S.F. Giants 19-19

The Giants were close last night, real close. A lose like this is tough to handle. I didn’t get to watch the game, so it’s a little easier for me than most. I heard about Armando Benitez blowing the save and my mouth got all foamy again. I was ready to blog him into oblivion. Then I saw the "homerun" he gave up and I decided to take a closer look at the guy.

For all the hate Giants fans have for the guy, and we have a lot, he isn’t doing too bad this year. Take a look at the stats:

7 saves in 8 opportunities (I’ll get to last night)

14 strikeouts in 12.2 innings pitched

ERA of 3.55

WHIP 1.50

Granted, I would like to see a lower ERA and WHIP, but I’m not saying the guy is Cy Young material. I’m just saying he isn’t doing too bad.

Last night was his first blown save of the year and I can’t hold that against him. As I said before, I was ready to bury the guy, then I saw the video of the "homerun".  I can’t pin that fluke on any pitcher. That wouldn’t have been a homerun in any other ballpark in the country, including some Little League parks. I know it’s trendy to pile on Benitez and I’m usually one of the first to do it, but not this time.

During this past offseason I thought the Giants were going to move him. I heard the Marlins were interested and I thought he was gone for sure. Didn’t happen. Apparently, Brian Sabean wanted more than the Marlins were willing to give up. Me, I would have taken their 3rd or 4th best hotdog vendor and called it even.

My point is that that was the Giants chance to rid themselves of this guy and they didn’t do it. There is no way we can deal him now. Not unless we can dupe some poor team into giving up way too much.

My stomach turns when he comes into the game just like everyone else’s, but I’m not sure who could replace him in the role. No team is giving up a good closer for this guy and the Giants don’t have anyone that has proven they can step into the role. My point is this: We’re stuck with this guy.

Enjoy the game.

Matt Morris

The Giants had the day off yesterday which threw off my entry titles. I had been simply going with the Giants record, but it would be the same as yesterday and that’s just confusing.

Yesterday I was complaining about having nothing to write about. That hasn’t changed a whole lot. I was going to launch into a tirade about the postseason schedule changes, but I don’t have the energy. I can’t blame MLB anyway, every other sport seems to draw their postseason out, why not baseball too? Is it just me or have the NBA Playoffs been going on forever?

I decided just to quickly praise the pitching of Matt Morris so far this year. Last year was awful for this guy. His only year with a losing record in fact. There was talk towards the end of the season that he was injured and had played through it. I thought it was just an excuse at the time, but with the way he’s pitching so far this year, I guess it was true.

So far this year he’s 4-1 with a 3.11 ERA. He’s been very effective in his starts and I think I have more confidence with him on the mound than I do Zito. Welcome back to form Matty Mo! Get a win tonight and you’ll be the first Giants pitcher to notch 5 on the year.

One other quick note: I noticed that Geoff Jenkins now has a blog here on MLBlogs. Just a welcome to the community. I grew up in Indianapolis and was a Brewer fan until a few years ago when I moved West. They never could get it done when I was a fan, but I’m happy for the Brewers and their success so far.

Enjoy The Game.

S.F. Giants 19-18

I have tried to update this blog four times and I’ve run into a problem: There is nothing to write about!!

There are no real big Giants stories. There are little tidbits, but nothing to real sink your teeth into and write about.

Yeah, Tim Lincecum got his first win in the Bigs, but it wasn’t really impressive. And, yeah, Fred Lewis hit for the cycle, but who’s Fred Lewis? I didn’t even know this guy existed until I got home from dinner and checked the Giants website. It’s a great story and all, but I don’t know anything about this guy, so I can’t really offer any kind of great insight or anything.

The Giants are headed to Houston for a 3 game series that starts tomorrow, but that’s not really exciting. I’ve seen some people try to make a story out of Lincecum vs. Oswalt, but I’m not really into that either. The story is that people keep comparing Lincecum (does he have a nickname yet? That last name is terrible) to Oswalt because of the type of pitchers they are and the fact that they’re both small guys. Really though, let’s face it, this matchup may be intriguing next year, but not right now.

I do hear that Noah Lowry may be on the trade block. Right now my opinion is that I would hate to see this happen, I still like Lowry a lot, but if the Giants can get a big enough bat for him, I’d change my tune. Actually, I would probably settle for some bullpen help too. This is the kind of deal that scares me though. Brian Sabean seems to try to pull off one of these trades every year and the Giants end up giving up a decent young pitcher for some old guy, past his prime who can’t help the club. If that’s the case, forget it, let’s just keep Noah. If the only reason for trading him is to make room for Lincecum, throw Russ Ortiz out of the team plane or something.

