Extra SF Giants notes

Earlier today I wrote about how great the San Francisco Giants offense has been during their recent run of 11 wins in 12 games. Here’s some extra notes I picked up while digging around.

  • The Giants are in the middle of a 21 game stretch against teams below .500. The average winning percentage of the 7 teams combined is .449. That means their competition is basically playing like the Reds (.448 win pct).
  • Flip it over. The next 26 games for the Giants are against teams over .500. That equates to playing the Yankees (.567 win pct.) for the next month.
  • Out of the top 14 teams in the majors in runs scored only 4 teams are from the NL. They are all from within the Giants division. 5. Colorado 6. Giants 9. Arizona 13. Dodgers.
  • The Toronto Blue Jays have scored 528 runs, he most in baseball. The Rockies lead the NL with 436. That’s almost a 100-run differential.
  • Nori Aoki leads the team with 12 stolen bases even after he’s missed 28 games. Brandon Belt and Angel Pagan are tied for second with 5 each. Calk that up as another reason I want to see him batting 1st when he returns.
  • Every game in which the Giants have had a 3 run lead this season they have gone on to win the game.
  • I didn’t even mention the Hector Sanchez grand slam at San Diego that made all Giants fans squeal with delight.

-Eric

@2outhits

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Orange Crushing

Buster Posey

It’s a lot of fun to watch the San Francisco Giants offense these days. They’ve managed to hit their way back into a race for the NL West crown. After falling to 5.5 games back of the Dodgers on July 10th the Giants now sit 1 game back of their rivals. In the race for a Wild Card spot the Giants are 2.5 games ahead of the Cubs for the final slot. Pittsburgh holds the lead by 3 games for home field in the coin flip game.

As a result of being pretty much the best offense in baseball lately the Giants have won 11 of 12 games. If you want to push it a little further they have gone 12-2 since the return of Hunter Pence.

The offense just keeps going. The Giants are 1st in hits, batting average, and on base percentage in the NL. They are second in runs scored, and have the 3rd best on base + slugging percentage. Over the last 12 games the Giants are averaging 6.3 runs a game and 12.2 hits. My dad used to tell me you should average 2 hits for every run. His story checks out.

The guy going bananas right now is Buster Posey. During this 12 game stretch he’s batting .511 with an OPS of 1.066. He’s driven in 10 runs and scored 7. It just seems like he’s always on base. Posey doesn’t have any homers over this span but he hasn’t needed them. It looks like late 2012 without the power.

Angel Pagan has been a nice surprise in the leadoff spot during this run. He’s batting .315 and has scored 10 runs. With Nori Aoki coming back he’s made a bid to stay at the top of the lineup. For my two cents, I want to see Pagan dropped back down and allow Aoki to take the top spot in the order again.

It’s not the Pagan at bats leading off an inning or game that scare me. He has been pretty good at getting on base early. It’s the ones when he comes up with 2 outs and runners on that freak me out. And so often it seems like he swings at the first pitch in those situations. When Pagan works a count he’s usually trying to get an inning going. Maybe he thinks that every pitcher wants to throw a get me over pitch to start him off. I don’t know. I just know I want Aoki batting more than Pagan. Give me the guy with a .383 OBP which is second on the team behind Posey. Pagan has just a .304 OBP and that’s the worst of any regular player the Giants send out there.

Let’s go back to Hunter Pence. The first thing that jumps out is that the Giants are 30-8 in games he’s played. In those first 18 games he played between DL stints the Giants went 12-6, in the 14 games since Pence came back this time the team is 12-2.

Over the most recent 14 games Pence has driven in 15 runs. He’s homered 3 times, the most important one was in Arizona that tied the game right after the All-Star break. Pence is batting .321 since his return with an OPS of .948. In his first 18 games that was a .282 BA and .780 OPS. He’s also managed 5 doubles and that’s come primarily from Hunter’s right field approach. He’s been looking away recently and only turning on a pitch if it drifts to the inner half.

