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…. Get in line

Let's make sure that everyone reminds Yasiel Puig how to play major league baseball. Let's make sure that he know that going all out, that making mistakes with his base-running, his outfield throws, and his overall greatness, all of those things…. the mainstream media need to make sure that he stops that. Because a guy that comes in and bats .400 for three months, that leads his team from the cellar to the best record in the league in two months….. that guy needs to be told how to do it. He's doing it wrong.

We don't want a guy that plays all out, that excites the fans, the players on his team, and most of everyone that cares one fucking whit about baseball…. that guy needs to do cialis super active it the right way. The way he's doing it now, turning a team that was 12 games out of first place, into a team that is 10 games up, he's not doing it right. Thanks to all of the guys in the media to make sure they correct all of the flaws in his game.

Who needs an out of control player to turn your whole season around? That guy needs to be straightened out. Somebody needs to explain to him how to play the game right.

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…. Disappointment

Wow. What a disaster of a season. Last place, 19.5 games behind the Dodgers, the Giants are on pace to have one of the worst seasons a defending champion has ever had. They've scored the third fewest runs, and allowed the third most. Talk about a complete fail by virtually every member of the team. I don't remember the last time a champ has looked this bad for this long. What a terrible defense of such a thrilling title.

Special thanks to Pablo Sandoval, who pretty much guaranteed he'd be worthless by showing up to camp roughly 50 pounds overweight. Way to be a leader, Panda.

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…. Perfection

Dan Lependorf, over the Hardball Times, puts together a graph detailing how impressive Matt Cain’s Perfecto really was:

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blockquote>…. If a pitcher strikes out 14 batters in a single game, it’ll be the lead story on every sports news program of the night. After all, it’s only happened a few hundred times in baseball history. If a pitcher throws a perfect game, it’s one of those landmark events that’ll be sold on DVD in the MLB.com store. And people will buy it, because hey, it’s a perfect game. Only 22 of those.

But both of them at the same time? Congratulations, Matt Cain. You just had one of the best nights from any pitcher in the history of Major League Baseball.

But then Bill James –who Lependorf cites in his article– writes (subscription required) that Cain’s game, while very impressive, isn’t even close to being the best pitched game of all-time:

…. The Game Score for Joe Oeschger, when he pitched 26 innings one afternoon, was 153, a feat beyond the understanding of modern fans. But in the last 60 years, Dean Chance against the Yankees on June 6, 1964, had the highest Game Score on record—116. 14 innings, 3 hits, 12 strikeouts, no runs.

James then goes on to chart the best games, seasons and careers using his Game Score method. It’s a great read, and well worth the $3 bucks a month you have to pay for access to Bill James Online.



…. Awful

I was at last night’s game. Jesus, did Cain let the team down.

What a drag. By the time the crowd settled in, the game was over. Bummer.

I don’t know how this team can turn it around. From where we were sitting, (front row, right behind Bochy) it was painful watching Fontenot, Rowand, Ross and Huff, who all look completely lost at the plate nine swings out of ten.

Got to shake hands with Larry Baer and Bill Neukom, they were super cool and nice.

Seats were great, game was awful except for the rally, which wasn’t enough.

Ugh.



OOOOOO—-Ribe!!!

He’s gone, bolting for the Dodgers.

…. After losing postseason hero Juan Uribe to the Dodgers despite offering him a three-year, $20 million deal, the Giants have agreed to a one-year contract with Miguel Tejada with plans to make him their everyday shortstop, sources confirmed.

Tejada told ESPN Deportes the value is $6.5 million. He still needs to pass a physical.

I have mixed feelings about this. On the one hand, I am happy Sabean didn’t sign Uribe to a three year deal worth $20 million, because that is simply too much and too long. And Tejada is essentially the same player, perhaps a little less likely to hit a home run, but also a bit less likely to strike out.

On the other hand, Uribe certainly had a flair for the dramatic, and was a fan favorite. I liked him, even though he would swing for the fences virtually every time. I’ll wish him well, as long as he’s doing it against every team but the Giants.



…. Nice touch

Tom Verducci chose the 2010 San Francisco Giants as his Sportsmen of the Year:

…. In three homes over 52 seasons did San Francisco follow this serial in wait for a championship. The Giants lacked the historical and literary embellishments of Brooklyn, Boston and Chicago, and so their suffering went underplayed, though much suffering did they know. Five times in those years they played a Game 6 or Game 7 with a chance to win the series, and lost every one of those games, getting shut out in three of those five potential clinchers.

