Tag Archives: sf giants

The Dodgers on making the Playoffs or “What A Difference a Buck can Make!”

Baseball Money

Baseball Money

Brandon Belt made a comment yesterday about the Dodgers and their incredible 1st place NL West ranking this year, something to the effect, “that’s where they’re supposed to be”. I thought it to be a rather odd comment and did a little research to find that the Dodgers have the highest average salary this year in all of MLB, besting the Atlanta Braves who will undoubtedly be their biggest contender in the playoffs by more than double ~ Dodgers average salary $7,468,882 vs the Braves average salary of $3,095,800.

Personally, I’m cheering for the Braves for that reason alone. Even though my home team is the SF Giants, I’ve never bought into the “Giants-hating-Dodgers” routine that’s prevalent in both ball clubs. But I am a fan of getting those ridiculous obscene salaries in line with what the average Joe can afford to pay at the gate i.e., cut the cost of the tickets in half and halve the players salaries. or something like that. The players would still be making tons.

And I guess I’m still just a little peeved that the Giants, back in 2011, after winning the 2010 World Series and all the profits that go with that, raised the price of their season tickets. I know baseball’s a business but it doesn’t mean I have to like it. Just one fan’s opinion.

Victorino and Posey, Blowing in the Wind

Last night during the Giants and Red Sox game, it got really interesting in the bottom of the 8th. The score was 2-1, Red Sox in the lead. The Giants had a runner on third with one out when Buster Posey hit a corker out to right field that was foul, which Shane Victorino chose to catch rather than letting it land foul, thereby allowing the runner on third to score. Had the ball landed foul, it would have been dead, and the runner would have remained on third. As a result, the SF Giants, hugging the cellar in the NL West, were able to score, and then score again, and hang onto a 3-2 lead in the 9th to beat the Sox, who were leading the AL East prior to the game.

Immediately after the game a rather lively discussion about the Victorino catch ensued about whether he should or shouldn’t have caught that ball. Here’s the options discussed:

1. Because it was Buster Posey, reigning NL MVP, he could have hit the next pitch out of the park for a 3-run homer. Better to retire him now than risk it.

2. The play only allowed a tie game, it wasn’t a go-ahead run. They can get them next inning.

3. It was windy at the park, and there was a chance the ball, barely foul, might have blown back in-bounds. Better to catch it while you can.

Victorino said there was no question in his mind he was going to catch the ball, knowing full well the runner was going to score. His manager agreed with him. After the game the Giants manager, Bruce Bochy, agreed too. And today before the final game in the series, the announcers generally agreed it wasn’t even open for discussion. The only logical option available was to catch the ball and let the chips fall where they may.

Personally, I was totally confused for the rest of the game. For some reason I didn’t think the runner could score on that caught foul ball. I’ve spent all morning looking through the MLB Rulebook and couldn’t find a thing about it and, of course, if that were true we’d be having a completely different discussion today. So be it. And so now it’s back to my pesky little scorebook to try and figure out how to record the darned thing. Never a dull moment in baseball, even in the most boring of games, last night not being one of them.

Adam Jones and the Banana Split

As a Giants fan watching last Sunday’s game between the Baltimore Orioles and the SF Giants, it was something to behold. I mean it was a decent game until the 7th inning and then the Baltimore Orioles remembered why they were there, that they had come to play and were still in the game. In the 9th inning Adam Jones hit a spectacular 3 run homer and it was downhill from there, Orioles winning 10-2. It was just another disappointing game for the Giants and especially for their fans who’ve had to endure late inning come-from-behind wins by their opponents all season. So be it, la dee dah, c’est la vie. That’s baseball.

So Monday morning as I’m reading the commentary and box scores and perusing the sports section I come across an article Adam Jones had tweeted about someone throwing a banana at him in the 9th inning. I’m thinking how juvenile and not very sportsman-like it was, but didn’t give it much more thought. Until the next day. A fellow came forward Monday afternoon after reading the banana article and recognized, to his dismay, the article was about him. Evidently as he was leaving the game in the 9th inning, he grabbed a banana off one of the vendor’s carts and hurled it toward the field, thoroughly disgusted by the Giants performance in the day’s game. It was a pretty stupid thing to do, but I could relate. I felt the same way after watching the game on my telly but, there being no bananas on a cart close by, I decided to watch a movie instead.

