Moooooooose Guest Post: My Giants Story

by
Mooooooooose

Many people claim to have been a fan of a particular sports team since they were born, but few can prove it. I was a fan of the San Francisco Giants BEFORE I was born. That’s right. I remember clearly that late summer day, August 20, to be exact, when my Mother and I (we were inseparable at the time), went out to our driveway in the Linda Mar neighborhood of Pacifica and picked up the newspaper that announced the Giants were moving to San Francisco and would play at Seals Stadium to begin the 1958 season. The weather was calm, as it often was at seven in the morning in August, and it was a pleasant 57 degrees. The wind would pick up soon and be gusting up to thirty miles per hour in the afternoon and early evening. I was relaxing in my own little world when I heard my Mother break the news. It had been rumored for months since the National League owners had given their approval back in May, but now it was official. The Giants were actually coming to San Francisco. I was all in! A Giants fan for life. I couldn’t wait to be born, but I decided to wait until the current season was over. 

I was hoping for a four game sweep for the Braves over the hated Yankees so I could get started, but the Yankees took game one behind Whitey Ford. The Braves evened the series in game 2 with Lew Burdette getting the complete game victory. The series was knotted at 2-2 when Burdette tossed a shutout to put the Braves on the precipice of the World Championship. The Yanks took game #6, however and I had to wait some more. Lew Burdette, on 2 days rest,  scattered 7 hits and threw another shutout, backed by 4 run third inning and a Del Crandall home run in the eighth, to beat the Yankees. Now my time had come! The next morning I burst upon the scene; 9 pounds, 15 ounces of all mooooooooooose with a primal scream. Thankfully, nobody understood me at the time as I yelled “F…Yeah!!!” and began contemplating my first Fake GM roster moves. The next game the Giants would play would be in San Francisco at Seals Stadium! The Giants would beat the Dodger 8-0 in that first game.

In 1967 or so, Mrs. Spadarella, who lived up the street, gave me a bunch of baseball cards, among which were many Giants (photo attached). Some of them are pictured here along with a couple I bought later at Little League games. It wasn’t until 1969 that I attended my first Giants game. I had remembered it as being Juan Marichal vs Don Drysdale on July 19, 1969, but according to baseball reference, it was Don Sutton pitching for the Dodgers. I did remember correctly that Ken Henderson and Willie McCovey hit home runs. Two things stood out in my memory; one was after going up the stairs and walking towards the entrance to our seats, I was able to see the most beautiful green grass and as I walked through, more grass from the outfield appeared before my eyes. Wow! As I took in the whole field I thought it was the most amazing thing I’d ever seen. Years later, I went to Yosemite for the first time and I had the same feeling as we drove through a tunnel and could see the base of El Capitan ahead of me. As we drove on, more and more of that incredible granite face appeared until we exited the tunnel and still couldn’t see all the way to the top until we stopped and got out of the car. In around the 5th or sixth inning of the game, Manny Mota lost control of his bat on a swing and it helicoptered towards Marichal, who had to jump to avoid being hit by the bat. I can’t say for sure that I knew of the history with Marichal and Roseboro at the time, but I was very aware of the tension in the stadium as the bat spun past the pitcher’s mound.

Fast forward to 1986 and I was living in Atlanta Georgia, when I got a call from one of my San Francisco friends, who told me the gang was heading to Cooperstown to see Willie McCovey inducted into baseball’s Hall of Fame. Could I join them? You bet! I arranged my flight and arrived in Boston around 11:30 a.m. They were taking a red eye and arriving about 8:30 the same morning. The plan was for them to pick me up as they were renting a car or two. Well, when I arrived at the airport, they were not to be found. I called the hotel from a pay phone (remember those?) and they had no record of any of my friend’s names. Uh oh. I decided to take the subway or whatever the mass transit is called in Boston and a map made it look pretty simple with just one change of trains to get to the hotel. Somehow I took a wrong turn or didn’t change trains when I was supposed to or something. Anyway, I was in the wrong neighborhood and had about a 2 mile walk to the hotel. Even after giving my friends a 3 hour head start from the airport, getting lost and walking 2 miles, I arrived at the hotel before them. The clerk at the front desk had no reservations in any of the names I was asking for. Finally, I used the middle name of one friend, as it was the same as the initials of his first and middle names. To this day I don’t know if he goes by his initials or his middle name! Anyway, they STILL weren’t there!! They let me pay fay for one of the rooms and gave me the key. My buddies arrived about a half hour later after getting lost in their rental car and driving around and around and around for some 4 hours. Apparently, Boston is not the easiest city to get around in. We spent a day or two in Boston, visiting Cheers (a letdown), getting some clam chowder (WOW!), and then heading to Cooperstown, stopping in Springfield, Massachusetts to see the Basketball Hall of Fame (outstanding!), and Albany, New York, before making our way to the Baseball Hall of Fame.

The day had arrived. We wandered the streets of Cooperstown, buying memorabilia and spotting Hall of Famers (Warren Spahn, among others), and took in the atmosphere. The induction ceremony was amazing. Just looking up at the stands and seeing so many heroes of my youth – Ernie Banks, Hank Aaron, Ted Williams, and so many more – is beyond comprehension. When Willie gave his induction speech, I moved closer to get a good picture and found it difficult as I kept tearing up. I guess it was a bit dusty out there! A great experience for us all. I highly recommend a trip to Cooperstown for every baseball fan, whether one of your heroes is getting inducted, or any time of year. Just a tremendous shrine to the great game of baseball.   

30 years later, the Giants have given us 3 World Championships and countless memories from the Ron Pruitt game and the Brian Johnson game to the Bob Brenly game. No hitters, a perfect game, Hall of Famers, players like Will Clark, Jack Clark, Kevin Mitchell, Chris Speier, Jose Uribe, John Montefusco, Tito Fuentes, Jim Davenport, Tom O’Malley, Jeffrey Leonard, Matt Duffy, and so many more. As horrible as they’ve played over the last 2 months, it’s a great time to be a Giants fan! 

  • Bapah

    Somebody misspelled Moooooooooose’s name.

    • fixed!

      • Bapah

        I think he did too in his own piece unless he officially changed his name. It’s been ten O’s throughout the blog’s history.

        • 610nm

          I took that as just not yet being very good at spelling while still age 0, plus a day.

          • Bapah

            Now that’s a very reasonable assumption.

          • This blog has a limit on consecutive “o”s lest we create problems with the Internet!

        • HaakAway

          I go for the random long string of “o”s and never have counted them. I think this keeps Homeland Security off of his trail.

          • Bapah

            He’s always been very consistent with his spelling.

          • Moooooooooose

            Heh, heh, heh!

        • dgg

          I always thought it was 9 o’s.

          • 610nm

            B’s right, it is supposed to be ten.

          • Bapah

            There’s only one true authority.