The agony began with a 1-0 loss to the Yankees in Game 7 of the 1962 World Series, which ended when Willie McCovey lined out to second base with the tying and winning runs in scoring position. In the 1987 NLCS, up three games to two, they were shut out in back-to-back losses to St. Louis. And in the 2002 World Series, up 5-0 on the Angels with one out and nobody on in the seventh, they managed the biggest collapse in a potential clincher in series history, followed by a 4-1 whimper of an elimination in Game 7.

This is all you need to know about the cruelty of Giants culture: Charlie Brown is a Giants fan. Two months after McCovey’s lineout, Peanuts cartoonist Charles Schulz, from Santa Rosa, drew a strip in which Charlie and Linus sit brooding silently for three panels, only to have Charlie wail in the fourth, “Why couldn’t McCovey have hit the ball just three feet higher?”

…. Not only did the Giants give their fans a winner, they also gave them an unforgettable one, one with a Playbill’s worth of characters who exuded joy and thankfulness about what was happening. They are now characters, and not unlike the misfits and urchins Dickens himself gave us, who are established eternally.

Wilson and that frightfully awful beard. Aubrey Huff and the red thong. Lincecum and the hair. Cody Ross, the greatest in-season claim in the history of waivers. The prenaturally cool Buster Posey. The unflappable Matt Cain. The very roundness of Pablo Sandoval and Juan Uribe. The redemption of prodigal Bay Area son Pat Burrell. Watching these Giants, you half expected Jean Valjean to pop up in the on-deck circle at any moment.

Well done, Tom.



…. Roost

The chickens are coming home to roost. I actually raise chickens –well, my wife does– and I have no idea what the connection is between this old saying and the concept of something you were worried about coming to pass.

Anywho….

Here’s what I wrote on August 15th:

…. So, baseball fans, San Francisco Giants fans; we are stuck. If we win, this inept front office will be rewarded with new contract extensions, and we will almost certainly see more of the same. We’ll see Sabean give soon to be 34-years old Pat Burrell a four-year, $25 million dollar contract for three months of hot baseball. Career journeyman Andres Torres will celebrate his 33rd birthday with a three year deal worth something like $15 million. And Aubrey Huff will get a Christmas/34th birthday combo deal of something like 4 years, $30 million.

…. Of course, the team could collapse. They could go on a ten game losing streak at any time. Burrell could pull a hamstring. He is, you know, old. So is pretty much every player on the field, save Posey and Sandoval.

Which would you rather see? Giants winning, and staying with Sabean for another three or four years? Or the kind of total collapse that gets heads rolling?

Well, they didn’t just win, they won it all, which certainly means Sabean and his “winning ways” and his “veterans” will be around for at least another four years, I’d guess. And now, Aubrey Huff will be here for what will almost certainly be the rest of his career:

…. Huff agreed to a two-year, $22 million contract with the World Series champions Tuesday. The Giants matched a similarly structured offer from another club, knowing Huff wanted to stay. Huff receives $10 million in each of the next two seasons, and the Giants have a $10 million club option for 2013 with a $2 million buyout.

“He was obviously underpaid for what he did for us last year,” General Manager Brian Sabean said during a conference call. “He certainly did his part and received a just reward for it.”

If he stays for that third year, it’d be a three-year deal, but he would still reach the $30 million I predicted. It seems likely, however, that Sabean has reached a sense of understanding that he has been out of his mind with some of these contracts the last four or five years, as Pat Burrell and Cody Ross don’t seem to be in line for the kind of contracts I was worried about. At least not yet.



…. Me complain here

They lose this game, it’s on Bochy. There was absolutely no reason to start Cain in that top of the eighth. (OK, seventh! Doh!) There was absolutely no reason to let him get into that much trouble, (anyway).

OK, so, I was working and watching, and working and watching, and I lost track of the situation. Once they lost, I was just ranting. Sue me…. ;-)

The fact still remains that the following sentence is dead-on:

THERE WAS ABSOLUTELY NO REASON IN THE WORLD TO BRING IN WILSON FOR A SIX-OUT SAVE!

The Giants only have the best bullpen in baseball. There were only about four different pitchers Bochy could have used in that eighth, before he stupidly wasted Wilson.

UPDATE: Bases loaded, one out, a major league team has a runs scored expectation of 1.65 runs. Without looking it up –since I have no way of doing so– I would guess that the Giants are somewhere around .90. Simply awful results in critical situations. Posey is so obviously exhausted. Bochy completely fucked this game up. Horrendous decision to go to Wilson with no outs in the eighth. Fairly terrible/possibly defensible decision to allow Romo to face another batter after the first one smoked him. And now the Giants, who haven’t had a real come from behind win in I don’t know how long, have to score at least one to avoid a loss that would rank among the worst in their history. Tonight immediately brings back memories of their folderoo loss to the Mets in 2000, about seven seconds after JT Snow’s miracle three-run home run.

