Friday, June 16, 2017

The Span Man isn't Alone in Killing the Giants!!!

On Friday, June 16, 2017, a pop fly into shallow center field looked harmless to the Giants' broadcasters as shortstop Brandon Crawford went out to see if he could get to the falling orb. It was thought, by Giants' broadcasters, that perhaps this was the reason why center fielder Denard Span just stopped. Did Brandon call him off? That will be discovered when the question is asked. But the broadcasters, both Jon Miller and Dave Fleming agreed it was Span's ball all the way. After all, he IS the center fielder. The captain of the outfield? Not on this Giant's team. 

Man, oh man, this guy is proving every day what a horrible sign he was by the Giants' management. Yesterday, at the Golden State Warriors's rally after their parade for winning their second NBA championship, it was said by GM Bob Myer that Draymond Green just wins. Denard Span just finds ways NOT TO WIN.

When you play the hard-hitting Rockies at Coors Field you do not give any team more than the allotted three outs per inning. Span either didn't see the memo or chose not to read the numerous papers attached to the bulletin board. But he is not the only player who did not read the memo. Hunter Pence is shagging some flies that are acting like some sort of repellent to the leather of his glove. Oh, those 2017 San Francisco Giants.

(The Span Man is killing the Giants. His hesitation from third base, on a wild pitch, in the June 15th game contributed to their 10-9 loss to the Rockies.)

Kevin J. Marquez

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Unbelievably Catchy

It is unbelievable what is happening to the 2017 San Francisco Giants. Indescribable things that are easier to explain if you saw it happen rather having to listen to it on the airwaves. Because these days, those guys calling the game are all but waving the white flag.

In Wednesday's game vs. the Royals on June 14th there were a couple of "duck snorts" just out of the reach of a Giant's fielder and then a base hit. In a game of inches you need to be within the grasp of the ball or else those inches turn into feet running around the base paths.

Then the 15 games under .500 (26-41) Giants head on to Colorado. To face a team whose record is 42-26. Bottom of the first went: Leadoff hitter hit a roller he beat out and Buster's throw hit him sending him to second base. Next batter hit was was described as a seeing-eye hit. Then Nolan Arenado hit what was described as a looping liner where nobody was. And just like that it was 2-0. Nobody hit the ball hard.

Top of the 2nd the Giants have the bases loaded and Story robs Span. Time to turn off the radio. Just too tough to listen to. Maybe tune in later. But the length of the game, where the game is being played (Colorado) and how it becomes endemic because you get a domino effect reaction that becomes Murphy's law. To use a baseball term, it's "catchy."

Fast forward to the 8th inning. Giants get a 3-run jack from Brandon Crawford, after a two-run shot by Buster Posey and a solo by Todd Hundley. They are now trailing by one run, 9-8.

In the 9th the Giants give Greg Holland his first blown save. But rather than take the lead going into the bottom half of the ninth they remain tied. How is this so? Because Denard- has a noticeable-Span between the ears. He hesitated on a passed ball in the 9th. This was a play where the runner just busts butt from third and just lets the chips fall where they may. Unlike Span's approach which was musical chairs all of the way. 

Kevin J. Marquez

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

(Denard) Span Between His Ears is Noticeably Vacant

One must think that Denard Span is a good ballplayer because he made it into the Major Leagues. And there is some merit to that belief because many players aren't good enough for one reason or another to make a career in major league baseball. Denard Span has had a career in major league baseball.

But it could be SO much better.

Long ago, when baseball cards cost .25 cents a pack, I was told by my father that baseball was a thinking man's game. You always had to be going over in your mind what you could do to better place yourself in scoring position or maneuver yourself to make a defensive play that will help prevent the opponent from being in position to score. THERE IS ALWAYS SOMETHING YOU COULD BE DOING!!

Backing up fielder on throws, taking the extra base when the fielder doesn't field the ball cleanly or just challenging the arm of an outfielder by taking the extra base. These aforementioned chances to help out his team don't often register for Denard Span. He's one of those guys coaches would be screaming, "Why don't you get a ticket and watch the game from the stands?"

Getting picked off base, once he reaches the base safely, or getting caught in a rundown because he misread the flight or direction of the ball is something he does with enough regularity you could hear the audible exhale from a Giant fan who recognized the guilty party. Denard Span's head is just not in the game. The span between his ears is noticeably vacant. 

