Episode 71: PLAYOFFS!

We want to see many more of these images in the playoffs.

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What does 2014 have in common with 2010 and 2012? The San Francisco Giants are in the playoffs, of course! Let’s hope the pattern extends itself to a third title. The boys break down the Giants’ wild card chances against the Pittsburgh Pirates for an hour, which is about the same amount of time you’ll be either watching commercials and relieving your bladder during wild card game on Wednesday.

We gloat over our expert prognostication of Giants wins back in March (we picked 89, 89, 88, and the Giants had 88), pick our team MVPs, and give our cliche “3 keys” for a Giants victory against the Buccos. Let’s hope this is the start of a new chapter in Giants’ lore. Who will deliver the next triple-double, stand in the rain, bust out a thong, deliver the clutch HR, or throw a strike that freezes a dominant hitter to clinch a series? We’ll find out if that road indeed lies ahead, Giants fans. Buckle up!

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Who Should Start the Wild Card Game?

Do the Giants start Bumgarner or Peavy in the wild card game? Does it matter if they are at home or in Pittsburgh? (photo: AP)

Now, before you yell at us, “BUMGARNER, YOU DIPSHIT!!” Just take a moment to ponder this:

It may sound crazy, and I’m not actually a proponent of this strategy, but I can see the logic in it…a little bit.

If the point of making the playoffs is to win the World Series, then you need to give your team the best chance to win each series. And, this is where it gets fuzzy. Some argue that Bochy should save Bumgarner for two starts in an NLDS by NOT starting him in the wild card one-game playoff. Insanity?

Well, if you throw Bum for the wild card game, and you win, you will only have Bum for one game on the NLDS. Does the thought of having Peavy throw 2 games in the NLDS sound ok? Maybe. By the same token, if you throw Peavy in the wild card game, and you win, Bum would start games 1 and 5.

Although this sounds like a plausible strategy, and Peavy has been incredibly hot down the stretch, being one of the best trades at the deadline, he has given up 24 earned runs in 23 career playoff innings, including a disastrous 2013 postseason with the Red Sox, despite the fact they won it all.

To further complicate this question, the Giants may be faced with the prospect of playing in Pittsburgh, where the Pirates are a striking 51-30, and under .500 on the road. However, to combat that, Bumgarner is 11-4 with a 2.22 ERA on the road this year (7-6, 4.03 ERA at home). So perhaps if he starts, those forces cancel each other out?

So, Giants fans, do you push in all your chips in the wild card game, or do you gamble by saving him for a potential 2-start NLDS? List your comments below!

Let’s hope the Giants can stave off Kershaw and the Doyers from clinching tonight, but to be honest, it looks bleak. However, it doesn’t mean the Giants can’t back into the playoffs and make it all the way. The beginning of the playoff journey is just getting there, and as we all know, the Giants had their back against the wall for 6 elimination games in 2012 and won every single one of them en route to their second trophy in three years.

Anything is possible, keep the faith.

Chad

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Bonusode 70.1: D’backs vs. Giants 9.10.14

The fog threatening to roll in as the Giants play the D'backs on 9.10.14.

The fog threatening to roll in as the Giants play the D’backs on 9.10.14.

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Willie, Ben and Chad once again head to Zeke’s after a Giants game to talk about many exciting events. First and foremost, the Giants blanked the Diamondbacks 5-0 to maintain their 2.5 game deficit behind the Dodgers and their 4 game lead on the wild card. We also talk about “video gamer’s” night with Todd McFarlane before the game (Ben got the sweet Assassin’s Creed figurine).

Even more exciting was the fact that we had clubhouse access for the first time. Chad snagged interviews with Panda, Pence and Affeldt before the game, and those interviews can be found here. We also spoke with Matt Duffy after the game (interview is at the end of this bonusode) about his critical 7th inning double to put the game away. Pour a shot and a beer, sit down, and enjoy another bonusode with the boys from TortureCast!

We’ll be in the clubhouse again for Saturday’s game against LA. Should be an anxiety-ridden ride for all.

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Pre-game interviews: Pence, Panda, Affeldt.

TortureCast had clubhouse access for the first time before tonight’s game against the Arizona Diamondbacks. Chad was able to interview Pablo Sandoval, Hunter Pence and Jeremy Affeldt.

Enjoy the interviews!

Pablo Sandoval

Download Pablo interview

 

Hunter Pence:

Download Pence interview

 

Jeremy Affeldt:

Download Affeldt interview

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Episode 70: George Kontos

 

Meet Mr. Kontos. He wears number 70, never shaves, and enjoys everything Chicago.

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Ben and Chad round up the last week that saw Buster Posey win the NL player of the week (.565!!) and Madison Bumgarner earned NL pitcher of the month for August, yet his monthly ERA (1.97) was actually higher than Kershaw’s ERA for the year. Yeah, we know who’s winning the Cy Young, and maybe even MVP. The Giants had a rough few days in Colorado, but bounced back nicely in Detroit, but because the Dodgers aren’t cooling off, they find themselves 3.5 games back after pulling to within 1.5 earlier in the week.

The good news is that the Giants have a 3.5 game lead in the wild card, they still have 6 games yet to play against the Dodgers, and Buster Posey found his spinach. We also talk Belt’s possible return, Morse’s injury, and how Panik and Susac are exceeding all expectations so far.