Enjoy the day off!!

S.F. Giants 17-15

Not a pretty one for the Giants tonight. Bonds drilled one but that was the only offense this team could muster. Losing 4-1 to the Mets doesn’t upset me that much. The Mets are a strong team and I wasn’t expecting to sweep them. Plus, it’s easier to take a loss when both the Dodgers and San Diego get beat too. Although it would have been nice to make up a little ground on those guys.

What did concern me about the game tonight was the way Matt Cain got knocked around for the second start in a row. Matt is going to need to make some adjustments. Obviously, the book is out on him. He can’t locate his breaking pitches, so sit on the fast ball. After his first couple of starts this year I thought he was going to be a Cy Young candidate. Now it looks like he’s got some work to do before he gets there.

I’m gonna get to Schilling in a minute. Before I do though, one more note about tonight’s game. Who was the homeplate umpire? That guy was horrible. He would wait a full five seconds before calling a ball or strike. Very annoying.

Speaking of annoying. Curt Schilling decided to open his mouth today. Apparently, he did an interview on radio station WEEI and made some misinformed remarks about Barry Bonds. This guy seems to be more interested in running his mouth than pitching. Schilling talking about Bonds: "He admitted that he used steroids. There’s no gray area, he admitted cheating on his wife, cheating on taxes and cheating on the game."

Let’s look at these one by one:

1) "He admitted that he used steroids. There’s no gray area…"

I’m pretty sure that Bonds never admitted using steroids. I know that a couple of guys wrote a book saying that he did, but just cause it’s in a book doesn’t mean it’s true. If Bonds admitted to using steroids Bud Selig would have bounced him out of the game in the blink of an eye. This is just flat out not true. Schilling is completely ignorant and should either get his facts straight or, I don’t know, maybe shut up.

I also take exception to the notion that "There’s no gray area…" Yes, there is a gray area. Everything in life has a gray area. If it didn’t life would be very easy.

2) "He admitted cheating on his wife…"

I’m not sure this is true, but I could be wrong. I don’t follow Barry’s personal life. Let’s assume he did, just for the sake of argument. Who cares? I know for a fact that he isn’t the first major league ballplayer to cheat on his wife and I also know for a fact that he’s not the last. The last thing I know for a fact, I don’t care! It has nothing to do with baseball. Maybe it means that Bonds isn’t such a nice guy, but we all knew that anyway.

3) "…cheating on his taxes…"

Again, just not true. I believe this was also reported in Game of Shadows and he may have cheated on his taxes. A lot of people cheat on their taxes. Maybe Bonds did, maybe he didn’t. I don’t know. I do know that he never admitted it. At least not in any public forum. The IRS tends to frown on things like that. As a matter of fact, I believe they go after people like that, sometimes they even put them in jail. Obviously, again Schilling is wrong on this point. Do we notice a trend here?

4) "…and cheating on the game."

This ties in with number one. I assume this means he took steroids. Again, I don’t debate weather he took them or not. No one really 100 percent knows that, except for Barry Bonds. What we all do know is that no one can prove that he did. Oh, and also that he never admitted that he took them.

I find it interesting that Schilling attacks Bonds just after David Ortiz had some supportive things to say about Barry. I don’t remember exactly what Big Papi said regarding Bonds, but I know that the gist of it was that Ortiz is rooting for Bonds and he doesn’t believe Barry took steroids. Now that I think about it, I find it interesting that what Schilling said is grabbing tons of press and what Ortiz said was basically a side note that was hardly mentioned.

To wrap things up, Curt Schilling is a *****. Unless he wants to fess up about his painted sock, he should just keep his mouth shut.

Enjoy the game.

S.F. Giants 17-14

I didn’t get to watch all of the game tonight, but I did make it home for the last few innings. I missed the fireworks in the 5th which is kind of a bummer, but it still counts even if I wasn’t home to see it. Bengie Molina jacked two in the inning, he is the slowest man alive but you don’t have to run fast if you hit’em out of the park. I wasn’t sold on his signing during the offseason, but I think it’s time to reconsider.

