anymore? Shame on you:
— Rob Biertempfel (@BiertempfelTrib) February 5, 2013
So, while there may be a sizable minority in terms of bodies (I didn’t calculate in terms of games played or innings pitched), I guess as long as there are guys like Buster Posey, Matt Cain, and Pablo Sandoval around, there will always be a little 2010 in the SFG, no matter the year. In the February 2013 squad though, you should definitely be seeing more 2012 than 2010, and that’s not the worst thing in the world.
To celebrate the seventh World Series title by the Giants — five happening in New York and two now in The City by the Bay — I thought we’d look at the best seven moves before and within the 2012 baseball season. You’ll probably have your own list, the rankings being a little different than mine, perhaps. I’ll start backwards from the honorable mentions, then from number seven and move on to what I see as move number one.
Honorable Mention (in no particular order)
Skipping Madison Bumgarner’s NLCS start
Jose Mijares pickup
Finally giving Belt a chance
“Closer by committee”
Extending control of Matt Cain
#7 — The Spring Training Invites
Namely, that of Gregor Blanco and Joaquin Arias, two guys that were merely names on a roster for those of us looking at the invitees, and admittedly, not taking them very seriously. This team would not have been the same though without these guys in 2012. Gregor Blanco replacing Melky Cabrera, Joaquin Arias being a decent replacement for when Pablo was out and Crawford was struggling. Both of these guys also have highlights where they have been immortalized into Matt Cain’s perfect game: Gregor Blanco’s diving catch which not many other people make, and Joaquin Arias fielding the final out with that shuffle to his right and then gunning it over to Belt for the end of that wonderful game.
#6 — Jonathan Sanchez for Melky Cabrera
So Melky Cabrera wasn’t a part of the last third of the baseball season, but maybe more importantly Jonathan Sanchez was not a part of the Giants rotation this season. How long would the Giants have put up with Dirty in the rotation or in the bullpen before possibly dumping him for nothing? Jonathan Sanchez became the problem of the Royals, then the Rockies. It wouldn’t be fair to say Dirty’s horrible performances for both squads would have been exactly the same for the Giants, but some had a feeling the intangibles would start to catch up with him. He will always have his part in 2010 lore, but like our next subject was for his old team, it was time for Jonathan Sanchez to go.
Angel Pagan had worn out his welcome in New York, and to give them two 2010 heroes for someone they wanted out seemed like a fair deal for both squads. Angel Pagan with his sometimes odd routes to the ball, had his contract year, and Andres Torres played like 2011 Andres with Ramon Ramirez being much less effective than during his time with his previous three clubs. Sometimes a change of scenery can do good for a player, and for Angel Pagan, I think it’s fair to say it worked out here.
#4 — Setting of the 25-man roster at the beginning, and the end of the regular season
People worried at both the beginning and end of the season that the rosters would not utilize all the talent an MLB roster had to offer, and the Giants much to the relief of bloggers, felt the same way we did in who was the best 25. There was a feeling that the best 25 were on the roster when all was said and done at both the beginning and end of the season, with the only question mark being Melky Cabrera. If we had it my way (boy that sounds snobby), Melky would’ve been on the bench at the very least, but I’m not going to go on a criticizing spree since everything worked out.
#3 — Signing Ryan Vogelsong to an affordable 2-year contract with a 3rd year option
Two years and eight million, with a $6.5MM option for a third year to the deal or a $300K buyout for Vogey. Taking a gamble on the Rally Enchiladas has been good since 2011, and if he keeps this up, he will be an even bigger steal of a pitcher. Here are some names that had worse ERA and FIP than Ryan Vogelsong in 2012: Tim Hudson, C.J. Wilson, Yovani Gallardo, and Edwin Jackson to name a few. All four are names you’d rather not go up against, and all four are getting Paid. I guarantee Ryan Vogelsong would cost more than $5MM for 2013 if the Giants had only gone one year on him going into 2012.
