Friday, April 18, 2014

Down on the Farm: 4/17/2014

AAA  Fresno Grizzlies defeated the Sacramento River Cats 7-3:

Gary Brown(CF)- 1 for 4, BB, SB(4).  BA= .274.
Joe Panik(2B)- 3 for 4, 2B, SF.  BA= .271.
Andrew Susac(Catcher)- 2 for 3, 2B, HR(2), HBP.  BA= .333.
Juan Perez, Tony Abreu- 2 hits each.
Chris Heston(RHP)- 5.2 IP, 8 H, 3 R, 1 BB, 4 K's.  ERA= 4.60.
Dan Runzler(LHP)- 1.1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 1 K.  ERA= 1.13.
George Kontos(RHP)- 2 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 K.  ERA= 3.97.

If Brown averaged a hit, a walk and a SB for every 5 PA's, he'd a darn good leadoff batter!  Panik is heating up a bit.  Abreu played 3B in this one.

AA  Richmond Flying Squirrels edged the Altoona Curve 2-1:

Angel Villalona(1B)- 1 for 2, BB, SF.  BA= .311.
Clayton Blackburn(RHP)- 6.1 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 3 K, GO/AO= 10/3.  BA= 1.76.

In a very SSS, Angel Villalona seems to be starting to get the hang of situational hitting and a little plate discipline.  A nice Huddy type start for Blackburn.

High A  San Jose Giants crushed the Bakersfield Blaze 9-2:

Jesus Galindo(CF)- 3 for 5, 2B.  BA= .321.
Elliott Blair(LF)- 2 for 5, 2 HR(3).  BA= .357.
Mac Williamson(DH)- 2 for 4, 2B, HR(1).  BA= .235.
Brian Ragira(1B)- 3 for 5, 2B.  BA= .262.
Chuckie Jones(RF)- 2 for 4, BB.  BA= .205.
Blake Miller(3B)- 2 for 4, 2B, 3B.  BA= .194.
Martin Agosta(RHP)- 1.2 IP, 1 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 3 BB, 1 K.  ERA= 1.93.
Jeff Soptic(RHP)- 3.1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 1 K.  ERA= 2.79.

Nice game for the batters to pad their stat lines.  Agosta came out early due to pitch count considerations(32 in 1 inning).

Low A  Lexington Legends edged the Augusta Greenjackets 5-4:

Devin Harris(LF)- 2 for 3, HR(1), BB.  BA= .250.
Tyler Horan(RF)- 2 for 4, HR(1).  BA= .302.
Keury Mella(RHP)- 6 IP, 5 H, 2 R, 1 BB, 3 K's.  ERA= 2.16.

Horan and Harris are two hitters who might be able to help SJ if needed.  Why is Harris back in Augusta anyway?

Game Wrap 4/17/2014: Dodgers 2 Giants 1

Madison Bumgarner couldn't buy a strike and Hyun-Jin Ryu was back to keeping hitters off balance in a game that was not as close as the score would indicate.  Key Lines:

Hunter Pence- 2 for 3, BB, SB(3).  BA= .206.  Pence did not figure in any scoring, but hopefully this is a game to build on for him.

Ehire Adrianza- 3 for 3, 2B.  BA= .200.  Adrianza had half the Giants hits and their only XBH.  With Hicks struggling on D and due for a regression at the plate, maybe we see more of Adrianza in coming games?

Madison Bumgarner- 4.1 IP, 6 H, 2 R, 3 BB, 6 K, 99 pitches.  ERA= 3.48.  I did not see the game, but from the Extra Giants description of things, Bumgarner was squeezed by the ump the whole game with seemingly every close pitch called a ball.  Beyond that, I think it is safe to say Bummy has not quite hit his stride yet this season.

The Loss drops the Giants into a first place tie in the NL West with the Dodgers at 10-6.  The Rockies topped the Padres 3-1 and are in 3'rd place, 2.5 games back with the Padres in 4'th, 3 games back.  The D'Backs had a day off to regroup and are 7 games off the pace at 4-14.

