Greek Giant

No, that’s not the title of the new Van Halen album (Rest in Peace, Eddie). Yesterday the Giants won their season finale against the cruising Padres in San Diego, 8-1. The win gave them a record of 81-81 on the season, a disappointment to be sure but a nice recovery for .500 and respectability to close out the season. The Giants are the first team in MLB history to finish at .500 while eight games under .500 with sixteen to play. At least they did that.

The Padres, by the way, finished 89-73 for their first winning record in a full season since 2010! That’s been a while and they will face the Mets in a three-game series on Friday.

Coming Back Down to Earth

The Giants are also only the fifth team in Major League Baseball history to win over 100 games one season and fail to finish over .500 in the following season. Ok, I know, it’s weird but I need something to write about. Actually, that’s not true. There’s plenty to write and talk about concerning the 2022 season and the offseason. It feels weird seeing other teams play in the postseason and knowing the Giants are going home. It’s like hearing a fantastic party at your next door neighbor’s house while you are at home trying to amuse yourself. FOMO (fear of missing out) indeed. The Giants do not have to fear it anymore. They missed out.

At TWG we will have much to analyze and much to discuss but for today let’s celebrate the 8-1 victory that came courtesy of two home runs by David Villar.

The second bomb went off the glove of Profar and caromed into the seats. Thank you sir. It still counts as a dinger.

The first homer was a no-doubter:

Villar would go 2-4 as a pinch hitter. Austin Slater also went deep, for the seventh time this year. Is it me or should Slater have at least 15 homers? Slater would get two hits, as would Yaz. Wade Jr. had three knocks to finish at .207 and get over the Mendoza line on the year. Wade, Ruf, Crawford and Belt are four of the principle reasons the Giants hit some 60 fewer home runs this season than they did in 2021. Those four seemed to have lost their magic with going cold at the plate and, spending considerable time on the IL.

I miss 2021.

Carlos Rodon, Wherefore Art Thou?

Gabe Kapler made this a bullpen game because, Carlos Rodon did not make his turn in the rotation when Cobb pitched the night before. Cobb elected to start last night instead of today. There is speculation that Rodon elected to bow out in order to prevent an injury as he heads towards free agency. I will not comment on speculation other than to say if this is true then the Giants now know that Rodon will in all likelihood, not return. According to NBC Sports Bay Area:

“No matter how it happened, Rodón was not going to make his final start of the year. His agent, Scott Boras, told the San Francisco Chronicle on Monday that the preference was for Rodón to shut it down after 31 starts. The next move for the left-handed ace will be an obvious one.”

If this is true and a player’s agent made the decision for one of his players to not play for the Giants and Rodon was feeling well enough to pitch (Kapler said he “was not feeling well”, then I have a big problem with the whole situation. Pretty soon we will see players decide when and if they should play MLB games just like College kids opting out of bowl games or whole groups of players like those at SMU deciding to quit the team four games into the season so they can be eligible for the transfer portal. It’s a disgrace for the players and it should not ever happen. Every MLB game means something. Rodon was paid x millions of dollars to perform and his agent and he decided not to just because. Sorry, but I would never want a guy like that on my team. Take note Farhan.


But back to the game, yes, Kapler and Zaidi made this another bullpen game in which the entire staff but Logan Webb had an appearance so their parents could clap. Just kidding, but there were seven Giant pitchers used in the game. Marte got the win and there in a nutshell is why the Giants fans are leaving in droves and diehard old-school fans are cringing every time a reliever starts and the Giants fail to audition young arms for starters. The Kapler-Zaidi brand of baseball is not for me and I will tell you later in the week why this regime will never win a World Series in San Francisco with this philosophy.

Just read Gabe Kapler’s interview with Andrew Baggarly in The Athletic and you will see why.

Counting the Days till Spring Training 2023

The Giants open their 2023 spring training schedule Feb. 25 against the Chicago Cubs in Mesa, Arizona.