Tag Archives: San Francisco Giants

Episode #202: Sometimes You Don’t See It

Hunter Pence shared this meme on social media after last night’s gaffe ended Johnny Cueto’s no-hit bid.

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

Somehow the baseball season is still pushing forward, despite the Cardinals are now the “infected” team. In fact, although the Giants have played 16 games, which is more than a quarter of the way through the season, the Cards have only played 5 games….FIVE.

The Giants went 3-5 since our last recording, but the main hurdle was Colorado, where they lost three of four, despite having late inning leads in two of those losses. They’ve split so far in LA, but Donnie Barrels (aka Donovan Solano) leads the league in hitting, and Yaz leads the majors in wins above replacement. The veterans of Pence, Pablo, and Crawford have not played well at all, and their pitching staff has a 5th worst ERA at 5.05. Surprisingly, their batting average is fifth. At 7-9, the Giants are barely out of the expanded playoff picture, and if they can survive the last 4 games of this hellacious 10 game roadie, they may not be in horrible shape. Eric and Chad chat about all of this and more in a brief episode 202.

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Episode #200:

June 12, 2011 was episode #1. July 28, 2020 is episode #200. We celebrate the fact that we’re this stubborn to continue a podcast about one major league baseball team over nine years.

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

We broadcast this milestone episode live. Check out the full video above!

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Willie Dills Gregory and his two friends started this podcast on June 12, 2011. Nine years later, we’ve finally reached episode 200. However, that’s with the caveat that if you add all of the bonusodes, season previews and interviews, it’s really recording number 258. That said, it’s something to celebrate, especially as we recorded during the Giants’ home opener (which they sadly lost 5-3 to SD).

Chad, Eric and founder Willie Dills wax poetically over 90 minutes about the Marlins’ COVID outbreak, the expanded playoffs, and the first series the Giants split against the Dodgers. This episode, and all going forward, was streamed on Facebook Live.

Check out our ugly mugs as we get through this episode! Hopefully baseball sticks around long enough to make it to the playoffs. Thanks for coming along for the ride!

@chadk21

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Opening Day Thud

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – JULY 23: Johnny Cueto #47 of the San Francisco Giants pitches during the fifth inning against the Los Angeles Dodgers in the game at Dodger Stadium on July 23, 2020 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)

On paper, we knew the Giants probably wouldn’t make the playoffs, and the Dodgers may run away with the division. But, shortly before tonight’s season opener in Dodger Stadium, the league announced that the playoffs have been expanded to 16 teams total, adding 3 teams to each league. Eight teams EACH from the AL and NL. This is great news for the Giants. But, they still have to be in the top 8 of 15 teams in the NL, a pinnacle they haven’t reached since 2016. But, it’s 60 games, so a little streak here or there, and they could sneak in.

Tonight, the news even got better as Clayton Kershaw was scratched from the start with back issues and placed on the IL. Dustin May was called up as his replacement. Everything started to look a bit more rosey for the Giants. After they had a minimal 1-0 lead (after squandering opportunities to score much more), the Dodgers finally broke through with a 2-out rally to tie the game off Cueto in the 4th. Overall, Cueto looked good until giving up two consecutive singles, a walk, and another single to tie the game.

With expanded rosters, and a young corp to try and battle these monoliths of baseball, Gabe Kapler has an extreme challenge, but he has some depth in numbers (as do all teams, of course). He quickly brought in Drew Smyly and Rico Garcia in the 5th and 6th to toss zeros. But, everything unraveled in the 7th when Tyler Rogers, who only gave up two earned runs in 17.2 innings last year was tagged for three earned runs in 2/3 of an inning. He was also the victim of questionable defense, including his own. With runners on the corners and one out, there was a comebacker to Rogers. He appeared to have enough time to start the 1-6-3 double play, but opted to go for the runner stranded off third. Unfortunately, instead of just running him back to third (the runner from first was able to make it all the way to third, like you’re supposed to), a long pickle ensued, which also allowed the hitter to get to second. So, yes, they got the second out of the inning, but now TWO runners were in scoring position instead of the end of the inning. Enrique Hernandez quickly doubled the Dodgers’ run total with a two out, two run knock to right to put the Dodgers up 4-1, and that was the end of it. They tacked on four more runs throughout the night, and the Giants didn’t put up much of a fight, offensively. But, the game was still tied going to the bottom of the 7th.