The 2-3-4 hitters in the Giants lineup are all batting over .300. There are only 14 guys in the NL doing that and the Giants have 3 of them. Posey is 4th at .328, Joe Panik is 8th at .311, and Matt Duffy is sitting 12th with a .302 average. Panik is 3rd in hits with 113 and Posey has 110 hits which places him 5th.

There’s also length in the lineup. Brandon Belt is 2nd in the NL with 26 doubles. That surprised me a little. Let’s not forget Brandon Crawford who shares the team lead in home runs (14) with Posey. These guys help keep the line moving after the top guys are getting on base.

I know this post is all about how kick ass the Giants offense is but I can’t let 2 pitching notes go by. First, I tip my cap to Tim Hudson. With the Giants 4-3 victory over the A’s on Sunday he’s now beaten all 30 MLB teams. He’s the 15th pitcher to do it. Hudson is the 4th one of those pitchers to spend time with San Francisco. The other three are Terry Mulholland, Barry Zito, and new Hall of Famer Randy Johnson.

The other great pitching note of late is the bullpen. Over the last 14 games Giants relievers have allowed 6 runs in 45.1 innings. A miniscule 1.19 ERA. They have a 2-0 record and are 7-for-7 in save chances.

The orange and black are streaking and tearing the cover off the ball in the process. The next 3 games are at home against the Brewers, a team they swept in 3 games while scoring 17 runs back in May at Miller Park. The Brewers are not scoring runs. They managed just 5 total this past weekend in 4 games at Arizona and were shut out each of the last 2 days. Hopefully this all means the Giants can keep up their winning ways the next 3 days at AT&T Park.

Remember to follow us on Twitter, like us on Facebook, and subscribe to our YouTube channel if you haven’t already.

-Eric

@2outhits

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SF Giants thoughts and notes

Getty Images/Rob Carr

Getty Images/Rob Carr

Much like Willie has his stream of consciousness posts after we cover a game in the press box, I’m going to share some thoughts and notes about the San Francisco Giants today.

It’s been a while since I’ve (Eric) popped in for a post so let’s see what’s been going on and what’s coming up for the Giants

  • Heading in to Monday night’s game against the Padres the Giants have won 6 straight and are now 49-43. They closed out the 1st half with a sweep of the Phillies. After the break they came out swinging and swept the D-Backs in Arizona behind 35 hits and 16 runs of offense.
  • It’s not just pitching for the Giants anymore. Right now they lead the NL in hits (866) and batting average (.272). They are second in on-base pct. (.373), and third in slugging pct. (.407) and runs scored (393).
  • It extends to the road as well. The Giants rank first in the NL on the road in runs per game (4.82), batting average (.278), OBP (.334), slugging pct. (.428), and OPS (.762).
  • Buster Posey has been red-hot lately. He’s had a hit in 17 of his last 18 games and is 15-for-26 (.577) with runners in scoring position during that time. He’s driven in 24 runs in those situations during that time.
  • Hunter Pence has also been a key contributor lately. Since his most recent return from the DL, Pence is batting .333 with 2 HR and 11 RBI. He’s tied with Mike Trout for the most runs driven in during that time.
  • There’s a great piece on Fox Sports by Owen Watson exploring Matt Duffy and how he’s one of the best rookies in baseball this season.
  • If you missed it last week Jonah Keri of Grantland looked at how the Giants have the best infield in baseball with homegrown talent.
  • We’ve all seen lately that Angel Pagan has lost a step or two out in center field. There’s talk on social media about moving him to LF but Bruce Bochy has said that a move like that will not happen during the season. Personally I think the Giants are better with Gregor Blanco in center, but that won’t happen as long as Pagan is “healthy”. Maybe we’ll see a DL stint for him once Nori Aoki returns.
  • Speaking of Aoki, we heard on Twitter earlier today that he’s beginning his rehab assignment in Sacramento tomorrow. And he could be back as early as the weekend series against the A’s.
  • Looking ahead the Giants play their next 5 series against teams currently under .500. At the moment they sit 3.5 games back of the Dodgers for the division and 1 game back of the Cubs for the Wild Card.
  • I’m standing by my pick of the Giants winning the NL West. I wouldn’t be surprised if they catch them for the division lead by the first week of August.
  • Tim Hudosn is back tonight and Jean Machi has been DFA’d to clear room for him. That’s probably the end for the Giants resident fart master.

