Tag Archives: trade

Episode #133: Pitchers and Catchers are Reporting…Soon!

bonds

Photo via @SFGiants Twitter account.

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

It’s true, the Giants’ pitchers and catchers are reporting in less in a week. A few mere days until we can claim that we smell the fresh cut grass and hear the crack of the bat echo through our collective skulls.

Until then, Eric and Chad talk about Barry Bonds’ #25 being retired in August, despite not being the Hall of Fame (a Giant requisite for a retired number), the clash between the MLB players’ association and MLB about the lack of free agent signings, Chad will be covering the Giants at Media Day on Friday, and Eric has been writing a metric ton on torturecast.com. Seriously. Go there. Read it. It’s good stuff!

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Once in a Blue Moon a Giantsy trade happens

BlueMoonCartoon

Was this deal you expected? Were you like me and holding out some rare hope that the San Francisco Giants would land David Price or Cole Hamels? Trading for Mike Leake from the Cincinnati Reds was an extremely Giantsy thing to do. He’s not the splashy front end starter type. Just a good, solid pitcher in his prime pitching years entering a rotation that has its home games at one of the more pitching friendly ballparks in all of baseball.

The price for Leake was not as steep as it would have been for one of the big names out there. The Giants gave up minor league RHP Keury Mella, and corner infielder Adam Duvall. Recently Mella played in the futures game over All-Star weekend and MLB.com rated him as the top prospect in the Giants organization. Duvall is a guy that needs to find regular playing time and there is no way he’s cracking that Giants infield any time soon. If the Reds want to get him at bats it may in the outfield. Duvall had 26 home runs and 25 doubles for Sacramento this season.

I liked Duvall as a Giant. He helped the team win a title last season. I love the fun fact that Adam Duvall’s first career hit was a home run off Mike Leake. By parting with Mella the Giants proved they feel comfortable with their organizational pitching depth. Tyler Beede, Phil Bickford, and Kyle Crick are probably at the top of the list now. Beede could be a part of the 2016 rotation.

This also means that Andrew Susac stays around. It’s clear there is no other player out there the Giants feel they need to trade for at this moment. Of course I wouldn’t argue with Aroldis Chapman coming to the Bay Area, but I don’t run the Giants or Reds. This is one of the best offenses in baseball and if they need to add depth to the bench it could come sometime in August by claiming a guy off waivers.

Tim Hudson is the odd man out in all this. He’s said that he’d accept a spot in the bullpen for the Giants. That starts another set of dominos. Who goes? Is it Yusmeiro Petit? It’s sure not Ryan Vogelsong who has been lights out since going back to the pen. We’ll see sometime today if Hudson heads to the DL or the bullpen.

I don’t know about you but I’m already thinking about Madison Bumgarner, Chris Heston, and Leake at the top in a playoff series. Every time one of those guys takes the hill it feels like the Giants have a chance to win that game. We’ve learned over the last few years that chance is the most important thing. Jake Peavy did the same thing in his start Thursday.

It’s crazy to think that Matt Cain is the biggest question mark in the rotation right now. Those words are strange to type. In fact typing Matt Cain’s name at all lately has been rare. He’s been missed and I hope he picks up where he left off at some point.

Wendy Thurm shared how Leake stacks up in the Giants rotation. I peeked at Brooks Baseball and it looks like Leake is relying on his Sinker and Cutter more than any other pitches lately. He throws one of those 2/3 of the time. It indicates he’s pitching to contact and getting ground ball outs. He should continue that trend because the Giants have a good defense that knows how to handle its home park.

Each of the past 4 years Leake has started a game at AT&T Park. In those 4 starts he’s gone 9, 8, 6, and 8 innings while only allowing 3 total runs. He never allowed more than 1 run in any start at 3rd and King. There was this one time, when he was a rookie, that Leake gave up 6 runs on 6 hits in only 1/3rd of an inning at AT&T. But we don’t have to mention that. Overall he has a 2.59 ERA in San Francisco in 31.1 innings.

How’s Leake pitching lately? He’s got a 1.25 ERA over his last 5 starts. Opponents are batting .183 against him with no homers and 7 doubles. He’s averaging just over 5 strikeouts a game and walking about a batter every 9 innings. Leake’s worst start this season came in Cincinnati against the Giants back in May. That was the game Brandon Crawford hit his grand slam.

Acquiring Leake was a good trade for the Giants. He’s a free agent after this season and GM Bobby Evans has already said that Leake was going to be a guy the Giants pursued this offseason. Now they have 2, hopefully 3, months to sell him on San Francisco.