          • Matthew

            He and Rzepczynski should share letters.

          • Moooooooooose

            Or trade.

          • Moooooooooose

            To be honest, most of the time I just hold the “o” button down for a few seconds! If I have to get it right, I have a pattern I use!

          • totalfan62

            I just go with “lotsa” o’s!

    • Moooooooooose

      Probably Mooooooooose!

  • dgg

    Mooooooooose, this is terrific. Of course you were a San Francisco Giants fan before you were born!

    • 610nm

      You can tell Moooooooooose was born with his lovely sense of humor. Kinda makes you wander what his Mom was like, too.

      • Moooooooooose

        She was pretty awesome, I can tell you that. Ranked NoCal tennis player as a teen, picked up golf at 35 and won club championships right and left, and introduced me to Tom Lehrer, Ray Charles, Louis Prima and Keely Smith and bought me 40 Funky Hits for Christmas one year!!

    • Moooooooooose

      Thanks deeg!!

  • HaakAway

    Thanks Moooooooooose … The Hall is everything a fan wants to see. I was there in ’99 for Cepeda’s induction and it was heaven.

    Are you coaching this year? I think I will be back in the game starting from the bottom with Tee Ball with my 5 YO grandson. Tips?

    • dgg

      And if the three of you are coaching Little League this year: Mooooooooose, HaakAway, and Noce, write-ups about your coaching experiences would be appreciated.

      • Bapah

        Not only for here, but I’ve found that making notes to yourself each season for each practice and game is incredibly valuable providing you review them every year. They’re even valuable if you never look at them again, but not quite as much.

        • Moooooooooose

          True. I’ll try and do a better job of this by doing it immediately after games and practices.

      • Noce

        No my coaching days are done for now. My son is graduating from Chico this year. Maybe in a year or two I will be coaching my grand niece and I look forward to that. She is in the 95% in height and is going to be a monster. We are already playing catch at age 2. The future looks so bright I have to wear shades.

    • Bapah

      Have a well-developed sense of humor.

      • Bapah

        … and a poorly-developed sense of expectations.

        • HaakAway

          Run the right way around the bases… without carrying the bat?
          Do not fight each other for the ball for more than 1 minute?

          Other goals?

          • Bapah

            As Ryan recently posted an article about the diminishing interest kids have in playing baseball, by all means MAKE IT FUN.

          • Scout Finch Baseball

            Who? Credit where credit is due. Channelclemente posted that and PerSpeier contributed. I had my thumb up my (*) the whole time.

          • Bapah

            My bad. It should have been you. BTW maybe it should be “hole time”?

          • channelclemente

            ‘whole’

          • Bapah

            I was referring to “(*)”.

          • Moooooooooose

            BOOM!

          • Do not shave the entire season. Your wife will forget she married you.

          • 22’sSweetSwing

            hold the bat correctly

          • Mentor them on how to wear their uniforms correctly. None of this Orlando Cabrera stuff after the last pitch is thrown. :-/

      • HaakAway

        Yeah … I still get some flack from my more flexible wife that I did not allow our son to skip a T-Ball game to go to an event with her. I said it was the “Team-Prinicple” of the thing but I was over-the-top.

        I am so much healthier now! In the words of Malcom in Jurrasic Park II … “Oh, not you won’t make the same mistakes your uncle made; you will make all new ones of your own.”

    • Tips?
      1)Blend a large batch of adult drinks with straws.
      2) See Bapah
      3) Hire the most outspoken mommy and daddy to do the book and prep the field.

      • Bapah

        Pick the right team mom! Must be energetic and dedicated. This is more important than you realize.

        • THAT works 85% of the time, true. I also found if you designate the most vociferous complainers to both “book” and “field” duties they tend to “get the message” as to how easy it is NOT.

          I reserve one other method for special occasions. Tell those types of parents that the game is being held on a different field than it actually is.

          And Always Always Always: http://mikematheny.com/sites/default/files/docs/MathenyManifesto.pdf

        • Moooooooooose

          Extremely important!

    • Noce

      I made friends of the parents by keeping my practices to one hour only. Your lucky to keep the attention much longer anyway. I told the parents they could set their watch on when I was done and it worked. Also the last station in each practice was to make the kids run the bases twice. I never had a kid run the wrong way.

      • Moooooooooose

        Excellent advice, Noce!

    • Moooooooooose

      Yes I am, and the only tip for the teeballers is pretty much watch them and let them do what they do and try not to let them swing the bats in the dugout!!

  • Scout Finch Baseball
    • Moooooooooose

      Thanks, Footy scout Ryan finchy !

  • earlytimes

    well done, m10se!

    • Moooooooooose

      Thanks!

  • crawnik

    Great story Moooooooooose!

    • Moooooooooose

      Thanks, Crawnik!

      • Scout Finch Baseball

        I gave you a trophy. Everyone else just gave you lip service.

        • Moooooooooose

          I thought everyone got a trophy!

  • Bapah

    I recently decided to install in my old truck an air freshener that I purchased early last year. Now that the new engine has been installed and debugged, I thought it time to use it… and use its replica as an avatar.

    • 610nm

      Do we dare ask what scent is emitted by this device?

      • Bapah

        It IS, in fact, bacon.

        • crawnik

          The maple kind, yeah?

          • Bapah

            Please tell Clutch it is NOT the Canadian version.

          • 610nm

            That’s clearly “side bacon”!

          • Well, ahem, I can SEE clearly NOW that – it tis not.

    • Scout Finch Baseball
      • Bapah

        Bacon on the hoof?

      • dgg

        Cute pink pig.

    • From here it looks like three slices of bacon

    • Moooooooooose

      Bapah, have you gotten of of those scratch n sniff Iron Pigs bacon t-shirts?

      • Bapah

        I don’t need one, really. Most of my T-shirts smell of many things. Bacon is just one of them. Pastrami, bacon, grilled cheese, horse radish, pumpkin pie… you know, the whole menu gamut.

  • STUDLY post Mooooooooooooose! Greeeeaaat Job!

    • Moooooooooose

      Thank you!

  • earlytimes

    “St. Louis is not “actively” working to acquire Dozier, per ESPN.com’s Mark Saxon (via Twitter).’ mlbtraderumors.

    • dgg

      Exactly. Cardinals’ beat reporter Ben Frederickson for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch says a trade for Dozier doesn’t make much sense with the Cardinals’ plans for Kolten Wong. (Fredrickson also disses Dozier’s ranking in defensive runs saved.)

      Chelsea James, Nationals beat reporter for the Washington Post, says the same re: rumors that the Nationals are interested in Brian Dozier. James reported on Twitter: “A person familiar with Nationals’ thinking said they haven’t made any serious inquiries on Twins’ Dozier. No natural fit there.”