Here’s the tweet the illustrious Orioles’ outfielder posted after the game:

“I want to thank whatever slapdick threw that banana towards my direction in CF in the last inning. Way to show ur class u jackass.”

And way to show yours Mr. Jones. Baseball players are generally a classy lot. Whether you agree or not, I’m thinking in particular of Barry Bonds, who endured bottles and cans thrown at him on a regular basis and at least on one occasion, was drenched as a bottle of beer was poured on his head as he chased the ball in left field. The particular play I’m thinking about was televised at Dodger Stadium and he ended up making the catch. But never once did I hear about Barry Bonds complaining of the fans treatment of him. Not once. Not that he shouldn’t have, but he just didn’t. And neither did scores of other ballplayers in similar situations. The Giants organization immediately responded to Mr. Jones tweet with this statement:

“We would like to extend our sincerest apologies to Adam and the entire Orioles organization for this unfortunate incident. The inappropriate actions of this individual in no way reflect the values of our organization and our fans……The Giants have a zero tolerance policy against this type of behavior ….”

I don’t know about you, but it seems obvious to me the fan was being, well, a fan, which is short for fanatic. He shouldn’t have thrown anything onto the field, bad behavior, bad thing to do. Can’t do it. Whether he threw it “at” someone is debatable and I’d like to take him at his word and assume he did not. It just seems to me that everywhere you look people are trying to turn situations into something they’re not. Is it political correctness? Is it racist? Or is it just plain stupidity?

Personally, I’d like to see an apology from Adam Jones for maybe overreacting just a wee little bit. Now that would show some class. How about it Adam? Show a little class.

Stars and Stripes Forever, just not This Year …..

I’m trying to record the Boston Pops Annual 4th of July Spectacular today, only to find out they won’t be televising it this year. Every time they hit that big crescendo and the gigantic flag unfurls to the wild applause of the audience, my emotions take over. It gets me every time.

So this is my contribution to those who have made this a tradition in their family for years but won’t be able to watch it today. It’s one of the items left on my bucket list ~ to watch a live Boston Red Sox and SF Giants day game on the 4th of July followed by a trip to the Boston Pops “live” 4th of July Spectacular, if it’s still around I mean.  I wonder who makes the decision to cancel such a wonderful televised event and interfere with family traditions? 

Oh well, I’ll try again next year.  Happy 4th of July everyone!

Thank you Guillermo Quiroz ….. It’s Why We Love the Game.

Guillermo Guiroz.  Click for MLB Video

Guillermo Guiroz. Click for MLB Video

Baseball’s unlike any other sport.  It’s the only one I know that’s not given time restraints.  A one-half inning lasts as long as it takes to get three outs.  It could last for only three pitches, or it could go on for hours, or seem like it.  Take the fifth inning in last night’s game between the Dodgers and Giants.   The Giants lead 5-0 at the beginning of the 5th, and then it all fell apart as the Dodgers scored seven runs, one after the other, on and on and on.  I thought it would never end, but finally it did and by the end of the 9th inning the score  was tied 9-9, and we were in overtime ~ extra innings.

It’s a fluke that third string back-up catcher Guillermo Quiroz was even on the roster last night.  Hector Sanchez is the regular back-up catcher for Buster Posey and had been sent back to the Minors only the day before.   So when Quiroz steps up to the plate I’m thinking what the heck’s going on.  I mean doesn’t Bochy know it’s the 10th inning?  I was already a little perturbed with Boche after leaving Vogey in to get really hammered in the fifth ~ he should have taken him out earlier.  So when  Guillermo steps up to the plate I turned up the volume and went to the kitchen to do the dishes. 

What happened next happens all the time in baseball.  In fact, it happened the night before with Buster Posey and was no big deal.   Well, it was a big deal, but we’ve gotten a little spoiled with Buster so you rather expect this sort of thing from him. 