#2 — Putting Tim Lincecum in the bullpen
This could be a potentially ground-breaking move for the Giants, since Timmy could not really find his stuff in 2012 but in the Postseason all of a sudden the Cy came back. The Giants unfortunately really don’t have a candidate in-house to take Timmy’s spot in the rotation right away and $22.25MM is a lot to pay for a super-reliever, but if that’s what it takes to get him back, I believe he can still have incredible value easily leading the league in games appeared.
Sure Jonathan Mayo loves Culberson, but most people don’t love him enough to say he will definitely be the everyday infielder for the Giants, and thus, Sabean and co. made what ended up being the trade of 2012. Dodger fans mocked the deal, thinking that Sabean reacted to the Dodgers making a blockbuster trade of their own. You don’t just do trades to do them, the Giants clearly had a hole at 2B, and Scutaro was one of those “lightning in a bottle” candidates for the Giants. For now, the crow on the plates of Dodger fans in their mouths is hot and fresh, and “Blockbuster” helped carry the Giants to their second title in three years.
Sorry I couldn’t put this in slideshow format if that’s your thing. Feel free to put your top 7 in the comments or tell me on the twitter or FB or whatever!
I shouldn’t need to remind you about the weekend that was, and Ryan Vogelsong even is suggesting the Giants should play a little angry, which I agree would work better than playing defeated, which is what they looked like in the last halves of the last two games they played. Not lost though on Giants fans will be the homecoming of RHP Ramon Ramirez and all-around nice guy OF Andres Torres, whom everybody was sad to see go from a personality perspective. From a baseball player perspective, I thought it was time to move on and agreed with Sabean’s move for Pagan. The ovation fans give to Torres today in the 1st inning should be nothing less than moving. After all the tears though, the Giants need to get into a winning-the-series mindset with their rivals to the South in a hey-this-winning-thing-isn’t-that-difficult thinking. The Mets have 3 SP on the DL (Johan Santana, Dillon Gee, Mike Pelfrey), which is why you might see guys with not that many IP under their belt this year.
Monday, July 30th: RHP Jeremy Hefner vs. LHP Madison Bumgarner
One sentence summary: Hefner just put in 6 against Washington for his first start since June 6th and struck out 7 while only seeing 2 Nationals crossing the plate while he was out there, giving his team a very real chance for victory.
Tuesday, July 31st: RHP Matt Harvey vs. RHP Tim Lincecum
One sentence summary: Matt Harvey baffled the DBacks hitters, and hopefully the Giants have seen the video on this guy, especially since the adrenaline for Harvey shouldn’t be there as much as it was for his MLB debut.
Wednesday, August 1st: LHP Jon Niese vs. RHP Matt Cain
One sentence summary: The only other healthy Mets SP with over 100 IP (R.A. Dickey the other) has had a rough July with these ER per each start in that month: 7 (CHI), 1 (WSH), 3 (LAD), 6 (AZ).
Thursday, August 2nd: RHP Chris Young vs. LHP Barry Zito
One sentence summary: If you’re excited to see these two pitchers duke it out, you’re the only one.
How about some offense?
The Mets as you might remember, were hanging around the top half of the NL East for a while, but then injuries and regression set in and here they are at four games under. Interesting to note that some of their colder guys for the season are the ones that are doing their best to carry the team. Ike Davis (.484 wOBA & 6 HR Last 7 days, .305 wOBA & 20 HR overall) is the scariest bat right now, and Andres Torres is even doing his part (.403 wOBA & 21.7 BB% L7, .303 wOBA & 14.4 BB% overall). It wouldn’t be right if a Hairston wasn’t doing well, and Scott has a little somethin-somethin going (.403 wOBA L7, .349 wOBA overall) and as you see, is actually having a pretty decent season as well. They have four guys with double digit HRs — Ike Davis (20), David Wright (16), Scott Hairston and Lucas Duda (12), but only two guys with double digit SBs in David Wright (11) and Andres Torres (10). David Wright also had a crazy high BABIP and AVG to start the year off but has predictably fallen and now stands at .332 and .365, respectively. Oh by the way, the Mets are also 2-8 in their last 10 games.