      Darren Wolfson is the Minneapolis reporter who seems to be stirring all these Brian Dozier rumors up, linking Dozier to the Cardinals, Nationals, Dodgers, and perhaps the Giants (although I couldn’t find where he links the Giants with Dozier on his Twitter account). Wolfson does not appear to be a Twins beat reporter. Wolfson’s Twitter Bio: “5 Eyewitness News jack-of-all-trades sports guy/anchor/reporter + 1500ESPN contributor/host.”

      Jon Heyman seems to the reporter with the rumor linking the Giants to Brian Dozier.

      There’s an old adage: Consider the Source. Or in this case, Sources.

  • Matthew

    This was gloooooooooorious

    • Moooooooooose

      Thank yooooooooooou, Matthew!

    • Sgbssfg

      Great photos. Gracias.

    • paul in p.v.

      That’s a lotta plaid, Trevor.

      (Who’s the tubby Santa?)

  • Bar None – Felix Hernandez has Baseball’s best right handed change up:
    Arm Speed – Change of speed – Location – Movement
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UCI6cE-qASM

  • This is most likely a CC re-post (not sure)
    Pitch Framing Was Doomed From the Start
    http://www.hardballtimes.com/pitch-framing-was-doomed-from-the-start/

    • Scout Finch Baseball

      CCian, for sure!

  • channelclemente
  • DrLefty

    Awesome post, Moooooooooose, but I’m not surprised. You wrote such great stories about your Little League team. You have a gift, my friend.

    “My mom and I (we were inseparable at the time)…” Snort!

    • Moooooooooose

      Thanks Dr!

    • Bleacher Bob

      Agreed. Funny stuff Moooooooooose. Great post. Thanks.

      • Moooooooooose

        Thanks, Bleacher Bob!

        • Bleacher Bob

          Remember how HRs hit into Right Center would clear the cyclone fence and bounce all the way into the parking lot?

          • JStreet

            If it hit the asphalt at just the right angle, it could travel upward of 800 feet from home plate. If it didn’t hit a car.

          • Moooooooooose

            Oh yeah. And I have quite a few memories of the mad dashes for balls hit over the left field fence!

    • Scout Finch Baseball

      Clementian post!

  • Flan Giving Nevin Advice
    “After all the ‘coach coaches with a blanket and wine’ (that’s us here folks) said ” don’t send Posey” I gave Nevin my take..it seemed to work …hahaha…

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/fe1b76f029892bab98d2119379deba116219b31db546ce9d9eecceb5169d7862.jpg

  • Bleacher Bob

    Great fun post Moooooooooose. Got me digging into baseball reference for my first Giants game. Bobby Bonds hit a leadoff HR in his 1st full season. Great storytelling.

  • Mr. Sarcastic

    Even if you’re not interested in playing “Dealing for Doziers”, can we at least agree that that this lineup, as it stands now, is seriously lacking in power? Will anyone get even close to 20 HR? Perhaps Belt, and Pence IF he can stay healthy. Craw and Posey will be in the teens again, and that’s about it.

    I want Evans to do something bold and add a legitimate power threat. if not Dozier, then something else. Signing Melancon and a few guys whose glory days are waaay behind them and then calling it a day for the winter is not acceptable! Hoping that Mac or Parker will maybe, hopefully, pretty please add some pop is not acceptable!

    C’mon Evans! Give this fantastic starting staff a little breathing room! Having a legit closer is great but I’d like to see a few more laughers that don’t NEED saving!

    This concludes my end-of-year rant.

    • Scout Finch Baseball

      Mac & Park could combine for 20! And doggonnit, Belt is going to belt 20 HRs one of these years !

      I mean, he is, right? Like seriously?

      • Mr. Sarcastic

        In Hank Schulman’s Twitter feed the other day he had a graphic of Belt’s 2016 AT&T triples spray chart overlayed on the Angels ballpark dimensions and about 15 of them were HR’s there.

        • Scout Finch Baseball

          Trade him to the Angels! For Pujols! Okay, I’m kidding.

          Were those career triples to HRs?

          I think a lot of fans would like to see him exchange some of those bases on balls for splash hits.

          • Mr. Sarcastic
          • Scout Finch Baseball

            triples alley seems to be where the ball goes when he really unloads. If he could only get the bat head out more like he did for that epic blast vs. the Nationals in the 18th inning.

          • Mr. Sarcastic

            Exactly! He was THINKING HR with that swing and look at the result! *

            * (Brandon Belt’s actual thoughts remain the sole intellectual property of Mr. Belt and have not been legally obtained by Mr. Sarcastic in any way).

          • channelclemente

            That’s Belt going the other way. What he seems to do, is keep his head down on those hits. I wonder what pitch he hit on those drives?

          • JStreet

            Keep the BBs, leave the strikeouts.
            Want a winning trade – the Ks for the Splash. Duh.

          • Mr. Sarcastic

            Especially the K’s caught looking

        • channelclemente

          The big problem with these overlay spray chart analysis is they don’t work. Wind, humidity, temperature during a game have a lot to do with park factors. In the end, it’s just a guess. Schulman logic usually shows up in a piece by him when he’s bored, been drinking, or has a new toy.

          • Mr. Sarcastic

            Why the unnecessary pot-shot at Schulman? I enjoy his stuff.

            Anyway, yes, I understand that these comparisons aren’t EXACT, but they do show that Belt has more power in him than “the numbers” that you crunch for breakfast would indicate.

          • channelclemente

            Oh, I read him too, on occasion. He’s like comfortable old house shoes. When it comes to the touchy, feely stuff, he’s a fun read. But after the Belt wars here of the last several years, he’s woefully out of date. Like if he’d go back and explore Belt’s power alleys in college. They are in and left of triples alley. Belt, in college, was an opposite field hitter, not here. Belt hitting with LD power to left center is using AT&T for what it’s park factors say it should be used for, and that’s a good thing, not a reason to lament his triples aren’t HR.

          • Scout Finch Baseball

            Seriously, why the shot at Hank the Tank?

            My guess is you are bored – I won’t speculate on whether or not you’ve hit the Scotch as of yet or found a new gizmo.

          • channelclemente

            That’s not a shot. Schulman is just Schulman. I overdosed at the Chronicle where every new post by him became monotony and more irrelevant. He’s a nice guy, and he’s been around forever, but I never felt baseball was his strong point. The touchy, feely stuff, as I said, seemed his best venue. We all have opinions, I guess.

          • Scout Finch Baseball

            Alex Pavlovic does very little for me, so there is that 🙂

          • channelclemente

            Each to his own. Swing away. I’m a Tyler Kepner fan myself.

      • JStreet

        Yes yes yes. And Morse too.

    • DrLefty

      I approve this rant.

      • Panik will hit 18 HRs in 2017.

        • Mr. Sarcastic

          For the Twins? =D

    • Scout Finch Baseball
      • JStreet

        A Ted Talk?