Joe McCarthy and Dany Jimenez made their (forgettable) MLB debuts tonight. Let’s be honest, the Giants roster is full of unknowns, castaways, rookies and retreads. Much like when the GM in “Major League” tried to fill the roster with such players to tank the season, but the team has been boxed in by over-inflated “thank you” contracts, bad trades, and a lack of draft depth. If they don’t make the playoffs in this “easy” year, it may be a few more until they crack the top.

There’s always tomorrow.

Chad

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Episode #195: Greed is not Good

bullpen

Framegrab from the KPIX helicopter flying over Oracle Park, showing the new bullpens nearing completion.

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

Things are tough in the nation right now. From the pandemic to civil unrest, there are many more important things happening than a podcast about baseball and the Giants. Yet, Eric and I decided to go ahead with our recording, as we only do so every two weeks at this point. Perhaps our conversation can be a distraction from these troubling times.

There have been a few developments in the negotiations between the owners and players, but both sides seem to have their feet planted firmly. The owners want to pay the players much less than previously agreed to, with fewer games played, and the players want a prorated salary and more games. They are currently very far apart, and the chances of having a season seem to dwindle with every passing day. But, there is some hope that we’ll see baseball some time this year. We also chat about Vegas reopening, bullpen completion and new dimensions at Oracle Park and more!

Chad

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Episode #194: Baseball in San Francisco…in July?

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Oracle Park may not have fans in July, but could it have baseball? (AFP Photo/JUSTIN SULLIVAN)

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

Do we think this is likely? Not really. But, that is the latest bit of news coming out of the baseball world. Last week, MLB owners sent the players association a proposal that would start an 82 game season in July. Some of the main points of how the season would work include the DH for the NL, an expanded 14-team playoff, games restricted to mainly geographic opponents to reduce travel, and a myriad of COVID-19 related guidelines for on-field play (no spitting, chewing tobacco, fist bumps, etc.). They also proposed a 50/50 revenue split with the players, but that would result in lower salaries than the players already agreed to on March 26, when they agreed to a pro-rated salary based on the number of games played. Additionally, California Governor Newsom indicated that pro sports may be able to return by June, without spectators.

All of these issues are massive hurdles, which makes the prospect of a season starting in July seem unlikely. However, baseball fans around the nation would be ecstatic to see their team playing on their home field (on TV) sometime this year.

We also talk about Blake Snell’s unwillingness to play for less, the Giants are paying their non-baseball staff through September, and the OOTP Baseball dream bracket #2 will send in the 1954 and 2012 Giants as part of the field of 64 historic teams.

@ chadk21, @ 2outhits, @torturecast

Show links:

MLB Owners Proposal Highlights: https://www.cbssports.com/mlb/news/mlb-2020-season-plan-owners-approve-proposal-for-july-start-talks-reportedly-begin-without-salary-discussion/

Blog by Craig Calcaterra: https://craigcalcaterra.com/blog/the-pandemic-diary-may-16/ 

Blake Snell: https://www.espn.com/mlb/story/_/id/29174318/rays-ace-blake-snell-says-refuses-play-reduced-salary

OOTP Dream Bracket #2: https://www.mlb.com/dream-bracket

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Episode #193: Could we Have Baseball in June?

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Dr. Anthony Fauci, the longtime director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said Tuesday the only path for sports to return this summer includes no fans in attendance and players being kept in quarantine for the duration of their seasons. (Photo by Alex Brandon/Associated Press)

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

We’re back to talk about developments in a plan that may bring baseball back in some form by June. Currently, the plan is to essentially put all players and personnel in a bubble, test them for the virus every week, and make sure they only travel to and from the stadiums and hotel. However, the PPE and test kits required would put a huge strain on medical resources, and there are players with families that are unwilling to be away from their families for five months or longer. Adding families to the bubble would raise the costs and stakes far too much. This plan is questionable, at best, but may be our only route to a form of baseball.

