And We’re Off…Well, Kinda…

And We’re Off…Well, Kinda…

 

So, today is one of the most anticipated days I’ve had since the Yankees did what they always do…win championships.

 

I sometimes wonder if it gets old…you know…winning all the time. As a competitive person myself, I can probably guess that it doesn’t, but then again I don’t have any fans cheering me on during slow pitch softball games or when I duff a shot on the golf course…so it might be a little different. I guess what I am trying to say is that when you always win (or support a team that always wins) and are scarcely the underdog, it has to get a tad boring. It’s the same ol’ song and dance and I am gearing up to change the radio station.

 

Last year was what many people call a “rebuilding” year our SF Giants. Our seemingly rag tag team (with the best pitching in baseball, a-thank you) gave it their best shot at making the post season, and it almost happened. Do I think we would have won the whole enchilada? No, probably not. But, we would have stirred things up a bit that’s for sure.

 

Since today is the magical day when pitchers and catchers report to their respective camps with dreams of what the 2010 season can bring, I have to ask myself what my dreams and expectations for the boys this year are…

 

I think that the NL West is going to be much more difficult this year than in 2009. If the Giants want to contend we need to win as many games early in the season as we can. Playing catch up to reach a playoff spot isn’t easy in September.

 

Our hitting…my, my, my…where do I begin…let’s just say I am not 100% sure that we made the off season moves we needed to in order help our bullpen and starting pitchers for 2010. Last year we saw WAY too many one run games (or rather 1-0 or 2-1 final scores). I would almost rather lose 15-3…but that’s just me. Also, our R(left)ISP in 2009 was too high not to notice and want to pull your hair out about.

 

Here are my notes for our SF Giants for the 2010 season

 

1) STAY HEALTHY

2) Base hits will do the job, but homeruns get it done faster…let’s mix it up and do both more often

3) Help your pitcher out! Have strong D behind whoever is on the mound

4) Score early! (and frequently, please…)

5) Have fun! (the boys play so much better when they look like they are relaxed and enjoying the game)

6) Beat the Dodgers…every time. Oh, and the A’s…I am sick of the smack talking.  

 

I truly believe that if we can accomplish most of these things we will have a wide open door to the playoffs and beyond. These kids (and not so much kids) are starting to come around and I can only dream of where this season will take them.

 

Here’s to 2010 boys! GOOD LUCK AND KICK SOME BOOOOOOTY!

Leave Your Crying at the Door, Please

Hello Fans of the Greatest Game Invented

 

For those of you who love the Giants, or love the sport, I thank you.

 

Win or lose, for better or worse, we are still fans.

 

Last night I got a bit irritated by what people were saying about Zito and our home crowd booing him when he left the field. Now, I understand this is his job and he gets paid handsomely to do this “job” but cut the guy some slack, would ya? Before last nights start he was doing the best he has ever done in a Giants uniform. The problem last night was he kept the ball up in the zone. Against a hard hitting team like the Angles, that ball up is going to end badly. Another reason they were seeing him so well is that they have faced him a BUNCH of times. Remember the A’s, who Zito pitched for? Yeah, same division as the Angels.

 

Basically all I want to say to round this topic out is: BALL PLAYERS ARE HUMAN! They are gonna get hit hard sometimes, they are going to strike out, they are going to make errors and most of all, they are going to be 10 times harder on themselves then we are on them. Instead of booing them, cheer them. Let them know that we KNOW they can do it, not that we KNOW they suck.

 

I just get really annoyed when fans of any sport get all negative and smack talkie against their OWN team! It’s your team?! Even when Giants are down 15-0 and it’s the 9th inning, I still have faith in our team because in baseball anything can happen. And even if it doesn’t, it’s a learning experience for the young players. That brings me to the hits.

 

While the Giants struggled to get anything going last night they really ended on a bang. I think seeing them fight so hard is what has been missing the past few seasons.

 

The 2009 Giants know they are capable of doing great things and last night they proved that. Sure, they didn’t get the W, and there is no stat for “almost came back” but it tells me that all these guys are playing with heart and that’s the most important part.

 

Pablo Sandoval is RIDICULOUS!!!!!

I love this guy so much. He had his first two homerun game, congrats!! Torres, Schierholtz, Aurilia and even Lewis hit the ball last night. Torres had the first Giants splash hit of the SEASON! These are positives to remember as we think about tonight’s game.

 

Last night we played well. We didn’t get the great start from Zito but our bullpen held up pretty darn well, our defense was on its toes and the bats came…but just a bit too late.

 

As I leave you today, please keep in mind that Giants fans are used to being let down under a team commonly tagged as the “underdogs”, but to me this just makes the victories so much sweeter.