    • earlytimes

      Look at it this way: They have already added Moore Melancon Smith Nunez.
      WIlliamson Parker Ruggiano Morse et al will replace 1 WAR Pagan. This team on paper is better than last yr’s team that had the majors best record at the break.

      But if Williamson Parker Ruggiano Morse Slater et al aren’t getting it done and power is an issue, they still can make a move at the deadline. They will have a clearer sense of Blach Beede Arroyo and some others emerging prospects from which they can then deal. They do this every year. In each title yr, the add ons were significant.

    • paul in p.v.

      Just like it did in 2010, 2012, and 2014.

      • Mr. Sarcastic

        No disrespect Paul, but if you find comfort in watching the stat go from “3 in 5”! to “3 in 6”! to “3 in 7”! then I don’t know what to tell you.

        • paul in p.v.

          None taken.

          “Comfort?” Not close. But I think what they did in those 5 years will go down in history and in memory, as we watch the years go by.

    • I could choke on my BB9 fanboy feelings and trade him but not JP12.

  • Noce

    Moose,

    Not to get to overly sentimental, (which us old farts can do) but I also remember the feeling of walking off the zig zag ramps and walking past the double doors to your section. Most of the time they were closed and orange. But when you went through yours to see the field for the first time that is a feeling I will always remember. I would get that feeling almost every time I walked through those Candlestick doors. The other memory about that park was the long escalator from ground to upper deck that was built later. I’m not sure they would pass code these days. The only time I have been on one steeper and longer was the subway in Washington D.C. It gave a little bit of a rush coming down after the game.

    • That make several of us. I never forgot:
      * The Green Grass as you hurried up the somewhat slanted up-pavement to the doors to see the GREEN.
      * The street address because of a school project – 602 Jamestown Avenue
      * Never forgot driving to and from: My dad and uncle (who did most of the driving UP from the Peninsula) would both bypass the Stick entrance on 101 and drive to 3rd ave down to Gilman and right turn and into the park that way. “We” parked near Cardiac Hill near the buses. The elders in our family struggled on THE hill all the time.
      * Upon leaving “we” went out the same way but the SFPD would not let you make a left on Third ave so we crossed the intersection, pulled into the donut shop and back out again at the other exit.
      * Remembered how easy it was to get into The Stadium Club. Owner Horace Stoneham held court at the bar.
      * How warm it was to finally get to our cars in the parking lot after even a day game at the Stick.

      • Noce

        It was also easy to get back to the press and TV announcers. I had pictures of Sandy Koufax when he was an announcer for game of the week. But getting out of there was a nightmare no matter which way you went. I also had a Croix de Candlestick but I have not seen that in years.

        I bought a large ticket package the last year in order to attend the last game there. My wife and I went and for me it was emotional for a lot of reasons and memories. I enjoyed the games there but I really don’t miss the place now.

        • Mr. Sarcastic

          I too have lost a couple of Croix de Candelstick pins after several moves over the years. One of Pat Gallagher’s greatest marketing achievements (along with the Crazy Crab) =)

  • Alvise Contarini
    • channelclemente

      Depends on who they’re killing.

      • Alvise Contarini

        I could have never expected such a reply from you. Evidently I made the wrong opinion about you.

        • channelclemente

          I’m a realest, not a pacifist.

          • Alvise Contarini

            Me neither, but I never forget that violence is the last refuge of the incompetent.

          • channelclemente

            So we’re an incompetent species, what’s a guy to do.

          • Alvise Contarini

            You can shout that loud and clear.

          • channelclemente

            It’s Darwin’s purpose. Why fight it.

          • Alvise Contarini

            Because we are not animals anymore. At least so we are supposed to be.

          • channelclemente

            On that we disagree. I’ll warn you, the evidence is on my side. I invite you to explore it.

          • Alvise Contarini

            Your evidence is only your opinion. IMO a true man never kills, but only if he is compelled to save his life.

          • channelclemente

            That sort of denies man as a communal animal, and all that goes with it.

          • channelclemente

            A person who declines looking, never knows.

          • Alvise Contarini

            You surely will never know what I do know.

    • Mr. Sarcastic

      Hey Alvise … Any thoughts on how the NL West will stack up this year?

      • Alvise Contarini

        I called my personal wizard and he told me: Giants 1st 100-62, 2nd Doggies 86-76. The rest doesn’t count.

        • Mr. Sarcastic

          Thanks! Just wanted to see a baseball related post here from you at least once…

    • Scout Finch Baseball

      Peace sells, but who’s buying?

      • Alvise Contarini

        All men and women of good will.

        • Scout Finch Baseball

          Can you put a price on peace?

          • channelclemente

            $2.99

          • Alvise Contarini

            Faced with the choice between peace and war they would offer everything they have to save their children.

          • Scout Finch Baseball

            Might say human nature is severely flawed.

      • Alvise Contarini

        A mountain retreat, but surely not in Cortina. Those mountains are not made of dolomia.

      • Alvise Contarini
        • Grazie Signore

          • Alvise Contarini

            Non c’è di che !

  • cabbie

    Ok, i’ll admit it. I’d never heard of Dozier at all until about a week ago when I read about him here. Anyone else want to confess?

    • 610nm

      Only very tangentially, in my case. Ain’t no way I want to see Joe Panik traded for this guy! I also think we may have already gotten the Twin’s best guy last summer, as Nunez intrigues me.

      • cabbie

        Yeah, the Panik/Crawford duo is one I want to watch for at least a few more years.

    • I am afraid to comment for fear of the Peter Principle Johnson

      • cabbie

        Ah yes. I’ve probably never heard of him because i hate home runs. I literally turn off the TV every time one is hit.

        • In Minny Soda any vitamins in ones system evaporates due to the wind chill factor and the Kirby Puckett rule so I don’t think The Doze would hit that many out at Willie Howard Mays, Jr. Field.

    • John Myhill

      The name looked familiar to me but that’s it. I don’t know what’s going on in the american league.

      • steve k

        …and i don’t really care what’s going on in junior circuit. unfortunately, living in NY, there’s no way to avoid knowing what’s going on, especially in the AL east. in september i start paying attention to the other probable playoff teams. the DH skews the game so much, i have trouble watching amarican league games.

    • Moooooooooose

      Who?

  • Scout Finch Baseball

    Maybe not for you if NYT editors are not up your alley, but a good one for a bad year…

    http://www.nytimes.com/2016/12/28/opinion/2016-worst-year-ever.html

  • This reminds of – if – the majority of TWG’s got together and entered a market somewhere in San Fran Cisco

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H965m0Hkk5M

  • paul in p.v.

    Mrs. Spadarella did you a good one, Moooooose.

    • Moooooooooose

      That she did, Paul. That she did!

      • I thought Spadarella was an ice cream flavor?

  • totalfan62

    Great guest post Mooooooose! Really enjoyed it. 20!!

