Tag Archives: Lincecum

DYNASTY

You'll need to frame the third one, there on the left. Yeah, that one.

You’ll need to frame the third one, there on the left. Yeah, that one.

I really can’t write much. It’s been almost three hours since the impossible happened. Especially after that single-almost-turned-into-a-homerun took our collective breaths away.

But, Madison Bumgarner calmly stated, “I got this.”

After an improbable closing relief appearance, World Series MVP Madison Bumgarner earned the save with five innings of magical relief to preserve a 3-2 win over the Kansas City Royals that secured the Giants third World Series Championship in the last five years.

I really have no words.

And I need to SCUBA dive tomorrow.

Look for a giddy podcast sometime in the next day or two. I really have no idea what’s going on. A humpback whale might appear in the Mojave desert for all I care.

God dammit I love this game, this team, this City, and all of you fine people. And I’m not even drunk.

Chad

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Episode 75: We’re Going to the World Series!

Unreal. The San Francisco Giants have won the National League Pennant and are in the World Series for the third time in the last five years.

Unreal. The San Francisco Giants have won the National League Pennant and are in the World Series for the third time in the last five years.

You can download episode 75 here, or stream it below!

Incredibly, our boys in black and orange have done it for a third time in five years! In a rousing 4-1 NLCS win over the St. Louis Cardinals, the Giants move onto the fall classic to face the young upstart Kansas City Royals beginning Tuesday night. Willie, Ben, Chad and guest Eric Nathanson review the NLCS, including the momentous homeruns hit by Michael Morse and Travis Ishikawa that have left indelible marks in Giants’ lore. In the last half of the podcast, we preview the Royals, their strengths and weaknesses, and how the Giants might exploit them. We also talk about Hunter Pence’s lack of geography knowledge, a horrible ESPN article, our favorite guys and we make series predictions (hint, all 4 of us take the Giants). Tune in for a jam-packed special World Series episode of the TortureCast!

 

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Episode 74: NLCS Tied 1-1

Bumgarner has been the only true ace of the playoffs. (USA Today/Getty Images)

Download the podcast here, or stream it below!

A special mid-NLCS episode of the TortureCast finds the Giants and Cardinals knotted at 1 game a piece in this 7 game series. Now, the scene shifts back to our park in China Basin for games 3, 4 and 5. Willie, Ben, Chad and special returning guest, Eric Nathanson, break down games 1 and 2, including what went right (bullpen) and what went wrong (bullpen, BA w/RISP). Although the walk-off HR was soul-crushing for about a minute, we all were inspired by the tenacious Giants coming back throughout the game, including the dramatic 9th inning.

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Episode 71: PLAYOFFS!

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

Download Episode 71 here, or:

Press play below to stream Episode 71!

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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Episode 70: George Kontos

 

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

Download the episode here, or

Stream the episode below!

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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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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Stream it below!

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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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.

Download the podcast here

Or, stream the podcast below!

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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Episode 67: Doug Mirabelli +1 or Xavier Nady -1

No SF Giant has ever dared to wear this number for reasons we cannot reveal

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stream it below:

We knew this day would come. We finally hit a uniform number that has never graced the back of a single SF Giant.

We’ll think of it as Xavier Nady minus 1, or Doug Mirabelli plus 1. Not sure what we’ll do about 100+, if we ever get there.

Willie and Chad talk Giants baseball on this off-day that finds the Giants starting a six game road trip to Chicago and Washington, only 3.5 games back of the bums and with a hold on the second wild card spot. Hey, they were further back of the Padres at this point in 2010.  Of course, the Dougie was also a popular dance then, so….

We cover the recent series, Morse’s hot bat, Panik’s hustling pinkie, Matt Cain’s season-ending surgery, Belt’s troubling concussion (and Sanchez’s), Susac, Posey, Pablo, perplexing Timmy, the second base curse, Jimmy Rollins, and what kind of player would manifest with Yaseil Puig’s raw talent with Hunter Pence’s love and respect for the game.

Also, next week around 9 pm PDT, Monday, August 25, we’ll be having our first LIVE CALL IN SHOW and will be streaming it LIVE on YouTube.

Mark it on your calendar, and be sure to call us from your phone and we’ll be sure to patch you in, even if you think Michael Morse is a bust this year.

That number is 415-799-SFG1

Again, that number: 415-799-SFG1. 

Wait, I only need to repeat it on the podcast, not on this post…

Chad

 

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Episode 66: Doug Mirabelli

That jean shirt is sweet

Download the episode here, or

Click the play button below to stream Episode 66

We’re running out of jersey numbers, so “Doug Mirabelli” it is!

In episode #66, Chad and Ben are joined by Eric Nathanson of 2outhits to discuss the flurry of activity surround the San Francisco Giants including Belt and Cain to the DL, Scutaro’s return, Hicks DFA, signing Dan Uggla to a minor league deal, and Ben’s trip to Minnesota for the All Star Game.