And it isn’t even that Guillermo Quiroz really smacked the hell out of that first pitch for the game-winning home run.  It was what happened after, as he looked out at that ball flying towards infinity, and you knew that he knew it was gone.  No doubt in his mind.  And when his arms went up in the air and he started towards first base he had a huge smile on his face, yelling something that made you realize that “spirit of victory” that we’ve all heard about so often is more than just a saying …..it’s why we love the game.   And we really loved the game tonight.

And to be honest, I was smiling and yelling right along with him.  The dishes could wait.

Oh It’s Good To Be Back Home Again ……

Okay, I’ll say it.  I’m not ashamed to admit that one of my very favorite baseball moments of all time was the Opening Day Ceremonies on April 5, 2011, following that glorious 2010 World Series Championship win .  The game was between the San Francisco Giants and the St Louis Cardinals. So today was just the icing on the cake for me.  The same teams were playing, and the championship flag was again being hoisted above the park to remain for the entire 2013 season so that all who crossed  our threshold could see what a magical place they had entered. 

But today, instead of being at the game, I was watching from my comfortable chair, all decked out in orange and black, with a box of Kleenex and a paper bag (to dispose of the used tissues) nearby.  And I did pretty good until they introduced the Cards Manager, Mike Matheny, and the crowd broke into near hysteria in support of this fellow, another of my very favorites.  And I lost it, never to fully recover for the rest of the ceremony. 

music notesI’m not sure why I was so emotional today, but it probably had something to do with the affection the Giants fans feel for their team, and the entire organization for that matter, but also for anyone who has anything to do with the Giants!  The crowd cheered just as loud for each of the St Louis Cardinal players who were former Giants as they did for the current Giants themselves.   It’s been a long dry spell, this post, post-season, and finally today, after five months we have our kids back home ready to dance around the mound, and the plate and the field.  “It’s the sweetest thing I know of, just spending time with you” ……..as if I was singing the song to each of them individually as they walked out onto the field.   Continue reading

Hey Ho ~ Way To Go! A Song for Giants Fans

 

This is the first “Theme Song” I’ve heard about our 2012 Championship Team, and it’s a good one.  It came to me, from all places, jolly old England!  Baseball is universal and we’ll get a chance to really experience that in March, 2013, when Baseball’s World Classic comes to AT&T Park!  Thanks to our friend,  Eric Bone, for sharing this little ditty with me.

“SAN FRANCISCO GIANTS, 2012 WORLD SERIES CHAMPIONS”

“2012 San Francisco Giants Team Photo”

Here’s a brief look at some of the 2012 Post Season Play:

 

“Tigers and Giants Going to the Ship”!

“Congratulations to the AL Champion Detroit Tigers and the NL Champion San Francisco Giants!”

The Ship means “Championship” at least that’s what Sergio Romo told us back in 2010.   This is going to be fun! 

The Tigers  posted a regular season record of 88 Wins and 74 Losses and ended up beating the socks off  the New York Yankees, a team with 95 Wins and 67 Losses,  for the American League Pennant.  Not only did they beat the Yankees, they beat them really, really bad.  Try 4-0 in a best out of 7 series.    Weapons ~ Justin Verlander, last year’s Cy Young award winner AND MVP;  Miguel Cabrera, first batter to win the AL Triple Crown since 1966 and Prince Fielder, who finished the 2012 Season with .313 Batting Average and 30 Home Runs.

Excuse me while I pinch myself.  I still can’t figure out how the Giants ended up in the World Series this year.   Spring training showed a recuperating Buster Posey, an out-for-the-year Brian Wilson and a pretty good, but not as-good-as-they-used-to-be pitching staff.  There were no individual stand-outs, with maybe the exception of Posey, until these past few months and things just started to happen.  That’s how they do it in San Francisco.  They got together in the clubhouse, put their heads together, posted a 94-68 record and “believed”.  

After one of the wildest Championship Division Series ever my prediction is the Detroit Tigers will win the first three games and the Giants will win the rest.  I don’t know why, that’s just the way they do it in San Francisco.

