Greek Giant

Casey Schmitt’s Historic Debut

There is joy in Mudville!

.667! Yes, that gaudy number, .667, is Casey Schmitt’s average after three games in The Show. Let’s pump the brakes on the Hall of Fame talk, Giants fans. Let’s give the expectations a rest and let this talented young man play out his career. At this rate Schmitt will need his own poem, a sequel to that baseball classic, Casey At the Bat.

Right now, however, his start is historic, as in Joe Dimaggio historic.

Casey Schmitt may just save Farhan Zaidi’s job.

In last night’s 6-2 Giants win he went 4-4 including a home run that was estimated to travel 443 feet. Say what you will about tempering expectations, that’s some mean power! Schmitt would drive in three runs batting sixth in the order. There is another story about this game before I get to Alex Cobb’s gem and his Cy Young Campaign. The bottom of the order made the noise offensively last night. Joey Bart, LaMonte Wade Jr., and Bryce Johnson each drove in a run and batted 7th, 8th, and 7th respectively. The bottom of the order has often been a dead zone in the Giants line up this season so this is an achievement.

One more thing: Gabe Kapler used the same nine batters the entire game. That’s not something Mr. Platton/Matchups often lets happen. It’s noteworthy and hopefully a sign of some stability in the Giants line up. It may also be a factor of Austin Slater’s hamstring injury but I prefer to take the positive angle that Kapler wants to create some line up chemistry and let batters settle into their roles. Another interesting note about last night’s line up is that the top three hitters, Thairo Estrada, Wilmer Fores and Mitch Haniger went a combined 0-13, and the Giants still won!

Praise the lord for Casey Schmitt and Alex Cobb!

The Giant Runs

Casey Schmitt got the scoring started for the Giants by hitting a booming, towering two-run home run in the top of the second inning off DBacks starter Tommy Henry.

That bomb was impressive not only for its distance but also for how it was hit. It was a 77 MPH curve ball, inside and waist-high that Schmitt waited, and waited, and waited on before unleashing the full force of Caseydom power. That homer scored Michael Conforto who had walked after one out. Those two runs would prove to be the total scoring in the game until the top of the ninth inning when the Giants exploded for four, much-needed insurance runs off the Arizona Bullpen. Diamondback starter Henry was matching Cobb’s zeroes after that second inning.

In the top of the ninth inning the Giants got those crucial difference-making runs off Ruiz, the Arizona reliever. The inning began with a J. D. Davis single and another Conforto walk before Schmitt doubled in Davis to put runners on second and third with nobody out. Joey Bart singled in Conforto and Schmitt scored on a throwing error by Marte. Just like that it’s 6-zip Giants!

Alex Cobb Continues His Dominance

Last night Alex Cobb went 7 1/3 innings allowing only seven hits and two walks while striking out only three hitters. By today’s standards, three strike outs in 7 plus innings is quite a low number. That’s a factor of a solid Diamondbacks team and Alex Cobb who is generally not considered a strikeout pitcher. The key to his performance on this night: ZERO runs allowed and only one extra base hit given up, a double by Yuli Gurriel Jr. Cobb once again mixed fastballs up and down in the zone, a key part of his success this year along with that extra little zip that gives him more velocity than last season. Maybe he ate more Wheaties this past winter? Whatever the case, Cobb appears to be a more confident pitcher and as a result he is more dominant. He now leads the National League in ERA with a mark of 1.70 that is positively excellent! Where would the Giants be without Alex Cobb this season?

With the win the Giants are now 17-20 and continue their baby steps towards .500 and contention. Once again a dominant start by the pitching staff was the key to this win. As the starting pitching goes so go the Giants in 2023. This team does not appear to have the firepower of the 2021 team but it is getting superb production from Webb, Cobb and Desclafani.

Doval Slams the Door

We need to talk again about Camilo Doval. After taking a 6-0 lead going into the bottom of the ninth Giant. Manager Gabe Kapler summoned Cole Waites to close out the game. He could not get the job done, allowing two runs and letting Arizona get a whiff of tying up the contest. He allowed a lead off single and then a walk before inducing a ground out by Yuri Gurriel Jr. One out, two on, Giants up 6-0. But unfortunately, Fletcher singled in two runs before Doval was called up on to get the final two outs via strike outs of Moreno and Thomas. I think, and Gabe Kapler knows, Doval needs a day or two off, which means, because he pitched last night, he may not be available tonight. You see the ripple effect here, Giant relievers, when you fail to do your jobs!?

Tonight’s Game

Game two of the series takes place in Phoenix versus the Diamond Backs at 6:40 PM. John Brebbia is slated to face Ryne Nelson.