The Giants gained on just about everybody last night, pulling within 1.5 games of the wild card leading Padres. Kevin Correia picked up Jonathan Sanchez and his team, after the Rockies jumped out to an early 4-0 lead, Correia lasted through the eighth inning, the Giants hitters roared to life, and the Giants won 10-6, picking up a win in a game they desperately needed.
Lowry looks to keep the dream alive tonight. Discuss amongst yourselves….
UPDATE: Lowry woke me up, and Felipe threw water in my face, when the two of them combined to allow the Rockies to score seven runs on just three hits in the fifth. Eecch.
As Lowry alternates between afwul, injured and good this season, Jim Adams wonders if he’s the second coming of Shawn Estes:
After pitching well in a late-season call-up in 1996, Shawn Estes was one of the best young left-handed pitchers in baseball in 1997, striking out 181 batters (8.1/9IP) and posting an excellent ERA (3.18). Then in 1998 the Giants lost a close race for the wild card, largely because Estes fell off a cliff: he battled injuries, he posted a losing record, his ERA jumped (5.16), and his strikeout rate plummeted(8.2/9IP). He never got back to where he was in 1997.
Fast forward a few years. After pitching well in a late-season call-up in 2004, Noah Lowry was one of the best young left-handed pitchers in baseball in 2005, striking out 172 batters (7.5/9IP) and posting an excellent ERA (3.78). Now in 2006 the Giants are trailing in a close race for the wild card, in part because Lowry has fallen off a cliff: he has battled injuries, he has a losing record, his ERA has risen (4.19), and his strikeout rate has plummeted (4.7/9IP).
Jim posits an excellent argument, except that Estes’ strikeout rates actually went up in ’98, and in both years they were pretty good. It dropped quite a bit after that, and he did fail to even really come close to ’97 again. Lowry certainly failed last night, that’s for sure. I’ll look at his season a little more closely in the morning.
Two other things….
First, is Clint Hurdle kidding somebody? 4 pitchers to get three outs in the bottom of the seventh, with a four-run lead!!?? And to add insult to injury, he has the balls to make the crowd sit through the third warm up session so that Venafro can walk Bonds on four fucking pitches!!?? There needs to be a rule that prevents managers from putting us through this bullshit. Between Hurdle and Alou, the two team used 11 pitchers?! In a game that had 17 runs scored? There oughta be a rule.
Second, I couldn’t have been the only one who, as Bonds prepared to bat in the ninth, knew he was gonna hit a home run and the Giants were gonna lose by a run, could I? What a terrible loss.