Monday, September 28, 2009

Starting to think beyond this week

On a day when the Giants salvaged 1 of 4 games against the Chicago
Cubs, one would expect the topic of conversation to center on Matt
Cain's brilliant 8 innings of shut out ball, maybe Eli Whiteside's 2
double night at the dish, or Juan Uribe's continuing torrent hot
streak. Instead, we find rumors floating about of who may or may not
want to be back next season.
> God forbid, we might muster a few thoughts about the fact that the
> Giants still aren't mathematically eliminated from the playoffs yet.
> Already in the last 2 days, the Giants have been linked to Milton
> Bradley and current middleinfielders Juan Uribe & Freddie Sanchez
> are wanting to return.
> Other questions have begun to arise as well.
> What to do with Aaron Rowand? Is this the Real Barry Zito?Is Edgar
> Renteria ever going to be healthy? What about our Free Agents? Winn,
> Molina, Penny, Lowry, Frandsen, Johnson, Uribe, Aurilia, etc
> But the two biggest issues of them all ought to be 1- Do we Fire
> Bruce Bochy? Do we fire Brian Sabean?
> It seems like everyone is talking already, why not us?
> Over the next few weeks we'll be taking a closer look at everything.
> Check back often

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

MasterZeet Theatre

Champions are those who step up and deliver the best they have when
needed most.

Tonight, watching Barry Zito take the mound in what was arguably his
biggest night as a San Francisco Giant, I wondered if he would dig
down and deliver a performance reminicant to his Oakland Athletic
days... And did he ever come through!

Entering the game, the Giants trailing the Rockies 3.5 games with 19
to go, the fate of the season seems to be residing on each game.
Coinsiding with the recent momentum of Brad Penny & Tim Lincecum's
dominance as well as the offensive resurgance, the Giants were in a
must win situation hoping to keep their momentum progressing.

To make matters worse, Barry Zito would be facing Ubaldo Jimeniez, the
Rockies Ace...

A game definitly full of pressure and expectations; completely worthy
of the billing "Barry Zito's biggest start as a Giant".

How would he respond?

7 innings of 5 hit ball, 1 walk, 1 hit batter, 2 scattered runs, and 9
strike outs...on just 95 pitches.

Zito was lights out from the first pitch, attacking hitters and
getting ahead of 10 of the first 11 hitters. Minus the cheap HBP to
Carlos Gonzales in the first (hit his hands on the bat) Zito struck
out 3 in the first on a curve ball the Barry Bonds couldn't hit.

Zeet's continued throughout, whipping the hook in for a strike every
time. It was so good, he started getting swingthru strikes on his fast

If it hadn't been for the Giants manufacturing 10 runs and a lead so
big even Bobby Howry could hold it together, Zito would have nailed
down a complete game.

The Giants still have alot of ground to cover and big games to play,
but it's nice to see the guy making all the money stepping up at the
right time!

As it stands right now, Zito is the projected pitcher for a one game
playoff game...

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Madison Bumgarner in... Tim Lincecum out?

Ladies and gentlemen, the future is here!

Today, the Giants have called up super prospect Madison Bumgarner and he makes his MLB debut as a spot starter for the injured Tim Lincecum.

Bumgarner comes from AA Connecticut, bypassing AAA Fresno altogether. He's been ranked all season as a top 6 prospect. Recently he's been referred to as the number 1 prospect in any organization. The number 10 overall pick in the 2007 draft, Bumgarner is on the fast track but still slower than Lincecum, Pablo Sandoval, or Buster Posey were.

Standing at 6'4", 210 lbs, the Left handed Bumgarner is much closer in comparison to an early Randy Johnson (except not nearly as wild) than other Giants such as Lincecum or Matt Cain. Yet still, Bumgarner comes with no less expectations than Lincecum did when first promoted. Bumgarner's biggest problem will be following in the massive footsteps that Timmy has left in his wake and fulfilled.

He excelled through both A San Jose & AA Conn this season, posting a combined 12-2 record with an ERA of 1.85, 92 K's in 131 innings, 1.02 WHIP, 6.9 H/9, 2.3 BB/9, 2.71 K/BB.

Lincecum on the other hand, was scratched due to a stiff back. Bruce Bochy said it didn't seem to be too bad, but it scares the crap out of me.

I really don't want to believe it.

It can't be true.

I don't believe it.

You know what... it can't possibly be true... God just wouldn't do that to us...

I'm gonna get to the bottom of this.

Monday, August 31, 2009

Our New, New #5 Starter, Brad Penny

According to multiple sources around the web, without officially confirmation, the Giants have signed Brad Penny to a contract through the end of the season today.

Penny was let go a few days ago from the Boston Red Sox after asking for his release. Penny cleared release waivers and became a free agent, allowing the Giants to sign him for a pro-rated portion of the league minimum, or only 75K for September.

Penny had been linked to multiple NL teams, most notably the Rockies & Marlins. By the Giants signing him, it at least prevents 2 of their closest competitors from getting him.

Penny had a rough go at times this year for Boston after struggling last season for the Dodgers amid injuries. Prior to that season, Penny was arguably the LA Dodgers most consistent performer. At 7-8 with a 5.61 ERA, 1.53 WHIP, 6.1 K/9, & 2.12 K/BB, Penny's stats don't look like an improvement, but remember that was in the hitter friendly AL East. Penny should have an improvement in the NL West, where he had dominated before.

At the very least, Penny should be a slight improvement over the Sadowski/Martinez combo who combined as the teams 5th starter posted a line of 5-6, 5.97 ERA, 1.79 WHIP, 5.63 K/9, & 1.30 K/BB. Penny not only should bring improved performance over these two, but he actually pitched a bit better in Boston than the Sad/mart combo has done here, plus his postseason experience is worth the try.

There's nothing saying the Giants owe Penny anything. If he pitches well, he should add at least one more win to this team. If he doesn't and the Giants still make the playoffs, they can leave him off the roster if they choose.

If the Giants miss the Playoffs, we can still blame him for being a Dodger, Bochy for pitching him, and Sabean for being, well, Sabean.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Edgar Renteria & the 3 million dollar homerun

I've said it before and I'll say it again, Edgar Renteria is the best signing the Giants made all year!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

What ever you do, DO NOT READ ANYTHING ELSE I'VE EVER WRITTEN ABOUT HIM. Just take my word on it, i'm good for it.

Today's 7th inning 2 out Grand Slam that put the Giants ahead 6-5 on a day when Matt Cain struggled mightily was the knockout blow the team was looking to produce.

For all the so struggles Renteria's endured this season and all the difficulties he's had trying to capture fan's hearts following not only the great Omar Vizquel, but living up to the lofty expectations placed on his head after inking that 2 year, $18.5 million deal, he's finally earned endeared himself to us.