There’s probably more to get into and I’ll be back later this week during the Giants off day Thursday with some more thoughts about the boys.

You can like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter, or check out our YouTube channel.

-Eric

@2outhits

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Another Press Box Dills Stream of Consciousness – July 10th SF v PHI

Listen to our “Bonusode” at Zeke’s here, stream it below!

Listen to our interview with All Star SS Brandon Crawford

Listen to our interview with Matt Duffy

Here we are again. Considering the struggles this team has had its amazing that the flag in right center is still hanging in the second position. If the rest of the west wasn’t so weak it wouldn’t be but we’ll take what we can get. Tonight’s an important game as the Giants are sitting at 43-43. Dipping below .500 can be a psychological blow and the Phillies aren’t exactly world beaters so a loss with your horse on the mound could be devestating. As the game goes on I’ll be noting my thoughts here for your enjoyment. Go Giants.

  • First real shareable moment of the night is the bat boy hitting the dirt bringing balls out in the first. It is social media night so I’m sure that will be all over the Twitters. He did get a well deserved standing ovation upon returning to the dugout. Look. We all have embarrassing moments growing up. They just usually don’t happen in front of 42,000 people.
  • If you had told me at the beginning of the year that Duffy would be hitting in the 3 hole consistently I would have assumed that we’d be out of contention. He’s been one of the best stories of 2015 and after losing Pablo and the struggles of McGeehee, it’s awesome to see him doing well.
  • Three straight singles to get going against the stingy Cole Hamels. Unfortunately, Posey hits into a double play and the Giants only get one run out of a bases loaded nobody out situation. We’ll see if that comes back to haunt them. (Edit: nope)
  • After a narrow escape by Bum in the first as well we have settled in to a bit of a duel. Both pitchers look like they are in a fairly decent rhythm. Could be a low scori…aaaaand as I’m typing this Carlos Ruiz (remember him?) hits one out on the first pitch and we’re tied.
  • Since facing the Phillies in 2010 this team has made a full 180. What used to be a perrenial contender is now a collection of unknowns dwelling in the cellar of the NL East. That team was so scary for so long and it’s tough to pinpoint exactly where it all went wrong.
  • On a team struggling to score runs two run singles up the middle are a beautiful sight. The fact that Maxwell and Pagan had a hand in the inning is also beautiful. These guys have been scuffling for an extended period of time and we’re going nowhere without them.
  • Panik keeps it going and the Giants have the rare double bases loaded one out situation in a single inning.
  • We’ve officially given up on keeping score as the Giants bat around in the 4th. The inning started with Brandon Crawford striking out and after 8 guys came around the bags we’re back at Crawford. Pence hit a Grand Slam in the meantime to continue his campaign to save the Giants.
  • Can’t tell if the Giants are really good at baseball or the Phillies are really bad. Maybe a bit of both?
  • How does a 10-1 route get better? When Bumgarner has a bizzare stand off on the basepaths with Phillies 3rd baseman, Maikel Franco.
  • Bumgarner leaves the game in the 6th after getting into a little trouble. It’s a shorter start by his standards but since we have finally given him some run support its nice to let him relax and take rest of the night off. The game isn’t over by any means but it’s gonna take a Herculean effort for this Phillies lineup to come back.
  • I need to start bringing a radio into the box. Games like this are perfect for Jon Miller stories.
  • The crowd is now in full on party mode. I guess that’s what happens when you score 11. This team needed a game like this. Recently runs have been so hard to come by and a blowout can actually provide confidence for many games to come.
  • It’s now a baker’s dozen as Panik launches one into the seats with Pagan aboard. The Giants are just teeing off at this point as they’ve scored in every inning since the 8 run outburst.
  • One thing the American League doesn’t get is Jean Machi at bats. They’re missing out.
  • A fan jumped into the cove after Panik’s home run ball. It was quite a majestic move, reminiscent of Aubry Huff’s legendary rail jump after Matt Cain’s perfecto in 2012. He did get the ball and what looks like a stern talking to by some official looking gentlemen. The smile never left his face, however. What more could we get from this game? It has it all!
  • Ladies and Gentlemen. The Giants just got 20 hits at AT&T park. I shit you not.
  • Make that 21 which is the most ever in a game at AT&T park. Maxwell with 4 of them. At this point the Giants are 21 for 41 for the game which is a .512 avg.
  • Another bat boy bites the dust but this time to much less fanfare. The Phillies BB was almost off the field with a bat and tripped. More on this story as it develops.
  • Another cool thing that happened: a Giants front office employee tweeted at me that he is a fan of my podcast, The Instance. He then tweeted a pic of his 10 year WoW statue and his 3 rings. Epic.
  • Giants win by a final of 15-2. Now to the bar for a bonusode!

