The Party’s Over - Maybe
The Giants continue to play below .500 ball. They are in 4th place after being swept by last place Cincinnati and losing two in the row to the Mets (lost 6 out of 7 on this road trip). That follows a decent (and giving us hope) split of a series against the Pirates at home and then winning a series from the Dodgers (it was worth it to see Puig ejected) on the road. Regardless, the result is 62 and 66, 9.5 games back. The team looks lifeless and lost.The pitching is decent, but they can’t string together hits, they leave men on base and are not doing the little things well. Bruce Bochy also looks tired. It’s depressing.
It's time to empty the River Cats bench to see what the future looks like. Given the injuries there may not be much choice. The G-Men are not mathematically eliminated - -yet - - but they are playing like they are out of it. The best thing to happen right now is to accept the inevitable and play with abandon and stop pressing. They can be spoilers going down the stretch, and that’s a lot of fun (also one of the traditional Giants roles it seems). They need to relax, loosen up and play like they are enjoying the game.
Who should get traded while there is a market?
If we really are going in a rebuilding mode, it’s time to consider even letting MadBum go if we can get a stud impact hitter for him (like Bryce Harper). We need a hitter to build around, like happened when Barry came to the team in 1993. Cutch is gone next season regardless so if we can get anything for him, do it. I’d also let Belt go (if anyone wants a streaky hitter but great defensive first baseman that can’t beat the shift). They are shutting Buster down (probably before this home series) to have a hip operation so if Belt was gone that would clear first base for him next year (or the year after) when Joey Bart is ready. Other than Crawford, who is untouchable, and the future (Slater, Duggar and Rodriquez) there isn’t a player on the team who isn’t a bargaining chip right now. I’d really like to see Chris Shaw myself.
The question is what to go for; new blood for the farm system or more journeyman players past their prime? I say stock the farm system.
What’s the hope?
September baseball is upon us. It’s time to watch the contending teams come into town and try to put them down. It’s also time to see what the kids can do. The young pitching looks strong (Rodriquez, Stratton, Suarez) and the relievers have stepped up, especially Moranta. However, they can’t win games without runs.
Predictions for 2019?
It’s a little early to be going there but the odds of Bochy retiring and the entire coaching staff being shaken up are probably good. There is a need for new leadership on the field, in the clubhouse, and probably in the front office. Fans who have enjoyed three WS in the last 8 years are not ready to return to the bad old days in the mid-1980’s when the most exciting thing about Giants baseball was throwing stuff at Crazy Crab. Regardless, the Snakes sandwiched between the last place Rangers and the 4th place Mets during the next home series will make for some entertaining baseball.
Ciao, and GO GIANTS!