    • Moooooooooose

      Thank you, tf!

  • totalfan62

    Watched a one-hour show on MLB Network last night about the 1971 Pittsburgh Pirates. Very well done, highly recommend it. I was always a Pirates fan (way less than my beloved Giants, of course) as early as the mid 60s. Those guys could hit! Every time we played them it was an 8-6 type game. Lots of hitting. It was like magic; Matty Alou hits .231 for us in 1965. We trade him to the Pirates (for Ozzie Virgil and Joe Gibbon), and he hits .342 and wins the NL batting title.

    The focus of the show was the Pirates all-black starting lineup on September 1 of that year. It was the first time an all-black (and Latin) lineup took the field. Even they didn’t realize it until about the fourth inning. For us old farts/trivia geeks…

    Rennie Stennent 2B
    Gene Clines CF
    Roberto Clemente RF
    Willie Stargell 1B
    Manny Sanguillen C
    Dave Cash. 3B
    Al Oliver LF
    Jackie Hernandez SS
    Dock Ellis P

    • John Myhill

      I liked that team because they beat the Orioles who I detested (but then they beat the Giants in the NLCS or whatever it was called in 1972) and because they had the ultimate no-name starting rotation–they used 6 different starters in the World Series, 5 right-handed (and after the one lefty Luke Walker got knocked out early in Game 4 they came back behind Bruce Kison) and took advantage of the Orioles’ radical weakness against righties. I didn’t even notice how many blacks/latins they had in the starting lineup.

      • Noce

        It was 1971, Marichal had to pitch the final game so the Dodgers would not force a tie during the regular season. The Giants were 9 and 3 vs the Pirates that year. Without Marichal pitching the first game it cost them the series. They were enclosing right field that year and had some seats up in the construction zone. Sirs or Kawanis got a bus together and my dad got us tickets to the game they won. We were surrounded by scaffolding and overhead was a work site. I remember Tito’s HR barely cleared the fence by McCovey’s was actually over our heads lost in the work site. A good day.

    • SurfCity

      They also talk about that game in a documentary about Dock Ellis, which I believe is called “No no.” (based on the no hitter he threw while under the effects of LSD). I saw it on Netflix within the last year.

  • Move Span to LF so his “glove is worn on the chalk line” (as BLB’s was) and put Nunez in CF
    http://www.mccoveychronicles.com/2016/12/28/14101968/eduardo-nunez-sf-giants-left-field

    • Giants54

      Why would you put Nunez in CF if he sucks in LF? Having both Nunez and Dozier learning new positions they may not be suited for is a bleeping scary thought. Bad fit.

      • Because the author who wrote the story – maybe and probably is incorrect.

    • Scout Finch Baseball

      Wow! That was actually pretty convincing for a small sample. No to Nunez in the OF!

  • Moooooooooose

    We’re thinking of taking the kids down to The City tomorrow for the day. It’s been a while, so what are some of the best things to do, say, in Golden Gate Park or anywhere else that isn’t Fisherman’s Wharf or Pier 39?

    • Bapah

      Exploratorium. Produce market. Cable car turntable and shed.

      • Like Bapah said: Exploritorium

        * Stow Lake
        * San Francisco Botanical Garden at Strybing Arboretum

        Sadly the panhandling and aroma’s of anatomical functions are out of control and close by. Keep everything with you or in your trunk BEFORE you park. If female purses are involved have them worn over-the-head on opposite shoulder.

        • Alvise Contarini

          Is it so dangerous to walk in San Francisco? I seem to read about Naples, Bari and Palermo…

          • Mr. Sarcastic

            Wow it’s almost midnight in Italy right now… It’s awesome that you stay up late to correspond with us during PST business hours!

          • Alvise Contarini

            I have never gone to bed before 2 am, since I was 20, 50 years ago. Six hours of deep sleep are enough for my brain.

          • Sei un vero italiano

          • Alvise Contarini

            Non credo proprio. I veri italiani dormono tutto il giorno e non combinano mai un cazzo. Mi son de Venessia.

          • paul in p.v.

            Alvise – see above re S.F.

          • Bapah

            Not really, the problem is the hills if you want to walk other than downtown or short excursions in the various neighborhoods.

          • paul in p.v.

            I lived there 8 years – it’s NOT a walkable city, but has good pockets for walking: Union Sq./Financial District, Chinatown/North Beach, Fisherman’s Wharf (yuk), Union/Clement St. And it’s too easy to drift into a muggable area – we used to have tourists decide to walk from Union Sq. to Alamo Park for photos, and get rolled on their way thru the Western Addition.

          • Scout Finch Baseball

            We have a student at the lab from Sicily and the university in Bari.

            He loves American country music. Seems to think he was mistakenly born in Italy instead of Nashville, Tennessee.

            Nice kid though.

    • 22’sSweetSwing

      http://www.calacademy.org/

      Children’s Creativity Museum creativity.org/

      Randall Museum https://www.randallmuseum.org/

      SF Zoo

      new playground in GGP (Golden Gate Park 45th Avenue Playground) also in GGP Conservatory of Flowers

      Privately-Owned Public Open Space and Public Art (POPOS)
      http://sf-planning.org/privately-owned-public-open-space-and-public-art-popos

    • channelclemente

      Italian restaurant under Coit, on Montgomery’s dead end. Across from the Bogart House where Dark Passage was filmed.

    • Skweezplay55

      I hope other HOF voters are as thoughtful as she.

      • As the first woman to serve as president of the Baseball Writers’ Association of America – I believe she not only speaks the truth but has the pulse of her fellow writers. After they INSERTED Selig into his wing – aptly named Hall of Shame – there can be no defense for BLB or Roger C.

      • channelclemente

        She and Windy Thurm are pure gold.

  • John Myhill

    This post made me check out what I remember as the first Giants game I went to. I remembered it as when we lived in Stanford (1961-64), it was after the Giants went to the World Series, it was on my birthday (June 16th), and the Giants beat the Reds 3-2. That’s all I could remember. When I just investigated, I found that they didn’t play the Reds around then in 1963 but they did in 1964. On June 16th 1964 (my 8th birthday) they lost to the Reds 9-4, but on June 17th they won 3-2, so that must have been the game. Bob Bolin started and pitched 8 innings and Gaylord Perry (!) pitched the 9th. They won it on a 2-run pinch homer in the bottom of the 9th by Willie McCovey. I didn’t remember that at all. http://www.baseball-almanac.com/box-scores/boxscore.php?boxid=196406170SFN

    • channelclemente

      My first game was in 2009 when Matt Cain beat the Cubs. I got vile looks for singing go Cubs go, and wearing a rally cap. It was wonderful.

  • Just for fun and a lot of other reasons – I wish this guy was still around so that I could listen to his latest “take” on the just concluded elections. Wonder what ‘he’ would say?