 

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Timmy 2.0

Timmy 2.0 dominated for his fourth-straight start. (Eric Risberg/AP)

We’ve all been hoping for his emergence, or better yet, his re-emergence as the dominant starter he once was. Even if he retired today, he would be one of the most popular Giants of all time with 2 rings, 2 Cy Youngs, 2 no-hitters, and a splash of playoff heroics. Yet, he just turned 30 last month, and that turn of the decade seemed to ring in a new Timmy, version 2.0. I just turned 40, but the only resurgence I’ve seen is the fat in my man-boobs.

We’ve seen flashes of brilliance in his last two dismal seasons, but nothing that was sustained, until now. Over his last four starts, he’s allowed only one run over a span of 30 1/3 innings. He had a scoreless streak of 23 innings that was snapped by a solo homerun, and he hadn’t had a streak like that since 2009, which was in between his two Cy Young seasons.

So why the change? We know his fastball velocity is the lowest it’s ever been, and will continue to drop with age. Perhaps he’s finally matured to the point where he trusts location more than “stuff.” He’s said as much in interviews, but the proof didn’t exist. Is that mentality finally translating to the field? To my un-professional eye (but I did just ‘retire’ after playing 20 years of amateur baseball, so at least I’ve seen a loooot of pitching), he is certainly more consistent, and he’s been pitching backwards as of late, with the curveball or change-up first, setting up fastballs low and on the corners, followed by either a change or another curve to keep hitters off-balance.

And to think that if Timmy was up to his old antics, the Giants would have even had a WORSE month of June? Is that possible? Let’s look at the starting rotation for the last 30 days:

Name W L ERA IP HR BB AVG WHIP BABIP
Tim Lincecum 4 1 1.49 42.1 1 12 0.140 0.76 0.171
Tim Hudson 1 4 4.91 36.2 3 8 0.297 1.42 0.336
Ryan Vogelsong 1 3 4.13 28.1 0 7 0.259 1.24 0.333
Matt Cain 1 3 4.83 31.2 4 9 0.282 1.39 0.323
Madison Bumgarner 1 3 5.18 33 2 13 0.260 1.39 0.320

 

Each starter only has one win in the last month, yet Timmy has four. But look at that sexy WHIP and BABIP. I know numbers turn our readers on, but you should probably go ahead and lather those up with oil, because they’re not getting any better than that. What’s remarkable is that Timmy’s walk percentage, although down slightly, is comparable with the other starters, and his strikeout percentage is actually second-lowest in the last month. It’s the quality of the pitches he’s making. His BABIP is a measly .171, which means players are making very weak contact, also translating into the .140 average against.

Now, let’s eliminate that one loss and look at his last four starts as a whole: his ERA, BA against and BABIP are 0.30, 0.101, and 0.120, respectively. Are you kidding me?!

The analysts all talk about his pitch selection. Let’s see how that stacks up in his last four starts vs his career:

Year FA% FT% SL% CU% CH%
Last 4 starts 24.8% 18.3% 27.2% 7.4% 22.3%
2014 30.5% 15.6% 27.6% 10.4% 15.8%
2013 37.2% 12.4% 21.2% 10.7% 17.6%
2012 39.3% 12.3% 21.3% 10.7% 16.0%
2011 42.1% 12.6% 24.1% 6.4% 14.4%
2010 37.9% 15.2% 7.2% 16.4% 21.3%
2009 55.1% 0.7% 7.1% 18.2% 18.8%
2008 65.5% 9.4% 9.8% 15.3%

 

I’ve heard a lot about his curveball lately, and it does LOOK GOOD, but he’s only thrown it 7.4% of the time in his last four starts, which is much lower than his career average. What’s notable to me is how his changeup (CH%) has replaced many fastballs (FA%), having thrown almost as many changeups as heaters. I think this is one key to his recent success, aside from location being number one. Delving further into his fastball selection, although that percentage is way down, he’s relying on the two-seamer (FT%) more than he ever has, comprising roughly 2 out of 3 fastballs over his last four starts. Historically, he’s used that pitch for less than half of his fastballs, going with the four-seamer the majority of the time, which is a higher-velocity pitch. The two-seamer has more movement than the four-seamer, indicating that he’s sacrificing a bit of velocity for movement, which is only adding to the reduction in BABIP. The variance of his pitch selection is also the lowest its ever been, by far, and this may keep the batters guessing a little bit more with a more even distribution of pitches.

One caveat that must be pointed out. Three of these four starts were against the Padres and D’backs, both woefully underperforming offensively this year. He did have a commanding start against St. Louis, but this is a small, yet promising sample size.

Maybe Timmy finally has reinvented himself, or version 2.0 will need to be returned before the warranty expires.

Chad

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