That Grand slam was clutch, not clutch like it's "cool" to say "bro, that was clutch". No, I mean the real clutch. The kind you see from savvy ballplayers who are capable of getting a hit in the 1997 world series to win game 7... Wait, that was Edgar. Maybe he still can do it. Maybe it's been there all along and he was just waiting for the pennant race. Maybe he knows how to pace himself and the best is yet to come. Maybe that $18.5 million looks a bit more like $15 million right now. Maybe, just Maybe...

Then again, if Renteria goes o-5 and leaves another 8 on base Tuesday, I'll be the voice you heard screaming "you're a bum" in the background of the Philly broadcast.

Feeling a sweep, really needing a sweep

2 Down, 1 to go... that is, in this series...

Entering the final days of August, the Giants are in an all important position today facing the Colorado Rockies. Win and sweep the 3 game series, and close the gap to a tie in the Wildcard race, or lose and fall 2 games back entering the final month of the season.

At 15-12, the Giants have already secured a winning month, but 16-12 would look soooo much better.

With only 31 games left next month, a 2 game deficit isn't impossible, there's plenty of time, but an even playing field is such a better way to go about it. The Giants have a tougher month than the Rockies, especially at the beginning.

The Giants start with 3 in Philly, then 3 in Milwaukee before coming home for 3 against S.D., 3 with LAD, then the final 3 against CO. Back on a road trip is in LA for 3, then in Arizona for 3, and they finish at home against the Cubbies for 4 and the DBacks for 3, then the final, most likely deciding series in S.D. for 3.

All the more important the Giants put a stamp on this series today. Let the Rockies know they really weren't affected by that 14 game disaster the other day and as the Giants are advertising...they really are "in this thing".

Matt Cain goes today and after Barry Zito's masterpiece last night, the crowd should be energized and Cain will be feeling it. If the Giants can score more than 1 run, it may just be enough, but lets hope they make things a bit easier on Cain.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

What in hum-baby's name himself was Bochy doing?


My hangover still hasn't cleared yet and I didn't even drink last night.

I feel like kinda like I was betrayed by my best friend and a need a few days away to eveluate our friendship. Problem is, I was on FUCKING vacation when it happened. How do I escape from that.

What I really need right now is Agent K or Agent J to come hit me up with one of them "Neuralyzers" so I can just forget yesterday ever happened because that's the only way. My mother always said, "even if you can't forget, you can always forgive." Well Mom, I guess we are gonna see if you're right this time...

Last nights debacle in the 14th left me sour, pissed, and down right angry. Way to screw up a perfectly good trip up the mendocino coast Bochy! My wife's birthday will now forever be mired with the nasty taste of a Ryan Spilbourghs swift punch to the gut. Justin Miller & Merkin Valdez are moving dangerously close to Felix Rodriguez/Livan Hernandez/Solomon Torres lore with that performance.

I am speechless and I assume you are as well... Actually, I'm not speechless at all but for the sake of anyone reading past this line, I'm pretending i'm speechless for now.

Fuck it...

I am so sick and tired of Bochy's "style" right now. If anyone, ANYONE AT ALL, on the mother f-in Giants knew how to bunt, this game would have been over ohh, i don't know, how about anyone number of innings:

How about Juan Uribe in the 8th? coulda got Randy Winn to 3rd with two outs for Bengie Molina.

Edgar Renteria in the ninth? IN THE NINTH INNING OF A TIE BALLGAME! No, it absolutely would not make sense to try to move a LEADOFF DOUBLE to third base. Nor would it make sense to try it one batter later when Aaron ( I don't have a sacrifice AB yet this season) Rowand comes to the plate with one out.

No, the best time to always try is when you have YOUR CLOSER BUNTING FOR THE FIRST TIME IN HIS LIFE TO MOVE A RUNNER TO SECOND, WHO HAPPENS TO BE YOUR ACE PITCHER PINCH RUNNING, BECAUSE HE REALLY IS EXPERIENCED AT BASE RUNNING, WITH ONE OUT. Why one out you ask? Because Boch didn't think it was the smart move one batter before... I mean, really, like, who bunts a runner over with no outs in the 11th inning of a tie game when you are on the road? I mean, come on...

OK, I'm gonna end the ranting there for today. It's gonna be a long last month and a week and I need to concentrate on something more positive right now...Like which Whisky I drink tonight as I watch the Giants game cause I can't do it sober again.

God help us if we lose the Playoff race by one game to Colorado

Thursday, August 20, 2009

An Ace named Barry

Huh? Did I just get confused with Barry Bonds? Certainly I can't be referring to Barry Zito! Actually, Yes, I am...Kind of.

Don't let me confuse you to much, because no one is going to argue Zito's the actual ace of a staff that has Tim Lincecum or Matt Cain. But I do give him a leg up on Bobby Howry. But the fact you cannot argue with is the end production.

Since the All Star break, Barry Zito has been the Ace of the team. The anchor, the guy who's saved the back half of the season by getting the team a win sandwiched between a few bad starts by Cain & Lincecum.

Zito has actually always been a second half guy. We've heard it before, but that's because it's just true!

Zito's career splits can be found here: Some notables...
1st half: 58-66, 4.23 ERA, 1.37 WHIP, 6.6 K/9, 1.75 K/BB
2nd half: 73-38, 3.42 ERA, 1.21 WHIP, 6.8 K/9, 1.91 K/BB

In 7 starts since the mid summer classic, would you believe his 2.36 ERA is better than both Timmy & Matt? They have a 2.49 & 2.78 ERA in that same span. How about the fact that Zito has more strike outs than Cain (although Cain has 1 less start and should surpass him today) with 34-32. Barry's 3 wins are 1 more than both of them and his WHIP of 1.10 is very close.

If it had only been a few starts, you might be able to brush it off but 7 is on a freakin roll. Imagine what kind of damage the Giants can do in a 7 game series with a rotation whereas so many of them had been so dominant leading into the playoffs...And don't forget about Jonathan Sanchez!

Since the break, here is how the four line up:
Lincecum- 2-1, ERA-2.49, WHIP-1.01, BAA-.209, K/BB-4.80, BB/9-2.13, K/9-10.30
Cain- 2-2, ERA-2.78, WHIP-0.93, BAA-.200, K/BB-3.10, BB/9-1.99, K/9-6.15
Zito- 3-2, ERA-2.36, WHIP-1.10, BAA-.227, K/BB-2.80, BB/9-2.57, K/9-7.29
Sanchez- 2-2, ERA-4.04, WHIP-1.21, BAA-.202, K/BB-2.30, BB/9-4.54, K/9-10.35

Looks pretty good to me...Now if they can just get to October...

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

2009 Draft signings

The deadline has passed for teams to ink their 2009 first year player daft picks and the Giants seemed to do well this year at least getting their players under contract. The top 17 picks all signed and only 8 of the top 41 decided to pursue other avenues this year. Most importantly, the Giants were able to agree to terms with their overall top pick, P Zack Wheeler, at the last minute.