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Episode #91: Unlucky 7

Could be 8 tomorrow.

Download the episode here or stream it below!

The Giants have been a streaky team this year, and this week is no different being mired in a seven game skid. Willie and Chad talk about the Giants recent struggles, injuries, the return of Cain and Peavy, and beat up on Don Mattingly. We also made ourselves feel better talking about the four Giants that were selected to the All Star game.

Seriously, stop it, Giants.

Chad

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Episode #90: Duffman

I wonder how many beers Duffy can actually chug after a game while holding Skeeter?

Download Episode 90 here, or stream it below!

The Giants went 4-2 for the week, which is something amazing considering they were under.500 at home. Despite a 12-13 June (ok, they can still be .500 with a win tonight), the Giants are only 1/2 game back of the Dodgers. Chad and Ben discuss the month of June, the All Star game voting, Duffy and more!

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Episode #89: The Almost Sweep

    Former Giant OF Darryl Hamilton

Download the podcast here, or

Click below to stream it:

The whole gang is back together to recap the week that was in the land of black and orange. Who’s out of the rotation when Peavy and Cain return? Is Crawford an All-Star? Is Pete Rose really that big of a douche? (answer: yes).

Ben was AT Citi Field for Heston’s no-hitter.   Jerk.

We also take a moment to remember former Giant Darryl “Hambone” Hamilton, who was tragically killed early this morning. Once a Giant, always a Giant.

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Episode #88: DubNation and #BeatLA

The Giants welcome the Warriors. Now, please give us some of that odd-year mojo!

Download the podcast here, or stream it below!

We had a power outage that prevented our last podcast, then acts of God that prevented our next scheduled podcast, but with the Giants entering Chavez Ravine, Chad decided it’s about time we talk Giants ball!

Oh, and THE WARRIORS ARE NBA CHAMPS!  and stuff

Chad catches up with the Giants “meaty” season, their road domination and underwhelming home performance. There’s also catching up to do with Heston’s no-no, the Giants’ visit to the White House, the draft, McGehee coming back, Scutaro re-signing, Scandoval, MLB canceling 60 million votes, and what in the hell do the Giants do when Cain and Peavy come back?!

Oh, and the Giants beat LA tonight 9-5 and are 1 1/2 games back.

Enjoy episode 88 of the TortureCast!

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Out of Left Field

Before I joined TortureCast in August 2011, I regularly contributed a segment on the show called, “Out of Left Field.” It was usually a short 60 seconds of me rambling on about some esoteric stat, streak, or oddity of the Giants’ season.

I’ve decided to resurrect it, and potentially in audio format once again. Because, who doesn’t like listening to themselves? Ok, I don’t, so here it is in digital print. At least most fonts aren’t embarrassing. Except for Comic Sans, of course.