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/f855f50b698922e64b352c4aaf01c3013689f6738c7bd5b704e832098e7f3a06.jpg

  • Matthew

    Moooooooooose,

    What’s really cool about your post (besides “everything”) is how you described the first time you saw the expansive green perfection of the field. I literally can still remember that exact visual from May 1965… and the contrast of those perfect, crisp, clean uniforms of all the players wandering in the outfield shagging flies during BP.

    I love baseball…..

  • channelclemente
    • Bapah

      It’s been years, but I remember my first swig. It’s like drinking snot, although I can’t swear to it (never having drunk a glass of snot). I haven’t seen it in many years.

      • channelclemente

        It’s great snot, though.

  • DrLefty

    Buster Olney notes that Clayton Kershaw made 21 starts in 2016 and in 19 of those, gave up two or fewer earned runs.

    One of those two others was…you guessed it, vs. Ty Blach!

    https://twitter.com/Buster_ESPN/status/814274054865768448

    • Matthew

      That’s gonna cause Kershaw to have a mental Blach

    • Scout Finch Baseball

      What a jump as a prospect!

      2016:

      17) Ty Blach, LHP, Grade C+: Age 25, posted 4.46 ERA with 93/31 K/BB in 165 innings in Triple-A, gave up 189 hits and 16 homers but I think he can improve that, throws strikes with 90 MPH fastball, solid-average curve, slider, change-up.

      2017:

      4) Ty Blach, LHP, Grade B-/B: Age 26, posted 3.43 ERA with 113/38 K/BB in 163 innings in Triple-A, 147 hits; 1.06 ERA in 17 major league innings with 10/5 K/BB; fifth round pick in 2012 from Creighton University in Omaha; velocity has picked up a hair since college and sits in low-90s now, mixes in slider, change-up, curve; stuff similar to Andrew Suarez and overall approach is comparable though I think Blach throws slightly harder; Blach is two years older but has a better track record of durability. ETA 2017.

      What a difference that extra velocity makes – from wherever it came from.

      Suppose Blach’s next jump is of the quantum nature and he becomes Kershawian?

      Step aside Mad Bum, there’s a new #1 lefty in the rotation 🙂

      • Matthew

        Which supports our skepticism, in general, of those “expert” analysis.

        • Scout Finch Baseball

          “… but I think he can improve that”

          Did that evade your skeptical eye?

          http://cdn.images.express.co.uk/img/dynamic/41/285×214/147311_1.jpg

          • Matthew

            That’s just a weak “covering my bases” move by a wannabe Kiper.

            Sorry….I just think these guys guess…they cannot possibly actually watch with their own eyes.

            Several of our very best players were NOT seen positively. This organization keeps proving the analysts wrong.

          • Scout Finch Baseball

            That’s one fan narrative.

      • DrLefty

        I remember reading these comments from the Sacramento pitching coach back in September:

        Blach, who turns 26 in October, has not allowed a run in two three-inning relief appearances, at Coors Field and Dodger Stadium. His 3.43 ERA ranked fifth in the Pacific Coast League.

        Blach repeated Triple-A and had fallen in the Giants’ prospect rankings, but he surged in 2016 as he gained more experience and added a different curveball to go with his changeup.

        Dwight Bernard, Sacramento’s pitching coach, said he believes Blach’s willingness to listen and change fueled his improvement as well.

        “When a kid is as receptive as he is, with the stuff and the confidence he has in the stuff, he’s got a chance to be successful,” Bernard said. “He’s probably not a world-beater, but he’s going to go out and compete.”

        http://www.sfgate.com/giants/article/Bochy-picks-rookie-Blach-over-Cain-and-Peavy-to-9278309.php

        • DrLefty

          This article (from the Sacramento Bee in August) also offers some insight about how Blach turned things around this year and the secret(s) to success for him.

          http://www.sacbee.com/sports/spt-columns-blogs/andy-furillo/article96834182.html

          • Efrain

            I’d be very careful in handing Blach the keys that fast, or do you remember Heston, he who threw a NH a couple years ago, many here figured he would be a part of the rotation moving forward.

          • Scout Finch Baseball
          • Efrain

            oh I like the Black Keys.

            But you know what I’m getting at, sure Blach looked good at the end of the year but he has not pitched one full season in the majors. The league has had a ton of flash in the pans who looked great for a small sample size.

          • Scout Finch Baseball

            Ty Blach has 17 MLB innings under his belt. If that isn’t a small sample, I don’t know what is.

            As a prospect, he’s always been back of the rotation potential since college. Not much has really changed other than to say he has a chance of being a very effective lefty in the league that can eat innings and keep his team in the game for 6-7 innings per start.

        • channelclemente

          They hate to admit it, but to my knowledge, no expert has ever been able to come up with a way to successfully predict from a pitcher’s minor league performance his ultimate MLB performance.

          • Scout Finch Baseball

            Uncertainty is a difficulty position to predict from. And, as we discussed from an article you linked, a difficult pill to swallow.

          • channelclemente

            Uncertainty is really a matter of not knowing the right metrics, ignorance.

          • Scout Finch Baseball

            Seems very Cartesian of you !

          • channelclemente

            Not really. It’s usually an accident that someone finds the thread. More polar. Things spin.

          • Scout Finch Baseball
          • channelclemente

            But it turns out not to be true.

          • Scout Finch Baseball

            What is true?

            Is it time to summon Yeats or Socrates?

            Or The Oracle?

          • channelclemente

            Give Amos Tversky a look.

          • Scout Finch Baseball

            He’s the guy in the Michael Lewis book. Yeah, I’d like to read the Lewis book and learn about Tversky that way. He’s got a great Wiki. That ambiquity and uncertainty, and loss aversion as well. These relate well to baseball I think.

          • Alvise Contarini

            There is something whose metrics can’t be known. Heisenberg dixit.

          • DrLefty

            My expert opinion is that pitching is hard. Hitting, too.

          • Scout Finch Baseball

            Staying healthy and getting big league hitters out is very hard!

            Hitting big league pitching is exceptionally hard.

            The fizzle rate of top pitching prospects seems remarkably high compared to the hitting prospects. Will have to look into this.

            Kris Bryant, Corey Seager BOOM!

            Lucas Giolito, Julio Urias ???

          • DrLefty

            It’s tough. I was thinking about when, a few years back, the Dbacks were just dripping with talented young pitching. Their major league rotation was headed by Ian Kennedy, just 26 and a 21-game winner in 2011, and 24-year-old fireballer Daniel Hudson. They also promising young lefty Wade Miley, and in the minors were Tyler Skaggs and Patrick Corbin, obtained in a trade for Dan Haren. They had just drafted Trevor Bauer and Archie Bradley in the top 10. They seemed set for years with their “Baby Backs” (oh, and rookie Paul Goldschmidt and MVP candidate Justin Upton).