Baseball Reference is simulating the 2020 season with the game, OOTP 21, and currently the Giants are in 4th place at 7-10. Hunter Pence is 1-3 in the players’ league, playing MLB The Show ’20, but he had an epic walk-off Buster Posey homerun in his last game. You can view his games on his Twitch channel.

Stay safe out there, and if you have a quarantine story to share with us, drop us a line at chad@torturecast.com!

@chadk21

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Episode #192: There are no Sports

oraclepark

Oracle Park may be empty for the entire 2020 season.

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

It’s April 8, 2020. Just six weeks ago, we thought we’d be talking about the first week of the regular season by now. Instead, we are without baseball, and without sports worldwide. I found myself watching old Giants games on YouTube as an exercise in remembering what it’s like.

Eric and I chat about how we’re doing during this crisis, but we dive into plans that are being floated that may, just may enable MLB to start the season in June with play across 10+ stadiums and adhering to a strict isolation and testing policy. We’re not so sure this is a feasible plan, but any baseball is better than no baseball! Eric also asked me and the general audience what are your top five Giants-related personalities you would like to be isolated with?

Tune in to find out what we thought! The corona virus has changed our world for now, and although sports and baseball aren’t of the utmost importance, it does bring balance and a little meaning to our lives. We miss it.

Oh, and STAY THE F&%( AT HOME!

Chad

@chadk21

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Which SF Giants Player or Personality do you want to hang out with during a pandemic?

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Oracle Park / Photo: Eric Nathanson

As you know, sports are canceled. The San Francisco Giants should be playing week 2 of their season right now. Check that, week 3. The home opener was supposed to be last Friday. So, I guess we’re in week 3. Sigh.

Sports are the distraction from everyday life, and right now they are not filling that hole. Everyday life has stopped as we know it. Quarantine has become the new normal and most people are taking refuge in their homes.

We here at TortureCast are staying home and staying safe and urge all of you to do the same. It’s a good time to catch up on books, music, movies, and podcasts that we may have missed. Continue reading

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Episode #191: Corona Virus, Astros, and MLB Season Delayed: a Twitch Special

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The corona virus has upended the world, and this includes the sports world with the suspension of MLB, NBA, NHL and MLS as well as the cancelation of March Madness and all D1 winter championships.

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

Check out the video stream on Twitch here! https://www.twitch.tv/videos/566341797

The founder of this podcast, Willie Gregory (@williedills) invited Eric and I to join himself and his friend and Astros fan Ty (@tyberius_asher) on a special Twitch streamed episode to talk about the Astros cheating scandal. However, in the days that passed, the corona virus had taken over the headlines and canceled or suspended sporting events around the world, including Major League Baseball.

In this special episode, we chat with Ty about how he has dealt with the Astros cheating scandal as an Astros fan, and then we dive in to discuss this brave new world that we are in. Covid-19 has forced the suspension of the NBA, NHL, MLS and MLB and canceled March Madness. Even Disneyland closed! My son’s school closed, the Monterey Bay Aquarium, and the list goes on. Even Tom Hanks and his wife have it.

Join us for a long, interesting, fun, and inebriated episode of the TortureCast!

Check out the video of our stream below!

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Episode #190: Spring has Sprung

masonsaunders

Photo of the winning team for calf roping at a rodeo in December. Yes, the man on the right is Madison Bumgarner. The story broke earlier this week, exposing MadBum, who competed under the alias “Mason Saunders.” This is so Madison Bumgarner. 🙂 (Photo from Rancho Rio’s Facebook page).

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

The crack of the bat, the smell of fresh cut grass, and the warm rays beating down on the fans. Baseball is officially back as spring training and the cactus league is a week into the 2020 season. Eric and I chat about our impressions of the first week of Giants’ baseball, and to be honest, although this team may not be that good, what if they surprise us. No, not playoff surprise, but maybe a 75 win season? Time will tell.

We also dive into “who is Mason Saunders?”, revisit the Houston Astros cheating scandal, Aubrey Huff, possible playoff expansion, and we even have our first music break, with a song sent in by a listener. Enjoy “Baseball always brings you home” by Shel Krakofsky and Dave Dresser.

Chad

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