The Giants however are a remarkably better 4-6 in their last 10, with an offense that got shut out in two straight games, in case you hadn’t heard. To nobody’s surprise, the Giants only have one guy with a wOBA over .350 in their last seven days, and two above .300 — this is the time where you incorrectly guess the two: Buster Posey (.385, .374 wOBA overall), and Brandon Belt (.336, .318 wOBA overall). I would’ve got half the answer wrong, too, don’t worry. The Mets may be just the trick to awaken the Giants bats with their being prone to being lit up, or you know, this could be where the Mets get closer to .500 due to facing a cold set of bats. This should be a series the Giants can at least split, but science says that if the Giants continue to score 0 runs for their pitching, they will not win any games. You’re welcome for that hard-hitting analysis.
Monday: Giants win (While fans shed tears for Andres Torres, Mets shed tears watching their hitters get beat by Bumgarner)
Tuesday: Giants win (Harvey’s 2nd start goes nothing like his 1st; Giants only add a reliever before the deadline)
Wednesday: Giants win (Closest game of the series shows the fans something can bounce their way)
Thursday: Mets win (Zito-Whiteside connection doesn’t work)
I’m an optimist, I know.
This is what I said about Andres Torres earlier today:
Apparently the Front Office thought so, too. In 2011 he wasn’t 2010 Andres Torres. Instead, he regressed to what clubs expected out of Andres Torres: .221/.312/.330 when given the nearly 400 PA he was given. Speculation of his medication not being as effective or whatever it may have been abounded. But we all knew he was a good guy. He was working his ass off. He’d be pumping iron after games, whether it was an 0-for-4 or the rarer 4-for-4 that he had after a game. He was a hard worker, the guy not just Giants fans, but human beings in general love to watch succeed. His bat couldn’t stay with him from 2010, and he will join the New York Mets. Look, he may not break any records there, but the clubhouse will love him. What a classy guy. I will miss him.
You know, this might be the thing I remember most about Ramon Ramirez. It might not be, but it might. His plunking of the scary-eyed Shane Victorino. Ramon from what Kruk and Kuip talked about was a good guy and a family man and I had no reason to speculate otherwise and he did a good job for the Giants. In 25 G for the Giants in the regular season in 2010 he had a 0.67 ERA. That’s nuts. I don’t care if you hate ERA, that’s a superb number. He did have a 8.7 K/9 and 66 K’s in 66 G which were quite good for his career line so the Giants did sell high on him. He was a good guy. I will miss how good he was.
This is who they traded for: CF Angel Pagan of the New York Mets. There is an article that talks about how him and Andres were nearly included in the deal that sent Beltran to SF but gosh that could be saved for the Winter Meetings gosh darnit. For whatever reason, this guy went sub-Mendoza in April and July and had most of his ABs in the 1st and 5th spots even though it was noted by some that he doesn’t like batting leadoff. Since he has 32 SBs in 2011, that’s kind of important because well sir, YOU HAVE LEADOFF SPEED. NOW EMBRACE IT AND STOP WHINING. The last thing the Giants need is a clubhouse cancer especially after dealing with losers like Rowand and Tejada. I don’t care to look up more stats on him mostly because of my mourning but he could be OK out there for us. Oh, what’s that? 10 E in CF 2nd only to Chris Young? And he’s moving to AT&T Park? Ah, crap.
But you know, April 19th-21st when the Giants go to New York will have a different meaning for Giants fans. And so will July 30th-August 2nd when they play at home. If Andres is still with the Mets then, he will get a standing ovation from the fans. And rightly so. Ramon Ramirez, too, but Andres’ will be louder. And longer. Like the bat Andres wields. We’ll miss you, Andres Torres. Ramon Ramirez, you too. Can’t wait to stand and applaud my admiration for your contributions soon.
Other teams did stuff today, but no one cares about them. The Giants are the only thing that matters. Word.