            Of all of those guys, five years later only Corbin and Bradley are left in the Snakes’ rotation–everyone else traded (Kennedy, Skaggs, Bauer, Miley) or in the bullpen (Hudson, after two TJs in quick succession). And Corbin had TJ and Bradley’s struggled in the majors.

            You just never know.

          • Scout Finch Baseball

            This is why established “reliable” pitchers are making a killing in free agency. Even the one inning guys that throw 60-70 innings are getting more $$$ than the 40 HR, 120 RBI middle of order run producers.

          • channelclemente

            But hitting is easier, it’s 9 on one.

        • Scout Finch Baseball

          Real nice. Giants haven’t developed a homegrown rotation fixture since Madbum (not all that long). So maybe Blach is the guy. On the side, maybe Beede doesn’t become the guy. Baseball.

          • Bapah

            Or, maybe he does.

          • Scout Finch Baseball

            Uncertainty!

          • Scout Finch Baseball

            But using the best probability estimators at our disposal, we could say that Beede has a good chance of being at least a #5 starter at the Big League org with some team. At best he could be a #2/#3 rotation stalwart.

            Blach may have more certainty as a #5, and less probability to be a top of rotation fixture.

      • paul in p.v.

        So you put aside some good herbs for the winter, Foots? Or something medicinal from Mateo??

        • Scout Finch Baseball

          There’s been no shortage of good herbs for a long, long time. That’s just the way it’s been…

          • paul in p.v.

            p.s. I would LOVE to see that prognostication pan out.

      • 12xu

        A Creighton University Bluejay! Notable Creighton baseball alumni: Bob Giblson and Scott Servais (mgr. of the Mariners). Blach is not even on the list on Wikipedia! The indignity!

  • DrLefty

    OMG, Debbie Reynolds just died. Had a stroke while discussing plans for her daughter Carrie Fisher’s funeral.

    Oh, that poor family. How awful.

    • crawnik

      This year just can’t end soon enough.

      • Scout Finch Baseball

        No kidding. At least the Spaniards didn’t just arrive with their poxes.

        • Alvise Contarini

          Morbillo in italian. Just woke up. 05:19 am and can’t sleep. It should be 19:20 in California.

          • Scout Finch Baseball

            Join the party. You crazy Europeans helped make America what it is today! It all started with your boats…

          • Alvise Contarini

            Blame that crazy stubborn guy from Genoa.

          • GSDUbs

            Overrated

          • Alvise Contarini

            Said by an authority like you…

          • GSDUbs

            Thanks for the props.Know your history and maybe you can be an authority too.

          • Alvise Contarini

            Surely I’m not ashamed of my two Ph.D.

          • GSDUbs

            Surely neither could be in American history

          • Alvise Contarini

            No, but I’m ready to bet that I know American history far better than 90% of you Americans.

          • GSDUbs

            You very well might…but I dont represent 90% of all Americans who believe Columbus discovered America by virtue of holidays, parades, days off school, office closings etc. Hence my initial remark.

          • Alvise Contarini

            Good for you. And I’m convinced too that the Vikings landed their long ships in the American shores well before (about 4-5 centuries) Cristoforo Colombo.

          • GSDUbs

            Columbus never stepped one foot on todays USA soil.

          • Alvise Contarini

            That’s unquestionable. But he was the pathfinder for the colonization of “The Americas”. And anyway the first to put their feet on the American soil were the native Americans coming from Asia about 13,000 years ago.

          • GSDUbs

            True…but why all the glory in the usa for him? Its based on a myth. We even learned the name of his ships – his whole story. it’s ridiculous.

          • GSDUbs

            If you asked any schoolchildren – virtually any american – who discovered america, they knee jerk the incorrect answer

    • dgg

      “She said, ‘I want to be with Carrie,'” her son said. “And then she was gone.”

      Thoughts and prayers for the family.

      • DrLefty

        I’m old enough to remember when Carrie Fisher was “Debbie Reynolds’ daughter,” not vice versa. So sad. RIP, both of them–so talented and in different ways, ahead of their time and trailblazers.

  • DrLefty

    I loved “Singin’ in the Rain.”

    https://youtu.be/Yu6–WBPBHo

    • Scout Finch Baseball

      I heard this on NPR around noon today.

    • channelclemente

      Just a great, great tune. I love it.

    • Peter Johnson

      My sisters watched a lot of old Movies, and Debbie Reynolds was one of the first teen idols in Hollywood, she and Elizabeth Taylor were total upsets, Reynolds the girl next door type, and Taylor the bad girl that stole Reynold’s husband away from her .

      • DrLefty

        Liz and Debbie buried the hatchet years later on a cruise. Kind of a cool story.

  • Scout Finch Baseball

    Lefty’s superb accounting of the Diamondbacks’ continual roll of “snake-eyes” at the pitching craps table reminds me of the “Royal Flush” the Mets were believed to have in hand last year. By the time the Wild Card game rolled around, it seems they were left with an ace and a pair of clubs. Remember the blue chip prospect the Giants pushed across the table in 2011 to the dismay of orange and black fans? How many professional innings has he thrown?

    The 2017 Giants rotation looks super solid. And not because of exceptional hype, but because of respective track records for durability. And that is perhaps all ye can really go by.

    • Bapah

      Somebody knew something about Wheeler that nobody else knew (gnu).

      • Scout Finch Baseball

        Perhaps the inverted W, perhaps other indicators of duress.

      • DrLefty

        I think the Mets and their “Take an Advil, kid” philosophy broke our Zack. The Giants wouldn’t have done him that way. 🙁

    • DrLefty

      That’s another thing I like about Blach. Led the PCL in innings two years in a row.

      • paul in p.v.

        Wow!

    • DrLefty

      You could kind of see the Mets’ thing coming, sadly. Syndergaard is the only one of the bunch who hasn’t already had TJ surgery, and he’s had his injury issues, too. TJ survivors Matz, DeGrom, and Harvey all had new problems this year. Zack Wheeler has missed two full seasons since his TJ.

    • Efrain

      I really like what the Giants have done over the past year in remaking the starting staff (although I think that they failed in being more proactive and waited too long to move away from Peavy/Cain)

      I know some will think this is crazy but I’d love to see them make a move such as trade fiom their surplus of #5 type pitchers and go grab a young guy like Chris Archer from Tampa, who needs talent everywhere.

      The surplus could come from the guys other than Blach, who have been around AAA for a few years and obviously are not going to start for this team in the near future.

      The Giants would be able to then make any moves they want during the ’17 season due to their position of strength, and imagine a rotation of Bum/Cueto/Moore/Shark/Archer with Blach/Suarez in the wings!

      • DrLefty

        I’m a huge fan of Chris Archer, but after the Chris Sale trade, the price for young, reasonably priced starting pitching seems to be “sun, moon, stars.” Again, props to Evans for getting Moore when he did, even though it was painful at the time.