  • The Giants finally broke their 9 game skid at home, which was the longest losing streak since 1940 at the Polo Grounds. I mean, that’s when gas was 18 cents a gallon and my grandmother was still in France about to hide from the Nazis.
  • Despite tonight’s 2-0 loss, MadBum pitched well and was perfect for 4 2/3 until a cleat-made divot caused a ball to bounce at Crawford’s insured face, necessitating the scorekeeper to laugh diabolically and mark it as a hit. Maybe that had a butterfly effect on the Giants’ offense. No, wait, no, that had about as much affect on their offense as I do screaming at the TV while I tear the wings off of a butterfly.
  • The Giants are 5-12 since their high-water mark of 30-20. After starting the season 4-10, that means the “meat” of the season sandwich was 26-10.
  • Giants are 8 GB of last year’s record after 67 games. In fact, they haven’t been worse at this point over the last 5 seasons: 2013: 0 GB, 2012: 2 GB, 2011: 3 GB, 2010: 2 GB
  • Marco Scutaro was symbolically re-signed by the Giants and immediately placed on the 60-day DL. He can now retire a Giant. And to think that I truly believed (last year) that he would certainly come back at some point to relive his glory days in 2012 and 2013. Sadly, he’s rehabbing his 2 fused vertebrae and hoping to “live a normal life, pain free” with his family. Egad. He might not ever play even beer league softball. I’ll stop my bitching about my injured wrist that prevents me from cleaning and jerking in my CrossFit sessions. And jerking.
  • Matt Cain and Jake Peavy are close to coming back into the rotation, but the Giants have stated that they will not go to a six man rotation, which begs the obvious, “who’s out?” I’d say take out Mike Murphy. There are no alternatives.
  • As of today, the Royals would have 8 starters in the All Star Game. If this holds, it’ll be the National League vs. the Royals, plus Mike Trout. I “kind of” want this to happen, if only to force MLB into changing this ridiculous ASG voting by the fans. Ok, well, Aoki is currently slated to start for the NL (being a former Royal), so maybe just this year…. In fact, wouldn’t it be something if Giants fans propelled 8 Giants starters to the final ballot? Man, the Royals could get their revenge…
  • Don’t look now, but Arizona is only two games back of the Giants. I thought Diamondbacks were not allowed to pray to their snake goddess.
  • Chris Heston was named NL player of the week. I wonder if anyone HASN’T been named that after a no-hitter. Glad someone else didn’t throw a perfect game that week, I suppose.
  • Maybe the Warriors can win every odd year championship.
  • Javier Lopez: 0.96 ERA, 0.64 WHIP. Dayum.
  • Giants are hitting .284 as a team on the road, which leads all MLB, 12 points higher than the next team. Can haz hitting at home? (.249)
  • Despite the last few downturns, they’re only 2.5 games back of the Bums. Could be worse. Let’s get back to that meat I mentioned earlier. Maybe it was grand salame?

Chad

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Duffy v Sandoval

Duffman rules so far....

Duffman rules so far….

Just some quick thoughts on the departure of Panda.

First of all, his replacement, Casey McGehee, isn’t even on the Giants roster, he’s in Sacramento, and yes, he may come back up, but the impetus for his demotion is one Matt Duffy.

So, Duffy isn’t exactly raking in the leaderboards, but let’s look at how he compares to Panda (Duffy v Sandoval):

AB: 137, 176 (Duffy has 39 fewer ABs, which is to be expected since McGehee had more ABs earlier)

AVG: .270, .239 (advantage: Duffy)

HR: 3, 5 ( (advantage: Panda, but he has more ABs)

RBI: 22, 17 (advantage: Duffy)

OBP: .313, .306 (advantage: Duffy)

SLG: .380, .352 (advantage: Duffy)

OPS: .692, .682 (advantage: Duffy)

Errors: 2, 7 (advantage: Duffy)

Fielding Pct: .972, .935 (advantage: Duffy)

Considering Pablo is making $17 million this year, and Duffy is making $509,000, I think this is a win-win so far for the Giants. Of course, Pablo doesn’t have a Skeeter, so can he really win?

Chad

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