Giants versus White Sox and Phillies

The best “worst team” in baseball, or the worst “best team” in baseball?

The G-men are now locked into 2nd place, 5 and a half games behind LA but still 6 games over .500. Their shot at the division gets longer every day, and their shot at the wild card is even in jeopardy.

They won on Wednesday against the White Sox thanks in large part to a questionable reply reversal (blocking the plate under the new rule when Blanco was out by 15 feet). That is the only reason the five game losing streak (lost 2 out of 3 to the Brewers and were swept by the Royals) wasn’t a six game losing streak. Of note is the fact that the G-Men have not won a series against a contending team since the Nationals came into AT&T in June and punished them.  That does not bode well for the next 43 or so games, including series against the Tigers and the Nationals on the road and the Brewers at AT&T.  I won’t talk about the six games left against the LA Thugs but those might be very ugly.

The reasons for the poor performance are pretty clear. The offense necessary to win games just isn’t there.  It’s not for a lack of trying but when you see half the Fresno Grizzlies on the field in a game against the division leading Royals you know that something is amiss. This is a minor league team much of the time.  Pagan’s return hasn’t made the difference that was expected but perhaps that will change with a good home series.  The players certainly realize what they are doing wrong.

Regardless, the only reason he Giants are in the hunt at all is because of an awesome April and May (remember when we were talking about the 1927 Yankees?).  However that has now been balanced out by a pathetic June and July.

The jury is still out on the question above.
 

The hospital ward – paging Hawkeye Peirce!

Cain, DL, for the season with bone spurs that were the size of quarters; Belt, out on concussion DL for the second time with the symptoms not receding (Belt has to be very worried considering what happened to Mike Matheney in 2006); Sanchez, out on concussion DL but now rehabbing in Fresno (he’s Timmy’s personal catcher); Scutaro – on DL again with a bad back and  finished for the season.]

This means that we have seen the young guys come up to take their shot: Panik at second (doing well actually, and batting .260 or so with no power but looking like the 2nd baseman of the future and a young Scutaro), Susac behind the plate (also looking decent for a rookie), Duvall at first (spelling Ishikawa, who is back only because they needed a body) and deserving of a demotion to find his stroke and Duffy at shortstop, second and wherever they put him.  I actually think that Duffy is a good looking kid and a step up from Arias. However he belongs in triple A.

And, unfortunately, none of them are named Mike Trout.

The regulars are all pressing. Crawford is making errors at an astounding rate and his BA is sinking fast ( below .230 last I looked and below the Mendoza line for the last ten games). Morse is colder than a polar bear in January. His power numbers are way down.  Posey, Pence, Pagan and the Panda are playing just OK (3 of the 4 P’s are under .300) but no one is carrying the offense.  It is true that the HR total is way up over last year but that is not the measurement that should be used.

Someone needs to step up and carry the team through the next six weeks.  The pitching is adequate to get the job done but the pitchers (with the exception of Lincecum who self-destructs with amazing regularity) are getting hosed by no offense.  The G-men have been shut out this year more than I recall in the last three seasons combined.

The games this weekend are a chance to get healthy against a struggling Phillies team who are nonetheless looking for a little payback after being beat up by the Giants on the last road trip. Then comes a road trip against the Cubs and the Nationals and another home stand against the Rockies and the Brewers. It’s like a prescription for playing .500 ball.  They MUST do better than .500.  It’s time for a winning streak.
 

Sabean’s moves!

Other than the trade for Jake Peavy, he didn’t make any.  The choice he made was to find out what the farm system has and roll the dice.  Well the dice are about to roll up against the wall at AT&T and I for one hope that it’s not craps. Sabean has done an excellent job so far (as the two WS show) so he gets the benefit of the doubt.  However, Brian, if you are listening it would be really nice to get ONE really good bat to spark the team (Alex Rios?).
 

Ciao, and GO GIANTS!

The Czar