Tag Archives: Madison Bumgarner

Episode #155: Coming Down the Stretch

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Hunter Pence watches a mammoth homerun sail to the warehouse at Petco Park. It may have been his last in a Giants uniform, but he certainly played his last road game with the Giants in St. Louis over the weekend. Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images

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

The Giants finished their abysmal road record at 31-50 after losing their final four roadies (1 in SD, 3 in StL). It marks only the 6th time the Giants have lost 50 or more games on the road and the first time they’ve done that in consecutive seasons since 1984-85. At least they’re guaranteed of a winning home record (they are standing at 41 wins).

Eric and Chad review the week on the road, a monumental bomb off the bat of Hunter Pence, the possibility that GM Bobby Evans might be replaced and what a new GM might do (trade Bumgarner?), Melancon’s struggles, our picks for the Willie Mac award, review the current playoff situation and pray and hope that the Giants can knock LA out of the playoffs this coming weekend as both teams close out the regular season.

We’ll be back next week to wrap up the season and preview the playoffs. Until then, be sure to like us on Facebook and follow us @TortureCast.

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Episode #153: Giants May Never Win Again

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Ryder Jones dislocated his left patella on a swing. No one touched him. WTF? Yep, this encapsulates your 2018 Giants. Photo: Patrick Gorski-USA TODAY Sports

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

Yes, that show title is hyperbole. But, the Giants have lost 8 in a row, plunging them to 8 games under .500 and 11 games back in the West. They were swept in Colorado and Milwaukee, making it their first winless 6 game road trip since 2015. Although their pitching hasn’t been horrible, the pen and starting pitching is choosing bad spots to fail. Their hitting, or lack thereof, is the main culprit. The difference between their home (+9) and road (-17) records is astounding.

Ryder Jones going down for the season on a swing just encapsulates this injury-ridden season too well. MadBum, for all of his fire and fury, plunked Ryan Braun after their words earlier in the game, was met by a grand slam by Jonathan Schoop, the best retribution the Brewers could have asked for…and that’s after 3 of their players and manager were ejected for their reactions from the plunking.

With less than three weeks left in the season, the Giants will try and finish with some competitiveness, and hopefully be spoilers for a team or two. They will also try and avoid their longest losing streak in SF club history at 10 games (1996 and 1985). Hopefully it will never get to their overall club record at 13 games (1902 and 1944).

Thanks for the wonderful comments on YouTube, and hopefully you’ll root for this team as they close out this miserable season. Besides, football is back, and a good distraction, anyway.

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Episode #151: Buster’s Hip Surgery and more

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Buster Posey had season-ending hip surgery today. He will be out 6-8 months and may miss the start of the 2019 season. Photo: John Hefti / Associated Press

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

With special guest, Ryan Leong (@ryanleong), Chad and Eric discuss the last two weeks of the Giants’ season and realize, like even the Giants’ brass, that this season will not end in the playoffs. At 65-67 and 8 games back with 30 games to play, the Giants probably just need to play the youngsters. Also, Buster Posey had hip surgery today and will miss the rest of the season and be out 6-8 months, hopefully ready in time for the 2019 season with more power to contribute from his legs.

We also talk about the possibility of the ballpark being adjusted to lure future power hitter free agents, Derek Holland’s racially insensitive appearance on national TV, a setback for Jeff Samardzija, the fight between the Dodgers and Giants, the excessive proclivity for the Giants’ bullpen to fail and much, much more on episode 151 of the TortureCast!

Ryan Leong been covering the Bay Area teams since 1998. Freelancing for major sports radio networks including ESPN and CBS Sports Radio, AP Radio and NBC News Radio. He has coverd all of the major events, including Super Bowls.

Ryan Leong also sent 6 interviews recorded after yesterday’s game against the Rangers. You’ll find these at the end of the podcast:

  • Giants manager Bruce Bochy says he roots for Derek Holland because he’s has been doing his best to bounce back from a bad 2017 season with the White Sox
  • Giants starting and winning pitcher Derek Holland says while he has shown improvement on the mound he wants to make it through the seventh inning
  • Giants center fielder Steven Duggar says he’s doing anything he can in each game to help the team win
  • Rangers manager Jeff Banister says Yovani Gallardo made one bad pitch which was the two run triple hit by Steven Duggar
  • Rangers starting and losing pitcher Yovani Gallardo says he knew the pitcher was on deck but with the count 2-2 he wanted to get Steven Duggar out and it didn’t happen
  • Rangers shortstop Elvis Andrus says the offense struggled while in Oakland and it had a carryover effect into their series vs. Giants

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Episode #149: Playoff Chances are on Life Support

San Francisco Giants vs Houston Astros AT&T Park MLB Baseball

Bumgarner twirled 7 inning shutout ball against the Astros, only to get the no decision, much like Dereck Rodriguez the previous game.