 

Tonight’s game can be seen @

7:15 on CSN-BA or KNBR680

O’Sullivan (0-0) v Sanchez (2-6)

 

Let’s get Sanchez some runs early boys and keep the positive vibes going!

 

Love,

Jes

(follow me on Twitter @_JessicaStudley)

Who ARE these guys?!

What a refresing turn of events last night!!!!!

Bochy must have put something in the water cause last night our SF Giants were killing the ball!!

 

It seems like it’s been such a long time since the bats have been that awake. It looked like a different team out there. Usually when we hit the ball that well, our defense or pitching (or both) will really struggle, but not last night. I found myself thinking “Who are these guys!”

 

Cain pitched GREAT! Yes, he gave up 4 runs, and a couple of walks with bad timing hurt his ERA (slightly), but overall he was able to get out of the jam and avoid a huge inning. Last year Cain couldn’t buy run support, it must be a relief for him knowing that this year the tables have turned. I think that’s what helped Cain win six straight decisions, the fact he knows his team will (most likely) score more than two runs when he’s out there.

 

As a former pitcher, I can contest to how important that is and how much more relaxed you are on the mound.

 

Next off, our defense was STELLAR!

 

I really liked Frandsen and Uribe in the middle infield.

 

They robbed a couple of hits up the middle which was also beneficial to get Cain out of a couple tough spots with runners on base.

 

Overall I felt our defense was really on target. The only one who was a bit shaky was Lewis. At this point, I’m not too surprised. I love the guy but he needs to put in some hours on pretty much every aspect of the game. He was so promising last year, and I still think he has one of the best swings on our team. He just needs to connect to the darn thing every once in a while.

 

That’s a good transition to my next (and most exciting!) point, our dominating offence.

 

SEVENTEEN HITS!!! YOWZA!!!

 

The homeruns of Uribe and Sandoval were the keys though, in my opinion. We scored on a couple of runs on error like plays and some pass balls, but it was the ability to get the boys on base and get them home that showed me what OUR Giants are capable of.

 

Five players who all had RBI’s were Uribe, Sandoval, Winn, Rowand, and Renteria. Everyone hit the ball well for once (excluding Lewis, eek) and I have to say I hope it continues.

 

One thing the giants haven’t been able to do too much of this season is the two out hit to knock in the extra run. Not last night. Sandoval, Winn, Rowand and Renteria all answered that call and boy did it make a difference.

 

I also want to take a chance to say CONGRATS! to Whiteside who had two hits and scored one of the runs.

 

Overall, a great game with a fantastic outcome.

 

Hope to keep the momentum going for the last of this roadtrip so we can come home and KILL IT!

 

TONIGHT’S GAME is on at 6:40pm and can be seen on CSNBA

 

Zito (2-6)  v Davis (3-6)

 

Thanks for reading my Giants Blog!

GO GIANTS!

Jes Studley

http://giantsjabber.mlblogs.com/

(follow me on twitter _JessicaStudley)

 

Hope you Dusted off those Brooms…

…Because ladies and gentlemen, for the first time since 2003, we swept the Atlanta Braves.

 

The Giants needed this, and they need it badly.

 

Not only did Randy Johnson (more appropriately named the “Big Unit”) get his impressive 299th win, but the Giants really kicked it up a notch in the offense.

 

I absolutely LOVE Rowand in the lead off spot. For some reason it seems like this has really turned the top of our line up around. Another notable is Ishikawa who in one game went 4-4 and had his first HR of the year. The Giants were the LAST team in MLB to get a homer from their 1B player, so it was nice to cross that off the list. He is also a savage in the field, so for all you haters who think we should get rid of him, what now? 

 

Burriss has finally found his swing on the left side and it looks great. He had a slew of base hits this series and that’s what we need from one of the quickest people on the team. His error was a fluke. I think he’s one of the strongest defensive players we have. Impressive out there in so many ways.

 

Poor Kevin Frandsen, I think he’s cursed, lol. He needs his first hit already (not a HBP). My best friend went to high school with him so I do have a bit of a soft spot for him, and hope he sticks around and improves where needed.  

 

It was great to see Uribe and Renteria get some hits too. It seemed like “everybody hits and everybody scores” really rang true this series. Looks like someone (*cough* Bochy) finally sacrificed that darn chicken.

 

As usual, our pitchers were money. It was great to see them get wins and runs. This was the FIRST time in Chipper Jones’ career that he has gone 0-4 with 4 strike outs. That is SWEET! 