Join us for the recorded stream, a stream while we recorded on the internetz. Don’t forget, we now stream all of our podcasts LIVE on YouTube around 9:30 pm PDT every Monday. We will also have clubhouse access this Wednesday and Saturday, so we’ll be sure to take our anti-anxiety medication before we ask Hunter Pence how fluffy his shower towel is.

Episode 70 on YouTube:

 

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Episode 69: No Player Wants This Number

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Eric Nathanson (@2outhits) pinch hit to join Chad on Episode 69, which was streamed live on YouTube. We talked about the Giants’ 6-1 homestand, the continuation of the May 22 game in Colorado, which the Giants won 4-2 (and that did NOT extend the winning streak, by the way), and the heartbreaking way (6 times this year, in fact) the Rockies exhumed the souls of the Giants once again. Seriously, if the Giants had only won three out of the six games in which they were leading the Rockies, they’d have a one game lead in the NL West right now.

 

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Bonusode 68.1: Giants Destroy Brew-crew

The Giants took care of the Brewers in a convincing 13-2 drubbing on Friday night.

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Willie and Chad break down the 13-2 crushing of the Brewers after the game at Zeke’s. Chad also talks about his interview with Will Clark before the game, and the boys break down the Giants chances to make the playoffs down the stretch.

Don’t forget to follow us @TortureCast and like us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/torturecast. We also stream our podcast live every Monday here at TortureCast.com.

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Interview with Will Clark

Chad sat down with “Will the Thrill” before the Brewers faced the Giants. (image: SF Examiner)

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Before the Brewers opened up a three game series with the Giants, Chad was able to sit down with Will Clark for a brief interview. Parallels between the ’87 and ’89 playoff teams were made with the ’10 and ’12 teams, he talks about his first at bat against Nolan Ryan, and we discuss the new wildcard format.

After the Giants whalloped the Brewers tonight, we recorded our traditional “bonusode” at Zeke’s. The whiskey always tastes better after a win. You can listen to the bonusode here.

Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter @TortureCast or like us on Facebook.  We stream our podcast live every Monday at 9:30 PM Pacific when you can call in at 415-799-SFG1.

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Brewers vs. Giants 8/29/14

Manny Pacquiao taking batting practice before the Brewers faced the Giants. The Brewers ended up hitting much like him.

Manny Pacquiao taking batting practice before the Brewers faced the Giants. The Brewers ended up hitting much like him.

Face it. We’ve had bad luck in the press box this year. We’re 1-4. This includes witnessing the self-destruction of the Colorado and Cincinnati games, and an extra inning loss in April. It’s been a tough one. The 280 was also closed. It felt like it was going to be a bad night.

But, sometimes life can surprise you.

I drove up early to deal with the traffic resulting from the 280 closure, but faced none after taking Third street all the way to AT&T. I arrived at 2:30 for a 7:15 game. This was weird. Fortunes smiled upon me when I was able to watch Manny Pacquiao take batting practice from right behind the screen.

And standing there beside me was none other than Will Clark. My favorite player. Ever.

After Giants players took hundreds of selfies with Pacquiao, Clark walked into the dugout with Marty Lurie to finish their interview, and shortly after, I respectfully asked Clark if I could grab a few minutes for an interview and he obliged. I’ll post that here and here and somewhere else, and on my wall, and bronze it. You’ll see it soon.

Or now, here, right here.

Then, I found out that we’ll have clubhouse access in September.

Then, the Giants played Milwaukee.

I won’t go into great detail, but the Giants scoring in the first five innings looked like this:

3, 2, 1, 2, 5.

13 runs in the first 5 innings set a season-high. In the FIFTH. Brandon Crawford, hitting 8th, had 4 plate appearances through 5. Pagan had 3 hits, and I’m sure I saw one fan consume at least 6 brats in the first 5 innings.

I’m sure the beneficiary, Ryan Vogelsong, bought the lineup a post-game meal, despite the fact that earlier in the year, he had one stretch of five starts without receiving a single run of run support.

It all comes in runs. Pun intended.

Posey tied his career high with five hits, and the rookie Joe Panik went 4-6. Every starter had a hit, except Crawford. You should probably just check the box score because we’re about to go to Zeke’s and record our bonusode, and I can’t wait to taste the victory whiskey.

UPDATE: You can listen to the bonusode here.

DOUBLE UPDATE: Although it’s already posted here, you can listen to my interview with Will Clark again and again here.

Chad

 

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Episode 68: We’re Doing it Live!

It wasn't smooth, but we did it...our first live streaming call in show.

It wasn’t smooth, but we did it…our first live streaming call in show.

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You can also listen to the YouTube version below

This is our first live call-in streaming show, ever! We apologize that Chad’s voice is a little soft for half the podcast, and we actually dropped the stream about 10 minutes in, causing mass hysteria as people couldn’t listen to us live, but we trudged through and took a couple of calls about the misfortune the Giants have faced over the last 3 games, including the Nats comeback and tonight’s inexplicable loss to the woeful Rockies. We’ll be doing it live from here on out! Don’t forget to call in at 415.799.SFG1 to let us know how sexy you think Crawford’s mane is.

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