Signing Wheeler became even more important after 2 recent trades that brought the team AllStar second baseman Freddie Sanchez and first baseman Ryan Garko because in those deals, the Giants traded away the organizations #2 & #5 pitching prospects. Wheeler himself should immediately slot into the #2 or #3 pitching prospect. He isn't expected to make his professional debut in the minors until 2010 and by that time, Madison Bumgarner potentially could be challenging for an open major league rotation spot so Wheeler might just be the top dog.

Outside of Wheeler, the Giants had other very important signings, Here's the complete rundown:
1-Zack Wheeler, RHP
2-Tommy Joseph, C
3-Christopher Dominguez, 3B
4-Jason Stoffel, RHP
5-Brandon Belt, 1B
6-Matthew Graham, RHP
7-Nick Liles, 2B
8-Karl Benusa, CF
9-Evan Crawford, CF
10-Jeremy Toole, RHP
11-John Eshleman, SS
12-Christopher Heston, RHP
13-Shawn Sanford, RHP
14-Brian Salsbury, RHP
15-Kyle Vasquez, RHP
16-Ryan Cavan, SS
17-Christopher Gloor, LHP
19-Jason Walls, RHP
22-Andrew Biery, 3B
24-Alexander Berg, C
25-Steven Rogers, RHP
26-Luis Munoz, CF
27-Kyle Mach, 3B
30-Craig Wescott, RHP
32-Luke Andrews, 1B
33-Jake Dunning, RHP
35-Brandon Graves, LHP
36-Ryan Scoma, RF
37-Ryan Lollis, RF
38-Addison Proszek, RHP
39-Kyle Henson, C
40-Jonathan White, LF
41-Gary Moran, RHP
46-Juan Martinez, SS
50-Kaohi Downing, RHP

All told, the Giants drafted & signed 15-RHP, 3-LHP, 3-C, 2-1B, 1-2B, 3-SS, 3-3B, 1-LF, 2-CF, & 2-RF. Because they did signed everyone but #18 in the top 20, focus won't be on who they failed to sign, but maybe on who they failed to draft or who they actually did draft.

It appears at the onset, that the Giants drafted the best available player most of the way through with some critics debate as to whether Wheeler was the best available. The line their looks to be so thin that I would trust Sabean's judgement when it comes to talent scouting within the ranks of high school & college Pitchers.

It's the 2nd round that some questioned since the team took super prospect C Buster Posey last season, so why did they take a C here? Tommy Joseph wasn't always a C and in fact just recently focused on it. It's his bat they like as Joseph is a pure hitter. Teams always find a home for a bat, look at Pablo Sandoval. Plus, there is no guarantee Posey is a career catcher. Injuries or the athletic ability to play elsewhere can change his direction. Look at Mike Piazza or more appropriate comparison is Craig Biggio.

Others to watch, 3rd round pick Chris Dominguez is already powering through low-A ball with 8 homeruns since July 1. In fact, the roster is already littered with over achieving 2009 draft picks. Drew Biery is batting .361/.426/.556/.983 with 13 doubles & 6 HR's. John Eshleman, Ryan Lollis, & Evan Crawford (you can follow him on twitter) all have OPS hanging around .800. Chris Gloor is dominating as both a starter and reliever posting a 5-0 record with a 1.78 ERA, 1.09 WHIP, & 33 SO's in 30 inn. Jeremy Toole & Kyle Vasquez are also excelling and a Pitcher to really keep your eye on, 4th round pick Jason Stoffel has just begun throwing. He's unscored upon through his first 3 innings with 5 K's.

Two others of note to watch who have yet to begin play: 5th round pick Brandon Belt should be exciting as he brings the classic first baseman makeup with solid hitting and above average power. 6th round pick Matthew Graham is a RHP to watch. He's young, just out of H.S. and fell farther in the draft than expected due to sign-ability concerns. His Fastball is plus and some suggest he could be the best player out of this draft class in the end, but is VERY raw right now.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

I really don't like the Dodgers!

I hate the Dodgers.

Do you hate the Dodgers too?

Hate is such a strong word tossed around recklessly among today's generation, whether it be the youth, adults, or elderly. We are all guilty. My parents tried to raise me to look past hate...

Except ONLY in the case of the Dodgers.

To understand where hate comes from, sometimes you just have to look back in time.

For me, it started before I was even born. My father would listen to Giants games and preach distaste of the Dodgers to me through my mothers belly.

The year I was born, the Dodgers lost the World Series. Only better way to start my baseball life would have been a Giants victory in the World Series.

My first words were actually "ti Tate ta Todgers" mother now says "you should have seen your fathers smile."

At 3, my father would read me bed time stories like "the Baby Bull and the three headed Campinella", "the Say Hey Kid saves the Bay from the Evil forces of the Drysdales", and "look out below, Jabba the Tommy's coming to town."

By 5, my dad took me to my first Giants/Dodgers game. I learned first hand bad names like Garvey, Sax, Guerrero, Valenzuela, & Welch.

My first year in T-Ball, I played on the Brewers and our coach taught us two post game celebrations. "2,4,6,8, who do we appriciate... (insert team name)" and 1,2,3,4, the Dodgers suck forever more"

At 7, my father bought me my favorite shirt. One I wish I still had, one I will have again, and one for which epitomises for which I stand on this very subject. I wore it often and I wore it proud. In Orange and Black, it simply stated "Duck the Fodgers"

At 9, I was drafted to my first little league team, unfortunately it was the Dodgers. I wanted to scream. My father said "don't cry, only Dodgers cry." So instead we formed a plan. My agent (dad) decided it was best for me to hold out through spring practice and see if I could force a trade. The GM (my ex-friends dad) was pissed and refused a trade, so I did the only honorable thing... played the year out in the minors.

At 10, I was drafted to the Expos and we beat the shit out of the Dodgers every game and chanted our to our hearts content.

At 11, I wanted to break both Kirk Gibson's other leg.

At 12, I called Tommy Lasorda a fat ass from the stands... It felt great. He called me a fat kid... that didn't feel so good but the hatred intensified.

At 14, Brett Butler broke my heart...HOW COULD YOU GO PLAY THERE TRAITOR

Jose Offerman's defense made me smile for half a decade until I was 18.

My 19th birthday I was treated to Jabba's retirement... hopes and dreams of the franchise tail spinning into the abyss were rampant

At 21, I was Orel Heirshisher threw the galaxy out of whack. It felt like french kissing my sister seeing him take the hill in Orange & Black. (thank god I don't have a sister eh? you'd all be really freaked right now)

I blame 2002 on the Dodgers cause FUCKING MIKE SCIOSCIA made the moves to get the better of FUCKING DUSTY BAKER and his fucking dumbass moves in game 6 and 7.

The next 10 years I enjoyed the hell out of watching Barry Bonds launch ball after ball out of the yard off them. I don't care how many suppliments he was taking, they were all doing it. It was an even playing field, it's just that we had the best and the Dodgers fans hated it.

I hated Eric Gagne, but loved Bonds duels with him.

I toasted Gagne when he was busted for cheating... That was a great beer...