 

I think we played these three games like we should (and CAN) play all season. The only beef I had while watching the series was with Bengie. He makes some good contact but hasn’t been able to really put it in play when we need him too for the past month or so. Being in the 4th spot is tough, I can only imagine, but somethin’ has got to give. Seems as if playing pretty much every game behind the plate is wearing on him, and his body. I think putting Sandoval in there more often would help Bengie’s hitting. Maybe.

 

The determining factor for the Giants was stringing together base hits. Do we hit the long ball all the time? No. Can we get base hits all day? Yes. And this series proved it.

 

I hate off days (like today) so I had to get my baseball fix somewhere!

 

Next game is tomorrow @ 7:15

Pitching match up is: Cain v Pineiro

Watch it on NBC-11 

As always, thanks for reading Giants fans!

GO GIANTS

Jes

http://giantsjabber.mlblogs.com/

_JessicaStudley (follow me on twitter!)

 

 

 

A Walk is as Good as a Hit

Did the Giants even play last night, or did I just watch the game again on my DVR? The only clues that lead me to believe I watched it live was Sanchez, Rowand and Winn.

 

With another low score last night, the Giants just were not able to kick start their offense. Even Bochy getting thrown out of the game wasn’t enough to get the team fired up. The two players that WERE able to do something with the ball was our leadoff hitter (Aaron Rowand) and Randy Winn. If they would have been closer to each other in the lineup, we would have won the game.

 

Sanchez pitched good last night. His walks were the only thing that killed us. You can’t do anything when someone hits a pitch out of the park, but limiting runners on base via BB was the determining factor last night. The first run that scored was the runner that walked. Without that, we have a tie 1-1 ball game. Who knows the outcome then.

 

Let me first say that I LOVE Bengie Molina. He is an amazing catcher, and overall great addition to the Giants team the past few years. One thing he isn’t, is a cleanup hitter. I think in other lineups Bengie would be batting 5th or even 6th. He has the ability to hit the long ball, but it seems like now that he is in the 4th spot he tries to kill it every at bat. His back shoulder is dropping badly, I can see it at every at bat this road trip. He’s also reaching WAY out of the strike zone.

 

Last night it seems like most of the hitters were not working the pitcher. Take a ball, shoot, take two. I don’t care, just try to see the pitcher more if EVERYONE is having problems hitting.

 

We need a bat. We need some pep.

 

Our pitchers can’t do it all. Runs win games, not pitching.

 

Tonight’s game can be seen at 7:05PM on CSN-BA.

Pitchers are Lincecum vs. Correia

 

*I’m excited to play against Kevin Correia, I always liked that kid*

 

Have a fantastic day baseball fans

 

GO GIANTS

 

Jes

A Hustling Team is a Winning Team?

When I was a kid, my grandfather use to wake me up in the morning with a loud “hustling team is a winning team”. That’s always stuck in my mind, no mater what sport I am watching or playing.

 

It seemed that last night that the Giants were hustling, making the plays in the field and running everything out, but we just couldn’t get it done, and get the win.

 

Does Zito have the curse of Cain?

First I have to give kudos to Barry Zito who was stellar last night.

 

Yes, he gave up two homeruns but if you know ANYTHING about baseball, you saw how beautifully he pitched the ENTIRE game and how he is starting to blossom into the pitcher the Giants knew he could be. Here are some good and bad things from the game:

 

  • Zito gave up only 5 hits and pitched though the 8th inning. His longest outing since 2003
  • Batters were 0-12 with RISP (UNACCEPTABLE!!!)
  • Zito now has the lowest run support of any starting pitcher, with less than 1.9 runs scored per game.
  • He pitched 116 pitches, with 74 strikes
  • Zito was able to get himself out of a few jams by pitching smartly and letting the D work for him.

 

To all the Zito haters out there. Go shove it.

 

The guy works harder than any pitcher we have, on and off the field. He isn’t blind, he knows he doesn’t have the same pop as when he was with the A’s, so why hound him about it? Yes, the Giants may have gotten a little ahead  of themselves by spending that much money, I’ll give you that. But, don’t hate the player, hate the game. Now his biggest obstacle isn’t pitching well, it’s getting run support. That is out of his hands. He deserved a W last night and you can’t argue about that.  

 

BREAKING NEWS!!!!

Pablo Sandoval WALKED!!!!

 

Nice to see him not swing at any/everything for once. I love the guy, but he needs to develop his eye, just a little bit more.

 

The first and second innings were pretty much carbon copies of each other. Two out HR’s by the Padres, and RISP less than two outs for the Giants, without a runner moving over OR scoring.

 

Do we need to take out the voodoo to get some hits? Where’s that live chicken at?  