There were two major problems at the start of the season. They couldn’t score runs and the bullpen was down right scary. The runs seem to be coming a little easier these days. That bullpen is still scary though. Whenever Bochy goes to the pen it’s an adventure to say the least. Even watching tonight, I have to admit, I got a little nervous. They seem to be getting the job done so far, but we’re gonna need some help.

As I watch this team I can’t decide weather they’re going to be an actual contender this year or weather it’s going to be another year where they hang around until just past the trading deadline. The Giants always seem to be just on the line of buyers and sellers at the deadline and GM Brian Sabean always makes some awful deal that not only hurts the teams future but isn’t enough to really push them into contention in the present. I could see the same situation playing out this year.

I did watch all of Tim Lincecum’s debut the other night against the Phillies. Overall, I was impressed. I’m looking forward to his next start and to watching him grow into a top of the line major league starter. Yeah, he had some problems the other night but he also looked really good at times. I think he showed a lot of promise. Maybe the Giants actually have a prospect that will pan out. You can’t judge a pitcher on one start, maybe I’m getting a little ahead of myself. Let’s just say that I liked what I saw the other night.

One thing I didn’t like about the game the other night was ESPN beating me over the head with the results of a poll about Barry Bonds. I realize that Barry chasing Hank Aaron is a big story but come on. Do we really need to be brow beaten with the results of a poll that are broken down by race? I’ve stated my position on the "controversy" surrounding the record before. If you missed it let me some it up: There is no controversy. Simply stated, there’s no proof that Barry did anything wrong. If there were proof, MLB or the federal government would have put it on full display by now. Trust me, if Bud Selig had proof, Barry wouldn’t be suiting up for the Giants or anyone else right now.

I’ve gotten off track now. Where was I? Oh yeah, the poll results. Why where they broken up by race anyway? It’s the year 2007. Is race still our greatest dividing line? I’m of the opinion that the poll wouldn’t have been mentioned had it shown support for Bonds. Why not just give us the results as a whole? It’s not like they would have been any different. For that matter, Bonds didn’t even play in the game. What was the point in spending any time on it at all? Was is a shocking revelation that most people aren’t rooting for him? Was it shocking that the majority of people believe he took steroids? No, this had nothing to do with journalism or an informative broadcast. This was sensationalism at its worst.

S.F. Giants 16-13

Today is going to be a good day. In about an hour and twenty minutes, it’s the major league debut of Tim Lincecum. I mentioned the amazing things he’s been doing in Fresno, now we get to see him on the big stage, in a nationally televised game.

I was able to catch the last 3 innings of yesterdays game. I hope the Giants can give Lincecum a little more defensive help than they mustered for Lowry yesterday. I hate to complain about a win though, so I won’t dwell on it. Let’s just hope it’s better.

A lot happens in the course of a baseball season. 30 teams play 162 games, records are chased, trades are made. I make it a habit to really only follow what the Giants are doing, there’s just too much happening to follow it all. Occasionally, though, there is something that can’t be ignored. Today that is Roger Clemens returning to the Yankees. I’ve read a lot of reaction from the other MLB bloggers and it has mostly been entertaining, especially the Red Sox and Yankees fans. I mostly agree with the Sox fans. If Clemens really wanted to play for a contender, he wouldn’t have chosen the Yanks. But I do admire his flare for the dramatic by making the announcement during the 7th inning stretch at a Yankees home game.

Enjoy the game.

Ortiz To The DL

I haven’t watched a Giants game it what seems like forever. As a matter of fact there’s a game going on right now that I’m not watching. I’ve been too busy at work. As a matter of fact I’m taking a break from work just to write this.

I will be watching the Giants game tomorrow night. Russ Ortiz went on the DL with right elbow neuritis(whatever that is). Ortiz has been decent so far this year. His 2-2 record has him winning 2 more than I thought he would and his 6.44 ERA isn’t really a reflection of how well he has pitched so far this year. All in all I would say that he’s been a success story for the Giants so far this year.

However, his move to the DL opens the door for what a lot of Giants fans have been hoping to see. Tim Lincecum will make his debut tomorrow against Philly. He has dominated AAA players to the tune of a 4-0 record and 0.29 ERA so far. He has given up exactly one earned run in 31 innings pitched.

I don’t know if he can have that kind of performance in The Show, but I can’t wait to find out. The Giants and I have a date tomorrow. Now, if I could just get out of the office in time to watch the game today.