Greek Giant

Let the kids play! Some of us here at TWG have been clamoring for the youngsters to play and for the Giants to stop the half-measures of signing ageing veterans and stars to one or two-year contracts with optouts. Some of us believe that there is no downside to this approach. As I wrote two days ago: Either the kids play and fail and the team sinks in the standings as the youngsters mature and the Giants get good draft picks for next season or the kids thrive and inject fresh energy into the team that surpasses expectations and enchants a disillusioned and bored fan base. See! No downside! It’s Win-WIn! Last night was WIN! Thanks in no small part to big hits and big plays by Luis Matos and Heliot Ramos, not to mention Logan Webb!, He’s still a kid too!

Logan Webb bounced back from a mini slump to pitch six shutout innings with three hits allowed, three walks and six strikeouts against the Dodgers in the Giants 4-1 win at Willie Mays Field that salvaged a game against the Arch Rival Los Angelenos. The game’s big highlight came courtesy of a spectacular home-run-saving catch in center field by Luis Matos in the top of the fourth inning, one day after having a bit of a spell in Center Field. The catch came after a long run and a leap just over the wall to the right of straightaway center off the bat of Teoscar Hernandez. Logan Webb and the Giants were in disbelief at the grab that saved a run in a game the Giants were leading 2-0 at the time.

Matos bumped hard into the wall (What’s with all these dramatic plays in center lately?!) but was able to stay in the game after a visit by Dave Groeschner and words of encouragement from Yaz. As my Little League coach used to say “Rub some dirt on it!”

The Giants took that 2-0 lead on a Yaz home run in the bottom of the third inning following a Curt Casali single, Yes, Curt Casali is back and it’s a good thing. I will get to him in a moment. The Yaz homer came on an offspeed pitch and was a very high arcing ball just over the wall in right field. It came off Dodger starter Elieser Hernandez on a cold and grey day, not ideal hitting conditions for either team.

Then with two outs in the bottom of the sixth inning Heliot Ramos doubled in left center, his power alley. The hit scored Thairo Estrada who was running on the play and who reached base earlier in the inning with a single. It was a solid example of hitting and I must say, Ramos has come up with some big hits this week in only a few games since his promotion to The Show. I’m loving it!

it was 3-0 Giants till the Dodgers pushed a run in the top of the eighth inning off Tyler Rogers. But the Giants got that run back courtesy of a clutch, two-out single by Luis Matos that drove in LaMonte Wade Jr from second. The Bullpen would hold from there with Doval closing it out in the ninth despite allowing two runners, and the Giants would get a desperately-needed win against their rivals.

One note: the Giants amassed seven hits in the game, a continuing trend of low batting averages this year. Yaz lead the way with two. Only, in last night’s win the hits came when it counted and that was the difference in the game, along with Logan Webb’s very strong start which set the tone for San Francisco.

The Giants have a much-needed day off today before hosting the Rockies on Friday to begin a three-game series.

Giants Sign Curt Casali

Yesterday the Giants signed veteran catcher Curt Casali to a one-year contract on Wednesday amid a growing number of injuries on their roster. Patrick Bailey went back on the seven-day concussion injured list Tuesday after being activated three days earlier, and backup Tom Murphy was transferred to the 60-day IL on Wednesday with a sprained left knee. Who says Farhan Zaidi does not read TWG! He finally realized that the catcher situation was dire without Bailey and Murphy. Bailey’s regression is a real bummer. The Casali signing is a good one and it paid instant dividends last night.