The Giants now start a weekend series in San Diego with Matt Cain facing Tyson Ross in Game 1.  The Dodgers play the D'Backs this weekend in Los Angeles.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Game Wrap 4/16/2014: Giants 2 Dodgers 1

Ryan Vogelsong picked a great time to get his game together pitching 6 strong innings.  The Giants scratched out 2 runs in support and the bullpen shut it down the rest of the way.  Key Lines:

Pablo Sandoval- 2 for 4.  BA= .186.  The Dodgers walked Hunter Pence with 2 outs and a runner on 2B in the bottom of the 7'th so the LHP Howell could face the switch-hitting Sandoval from the right side.  Sandoval worked all offseason on his RH hitting and made them pay with the game-winning RBI single.

Buster Posey- 1 for 3, BB.  BA= .280.  Buster drove in the first Giants run of the game with a single up the middle.

Ryan Vogelsong- 6 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 2 BB, 2 K.  ERA= 5.40.  I thought Vogey might have turned a corner in the 3'rd inning of his last start against the Padres.  He continued the tougher pitching this game and came away deadlocked 1-1 with Paul Maholm after 6 IP.

Jean Machi- 1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K.  ERA= 1.29.  The Giants bullpen outpitched the Dodgers pen once again and Machi was a huge part of it tonight getting through the 7'th with the tie game intact.

Sergio Romo- 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 K, Save(4).  ERA= 1.29.  Romo struck out the LH hitting Adrian Gonzalez then Matt Kemp for the last 2 outs.  He had to be pumped!

Hanley Ramirez was struck on the hand by a Ryan Vogelsong 90 MPH fastball and came out of the game. X-rays were reportedly negative.

Vogey picked Matt Kemp off 1B in the 2'nd inning.  Mattingly appealed and the call on the field was upheld.  From the replays I saw, it looked like Kemp might have been safe, but they were definitely inconclusive so upholding the call on the field was the right call for the replay ump.

The Win improves the Giants record to 10-5 and gives them sole possession of first place in the NL West, 1 game ahead of the Dodgers who fall to 9-6.  The Padres defeated the Rockies 4-2 to take over 3'rd place, but remain 3 games behind the leaders.  The Rockies fall to 3.5 games behind in 4'th place.  The D'Backs lost again, this time to the Mets, 5-2.  Their record now stands at 4-14 and they are 7.5 games behind the Giants in last place.

Madison Bumgarner goes for the series sweep tomorrow facing Hyun-Jin Ryu.  The Giants are already guaranteed a series win and can come out of the series no worse than tied for first place.  I liken these first two games to trench warfare or "hugging the belt", both wartime metaphors for a strategy that neutralizes a seemingly superior opponent.  Love it!

Down on the Farm: 4/16/2014

AAA  Sacramento River Cats defeated the Fresno Grizzlies 4-2:

Tony Abreu(SS)- 2 for 4.  BA= .313.
Adam Duvall(3B)- 2 for 4.  BA= .304.
Chris Dominguez(RF)- 2 for 3, 2B.  BA= .364.
Jason Berken(RHP)- 6 IP, 5 H, 3 R, 2 ER, 1 BB, 3 K.  ERA= 3.38.
Erik Cordier(RHP)- 2 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 0 BB, 2 K's.  ERA= 6.75.

Cordier keeping his walks down.

AA Richmond Flying Squirrels beat the Reading Fightin' Phils 4-1:

Brett Krill(RF)- 2 for 4, 2B, SB(2).  BA= .314.
Matt Duffy(SS)- 1 for 3, BB, SB(1).  BA= .286.
Angel Villalona(1B)- 0 for 1, 2 BB, SF.  BA= .302.
Ty Blach(LHP)- 4.2 IP, 5 H, 1 R, 3 BB, 3 K.  ERA= 2.30
Cody Hall(RHP)- 1.1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 K.  ERA= 4.76.
Derek Law(RHP)- 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, Save(2).  ERA= 0.00.

Either opposing pitchers are working around Villalona or he is discovering plate discipline.  Derek Law continues be lights out.

High A  San Jose Giants edged the Inland Empire 66'ers 4-3:

Chris Lofton(CF)- 2 for 3, BB.  BA= .207.
Brian Ragira(1B)- 1 for 3, HR(1), BB.  BA= .216.
Joan Gregorio(RHP)- 5.1 IP, 5 H, 2 R, 2 BB, 11 K's.  ERA= 1.88.
Jorge Bucardo(RHP)- 1.2 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 3 K.  ERA= 2.25.
Steven Okert(LHP)- 1 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 0 BB, 3 K, Save(2).  ERA= 1.29.

Gregorio piles up the K's!