Manny Ramirez went from bad to worse last year but gave me the best early season present I could ask for this year with his 50 game break. It's funny how the tables can turn...although OUR Barry (so called cheater) Bonds was never actually caught in a drug test. Manny's an idiot!!!

So now you know my story. I fucking hate the Dodgers and it's in my Genes. What's your story?

{some of these stories may have been slightly blemished, twisted, or complete blatant lies, but you get the point...who really cares...I hate the Dodgers}


Monday, August 10, 2009

Big Series, Giants/Dodgers matchup

Coming into this season, most so called "experts" picked the Giants to finish between last and might as well be last in the "miserable" NL West and the Dodgers with Manny Ramirez to run away with the Division. Much has happened between then and now but one thing hasn't changed much... The Dodgers are still supposed to run away with things.

It's now August 10th and the Giants are 61-50, 11 games over .500, and only 5 1/2 games back of the mighty Dodgers. Plus they own a tie atop the Wildcard standings with the Rockies.

With the complete lack of offense and only 2 "solid starters" it's apparently a wonder the Giants are this close to the chosen team. What with the rash of injuries they've had, and inconsistent play, the Dodgers ought to be 15 games ahead.

But they're not!

Think back to May 8th when the Ramirez story broke. The Giants were 6 games back of the baby blue boys when the 50 game suspension took effect. The Dodgers extended their lead to 8 games by early July when ManRoid returned. At the most since then, they got out to an 11 game lead. But somehow, some way, the Giants are only 5.5 back today.

Closer than in early May.

The Dodgers are suffering, have a sputtering offense (although capable of scoring MANY runs), inconsistent relief, and a VERY injured pitching staff. Perfect timing for a team 5.5 games back to overcome that deficit. Especially if they play three games against each other.

The Giants throw out Jonathan Sanchez, Joe Martinez, and Tim Lincecum vs, Hiroki Kuroda, Randy Wolf, and PTBN (Chad Billingsly's day but he's nursing a sore hammy). Advantage Giants. The key will be Martinez overcoming his emotions, first start at home.

A three game sweep sends the league a serious message. A three game sweep puts the Giants 2.5 games back of the Reigning NL West Chumps with 6 more head to head games.

First things first, one game at a time.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Worst game ever? hopefully we never see worse

Of all the games to miss, why couldn't it have been last night's...Dammit!!!

Damn my fascination with this team. Why couldn't I have just taken the night off like I was supposed to...It's Timmy's fault. If he hadn't have been pitching, I wouldn't have rushed home from Tahoe to catch the game in time...

At least I took my wife's advice and didn't place a bet on that game. Head's would certainly be rolling least mine would...

That Game was utterly disgusting!

It wasn't too bad seeing the Franchise struggle a bit, even though he was able to only allow 1 runner per inning. His K total was down and his pitch count was up. But when the King Eugenio gave him a 4-2 lead in the fifth, I was certain this game was over.

I mean, the Giants were 41-11 in games they score 4 or more runs this season...and Timmy was still pitching...

Then they got that much needed insurance run to make the game 5-3 in the 7th. It had to be over. At 36-4 when scoring 5 or more runs...This game was locked up.

Time to hand it over to our Bullpen! Rely on the defense! I recipe that has worked so well this season. But not last night.

Jeremy Affeldt got one batter...Walk...who later scored

Sergio Romo couldn't finish of the out, a hit and a walk... who would later score.

Brian Wilson came in needing a 5 out save with the bases loaded...That's a tough call considering he has a tough time with 3 out saves and the bases clear half the time... 2 runs score, tie game.

At least Wilson had a chance at 9th inning redemption. Got time to clear his head and refocus...Not really. Wilson started off the 9th with frustration, only getting 1 out while getting more pissed at a few bad calls by the plate ump... Game over!!!

Brandon Medders had to finish the inning off. The defense fell apart. 3 consecutive walks. 5 Errors.

Worst game I've watched since T-Ball... Maybe worse.

I guess there's a reason you are 0-14, 324 when you give up 7 runs in the last 2 innings

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Joe Martinez back in action

Don't call it a failed expirement, Ryan Sadowski just pitched well above expectations AND above anything he put together in the lower minors. He was bound to hit some struggles eventually. Think back to spring training; Sadowski wasn't ever mentioned as a guy to be this years long reliever, nevertheless the teams fifth starter.

Joe Martinez won that job. Kevin Pucetas was a close second. Justin Miller and Brandon Medders were the surprises in the pen. Even free agent lefty specialist was touted as a potential starting candidate (although that was before he spent 28 scoreless innings pushing Brian Wilson in the closers role). In the end, it was always supposed to be Martinez.

After 4 solid seasons in the minors, with steady improvement each year, Martinez headed into last offseason with the expectation he could push for a roster spot. He won it and looked like he would excel early.

Spring training went very well as he solidified his opening day roster spot as the long man.

Martinez saw his first action opening day as he came in behind a struggling Tim Lincecum shut down the opposition and take the win himself.

About a week later in just his second appearance of the season, pitching to Mike Cameron of the Milwaukee Brewers, Martinez took a lined shot off his head... The result was multiple skull fractures and a very long road to recovery.

Joe has been in Triple-A Fresno for month now rehabbing. In his 5 starts, he has not only put up good numbers, but he's pitching with confidence. More importantly, he's pitching without fear. He's earned his trip back to the bay, with or without Ryan Sadowski's return flight to earth.

Today Joe Martinez will take the ball in his first professional start. Expectations aside, it'll be great to see this comeback complete. For him, for his teamates, for us fans. For those who watched, or for those who heard...that skull crack, it's something you never forget. 

I'm watching today in anticipation of a guy who I hope can be the next great pitcher to be developed out of the Giants system. But I'm also watching in anticipation of seeing a guy who is about to overcome more adversity than mere mortal ballplayers can fathom. To see him conquer any deamons he might have will be special in it's own right.


Friday, July 31, 2009

Possible Giants targets

With less than 12 hours to go before the July 31st non waiver trade deadline passes, I don't expect we'll see additional Giants moves but it is certainly possible. The Giants  have made the decision to go for it this season yet set themselves up for the future somewhat. The team still has needs and can upgrade in a few areas so expect that Brian Sabean will be combing every opportunity until 1600 EDT today. 

The team could look to upgrade a back of the rotation starter and another bat, likely a LF but they won't be very picky. Here is a short list of who they are likely targeting:

Mark Teahan- the Royals infielder can play nearly anywhere... Literally. 2B, 3B, 1B, LF, RF. He has shown good power over the years but has been inconsistent offensively. He would likely be a platoon guy similar to what they expected from Frandsen, but not have an established position on this team. He's controllable for one more season and is a local CA guy out of Redlands. This season, Teahan is hitting .290/.344/.450/.794 with 9 homeruns. Teahan is not likely to slip through waivers in August 

Carl Crawford- Crawford is one of the games most underated superstars and not likely to be moved. With one more very affordable team option, Crawford makes sense to keep for the Rays except this may be the best time to capitalize on his value. He's the perfect fit to AT&T park and quite possibly could reach 25-30 triples playing there. No one in the league is better at stealingbases currently than Crawford and his high OBP is just what the Giants need. The Rays won't become sellers this season, but have indicated they might move him if it involved getting something of greater need back for this years playoff run do to clear money, sat Roy Halladay. Crawford is not likely to clear waivers in August. 