 

Randy Winn (who seemed to be one of the only awake offensive players last night) went 3 for 4 with a double and two singles. Good job Randy!

 

So, as I have stated before, I am not a huge fan of Velez but last night he proved a little bit (to me at least) that he deserved to be here. Some strong defensive and offensive skills were displayed and I hope he can keep it up. I think he knew that he wasn’t going to be around much longer if he didn’t pick it up. Maybe we just need to light a fire under his rear before each game.

 

LEWIS, WOW!!! What a catch. That’s all I can say. It was one of the best plays I’ve seen one of our left fielders make in a LONG, LONG time!!

 

I would like to say also that the Padres Pitchers did really well last night too. That Heath Bell guy has some impressive numbers (or lack thereof). Opposing RH hitting has an average of .000!!! WOW!!

 

Hang in there Giants fans!! We can still take two on um : )

 

Next game can be seen tonight on CSN-BA at 7:10pm.

Starting pitchers are Sanchez (1-3) vs. Gaudin (0-3).

 

Here’s go scoring 10 runs tonight.

 

GO GIANTS!!!

 

Jes

Halle-freaking-lujah

It might have not been a high scoring game, but damn if we didn’t deserve the win.

 

First things first, Cain is a SAVAGE! Not only did he throw a shut out game but helped himself in the batters box with a base on balls and an RBI single to put us up 2-0. I can’t wait till we see the first Cain homerun this year too, it’s always a treat.

 

Bengie’s RBI in the first kept the Giants 15-0 when scoring first. Pretty impressive. It will be interesting to see how long we keep this statistic going.

*knock on wood* 

 

It was great to see Kevin Frandsen come play, too. He didn’t do much offensively but his defense was strong, and that’s what we really needed in such a close game.

 

What was up with the ESPN announcers this game? I’m sorry, but 3+ innings talking ONLY about the Met’s leadership, or lack thereof, was so boring. I was surprised since John Miller, the best baseball announcer ever, and avid Giants fan, was also calling the game. I do have to say though, that there is nothing better than listening to Kruk and Kuip, they will make any game, win or lose, entertaining.

 

One thing that really solidified this game (apart from Cain’s and the bullpen) was the defense. Ishikawa had a great defensive game. The double play to get us out of a jam in the 2nd inning was MONEY! Is he the next JT? Perhaps!

 

Ah, Velez. I really want to like you but it just isn’t happening so far this season. I would much prefer to keep Frandsen up here then Velez. If you want to understand why, read my premier blog. What do you all think of Velez? Am I crazy for feeling this way? 

 

I am happy that Wilson was able to work out his inability to get the Met’s out. Maybe it just needs to be a save opportunity…

 

Hope all the Giants fans out there appreciated the win today. They wanted it, and took it. It was about freaking time.

 

Here’s to having a great road trip!!!

Next game is on Tuesday @ 7:05pm against the Padres and can be seen on CSN-BA.

 

Tomorrow is an off day (and well deserved). Although, I hate off days. I missed baseball for too long during the off season. : )

 

Pitching match up on Tuesday will be Zito against Young. Let’s hope Zito pitches as good as he has been. I know he can rock it.

 

Till Tuesday!

Jes

http://giantsjabber.mlblogs.com/ 

 

Killing Me Softly

This series is really killing me softly. There are moments of great defense, aggressive offense and great pitching. Against most other teams (especially those in NL West) we would probably sweep or at least win the series; but not against the Mets.

 

As I said in my blog yesterday, the Met’s just DON’T go away. There isn’t one batter in the lineup that can’t (and hasn’t) hurt us in the past three days. They are a great team and I won’t take that away from them.

 

We had such a great home record going into this series, I hope the guys don’t let it get them down. We have everything we need to get a win tomorrow and not get swept, we just need our pitchers to figure out a way to shut down what seems like (to a Giants fan) the hottest team in baseball.

 

The past few outings from the Big Unit has really got me worried. That, along with Sanchez’s inconsistencies, is starting to make me even more nervous than usual. There were a handful of innings he looked strong today, but for the most part he got hit, and he got hit hard. They hit them where they aint, and that’s the name of the game.

One of the things that stuck out to me was the fact that until today, Johnson had NEVER givin up four strait hits. Ever. Well today, he did it twice.

 

I want to end this blog entry on a good note, so I will remind everyone out there in blogland that the Giants are ten times better right now, then they have been the past three seasons. I am proud (as always) to be a diehard fan of a team that’s always the underdog.

 

Tomorrow’s game is at 5:00 and can be seen on ESPN.

The pitching match-ups are Cain (3-1) vs Pelfry (who’s 4-0).

