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The Giants stopped their slide with an offensive onslaught against the Rockies last night, winning 13-6 . Bonds hit his 673rd home run, among the four that the Giants blasted, and Jason Schmidt won his 7th of the season, although he wasn't as sharp as he's been lately (certainly Coors Field must have had something to do with it).
Giants GM Brian Sabean made a best place to order flowers online
www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/chronicle/archive/2004/06/05/SPG07717AB1.DTL”>couple of moves sure to change the shape of the NL West, releasing Jeffrey Hammonds, and bringing up Cody Ransom and Todd Linden.
And Keith Emmer has a common sense approach to perfect games in today's NY Sports Express. “The truth is, a perfect game is more of a statistical anomaly than the mark of a great pitcher.” Go, now.
But not the way they were last week. After last night's 11-5 loss to the D'backs, the Giants have now lost three straight to drop back down below .500. Even though their offense gave them a lead in two of the three games, their pitching was
, quite frankly, woeful.
No one was immune, from poor starts to equally ineffective relief; and they simply do not have the offense needed to overcome leads again and again.
As I said earlier this week; I sure hope Sabean didn't look at that winning streak and feel like he could quit working on improving the team, because he still needs to do that.
Can I complain about something? After watching the Giants play the Rockies these last couple of days, I’ve had it with all of the BS about how dangerous Burnitz is, or Castilla, or Helton, or whoever. Listen, everybody on that team has great numbers. This isn’t news, it’s a known fact. Saying that Burnitz is the best home run hitter in the league because he’s leading the NL in dingers is flat out ridiculous.
Coors field made Neifi Perez a 200 hit a season guy. Neifi Perez’s whole F@#*ing career is based on what he did there!!!! Outside of Coors, he’s the worst hitter in baseball, one of the all-time worst hitters to ever play the game.
Burnitz has 1.104 OPS at home and a .923 OPS on the road this season. Sure, he’s doing well, but the guy’s career stats demonstrate that he is a strikeout, out-making machine. His OPS the last three seasons is .775.
Castilla is another one. 9 home runs and a 1.215 OPS at Coors, .719 OPS on the road. Over his last three seasons, he’s posted a .721 OPS.
And don’t get me started on Todd (He rakes) Helton. Helton is a good, quality hitter. He is not one the best hitters in the league. He is one of the best hitting first basemen, but that’s it. Over his last three seasons, he’s seen his numbers inflated by some 30% when he plays at Coors field, which creates the illusion that he should be mentioned in the same breath with the best hitters. At home, he’s posted an awesome 1.205 OPS over the last three seasons. On the road, he drops to a more mortal .935, still excellent, but not a top ten hitters in the league number. He has 155 extra base hits at Coors, 110 on the road, 70 more RBI at home, 102 more runs scored, 82 more hits, fewer strikeouts, an almost 100 point jump in batting average.
Coors field does this to everyone. Listening to Krukow and company, I sometimes get the feeling they’ve never looked at a stat page.
Coors turns Neifi Perez into an All-Star. Jeremy Burnitz goes from a guy being dumped from team to team, to leading the NL in homers. Get it? Good.
Check out a new site I was just hipped to, Broken Cowboy. It's run by a fellow named Han
k Waddles (is that a name or what?), and he covers mostly baseball, with some odds and ends.
I put him in More Baseball anyway. Go, now.
Just to keep everyone grounded, let's talk about the Giants for a second. They are in the midst of a stretch of 25 consecutive games against the worst teams in the NL. They remain among the very worst hitting teams in the league, (any team that has Neifi Perez in the everyday lineup has to be considered among the worst offensive teams in all of baseball, regardless of any other factors). They have one top-flight starting pitcher, complemented by a bunch of guys whose arms haven't fallen off yet. They're best leadoff hitter, and one of the best in the league; is watching games from the dugout, once again on the DL.
They have a pretty damn good relief corps, even without Nen, (God, if he was healthy, they'd have an awesome set of relievers). They have Superman.
According to this Nick Peters article, (whi
ch I found over at Across the Seams) Sabean was considering wholesale changes to the roster prior to the streak. Well, I sure hope Sabean isn't fooled by a couple of wins. This team needs offense, and another starter. If Sabean is smart, he'll pick up Gallarraga, (Minor is not a major league hitter), package some of the mediocre prospects the Giants are loaded with, and get a real hitter. Maybe Theo Epstien can be persuaded to send Bill Mueller back home.
They could play Alfonzo at second until Durham gets back, or maybe, in a dream world, some team would be willing to take him in a trade for an '76 Oldsmobile.