Josh Willingham- Willingham has really gotten hot recently and may have just played himself into staying on the Nationals for years to come but just last week they were still talking about him. He has the power potential to hit 30 homeruns but is somewhat limited in his dimensions offensively. Willingham is team controllable for a few more seasons and is cheap now. One factor against him is he's already 30 si this could be the ideal sell high time... Hry wait, Sabean loves to buy high, who needs match dot com when you have this? He could be the power bat the Giants want in LF this season but as the Nats GM Frank Rizzo has made aware, he won't come cheap. They wanted Jonathan Sanchez for Nick Johnson! What do you think they'd want for Willingham... Matt Cain???? No way he slips through waivers.

Jermaine Dye- The white Sox think they are still in the race so GM Kenny Williams hasn't made Dye available yet, but it could come soon. Dye would give the Giants that natural cleanup hitter they long for and positionally fits great. Another NorCal guy, he would be very familiar here. For an aging OF with questionable knees and a rather large 2010 salary, there is very little question he slips through waivers so don't worry about him. The Giants still have a month. 

Carlos Lee- Lee is a bit of an enigma here. The OF spurred the Giants a few years ago to sign for less with the Astros for their Hitters park and has not even lived up to that contract. He's owed a lot ($56 million more thru 2012 & full NTC) for a long time still, but if you compare him to our other two deals that way(Zito/Rowand) his numbers look good...and technically Sabean didn't give him that contract so he can't take fault right? On one hand, he didn't want to come here anyways so why should we want him. On the other, well, I still don't want him but the 'Stros may pick up some coin on him and it won't take a buster/Madison/angel to get him... And he should clear waivers over and over.

Jon Garland- This DBacks starter has been consistent if anything else recently. nothing spectacular or over powering but he'll give at least the quality innings Zito has. That's pretty good if you're looking to improve a back end spot. He might just be the difference in 2 more wins the last two months. 2 wins is 2 wins. He has a mutual 2010 option but not so favorable wording regarding trading him this season. If he is, the acquiring team cannot offer arb if he's a type A FA. Garland is questionable but likely to clear waivers.

Jarrod Washburn- This Seattle starter is having a renaissance season perfectly timed with his walk year. He is more of a number 3 starter than a back end guy but is owed a good chunk of change still and is likely to clear waivers. The problem is he's likely to garner type A FA status so the Mariners are going to push for 2 quality prospects back even though the likelyhood they extend arbitration in the first place is very low.

Brian Bannister- This Royals pitcher is still fairly young and controllable for 2 more seasons so it would be likely the Royals look for a sweet return on Bannister. He's another quality three guy and doesn't cost much at all. He is not likely to clear waivers in August.

One thing to keep in mind: With this economy, this "trade deadline" will be as loose as ever and more players than ever before should slip through waivers. The August deadline should be busier than July's. Expect the Giants to deal again...

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Giants acquire Freddie Sanchez for Tim Alderson

The Giants announced last night another trade, acquiring Pirates All
Star second baseman Freddie Sanchez for AA pitcher Tim Alderson.

Alderson was one of the Giants top 4 (suposedly) untouchable prospects
with a live arm and great command. He has been projected to be a solid
#2 starter. Many have envisioned a "dream rotation" of Lincecum, Cain,
Bumgarner, & Alderson leading the Giants for years to come, comparing
to the great Braves staff if the 90's. It's hard to compare prospects
though until they reach the show.

Baesball America had Alderson ranked as the midseason #26 prospect in
baseball. Others all had him listed in the top 50. He was #4 in the
Giants farm system and will move up to #1, maybe #2 behind Pedro
Alverez, in the Pirates farm.

Sanchez brings stability to a shaky second base this season and a
consistent #2 hitter. Sanchez doesn't hit for power but high average
and on base % he excels in. Sanchez has an $8 million option for 2010
that vests at 600 PA's or becomes a club option if not. Either way,
you can count on the Giants picking it up and looking to extend him
another 2 years this offseason.

This is a high price to pay for Sanchez, but if the Giants reach the
playoffs this season this deal will look better. If they reach the
world series, Sabean will be lauded.

In the end though, it will be difficult to determine how good or bad
this trade was until a few years have gone by. Alderson will likely
make his MLB debut at some point next season for the Pirates, whereas
it wasn't likely until 2011 with San Francisco. If he starts his
career off strongly, Sabean once again will have an earful of critics.

My opinion: I was in favor of and was hoping the Giants would go after
Sanchez, but not to this extent. Many of the 2B prospects didn't get a
fair shake this season &/or are still very young and were pushed to
hard to fast. The organization decided to go all in on 2009, a move
that is hard to argue with given the position the team has put
themselves in. Freddie Sanchez will make a lot of fans in San
Francisco as long as they accept he won't bring the power bat they
desire, and he should be here for years to come.

Last but not least, this will likely spell the end of the Kevin
Frandsen era in S.F. and he will be gone by next season, if not
sooner. Matt Downs still has time in the organization to play himself
into a role here. Emmanuel Burriss, once healthy from his broken foot,
will have his focus shifted back to SS, where the team will have thru
the end of next season to see if he can take over for Edgar Renteria
in 2011, a much healthier time-line for him offensively given his age
of 22 now.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Breaking down the Garko trade

"Sometimes the best deal you make is the one you don't"

Who ever said that doesn't know what they are talking about, trades are fun when you think they are going to work in your favor or you THINK that your team won... Oh wait, I've been saying that for months.

Well, I didn't mean it in this case. This time, the Giants have finally made a trade that looks great on first impressions. The Giants acquired 1B/OF Ryan Garko from the Cleveland Indians for minor league (A) P Scott Barnes. On second impression, I still like it.

Now, if Scott Barnes turns into Francisco Liriano or Joe Nathan, then for the record I HATE THIS DEAL. I thought it was dumb from the beginning and Sabean needs to be fired... But for now, I think the Giants got a great return.

Garko, 28, is a Stanford product so he's got to be smart right? Isn't that enough? No, OK, well we do have a ton of Cal Bear fans so we'll leave that one alone. He was a 3rd round draft pick by Cleveland in 2003, made his major league debut in 2005 but only played one game. Garko then played 50 in 2006 and became a regular for the Indians over the last three seasons. Regular? kind of. He's been playing mostly 1B and DH over his career, with some limited LF/RF this season... and it hasn't actually been everyday. Garko has about 100 less plate appearances than Giants regulars Winn, Sandoval, Renteria, Rowand, & Molina so his numbers may look smaller than they can be.