I’m sorry, but this is just atrocious.

UPDATE: No pinch runner for Uribe? Is Bochy trying to get fired?

UPDATE: Awful, awful loss. Bochy failed his team in just about every way possible. For every mistake he made –as in, with a bullpen that had allowed something like 5 runs in their last 60 innings, there was no reason to pull the parachute cord like that. If you are gonna be decisive, you pull Cain (Romo) the minute a man gets on. You don’t wait until he puts the tying run at the plate, and then ask Brian Wilson to do something he’s NEVER DONE BEFORE IN HIS LIFE!!!!– even with all that failure, the team still had the tying run on first with one out in the bottom of the 11th.

Of course, Bochy –stunned into submission by his earlier blunder– for some reason, didn’t even consider the possibility of, oh, I don’t know, trying to steal second and: a) get into scoring position, and, b) avoid the double play. Instead, Bochy decides to do nothing. Of course, since a Giant wasn’t on first with nobody out, he couldn’t automatically bunt, so all of his decisions were essentially made for him.

The move to Wilson spoke of panic, and desperation; not decisiveness. And then, in the bottom of the tenth, the Giants loaded the bases with one out, which raised their expected winning percentage at that point to around 90%, failed to score. Just prior to the moment that Posey grounded into the five-hundreth double play of the Giants season, wasn’t something creative needed? Given what we all could see with our own two eyes, that the Braves were planning on trying to double up Posey –even though that decision meant that they would be giving up the chance to preserve the tie in order to end the inning– the question that occurred to me immediately was; why didn’t Bochy call for a squeeze play?

The reason? Because he is a button pusher. He is destined to fail in these kinds of pressure situations. And, let’s be clear, when the pressure was on, Bobby Cox put the game in his players hands, and said, do the hard thing, and let’s see if we can win. Bochy told his players, his fantastic bullpen, that they couldn’t be trusted to do what they had done better than any bullpen in baseball history over the last six weeks, not to mention that, over the course of the season, they had been one of the top two or three in the entire league.

No, Bochy tried to be Joe Torre, and he asked Brian Wilson to be Mariano Rivera. Except that the Giants bullpen isn’t Joba Chamberlain, or Phil Coke, or Ramiro Mendoza. And Bochy didn’t need to be Joe Torre. And Brian Wilson should never have been asked to be Mariano Rivera.

And when the Giants lose this series because of this loss, remember that this idiot will probably get a contract extension.

UPDATE: Here’s Andrew Baggardly:

…. If anyone had a problem with Bruce Bochy going to Brian Wilson for a six-out save, they haven’t been paying attention to the way Wilson has pitched this year. He made one mistake fastball, and Alex Gonzalez got his bat started early enough.

And the tying run was Melky Cabrera, who reached on Pablo’s throwing error. Wilson couldn’t do anything about that.

Wilson also looked pretty darn good as he struck out two in a 1-2-3 ninth inning. So again, it’s nonsense for anyone to pin the loss on Bochy for bringing in Wilson when he did.

No, it’s not. It was a panic move, plain and simple. The best bullpen in baseball, sitting there, fully rested. I’m too busy to sit here and dig it all up, but I’d hazard a guess that Wilson’s DP% is the worst of any of the Giants relievers….

There, satisfied? I looked it up. Wilson induced 2 GDP in 74 innings this season. Romo induced 3 in 62 innings. Mota 3 in 54 innings. Casilla, 8 in 55 innings. Affeldt, 4 in 50 innings. So, exactly as I ranted last night, the Giants did, indeed, have four guys who were better suited to solving that eighth inning, and they were all rested and available. The first one –Romo– got his chance, and allowed another hit.

OK, great, (well, not so great, but you know what I mean) bring in Casilla, who has induced a total of 17 GDP’s in his last three seasons, over a total of just over 150 innings. Why have 11 pitchers on the roster if you are going to ignore what you’ve done all year long, if you’re gonna ignore the stats, the tendencies, and the scouting?

UPDATE: Got a quick break from work…..

Wilson had two six-out appearances this season. In the first, June 1st against the Rockies, he allowed 4 hits and a walk, and apparently no runs, but the Giants lost the game. On August 25th, he did it again, and he allowed 2 hits, 2 walks and a run, and the Giants lost again. Last season, he went at least 2 innings six times, and won twice and got a no-decision the other four times. So, I was wrong about that.

I’m not wrong about using him the way he did. If Bochy wants to hammer the Braves, end it right now, (insert appropriate sports cliche here), then bring Wilson out to start the eighth. Let him face the hitters doing what he does best, striking guys out. With men on first and third, Wiloson has to be slightly less aggressive, because a wild pitch (0 this year, 4 last) is a disaster. A flyball, which he, like most strikeout pitchers, is prone to, is probably gonna score a run, and he’s still facing the tying run in the next guy…. I mean, come on.