        • Efrain

          I’ve always like Archer. I see the point his price is rising daily.

      • Scout Finch Baseball

        It’s 10 AM EST, and you’re still having REM dream sleep ?!?

        • Efrain

          Hey, I can dream!

          • Scout Finch Baseball

            Then shouldn’t Belt be in that trade ? 😉

          • Efrain

            Ohhhhhhh now you are talking! I’ve eased up on that since the Giants don’t have a viable 1B coming up and Posey had a great year behind the dish.

  • DrLefty

    Yay! Just got an email from Chef Scott! 👏👍🏻🍾

    • Matthew

      NICE!!! Thanks for letting us know!!

      • DrLefty

        I knew you’d want to hear.

        • Bapah

          I’ve been away quite a bit. What’s the significance?

          • DrLefty

            He “signed off” about 10 days before Christmas, wishing us happy holidays and telling me to keep everyone in line. He didn’t say so, but I inferred that maybe another of his hospital stays was upcoming. I’m always a little worried until he checks back in.

          • Bapah

            Thanks. Hope all is well.

  • just peachy.

    Just pre-ordered Zito’s EP. Tempted to go to his little show in Mill Valley, but only SRO tickets left. Don’t know what to expect, but I’ll give his music try, even if it’s country-ish… anyway, I wish him the best of luck!

  • PerSpeier35

    OMG, until Moooooooooose wrote about it I had completely forgotten what a charge it was to first walk through that amazing wind draft going through the doors at Candlestick and saw the amazing brilliant green baseball field (never mind that it was plastic). I loved that, now I don’t even notice it but I sure will next time. Thanks Moooooooooose.

    • Moooooooooose

      You’re welcome!

      • totalfan62

        Me too! First time I attended a Giants game at Candlestick Park was September 9, 1966. It was my birthday present, and needless to say I was PUMPED. First impression was ballpark smells: the hot dogs and other food as well, Then we walked through those big doors at the top of the stairs…and the brilliant green grass stopped me in my tracks. It was the most beautiful baseball field I had ever seen. It was a windy day, and I remember thinking “how can they play a good game of baseball in this wind?” That was our beloved Candlestick. Part of me will always appreciate the old gray lady. She was good to the Giants and the 49ers.

    • But wasn’t always plastic …

  • cynic

    Is it really that hard to have a few young players get regular time on a baseball team? This isn’t basketball where there’s limited roster spots and playing time. Would letting a young guy pitch an inning or two every week or have a couple ABs a week be that hard? It used to be done all the time. I feel like this version of the Giants is the only team that is loathe to let any young player regularly play unless they’re immediately equal to a starter.

    • DrLefty

      I’ve noticed that most other good teams do a better job of rotating their players–both as to position and playing time–than the Giants do. The Cubs mix up lineups and batting orders. So do the Dodgers. Back when the A’s were good a few years ago, their depth was enviable. With these teams it feels like they’ve got an extra five players when really it’s just intelligent roster construction and utilization.

      The Giants? They’ve had a chronically short bench and then regular intervals where a player–let’s call him “Angel Pagan”–would get dinged up and not play for days while the bench was even more shorthanded. It seemed like four times out of five, “Pagan” would ultimately end up on the DL anyway.

      It’s a chicken-egg thing: the bench has unproven guys so Bochy won’t trust them unless he’s desperate. So they never get playing time and don’t thrive, so he continues to not trust them. But it’s worse than that–even guys who did do well as injury replacements–think Kelby Tomlinson in 2015 and Mac Williamson in 2016, and heck, how about Chris Heston?–get completely buried again once the higher-status player is (rushed) back.

      • Efrain

        the difference is the Cubs have mixed in young guys like Schwarber, Soler, Baez. I mean, can’t compare that to what we have? Maybe Kelby, but after that it’s pretty slim.

        • DrLefty

          Well, yeah, the Cubs have done a great job of stockpiling premium talent over several years of tanking. But that doesn’t really apply to the other teams. The Dodgers picked up Andrew Toles off the scrap heap and he really helped them down the stretch. And guys like Trayce Thompson (fringe-y prospect type) and Charlie Culberson (hit the walk-off HR that clinched the NL West)? These are not Schwarber/Baez type names. This a savvy manager getting it done by putting players in positions to thrive and riding hot hands (instead of gluing those hot hands to the bench).

          • Scout Finch Baseball

            Trayce does compare favorably well to Mac – so yeah how much would Trayce have played for the Giants? Just as much as Mac? Toles seems legit, it seems he will get a lot of playing time in ’17. Giants don’t have a comp, well maybe if you turned back the clock 10 years on Span 🙂

      • The Giants short bench is thanks to Bochy’s over-use of pitching changes and matchups. It needs to be reigned in a bit. It would also help if the MLB expanded to 26 player rosters.

        • 22’sSweetSwing

          I wouldn’t blame the short bench on Bochy entirely. He has had to compensate for unknowns like injury/ contract problem Matt Cain and a mercurial/ loyalty problem Peavy. Often It really isn’t so much a lack of players on the bench so much as a lack of quality there. That said, Bochy does have an incredibly high threshold for trust. I’m not convinced that giving the Giants 1 more bench player the Giants would employ better quality players there.

  • Scout Finch Baseball

    I took a little peak at the 2015 Sickels prospect list below and summarized the Top 50 prospects into 4 categories, between positional prospects and pitchers. It’s funny, there are some Giants prospects on this list that definitely seem overranked, contrary to Matthew’s complaint about Giants prospects continuously being underrated by the “biased experts”. The four categories are star level, MLB contributor, still a top prospect, & fizzled/busted prospect.

    Pos.

    9 star
    8 MLB
    7 Top Prosp.
    2 Busts

    (26)

    Pitcher

    3 star
    13 MLB
    5 Top Prosp
    3 Busts

    (24)

    I’m not sure what can be gleaned from this survey, but it’s a start. My hypothesis is that hitting prospect that are highly rated are a more sure bet for success.

    http://www.minorleagueball.com/2015/3/16/8215045/top-175-mlb-prospects-for-2015-john-sickels

    • Matthew

      Don’t mind me…

      No, I insist. It’s getting creepy.

    • 22’sSweetSwing

      You better look at few more years before you draw much of a conclusion (but you already knew that). I agree with your hypothesis because at the lowest level hitting is a physical reaction with definitive success/ failure that is easier to evaluate. Whereas pitching involves both many moving parts and more mental processes than hitting, thus more room for error and difficulty to judge.

  • Surf Maui

    Nice story. Thanks. You should have stopped by to visit in Albany where I was living at the time.

    BTW as the closest airport to Cooperstown most of the HOF ers go through ALB on the way to Cooperstown for the induction ceremonies. Hanging out at the airport on the Friday before the ceremony is a great way to meet many of them.