He has demonstrated decent power over the last 3 seasons, with a high of 21 and 53 career. Garko may never be that perennial 30 home run, 100 RBI guy, but 25/90 isn't that far fetched. He's just entering his prime and is coming to a home park that actually suits a right handed pull hitter very well. Garko is a pull to middle hitter that nearly equally hits line drives, fly balls, and ground balls

More so than his power is his all around bat. Garko has a career line of .283/.355/.450/.805. That .805 OPS isn't superstar, but it is good. It's also better than the career average of every single Giant except Pablo Sandoval. It's not just the career line though, this season he's at .285/.362/.464/.826. Again, better than all the current Giants except Sandoval.

Garko excels against lefties, this season batting .333 with a .960 OPS. He takes a few more pitches than we're used to and can hit in the clutch. In 61 AB's this season with RISP, he has 4 doubles, 4 HR, 27 RBI, and is batting .295/.408/.557/.965.

Garko is also under team control for 3 more seasons as he enters arbitration for the first time this offseason. He makes 450K this season but should get a nice bumb this offseason in the 1 to 2 million range.

Comparable ball players to Garko on Baseball Reference are James Loney, Conor Jackson, Casey Kotchman, and none other than our very own JT Snow. Not bad company.

Barnes is a fair price to pay. It's unforunate to see him go as he is likely to be a very quality to good major league pitcher. Barnes problem is the depth within the organization, exactly the reason why he was expendable. Baseball America rated him the Giants preseason #9 prospect within the farm system. Currenty he was buried behind Madison Bumgarner, Tim Alderson, Henry Sosa, Kevin Pucetas, Jonathan Sanchez, Ryan Sadowski, Joe Martinez among others. Barnes is still 2 years plus away from making the bigs but when he does, he's probably more like the 5th best pitcher in the farm system.

Barnes is having an excellent season at A San Jose, posting a 12-3 record with a 2.85 ERA & 1.13 WHIP. He certainly has the chance to make the Giants look bad 5 years from now, but in the end, this should be a good move for both teams. The Giants don't lose their best prospects and still have depth while improving their offense and the Indians clear a spot for one of their top prospects in Matt LaPorta while getting a likely 3rd starter in a few years.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

How the Hell did they ever win three?

Right about now, the San Francisco Giants are boarding a plane inbound for home, and they better be thanking their lucky stars that they are only 2 games behind the Colorado Rockies in the wildcard race.

The Giants just finished a miserable (I'm trying hard not to use the adjectives I'm thinking) road trip; 10 games of 3-7 ball.... THREE And Freakin SEVEN!!!!!!

I'd love to blame it on needing days off, maybe have Crash Davis get them a rain delay, but the All Star Break preceded this...disaster. So we'll give Lincecum & Cain a pass, but the rest of them....

Actually, when you look back at it, disaster is too harsh. I mean, they did win 3 games. 3 games is a mind blowing success; it should have been 1 or 2.

Over the last 10 days, the pitching sucked, the defense blew(well, with the exception of Andres, Pablo, & Nate) and the offense...who are we kidding. What offense?

The Giants were outscored 44-23 on the trip. The batted .217, had an OBP of .254, slugged .292... That's an OPS of .546 

2.3 R/G, 50 LOB, batted 12-67 with RISP... That's .179

They had 17 doubles (6 in one game), 3 triples, 3 SB, 17 BB's, and ONE measly HOMERUN

The team only had 3 guys with an OPS over .710 I'll give you 20 guesses and I bet you wouldn't get the order right. (since I don't want to lose another bet, I'm just going to give you the answer now) 

3- Nate Schierholtz- .333/.333/.485/.818
2- Matt Cain- .333/.333/.500/.833
1- Freddie Lewis- .333/.454/.500/.954

In case you were wondering how some of your favorites fared, here you go:

Winn- .268/.318/.390/.708
Renteria- .192/.222/.231/.453
Uribe- .187/.212/.281/.493
Sandoval- .244/.279/.341/.620
Ishikawa- .280/.280/.280/.560
Molina- .214/.290/.250/.540
Downs- sorry, I couldn't bring myself to crusify him

But don't fret, it wasn't all the offense; although 2.3 runs is enough to make any self respectng pitcher shut down. Still, those guys have a job to do and all of them not named Matt Cain or Jeremy Affeldt just didn't help matters

Going into the All Star break, the entire staff was 1st or 2nd in every category frm CG's to No-Hitters, ERA to Shut Outs, Strike outs to girls phone numbers... Heck these guys were so good, even the opponents started sending notes via courier to the boys, looking for a night out. Notthis trip though.

The team ERA this trip was 4.40, WHIP- 1.375, K/9- 7.97, BB/9- 4.09, & K/BB- 1.95

The bullpen had it rough: ERA- 4.02, WHIP- 1.44, K/9- 5.46,  BB/9- 4.31, & K/BB- 1.26

If not for Matt Cain's 1.28 ERA, WHIP- 1.00, K/9- 8.36, BB/9- 3.85, & 2.16 K/BB while leading the Giants to 2 wins and Jeremy Affeldt keeping his scorless streak going(now the best in 40 years for a reliever) at 27...this teamwould have been 1-9

Indeed these guys were lucky to get three wins. If they want to stay together, they had better find their mojo quick. With the trade deadline looming, Sabean undoubtedly is burning the midnight oil looking for help. Is is needed, Yes, but that is another topic. For now, these guys are glad to be home

By the way... Is it "Sad & Pathetic" or just another "Showcase of his talent" that Matt Cain currently sits 2nd on the Giants with his current active hit streak at 2 Games? 

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

A Giant reason to win tonight

Tim Lincecum is taking the ball tonight & the Giants haven't needed a win this bad in a while. Not since the now infamous 6 game road trip thru San Diego & Seattle have the Giants looked this bad. At least then, the Giants were holding opponents to a 2-1 score.

Gone are the days of a 1-2 loss. The Giants must have gotten tired of those close losses because after a couple of them in Pitt(1-2, 0-2), they decided to give up a boat load of runs, 3-8 & 1-8 in the last two. The offense has just been absent since the All Star break.

At 1-4 in their last 5 games, the offense has been nothing short of anemic. They are:
35-180 (.194 BA), .236 OBP, .311 SLG, .547 OPS...9 Runs (1.8 R/G), 8 RBI, 9 BB, 47 K's (9.4/G), 9 Doubles (6 of them in the lone win), 1 Triple, 0 (ZERO) Homeruns, 2 SB's, 34 LOB, & 5-32 with RISP (.156)

Pretty sad considering...well, it's just sad. The Giants have never been accused of being an offensive threat, but this awful. With only 9 days remaining before the non-waiver trade deadline expires, the Giants NEED to find some offense and quick. It's not that they may fall out of contention, their pitching staff will always keep them close...It's not that some players may be on the chopping block, most have little value right now...It's that GM Brian Sabean may feel more pressure to deal some top talent that may cripple the franchise for years to come, just so he can feel better about the teams chances at the wild card in 2009.