Bochy fucked up. It is on him.



…. Letdown

Once again, the Giants come up one run short of the Padres. Let’s see, who were the goats in this disgrace of a game…..

Jonathan Sanchez, who gift-wrapped two runs for the Padres in the top of the second, about ten seconds after the Giants ignited the crowd and took a two-run lead in the bottom of the first. Oh, and then failing to get down a bunt with runners at first and second and no out. Oh, and then allowing the Padres to score the go-ahead run with a double and a single on two pipeline, batting practice pitches to start the top of the sixth.

Pablo Sandoval, continuing his season-long exodus into flail-town. Here’s an idea…. Swing at strikes.

Bochy, allowing Freddie Sanchez to continue his season-long effort to kill the team. Here’s an idea…. Bench the worst regular in the lineup.

Aaron Rowand, for inexplicably running off second base right after Sanchez fucked up his bunt attempt, getting picked off and essentially ending a first and second, no out situation in three fucking seconds.

That is a buzz kill of a game. Fuck the Padres.

If I were the Giants, I’d be hitting somebody tomorrow.

UPDATE: What has to happen for Bochy to bench Sanchez? Sanchez is 22 for 106 since the All Star break, running out a .216/.277/.265 .542 OPS line, with just three extra base hits. During that time, he has scored 6 runs from the #2 slot while the Giants have posted their best offensive numbers in five years. By comparison, even with Sanchez doing everything he can to kill the team, Andres Torres has scored 20 runs, running out an outstanding .316/.370/.547 .917 OPS line, with 18 extra base hits. Put another way, Torres has almost as many extra base hits as Sanchez has hits.

Either he needs to be benched, or he needs to be dropped down in the lineup. Ideally, he needs to be sent down, but that’ll never happen. Sit him down.

UPDATE, Part II: Fontenot replaces Sanchez and goes 2 for 5, with a double, essentially making me look like Nostradamus.



…. Going down with the ship

It would be refreshing to hear some candor from our estimable GM, but, obviously, that’s never gonna happen. You’re never gonna hear Brian Sabean admit making a mistake, or admit failure. He’s never gonna come out and say that another GM got the best of him, or that he handled a player or a situation incorrectly. He’s gonna puff out his chest, and, “Damn the torpedoes,” everyone around him until they either agree with him or shut up.

This is the trademark of an insecure, immature man.

So when Sabean trades Molina for nothing, once again demonstrating that Sabean was wrong in his evaluation of a players worth, of course we’re gonna hear his bullshit explanation of how the team needed to make this move, how the player just acquired had a lot of upside, blah blah blah.

Boring.

Sabean is boring, his team is boring, his bullshit excuses are boring…. It just goes on and on.

Look at the list of trades Sabean has made in the last several years, put together by +mia:

May 31, 2007 — Traded Armando Benitez and cash to Florida Marlins in exchange for Randy Messenger.

July 31, 2007 — Traded Matt Morris to Pittsburgh Pirates in exchange for Rajai Davis

August 9, 2007 — Traded Mark Sweeney to Los Angeles Dodgers in exchange for Travis Denker

July 20, 2008 — Traded Ray Durham to Milwaukee Brewers in exchange for Darren Ford and Steve Hammond.

March 27, 2009 — Traded Jack Taschner to Philadelphia Phillies in exchange for Ronny Paulino.

March 27, 2009 — Traded Ronny Paulino to Florida Marlins in exchange for Hector Correa.

July 27, 2009 — Traded Scott Barnes to Cleveland Indians in exchange for Ryan Garko.

July 29, 2009 — Traded Tim Alderson to Pittsburgh Pirates in exchange for Freddy Sanchez.

Add to that list the endless stream of players that go straight from the Giants to the after-life, the Edgardo Alfonzo’s, the Dave Roberts’s…. And then add to the list the young players Sabean waived or traded for essentially nothing who are now performing admirably…..

At what point does this Giants team ownership group realize what the hell is going on here? At what point does performance begin to matter? When will Sabean be held accountable for the team that he has built? This is a team with one of the highest payrolls in all of baseball, how the hell can this team be so poorly constructed?

I know I was wrong when I said they were in last place the other day, but let me ask you this:

If –at the beginning of the season– I would have told you that the reason this team wasn’t going to be in last place heading into the Fourth of July weekend was gonna be Andres Torres, how many ribs would you have cracked laughing at me?

This team is a laughingstock.



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All commentary is the opinion of John J Perricone unless otherwise noted.
None of the opinions expressed should be construed as being endorsed by the
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