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

Two weeks ago we talked about the Giants’ dwindling playoff chances and how they needed to reel off a streak of near-historic proportions to get back in the race. It hasn’t happened in the last two weeks. Going 5-7 in those two weeks with some late heart-breakers against the Astros has all but put a nail in the coffin for the Giants playoff hopes. MLB rates them at a 2.2% chance of getting into the dance.

When you look at their current deficit at 6.5 games behind Arizona, you can point to just one game a month that they shouldn’t have blown. If they just had one game a month back, they’d be sitting just 1.5 games out. This is the difference between a good team and a mediocre team.

Chad and Eric review the last two weeks, talking about the devastating blow of Cueto getting Tommy John surgery, Pablo is out for the rest of the year with a hamstring tear that required surgery, and Brandon Belt is still out. Although rocked by injuries, the Giants have had bright spots in Dereck Rodriguez, Duggar, Moronta and others. We also talk about why the Giants didn’t buy or sell, and if they’re rebuilding. And…should they trade Bumgarner?

Enjoy Episode #149 of the TortureCast!

Chad

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Episode #148: Are the Giants Buyers or Sellers?

FUCKINGBAYBRIDGETROPHY

Really, does anyone fucking care about this piece of shit?!

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

https://torturecast.podomatic.com/enclosure/2018-07-26T16_22_42-07_00.mp33

The Giants have not been too bad, but they haven’t been great at all. They are 3-5 since we last recorded and are slipping in the standings, now in 4th place, 4.5 games behind the Dodgers, needing to leap three teams in the NL West. Things aren’t great. Things aren’t horrible. Things are just…meh.

Chad and Eric catch up on the Giants over the last two weeks, with series against Oakland and Seattle, with the All Star game in between. Posey, Cutch, Belt and Crawford have been woeful since the break, and all four maybe even worse over the last month. The bright spots are Derek Rodriguez, and more recently, Hunter Pence.

If the Giants want a shot at the West, they may need a bat or arm. But, will they be buyers this far back? Or, will they sell and reload for 2-3 years from now?

Enjoy Episode #148 of the TortureCast. The Giants need a push!

Chad

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Episode #147: Walk-offs! Walk-offs! Walk-offs!

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Buster Posey knocks in the game-winning run in the 13th inning against the Cubs on July 11, 2018. It’s the 8th walk-off for the Giants this year, which leads all of baseball. © Stan Szeto

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

The Giants took the rubber game of a three game set with the Cubs with a 13th inning walk-off hit by Buster Posey. This was the second walk-off in the series and the eighth walk-off of the year, which leads all of baseball.

Chad and Eric chat about the current homestand, Crawford and Posey’s selections to the All-Star game, the timely pitching of Dereck Rodriguez and Suarez, the return of Johnny Cueto, the trade of Gearrin and Jackson, more trade rumors and more!

Friend of the show Ryan Leong passed along this youtube video, it’s a good watch. “The Giants Story, A Tale Of Two Cities” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jDNdb2xHxCI

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Episode #145: Giants Refuse to Quit

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Madison Bumgarner earns his first win of the year with a 3-0 victory over the Padres. He pitched 8 innings, allowed 3 hits and 2 walks and struck out 8. Photo by Jason O. Watson/Getty Images

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

We’ve had a string of real-life incidents get in the way of recording the last 3+ weeks, including Memorial Day, the death of Chad’s dog, Eric’s car breaking down, and a hair appointment (long story). Alas, Eric and Chad get back together to talk about what we’ve missed and where the Giants are. They are .500, 4 games back, and quite frankly, in a position to win the west, now that they have MadBum, Panik, Williamson, Hanson, Melancon and others back on the roster. That said, they’re missing Strickland to a self-inflicted hand injury, and Longoria also breaking the same 5th metacarpal that both Strickland and Bum broke. It’s like whack-a-mole with injuries this year. Get one back, another one goes down.

They’ve won 3 in a row, 4 of their last 5, and Bum had a classic dominant performance last night against the Padres. This is the point. The Giants can’t keep giving away games. Just one or two games a month equates to 6-12 for the year, which can make the difference in a season. The Astros won like 13 in a row, including many close games that they didn’t give up. That’s the mark of a championship team, like the Giants were for their 3 World Series rings.

Eric and Chad talk about who their pick for team MVP is so far this season, drafting Joey Bart, who’s hot and who’s not, injuries and more in this packed episode #145 of the TortureCast!

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SF Giants Season Preview: Starting Rotation

Ty Blach of the San Francsico Giants

Ty Blach/Photo: @SFGiants Twitter

The San Francisco Giants have wrapped up spring training and have their roster for the 2018 season. I guess. It hasn’t been officially announced as of Tuesday afternoon. Cactus League action is finally over. It feels like it took forever. I’m ready for some baseball that matters. I bet you are too.