I think the largest compliment you can give a Giants move is that is was a Giantsy thing to do. This trade fits that definition perfectly.

– Eric

@2outhits

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Episode #53: The Jonathan Sanchez Episode

Where has our Sanchez gone?

Click the player above to listen to the Episode!

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The Giants are in a tailspin towards the bottom of the MLB, trade talk, suicide watch and more…

P.S. This was recorded on the evening of July 29, the night before Brian Wilson signed with the Dodgers…ick…

 

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What’s Does “Pivotal” Really Mean Anymore?

Where’s the pivot?

Listening to the talking heads on radio, TV, and print can be quite amusing. The word “pivotal” is a cliche thrown around for every game and series against the Dodgers….and the third game of the last Padres series.

Was it pivotal that the Giants set the tone with an opening game victory? Well of course. However, after seeing many tweets out there proclaiming the Giants had won the west, not so fast. I would actually say that today’s loss versus the Dodgers was the pivotal game in the series. Okay, yes it’s the middle game, where pivots tend to be placed, but hear me out. If the Giants had locked down today’s game, which they should have considering Cain was going against Capuano, Kemp was out, they were leading in the 8th, etc., they would have been 6.5 games up heading into what most people would bet is a loss tomorrow with Zito versus Kershaw. Now that Affeldt slumped again in the 9th allowing a triple and double in succession, the Giants find themselves up 4.5, but with the likelihood that they will only be 3.5 ahead after tomorrow. Taking the last two games of this series will give the Dodgers confidence, and as long as they are within 3 games going into the last series against the Giants in LA, they have a chance.

Also, for those of you making fun of the LA trades this year, two of those acquisitions were responsible for the go-ahead run in the 9th. Well, a few million bucks just bought them a 2 game positive swing in the standings. If the Giants are not careful, the trades could still pay off for the Dodgers.

Here are my keys to the rest of the season:

– win tomorrow, win tomorrow, win tomorrow
– deliver the home cookin’!! The Giants are 8-15 in the last 23 at home, yet 19-6 in their last 25 on the road.
– if they split the last 4 games against LA, all they have to do is go somewhere around 11-8 against the rest of the west (19 games), and most likely the Dodgers wouldn’t make up 5 games in the loss column unless they played at an unGodly clip (15-3 or better).
– the Giants have a favorable schedule (SD, AZ, COL), the Dodgers still have 9 games vs the Cardinals, Nats, and Reds.
– take it easy on my liver

Chad
@chadk21

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Giants Not “Pence”-ive as a Free Agent “Hunter”

Right park, different uni (manginphotography.net)

First of all, I apologize for the title, but I was in the NY Post spirit with the Mets in town.

Hunter Pence is the player that many Giants fans have been drooling over for quite some time, and in all honesty, the Giants didn’t give up as prized of a prospect as they did last year as they jettisoned Zach Wheeler for a Beltran rental (btw, can we have him back, now?)

It’s not generally recommended to react to trades completed by your divisional rival, but in this case the Giants had to put at least one more bullet in the chamber as the Dodgers put a few (Ramirez, Victorino, and almost Dempster). Alas, the gaping bleeding hole in their lineup is a right handed bat, and much as I like him, Brett Pill ain’t the medicine for that ailment. Pence is a nice fit, an energetic player with pop and speed. He reminds me a little of Eric Byrnes; very awkward in the field, not majestic in his mechanics, but god damn if he doesn’t just get the job done, he does it better than most.

Shierholtz had a nice tenure with the Giants; a player that always aspired to do more, yet was solid in his contributions, despite not getting as many opportunities as he’d hoped for. His comments in the Chronicle a few weeks ago essentially put an “X” on his back regarding trade bait. His comments may not have been detrimental to the clubhouse, but perhaps you want to change the scenery for that player in the interests of both parties. Heck, he’s even reuniting with one of his best buds, Kevin Frandsen, who was recently promoted from AAA. Frandsen was even in Shierholtz’s wedding. Tommy Joseph is a promising talent, but the Giants are flush at catcher, a position that teams generally have a paucity. San Francisco still has Hector Sanchez, Andrew Susac, and some guy wearing number 28.

Unfortunately, the Giants will have to deal with arbitration with Pence this offseason, and if Beltran is any indication of how he feels that AT&T Park is a black hole that just sucks power numbers away from any bat that lingers near its center, Pence may come to find that the next 30 odd games played in this pitcher’s haven are not kind to the stat sheet. Nonetheless, if they get into October, he could smell the allure of a triples record next year?

-Chad King, @chadk21

 

 

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