Low A  Savannah Sand Gnats beat the Augusta Greenjackets 4-1:

Devin Harris(LF)- 2 for 4, 2 2B.  BA= .190.
Luis Ysla(LHP)- 2.2 IP, 3 H, 4 R, 3 BB, 3 K.  ERA= 7.00.
Carlos Alvarado(RHP)- 3 IP, 1 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 3 K.  ERA= 0.00.
Jake Smith(RHP)- 3 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 2 K.  ERA= 0.00.

Ysla has not gotten traction on his season yet.

Down on the Farm: 4/15/2014

AAA  Sacramento River Cats defeated the Fresno Grizzlies 7-4:

Gary Brown(CF)- 0 for 2, 3 BB, SB(3).  BA= .296.
Joe Panik(2B)- 2 for 4.  BA= .235.
Andrew Susac(Catcher)- 1 for 3, 2B, HBP.  BA= .308.
Edwin Escobar(LHP)- 4 IP, 7 H, 6 R, 5 ER, 1 BB, 6 K's.  ERA= 8.53.

The top 2 batters in the lineup, Brown and Panik get on base 5 times and score just twice as Duval and Abreu go 0 for 8 in the 3-4 slots.  I guess you can say Escobar has nice peripherals but he's getting knocked around.

AA  Richmond Flying Squirrels vs Reading Fightin' Phils rained out.

High A  San Jose Giants topped the Inland Empire 66'ers 4-2:

Mac Williamson(DH)- 2 for 3, 2 SB(4).  BA= .227.
Ben Turner(1B)- 1 for 3, HR(1).  BA= .333.
Kendry Flores(RHP)- 6 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 9 K's.  ERA= 3.00.
Steven Okert(LHP)- 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 K, Save(1).  ERA= 0.00.

Strong bounceback start for Flores.  Okert gets the Save Opp with Mizenko pitching setup.

Low A  Savannah Sand Gnats beat the Augusta Greenjackets 3-1 in the completion of the suspended game from 4/14.  This is the game in which Christian Jones pitched 5 innings of no-hit ball.  Nothing else to see here.

Augusta Greenjackets edged the Savannah Sand Gnats 2-1 in the regularly scheduled game(8 innings):

Brandon Bednar(1B)- 2 for 3.  BA= .365.
Tyson Ross(Catcher)- 2 for 3, 2B.  BA= .226.
Chase Johnson(RHP)- 6 IP, 5 H, 1 R, 1 BB, 6 K's.  ERA= 2.70.
Luis Castillo(RHP)- 2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 K.  ERA= 1.35.

Strong start for Johnson and a very nice 2 inning relief job for the W by Castillo.

Game Wrap 4/15/2014: Giants 3 Dodgers 2

I went to bed last night fully expecting to wake up and write a post about a Giants loss.   They were trailing 2-1 and had already squandered a total of 3 AB's with the bases loaded.  Turns out they'd do it 2 more times, but in the 10'th inning of a game they eventually won on a walk-off single by Hector Sanchez in the bottom of the 12'th.  Key Lines:

Brandon Belt- 3 for 5, 2B, BB.  BA= .298.  Belt was the hero before The Hector was the hero. Pagan singled with one out in the bottom of the 9'th against Kenley Jansen.  Belt then went down the 3B line for an RBI double with Pagan scoring all the way from first to send it into extra innings.

Hunter Pence- 3 for 6, SB(2).  BA= .193.  Pence scored the first run after a single in the bottom of the 6'th.  He took second on a throwing error by Hanley Ramirez on a  potential force play.  He then went to 3'rd on a wild pitch by Chris Withrow and score and Crawford's SF.  Hey!  Whatever gets the run home!

Brandon Crawford- 2 for 5, SF.  BA= .318.  Crawford drove in the first run, scored the winning run and continues to produce out of the 7-hole in the lineup.

Hector Sanchez- 1 for 2, BB.  BA= .176.  The Hector entered the game in the 9'th inning to preserve Buster Posey's legs, a move I am sure would have received widespread criticism had the Giants gone on to lose.  Crawford singled with 1 out in the 12'th, took 2B on a groundout, took third and a WP by Brandon League.  Hector then ended it with a deflected single up the middle.  The Hector!  This guy is what, 23 years old?  He is married, has a daughter old enough to be in school and drives her there every morning.  He already has 4 walk-off hits in his career.  You have to RESPECT a guy like that!