First Game:  Wednesday, October 24, 2012, Time TBA, at AT&T Park.

How Do You Solve a Problem Like . . . Melky?

Melky Cabrera

Melky Cabrera’s front and center everywhere in the media, but not in the SF Giants front office.  Matthew Pouliot on NBC’s HardballTalk wrote a convincing piece recently about the organization not allowing Melky to join the team after his 50 game suspension.  The suspension would be lifted about five games into the playoffs, assuming the Giants get there, and it’s looking pretty good they will.  

I wrote a testy piece a few weeks ago and the title pretty much sums up my frustration with the mess, “Melky Who?  Who Needs Him?  Who Cares?”  But the fact is, Melky’s record prior to his suspension was  .346/.390/.516 in 459 at-bats.  The real question is what would his record be after the suspension?  There’s only one way to find out.  This would be a rest test for the argument that PED’s do or do not allow players to hit better.  

If Melky were allowed to play in postseason and kept hitting like before, it could present a convincing argument that PED’s are not responsible for making a batter hit better as many have alleged.  Barry Bond’s argument was if 80% of the ball players were using steroids in the 90′s, why weren’t 80% of the ball players hitting better ~ a lot better?  Personally, I’d like to see this tested.  What could it hurt?  Bring Melky back and, if nothing else,  use him as a DH when appropriate.   I mean, the Giants had no qualms about bringing Guillermo Moto back a few weeks ago and that was after a “100 game suspension”, for a second offense, no less.

This blog has a sophisticated database ~ I found out the hard way   :(   So what do you think?  Should the SF Giants bring Melky Cabrera back to the roster after the 50 game suspension is lifted?   Your “vote below” means absolutely nothing.  I mean it’s not going to change the minds of the powers-that-be.  I’m just curious and I’m happy to share the results with you here.

What the hell happened to the Freak?

garlicfriesandbaseball:

Well this is interesting.  I try not to swear in my posts, but it seems appropriate that The Sports Geek does in this post ~ if hell’s a swear-word, that is.  Timmy’s dilemma would make most anyone want to swear about now, three months into the season and only one month away from the All-Star Break.  Good post T. J.

Originally posted on tjthesportsgeek.com:

Tim Lincecum has not been his usual self this season, he has a 2-7 record and an ERA of 6.

I never thought I’d see the day Tim Lincecum would take over the role as the weak link in the Giants starting rotation. 

Make no mistake about it, Lincecum is not the same guy he once was when he won his two National League Cy Young awards or when the Giants won the 2010 World Series. I used to get excited when it was a game he was scheduled to pitch and now I am starting to dread a start from him the way I would dread one from Barry Zito from 2007-2011.

Lincecum currently shoulders a 2-7 record on the season and an ERA of 6.00 in 13 starts so far in 2012. His latest loss came yesterday in a 5-0 shutout by the Rangers in front of another…

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Mike Matheny ~ Leading by Example

Example isn’t another way to teach, it is the  only way to teach. ~ Albert Einstein.”

Last week the sports world was shaken by an announcement about illegal, immoral, unethical, sickening and a zillion other adjectives you could use to describe activities  that have been allowed to exist while the powers-that-be looked the other way.  And then yesterday another college has come forth with a similar situation.  We’ll just have to wait and see how many more are involved.

Mike Matheny as the Giants Catcher

So last night as I was getting ready to shut down for the evening I caught a headline that had crept into my blogosphere:  “Mike Matheny to Become New Cardinals Manager.”  Did I read this right?  How can this be?  I was thinking about the popular catcher the Giants signed to a three-year contract back in 2004.  In his first season with the Giants, Matheny won not only a Gold Glove Award but also the coveted Willie Mac Award given for spirit and leadership.   But the next year was not so kind to Mike as a series of foul balls pummeled his catcher’s mask resulting in a serious concussion that eventually ended his playing career.   I’d heard he went back to St. Louis where he’d played previously and was hired as a consultant or adviser or something. Continue reading