Don't get me wrong, if the right deal were to fall to our laps, I would jump on it like Amy G on Jonathan Sanchez post No-Hitter. But that is for the right deal. Your not gonna pry Buster Posey out of my cold dead hands, nor am I "cool" to the idea of relinquishing my grasp on future man crush Madison Bumgarner, but some others aren't completely untouchable. It's just that I would require a deal that no one would meet.

I don't want to see Matt Holliday in a Giants uniform for 2 months at the price of Thomas Neal & Henry Sosa. You can keep your Freddie Sanchez for $8 million next year if you think I'm giving up Jonathan Sanchez, and there is NO WAY I'm sending Tim Alderson to Texas for Hank Blaylock...

But you offer up Roy Halladay, David Wright, Ryan Braun, Jose Reyes, Nelson Cruz, among others and I'll open, my ears a little. The problem is now... Now the Giants can't hit... Now the Giants need offense... Now the Giants need to win to ease the pressure just a little on Sabean to pull that trigger because the longer he waits, the more the price will drop.

Come on Timmy, Now we need a win!!!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

A look back at the first half, by Cliff Claven

With the second half of the season about to begin tomorrow, teams licking their wounds, gathering game plans, rearranging the rotations, & taking a look back at what did and didn't work in the first half. While the Giants do the same, I thought we could take a look into what turned out to be a terrific first half by any standard and see if we can figure out what to expect in the second half:

I think we'll find some pleasant surprises here...

First the obvious, Team stuff...

-At 49-39, the Giants hold the 2nd best record in the NL and 5th best record in baseball. 88 games into the season is slightly over halfway, but that record puts them on pace for a finish at 90-72. That would be their best record since 2004.
-At .262, the team BA ranks 13/30 in MLB, & 5/16 in the NL
-At .393, the miserable team SLG ranks 26/30 in MLB, & 13/16 in the NL
-The OBP is even worse, at .312, it ranks 28/30 & 15/16
-Surprisingly, both the Mets & Pirates have hit fewer HR's thus far.
-The team is 20th in baseball in total SB's, 15th in doubles, and 8th in triples
-Not surprisingly, the Giants are LAST in BB's received.
-Even with fleet footed Bengie Molina, the Giants have grounded into the 7th fewest double plays this season in the MLB
-The Giants are second in baseball in Sac Fly's, so as much as we make about them not being able to get "that" run in, they are doing a fine job here
-The Giants lead all of baseball with a team ERA of 3.51, CG's with 8, SHO's with 13, OB% of .316 & K's with 694
-They are also 2nd overall in WHIP at 1.27, SLG% at .375, & BAA of .239
-The team fielding% is 10/30 at .985

...then the obvious, Player stuff...

-At 15 HR's, Pablo Sandoval ranks in a tie for 42nd overall, and 18th in the NL
-Andres Torres & Randy Winn are both tied for 18th in Triples with 4. That's good enough for 11th in the NL
-Sandoval is tied for 17th MLB & 7th NL in doubles with 24. Winn & Aaron Rowand are right behind him with 23
-Sandoval has 55 RBI, 31st MLB & 16th NL, but still 30 behind Albert Pujols
-At .964 OPS, Pablo is 8th in the NL & 13th in MLB
-Tim Lincecum & Matt Cain are second in baseball with 10 wins & CG's with 3
-Both Lincecum(2.33) & Cain(2.38) are 3rd & 4th respectively in ERA
-Brian Wilson leads (that's right, LEADS) the NL with 23 saves & is 2nd in MLB
-Timmy is tied for the MLB lead in K's with 149
-Jeremy Affeldt leads the majors in every one's favorite category, Holds, at 19

...and for the Cliff Claven stuff...

-The Giants are 18-7-4 in the series they've played thus far
-Giants are 13-5 when Matt Cain starts, 12-6 behind Tim Lincecum, 10-7 when Randy Johnson takes the ball, 8-10 behind Barry Zito days, 4-10 when Jonathan Sanchez toes the rubber, & 2-1 when Ryan Sadowski pitches.
-Jeremy Affeldt still holds the league lead with 21 2/3 innings scoreless innings
-Giants are 8-3 when Eli Whiteside catches with 4 team shutouts, & the No hitter
-3-0 when Pablo Sandoval catches, all Barry Zito starts
-BTW, when someone not named Bengie Molina is Barry Zito's battery-mate, the Giants are 5-2 in 2009...
-Giants are 46-10 when allowing 4 runs or less
-Giants are 41-16 when scoring 3 runs or more
-Matt Cain & Tim Lincecum have more hits than unlucky Kevin Frandsen
-They also are undefeated in games in which they haven't lost since 1883, tied for the longest active streak ever...OK, just checking you were still reading

It should be one hell of a second half & we'll be right here second guessing every move...stay tuned
-28-18 when Juan Uribe starts

Thursday, July 9, 2009

The Panda losses to the Flyin' Hawaiian...but there's still a chance!?!

So .326/.379/.560 is not good enough to get into the All Star game. At least not when it comes to fan votes in the Final Vote as Pablo Sandoval lost a seesaw battle with Shane Victorino today by apparently the slimmest of margins.
Giants fans came out in remarkable fashion to vote and certainly is wasn't lost on the national media as now "the Panda" is a household name...but still not an All Star. Yet he may still be...

Every year some player comes down with a last minute injury and is unable to attend the All Star game leaving the manager to pick one final player. It just so happens that this year there could be one.

N.Y. Mets outfielder Carlos Beltran is currently hurt & likely to be unable to attend the game. Given that Victorino is an OF, Phillies & NL All Star manager Charlie Manuel will not NEED to add an additional OF if/when he must fill that spot, so maybe Pablo can still slide in.

Here's an idea, why not put the pressure on him now? As fans we spent countless hours over the last 4 days voting for Pablo, why not spend a few more minutes to let the Phillies & major league baseball know you want Pablo in?

Here is the contact link for the Phillies contact center online...

Here is the contact link for the MLB contact center online...

Let's inundate them with emails. Tell them Pablo needs to be Beltran's replacement!!!

Last chance to get Pablo in!!!

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

What's up Doc? How about the Giants for a while!!!

Who's ready for a bold move?

Sometimes you have to get bold to win...

...and sometimes you get very bold!

Yesterday, Toronto Blue Jays GM J.P. Ricciardi made it known that he would "listen" to conversations about trading ace P Roy Halladay. Translation: Halladay is on the block! And he WILL be traded.

Why not to the Giants?

Ricciardi won't trade Halladay just to trade him, he doesn't need to. Doc is under contract through 2010 with a $14.25 & $15.75 Million price tag over the time period, plus a complete no trade clause. Ricciardi will need a very good haul to let go of Roy, but teams will line up to the offering table. All biases aside, Halladay is the best pitcher in baseball...