The next few days, I’m going to take a look at the roster to get prepared for the start of the season. First up, the starting rotation. After that I’ll cover the bullpen and the position players. All projections are from the 2018 Baseball Prospectus. Let’s get this season started. Continue reading

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Episode #136: 2018 Season Preview

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Opening Day is Thursday, March 29. Ty Blach vs. Clayton Kershaw.

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

It’s our annual season preview! In this 7th preview in total, the gang has all been pretty close in guessing the Giants’ win totals…until last year. With all of us ranging between 84 and 92 wins, we were more than 20 games off.

That said, no one predicted that the Giants would lose 98. Taking that into consideration with this year’s injuries, we have the biggest range in our hosting history, with Chad going low with 76 wins, Willie just behind at 79, and Eric piling on the unicorn droppings with a whopping 96 wins, proclaiming that the Giants will win the West, the World Series, Duggar will win Rookie of the Year, and Posey and Panik will battle it out for a batting title.

Perhaps Eric is getting high off his new puppies?

We also read listener’s win total predictions, talk final potential roster moves, and our keys for getting off to a good start, considering that the Giants play the Dodgers 10 times over their first 29 games…and that’s without Bum or Shark.

 

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Even Years may be Odd

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San Francisco Giants starting pitcher Madison Bumgarner is helped off the field after getting hit by a batted ball during the third inning of the team’s spring training baseball game against the Kansas City Royals in Scottsdale, Ariz., Friday, March 23, 2018. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson)

The second half of 2016 was horrid, but the Giants limped into the playoffs, and were one bullpen collapse in the 9th inning short of forcing a game 5 in the NLDS.

2017 was an odd year, so nothing was expected, except the unexpected happened. The Giants lost 98 games after losing Madison Bumgarner to a freak, yet, completely preventable motorbike accident on an off day in Colorado. Match that with under-performing players, other injuries, and a bullpen that couldn’t plug any dyke in the world, and you come up with the second worst season in SF history. But, I think I speak for all of us when MadBum went down…there was a collective “oh shit,” and I’m sure the team felt it, too. I’m sure there was an emotional tsunami that cost the team a few games.

But…this offseason the Giants addressed many issues, including third base (Evan Longoria), outfield (Andrew McCutchen and Austin Jackson), bullpen (Tony Watson, Will Smith coming back from TJ), and with promising performances from young bullpen guys and Chris Stratton this spring, and with the prospect of MadBum having a full healthy season, things were positive, dare I say…confident. Yes, this team exuded confidence, in defiance to last year’s supposed outlier.

Then, two days ago, Jeff Samardzija was shut down. Yesterday we learned that he has a right pectoral muscle strain, and will be out 4-6 weeks. Although bad news, at least it wasn’t a shoulder injury, and maybe this injury could explain his drop in velocity this spring, along with the neck-jerking frequency of homeruns he was giving up.

Then…today.

It’s not an off day in Colorado, but it WAS the LAST start of the spring for Madison Bumgarner.

THE LAST START OF THE SPRING.

HIS NEXT START WOULD BE IN LA ON OPENING DAY.

Ah…the cruel baseball gods dipped Whit Merrifield into the cauldron of odd-year-bullshit, and firmly placed him in the 2018 batter’s box to deliver a line drive up the middle that impacted the FUCKING PITCHING HAND of the Giants’ best player.

Fracture.

Surgery.

with pins.

MadBum won’t even get the pins out for 4-6 weeks before he can start rehab and throwing. Most sources indicate that he may not even pitch before the ALL STAR BREAK. He’s out at least 6-8 weeks.

Are you fucking kidding me?!

After all of the re-tooling, pressing up against the luxury tax, and thankfully, having a relatively injury-free spring, this happens?!

Oh yeah, the Giants and Dodgers play 10 times in the first 33 days (29 games) of the season. None of those games will feature the Shark or MadBum. Any, and I mean ANY hopes of the Giants beating the Dodgers this year are gone. I mean, Chris Stratton as their #2?!

Las Vegas had the over/under for wins at 81.5. I think Giants fans were hoping for 86+ for a wild card. I think that number just dropped by 10 wins.

So, unless even magic will rear a unicorn ass and pull something out of it that we just cannot imagine, I think the even-year magic is over. Perhaps Sabean sold their collective soul to the devil to win three championships (which, btw, I’m cool with). Maybe this is their penance for coming back from 2-0 and 3-1 deficits in the NLDC and NLCS. Maybe this is karmic payback for Pence’s triple-hit, or Blanco’s bunt that didn’t go foul, or maybe even MadBum’s god-like performance in game 7 in 2014.

These aren’t even age-related issues for Bumgarner. Or over-use. Motorbike accident. Freak line-drive. Both will cost him about a full season of pitching combined.

And two seasons of frustration for Giants fans.

-Chad

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