Johnny Black

Ok, so it was a veeeerrrrryyy disappointing weekend in Denver. It’s ironic really. After winning 15 of their previous 16 games against the Colorado Rockies the Giants managed one win over the four-game series this weekend. And even that win, yesterday, was nearly a loss! It was a weekend that demonstrated all the Giant weaknesses against one of the worst teams in Major League Baseball no less. The Giants could not hit a pitcher who came into a game with an ERA over 6.5. They played terrible defense and gave away outs and runs. They pitched poorly (except for Logan Webb) and they rightly got their asses kicked most of the series. It’s what happens when you suck at everything, or nearly everything.

The result is after the one win yesterday, an 11-10 Coors Field special, the Giants are now two games behind the Cubs and Marlins for the final wild card spot in the National League. The Cubs and Marlins are tied and the Reds are behind them by only half a game so the odds of the Giants leap-frogging three teams with only 12 games left are pretty darn long. But it’s not to say it cannot be done.

But let’s face it, Giants fans. This is not a good team we are rooting for. We can use all the stats we want and we can say well, “Maybe Farhan needs more time” and all that but the bottom line for me is that after 150 games the Giants are nobody’s idea of an impressive ball club. They have nobody with impressive offensive numbers. Logan Webb has had a fine season and on a better team he would be getting Cy Young votes. Camilo Doval appears to have hit a wall.

Players like Michael Conforto, J. D. Davis, and Joc Pederson have regressed to their means, a very mean mean at that. A mean of mediocrity which is why they were dispensed with by the New York Mets and the Dodgers (Pederson).

Yesterday’s Game

The Giants won! Yes, indeed. They won 11-10 after losing leads of 8-0 and 10-5. Ouch. There was a rough ninth where the Rockies scored four runs. Sean Manaea earned the win with his 5 1/3 innings of work allowing three runs but only two earned against eight hits. It was the bullpen that nearly shat the bed. There were errors made and runs given away. But hey, we have analytics so it ain’t all that bad! Is it? Mitch Haniger had three runs batted in and Brandon Crawford hit a three-run home run. His first homer in quite a while. It’s good that he’s playing. Let the veteran and greatest shortstop in Giants history have his final thrills before retiring.

Saturday’s Games

Don’t ask. The giants got swept in a doubleheader because Thursday night’s game was washed up, like the Giants playoff chances… Bata bing!

The scores were 5-2 and 9-5. They lead the 9-5 loss 3-0 at one point but that’s life. The Giants played poorly when it mattered most against a really bad Rockies team. There you have it.

Thinking About Kyle Harrison & Other Rookies

Amidst all this Giant sadness I have been thinking a lot about Kyle Harrison since he got sent down to Sacramento after another poor start. It’s fair to say Harrison’s brief stint in the Bigs was a big disappointment. He was not the Giant savior we were all hoping for. Not by a long shot. His fastball was getting pedestrian and his offspeed stuff was getting hammered. It’s not to say the he does not have potential. It’s just that his debut work was a big disappointment when, again, the Giants really need him to provide a boost to the rotation. Maybe he will turn out to be another Madison Bumgarner next year? We shall see. In 2023 many of those highly-touted rookies (Marco Luciano, Kyle Harrison, Heliot Ramos and Casey Schmitt) were a big bust. Only Patrick Bailey has contributed on a consistent basis and figures to be a properly good catcher for years to come. Luis Matos has looked good in spots and fairly mortal in others. I would keep my eye on him. He may end blossoming as a centerfielder. But where are the big bats? Where is that power hitter we’ve all been craving for?

The Black Monday Weekend Wrap©

I think I blew my load on this post in the first few paragraphs. Of course, since the Giants are not yet mathematically eliminated we can say they are still alive, down but not out, as they say. In fact, have you noticed the change in moods from my first paragraph to this one? it’s a roller coaster of emotions for me as I recount the very disappointing weekend.

In every Managerial and GM regime there comes a point when you can no longer make excuses or justify poor results. The Zaidi/Kapler regime has reached that point this weekend in Colorado. The Giant failures are all kind of predictable in a way: Un-athletic team, no real starting pitching staff after number 1 and 2, too many players playing too many positions badly, streaky hitters, journeymen veterans who catch fire once a blue moon but cannot be relied upon for a full season.

This is a Giants team put together on the fly almost with no real foresight or ground philosophy. Apart from focusing on versatility and using players in all matchups and positions, it’s hard to say what Zaidi is aiming for after five years.

-JB out!

Scale that conversation Gabe!