Before you jump my shit, I didn't say I'd trade Lincecum for him...and for the record, I'd rather have Timmy. But Doc is the best pitcher currently as he has been consistent at his level for a number of years. I do think Timmy's level is & will match his over time, but we've only had a very short sample size. Still, imagine the rotation...Lincecum, Halladay, Cain, Johnson, Zito... and the Giants are one of the few teams who actually have the resources, the chance to win, the ability to take on payroll, and the right division/league to match up with the Jays.

The Giants farm system is a deep as it has been in 30 years. The team is winning, therefor making money, and as reported yesterday by Hank Schulman, the Brass met to discuss finances... or more like adding payroll. Halladay has the No Trade thing & wants to play for a winner... it's been so long, I almost forgot I was talking about the Giants here... and the kicker, the Jays could trade Halladay to a place the only have to (possibly) see him once every 3 seasons.

Why, do you ask, should the Giants even consider this given the pitching in the minors & the current staff? Easy, because they can simply be the best team in baseball with the addition of Halladay. Naysayers would argue that the Giants should target a bat, but what the Giants really need is a superstar bat & one is just not available, so why not build up the current strength even more?

Halladay will command a deal similar, but possibly slightly better than both the DiamondBacks & Mariners gave up in the Dan Haren & Erik Bedard trades recently. Plus compared to what the White Sox were giving up in the failed Jake Peavy deal, it makes the Giants seem like they have the perfect pieces. A quick rundown on those trades:

-A's Dan Haren (+Conor Robertson) to the DBacks for OF Carlos Gonsalez, P Brett Anderson, 1B Chris Carter, OF Aaron Cunningham, P Dana Evaland, P Greg Smith (the DBacks 1, 3, 7, & 8 ranked prospects)
-Orioles Erik Bedard to the Mariners for OF Adam Jones, P George Sherrill, P Chris Tillman, P Cam Mickolio, & P Tony Butler
-(vetoed deal) Padres Jake Peavy to the White Sox for P Aaron Poreda, P Clayton Richard, P Lance Broadway, & one other unknown Pitcher

Haren was under team control for 3 more season at the time for only $16.25 million total, nearly all of Halladay's 2010 deal. Bedard was under team control for 2 more seasons but was still in arbitration. He's earned only $14.75 million over that time period, or Halladay's salary this season. Peavy, the better of the three, was to be traded for a lesser haul due to his salary (signed through 2013 for $69 million more)

Based on these deals, the Giants are looking at trading 4-5 players depending on the quality. Neither Lincecum nor Matt Cain would need to be involved. The Blue Jays reportedly would like a SS & Pitching back, but will take the best they can get. So who then would the Giants have to part with?

For starters, one of the two untouchable pitchers would have to go. That's either Madison Bumgarner or Tim Alderson. My guess is Sabean keeps Bumgarner, so Alderson becomes the focal point.

Second, the Jays would want a major league ready arm to possibly replace him, so Jonathan Sanchez is included.

The Jays want a SS, but will take the best they can get. I'm guessing one off the 40 man roster for potential. Probably one, maybe two of SS Brandon Crawford, OF Thomas Neal, 3B Conor Gillespie, 2B Matt Downs, 1B/OF John Bowker, 3B/1B/DH Jesus Guzman, SS Emmanual Burriss, or OF Roger Kieschnick

Lastly, they want another pitcher with potential, but it won't be a top prospect so look at P Kevin Pucetas, P Scott Barnes, or P Dan Otero

The Jays obviously see him as a "Type A" free agent after 2010, so they at least want the equivalent of two first round picks for him. Any combination of these Giants would give them that if it starts with Alderson & Sanchez.

Halladay for Alderson, Sanchez, Gillespie, & Otero or
Alderson, Sanchez, Crawford, Downs, & Barnes
Alderson, Sanchez, Guzman, & Neal

The more I look at it, the better it sounds. The Giants still keep Bumgarner, Buster Posey, & Angel Villalona. They still have depth, they still have trade bait for other pieces, they still have youth & a future...and they would have ONE HELL of a pitching staff.

In case for some reason you don't know Roy Halladay that well; he's a 32 year old, former Cy Young, 6 time All Star, who dominates in the AL East. In 11 seasons, he has 43 CG's & 12 Shut Outs (19 & 4 since 2007), 220-260 inning pitched/year.

Career: K/9-6.5, K/BB-3.17, BB/9-2.0, HR/9-0.7, WHIP-1.20, ERA+ 132, 141-68 record, ERA- 3.47

64-27, 3.08 ERA in 115 starts, 25 CG, 5 SHO, ERA+ 144, WHIP 1.101, H/9-8.4, HR/9-0.7, BB/9-1.5, K/9-6.3, K/BB-4.21

Here's a look at Lincecum in his career (since 2007):
34-12, 2.93 ERA in 74 starts, 5 CG, 3 SHO, ERA+ 149, WHIP 1.173, H/9-7.3, HR/9-0.5, BB/9-3.3, K/9-10.1, K/BB-3.11

So why not go bold? The Giants can make a serious run at the World Series title the next two season while not mortgaging the farm. They really wouldn't need to add too much offense if they don't allow any runs...

This year so far, the Giants have recorded 12 team Shut Outs, 10 times they have held teams to 1 run, 13 times to 2 runs, and 8 times to 3 runs. In those 43 games, they are 36-7. Logic says "No Shit Sherlock, if don't don't give up many runs you're gonna win more" but that's the point here. Halladay would basically replace Sanchez/Sadowski. In the 15 games, the Giants are 5-10 behind these two & opponents have scored more than 3 runs 8 times, all losses.

In 16 starts this season, Roy Halladay has only allowed more than 3 runs 4 times. Certainly the difference between them would result in another 4-6 second half wins, or the Wild card race. Then the post season would shape up with Barry Zito in the bullpen...

Time to get bold!!!

BTW, Vote for Pablo

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Vote for Pablo, Vote for Kinsler

By now we all know Pablo Sandoval is in the running for the final spot on the NL All Star team. Whether or not he should have already been included is moot at this point because, well, he's simply not there...yet...but we can change that...(VOTE FOR PABLO)

Sandoval is among 5 in the NL up for the vote. The others, well, I'm just not going to name them as to not confuse anyone still on the fence. (VOTE FOR PABLO) Time is running out though. With less than 2 days, 12 hours till polls close, Pablo has the early lead but word is teams fans from both leagues are starting to work together to get their man in, like those damn LA teams.

It's worked in the past: the last season saw Milwaukee & Tampa work together to get Corey Hart & Evan Longoria in. Before that, (2007) Okajima & Young, (2003) Varitek & Jenkins had their fans work together. So why can't we? (VOTE FOR PABLO)

We can!!! Actually, we already are. As word began to spread today that both Sandoval & Texas 2B Ian Kinsler were leading in the early poll, fans from both our teams began to work together. (VOTE FOR PABLO) On Twitter, all day long, fans have been pushing Vote for Sandoval, Vote for Kinsler. Lets keep it going.

This is our chance to be heard. Pablo is our guy. He deserves to be there. VOTE FOR PABLO