 

Hopefully tomorrow will start us on a nice little win streak. The Dodgers lost tonight (finally!) so we really need to pick it up. I know its early in the season, but I want to at least keep it close.

Goodnight everyone! Have a fantastic rest of the weekend. : )

 

Jes

Am I having Déjà Vu or Something?

Emmanuel Burriss’ half way swing to end the 9th defined the whole game in my opinion.

To start at the beginning (of what seemed like a very promising game) Timmy had a pretty good outing. His curve and fast ball were pretty much money (excluding his last inning) and he was paying much better attention to the runners on base then our other pitchers were last night. He helped himself out by getting a double (but getting out on the tag), and an RBI. When he left, we were winning.

Our offensive was as perky as it’s been all season. Six runs are great, but not enough tonight. I was happy to see Lewis get out of his recent slump a little bit with the homer, here’s to hoping we can get his great swing back in touch with our offense. Looks like he’s looking to get the lead off spot from Burriss, back. Another good thing we did tonight was only leaving nine runners on base.  A lot better than last night.

On another positive note (on a night where my mind is having difficulty retrieving them) Aurilia did really well. I have seen a lot of smack talking about him on the Giants forum and other online outlets but tonight, he really gave it his all and it showed.

Tonight the melodrama never ceased to end as both managers were thrown out of the game. I actually love when that happens, it shows passion. As long as it’s a once in a while occurrence, I will never be mad.

I am going to try and not be mad at our bullpen. All I will say is that it’s starting to feel a lot like 2008 when they head out there, and it’s a bit unsettling. Brian Wilson needs to figure out whatever he is doing wrong and fix it, or my vote for closer is going to be Affeldt (who ROCKED tonight).

The bottom line is that the Met’s just don’t go away. The Giants need to dig even deeper against this team if they want to split the series. They have the ability and talent to do so; they just can’t let it get away from them. Kinda like Burriss’ last swing. That was the game in a nut shell my friends.

 

Tomorrow’s game time is 1:10PM. If it’s going to be on TV, it’s going to be on FOX. 

Johnson and the tough Santana are said to be the starting pitchers. 

 

Here’s to splitting the series boys, you can do it.  

 

It just Slipped through our Fingers

Last night was another great game. This time it was courtesy of our SF Giants and the NY Mets. Before I start to get into the meat and potatoes of the game, I want to share something interesting I found out.

 

Did you ever wonder how the NY Mets came about? Well, when the Dodgers and the Giants left NY, it devastated the National League following that had followed them for years. Because of this, the city of New York established the Mets as a National League team that NY fans could support. The colors of the Mets uni’s were taken from both teams!! The orange from the Giants and the blue from the Dodgers. I thought that was REALLY interesting!

 

Back to present day now : )

The Giants had about 4 wasted opportunities to score some much needed run support for Sanchez. He looked okay on the mound, but still allowed his head to get out of the hitter every once in a while. He plowed through and ended up with a much better outing than his last couple starts. I would say a positive game for Sanchez nonetheless.

 

What really killed us was the lack of clutch hitting. We could have blown the game wide open a couple times, but failed to capitalize with runners on base. We ended up leaving TWENTY THREE runners on base. Yeah, not so good. The Giants have been working the “ground attack” this season, but last night, with about 8 steals the Mets beat us at that game too.

 

A couple interesting statistics that Kruk and Kuip pointed out was the fact that Bengie Molina accounts for over 23% off ALL Giants RBI’s. WOW! Thank goodness for Bengie! Also, that Burris leads the National League in infield hits. The kid is good, and he is only going to get better.

 

When we tied it up at 4-4 I thought we really had a chance to come back and win, but our All-Star closer Brian Wilson ended up giving the Mets a 3-run lead that we couldn’t rally against in the 9th. It was a disappointing loss, but I am happy to say that we did pretty good against a great hitting team.

 

I’m anxious to see how the rest of the series goes and hope that our NY predecessors will be able to see what the Giants are really made of.

 

One thing that didn’t help us either was the umpiring. The inconsistent strike zone, and the steal to third that SHOULD have been called out (not safe) hurt us as well, but as all my coaches told me when I pitched, you can’t let the umps control the game.

 

On a random note, Bengie is so TOUGH! Did you see the foul that dinged him? Not only did he walk it off, but he stayed in the inning and the game. Man, that guy is diehard, I love it.

 

Well folks, hopefully tonight will have a different outcome.

 

Game time is 7:15pm, pitching matchup will be Hernandez vs. our boy Lincecum. The game will be aired locally on NBC-11.

 

(late addition to the blog: Is Renteria okay?!)  

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.