Tim Lincecum- 5 IP, 5 H, 1 R, 0 BB, 5 K's.  ERA= 7.20.  Timmy threw 93 pitches in those 5 innings, but hung tough including striking out the side in the 3'rd inning, then striking out 2 more to escape a 1-out, bases-loaded jam  in the 4'th.  At this point, it is probably significant that he has a 17/1 K/BB on the season.  Baby steps!  He was just good enough in this one.

Juan Gutierrez- 2.1 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 3 K's.  ERA= 2.00.  Where would the Giants be without this guy?  No way he gets cut for Affeldt!  I think last night's marathon pretty much guarantees Perez gets sent down and the Giants keep 13 pitchers when Affeldt comes off the DL today.

Huff, Romo, Casilla, Petit- 1 IP, 0 R each.  Giants bullpen has a 0.58 ERA in 39.2 IP over their last 12 games and outpitched a terrific Dodgers bullpen in over 7 innings in this one.

The Win brings the Giants record to 9-5, tied with the Dodgers for the lead in the NL West.  The Rockies edged the Padres 3-2 to remain 2.5 games behind, moving into 3'rd place, 0.5 games ahead of the Friars.  The wheels have come off down in Arizona as the D'Backs were shellacked by the Mets 9-0 dropping them 6.5 games behind in last place with a record of 4-13.

Ryan Vogelsong faces Paul Maholm in Game 2 tonight at AT&T Park.

Once again, I did not get to see the game because of the Dodgers ridiculous TV situation.  I live in SoCal and I have not detected any groundswell of support for Time-Warner Cable and getting the Dodgers on other TV outlets.  Gotta think this one could come back to bite both TWC and the Dodgers big time.  Shankbone can maybe fill us in on where this all stands, but just remember this about SoCal, they have not had an NFL team for close to 2 decades now, and NOBODY CARES!

Around the League:

Speaking of the D'Backs, the wheels are definitely off down in Arizona.   There are already whisperings about Gibby's job being in jeopardy.  Kevin Towers was quoted yesterday saying they would not bring up Archie Bradley to play in the current environment, which says a lot.  I'll say that if Gibby goes, Towers needs to also.  Yeah, the Corbin injury hurt a lot, but that is not a good roster even with Corbin.  It's a bit hard to tell whether Gibby or Towers has been the bigger driving force in their roster construction over the last 2 years, but that organization has hemorrhaged talent.  Some of Towers' public comments, especially regarding pitchers retaliating for HBP's, make you wonder if he doesn't have a screw loose upstairs.  Might be time to clean house down in Arizonaland.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Down on the Farm: 4/14/2014

AAA  Las Vegas 51's defeated the Fresno Grizzlies 5-2:

Adam Duvall(3B)- 1 for 3, HR(6), BB.  BA= .313.
George Kontos(RHP)- 1.1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 3 K.  ERA= 4.82.
Dan Runzler(LHP)- 2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K.  ERA= 1.35.

Duvall has now hit something like 4 HR's in 3 games.  Runzler continues to keep his walks down.

AA  Reading Fightin Phils beat the Richmond Flying Squirrels 7-4:

Angel Villalona(1B)- 1 for 3, 2B, BB.  BA= .310.
Myles Schroder(Catcher)- 2 for 3, BB.  BA= .273.
Brett Krill(RF)- 2 for 2, 2B, BB, HBP.  BA= .290.
Jack Snodgrass(LHP)- 4 IP, 4 H, 3 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 2 K.  ERA= 1.13.

Villalona continues his impressive start to the season.  I kind of gave up on Krill last year, but maybe too soon?  Schroder continues to build a utility resume.

High A  Inland Empire 66'ers blanked the San Jose Giants 6-0:

Chris Stratton(RHP)- 6 IP, 3 H, 2 R, 1 BB, 5 K's.  ERA= 3.94.

A better start for Stratton than his last.  He took a shutout into the 6'th inning in this one.

Low A  Augusta Greenjackets vs Savannah Sand Gnats suspended after the top of the 5'th inning with the score tied 0-0:

Christian Jones(LHP)- 5 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 7 K.  ERA= 3.00.

Coming out party for Jones?  My understanding is he was a pretty hot pitching prospect for Oregon before TJ surgery in 2012.  Pitched in relief last year for Oregon and for Arizona and Salem-Keizer after being drafted by the Giants.  He was working on a no-hitter here with dominant peripheral stats in the process.  Definitely someone to watch going forward!