Anyway, I'm sure there are lots of possible transactions that I could come up with. Here's hoping Sabean is doing the same. Ten wins in a row notwithstanding, Bonds' chances for a ring with this version of the team are pretty slim.
…. in a row, for the unlikeliest winning streak you can imagine. The Giants have feasted on the mediocre teams during the streak, and last night, Arizona fit the bill.
With three errors, and at least that many more miscues and bumbling misplays, the Giants won 8-4. Bonds got things started with his 672nd home run leading off the second (Arizona manager Bob Brenly walked him every time up after that, something Bonds should expect to see the rest of the roadtrip), suddenly hot Michael Tucker hit his second long homer in as many days (on his way to a four hit ef
fort), and Kirk Reuter got his second win of the season.
The eight runs is the most they've scored during the streak, as last night was the closest thing to a blowout they've managed yet. In fact, the streak is odd in a number of ways. No blowouts, no ten run runaways, and no shutouts either. Just a nice string of solid games in which they've done just enough to win. The game that makes it a streak is, of ocurse, the Bonds walkoff homer game against the Rockies. Without that, they would have been done at six in a row, and now three more.
Anyway, great way to start a long road trip. Oh, did I mention they're just 1 1/2 out of first? Sweet.
I may have neglected to add some new blogs during my own month-long road trip. Two of them share the spotlight in this post:
First up, The View from the Bleachers, which is running a World Series of Blogs feature. Noreworthy from OBM's perspective (we are nominated), but interesting in its own right. Go check out Joe's work, and when you vote in the NL West, be sure to punch your tabs for OBM. Bleachers is currently headlining my More Baseball section.
Also new in my Giants links section, Swingin' Amiss, covering the ins and outs of all things San Francisco. Go, now.
And sadly, we must say goodbye to the excellent work done by the Bench Coach, who can no longer find the time or energy to write about his beloved Dogers. We, of course, hate the Dodgers; but we respect any and all go
od writers. the Coach wil be missed. His place on my 25 man roster has been amply filled by the sharp as a tack, El Lefty Malo, who rejected my overtures to join the OBM staff, but still occupies a place in my heart. Congratulations, mi amigo!
Oh, one more thing…. Some of you may have arrived at OBM recently as a result of the outstanding feature article in the spring edition of the SBC Park, Giants mini-magazine, found (I believe) on the Club Level and in the Luxury boxes. If so, welcome. I hope you enjoy our work here, and the enthusiasm and energy with which we follow the boys in cream and orange. Please drop me an email or post my guestmap if you were turned on to OBM by the mag, I promised Carol I'd try to get an idea of what kind of response it generates.
Oh, and Carol; thanks a million. I just saw the piece, and I am stunned by how awesome you made my site look. Thanks thanks thanks.
And nine wins in a row for the Giants. Today's afternoon tilt featured the soon-to-be NL pitcher of the month, Jason Schmidt, dominating the Rockies to the tune of 11 strikeouts, two hits and 8 innings of shutout ball, as he led the Giants to a 3-1 victory, capping a perfect 6-0 homestand in which the G-men rose from the grave to climb over .500 a
nd into a pennant race. With Bonds and Grissom (the only hitters on the team batting above .300) watching from the dugout, the Giants saw Michael Tucker blast one into McCovey Cove, and Pedro Feliz reach base four times to generate enough offense to make Schmidt's gem stand up.
Now they embark on a season-long 14 game road trip, in which they'll see whether this streak is a mirage or a sign of what the team is really made of.
For the Giants to get themselves to .500, after coming from behind to knock off the Rockies last night, 5-3 behind Yorvit Torrealba and Jerome Williams. With the National League's second to last offense, the Giants have still managed to give themselves a chance for a meaningful month of June.
The pressure is still on for GM
Brian Sabean to do something to bolster the lineup, but you can't say this team rolls over. Scrappy, tough, and hard-working, to be 24-24 at this point of the season, with Bonds producing almost nothing the entire month of May, Durham on the DL, a slew of players struggling to the Mendoza line, and no Robb Nen…. well, that's pretty damn good.
Here comes June, and a nice long road trip. We'll see what happens now.
The surging Giants got their seventh straight win, beating the Rockies 4-2 behind Superman's two out, two-run, walk-off hom
er. A game under .500, and 3 1/2 games out of first, the G-men are hitting their stride at just the right time, as they head into a long road trip when this series with Colorado ends.
Good God A-mighty, baseball baseball baseball.