And as far as his defense the only thing he gives you is the ability to catch up to some well-hit balls. But because he doesn't take the best angle on balls you would not be incorrect thinking he was fortunate when he does actually catch the fly ball. I am really surprised that every team doesn't challenge his arm whenever the ball is hit to him. His arm is that weak. 

Kevin J. Marquez

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Okert Not Major League Worthy

What is it about this guy, Steven Okert, that provokes Bruce Bochy to call his number? I, from my position of listening to the radio, just don't see it!! His numbers are inflated when they should be ERA- 3.00 or lower. (He's 5.00+ and after today probably at 6.00+.) How often has this guy gotten his man out? Not often enough!!

(Games-18,IP-12.2, H-11, R-8, BB-5, K-7...before tonight May 24, 2017.)

With the Giants trailing 4-2, Bochy brings this bum into the game to keep the score at 4-2 and the leadoff batter promptly belts a triple. Next batter hits a deep fly ball to easily make the score Cubs-5 Giants-2. Didn't do his job, again.

Bottom of the 9th inning, Mac Williamson hits a 2-run homer over the right field fence. Score: Cubs-5 Giants-4. Unfortunately, Giants couldn't score another run. They did enough to extend the game into the bottom of the ninth tied, but with their bullpen...

This is getting old. From last year, after the All-Star break up until now, Bochy has yet to find guys in the bullpen he can trust. Guys like Okert, Cory Guerrin, and George Kontos are making Bochy look bad when he usually looks like he knows what he is doing.

When your record is 20-28 time is running out. It truly is a lost season if they don't find help in the bullpen.

Kevin J. Marquez

Friday, May 19, 2017

Bullpen Cannot Keep Surrendering Leads

Every San Francisco Giant fan knows the perils of this 2017 season. Beginning the season at 12-wins and 24-losses and then showing signs of hope by winning 5 in-a-row only to lose to Clayton Kershaw to make their record 17-25.

But things were looking good. The bats began to come alive and the pitching was stopping their opponent from big innings which is the characteristic necessary to keeping a team in the game. And this is why they were winning.

Then after an off day they fly to St. Louis and after coming from behind 2-0 they take the lead only to have a rain delay. Once play resumes the long delay was cause for the starter (Matt Moore) to be replaced by Steven Okert. 

First batter up is walked.  Next batter hits a bloop. Would you like to guess what happened next?  Dexter Fowler, a player who sought some batting tips from Barry Bonds, blasted one over the wall for a 3-run homer.

You cannot come back from being eight (8) games below .500 when the bullpen cannot get outs. An inability to throw strikes and then when the pitcher does throw a strike it is in a location that gets too much of the plate. Which then makes the pitch a meatball and that is something that makes most hitters salivate. Comfort and confidence at the plate spells disaster for the pitcher almost every time.

This year the bullpen has a couple of characters who have yet to find their niche coming into a game. Two of them would be Steven Okert and George Kontos. Both of these guys seemed to contribute to the demise of the Giants on May 19th in St. Louis.

But baseball is a beautiful game. There were still six (6) outs the Cardinals needed to get. And they would get those six outs but only after the Giants roared back with three runs. 

Bryan Morris pitched a perfect 8th inning and Mark Melancholy, uh, Melancon came on to close the game out in the 9th inning. Leadoff hitter raked a single. Of course, did anyone expect anything else? Next batter flew out. Then up came the Cardinals' star of the game Dexter Fowler. But he hit one back to Melancon hard enough for the Giants to turn a 1-6-3, game ending double-play.

Bryan Morris, the winner of the 17-inning marathon, got the win.

Kevin J. Marquez

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Two years to the Day- Oh Baby!!

Exactly two years to the day (May 10) the Giants comeback win over the Mets, 6-5, in New York, was the first time they have won a game when trailing after the 8th inning. 

The fact that it came at a time when nobody knew what to expect is serendipitous. But I find it interesting that a team struggling like the orange and black has been (in 2017) does something in which to build upon.  God is good, but never dance in a small boat. 

Christian Arroyo hits a bases-clearing double. Buster goes yard for the third game in-a-row. Eduardo Nunez contributes with a line drive snaring snag at third base and singles to lead off the 9th inning.

Their outfield is reprehensible. Guys getting to balls and then not putting them away (in their gloves) is all too common. And unacceptable. I mean, come on!  I grew up watching Willie Mays. And a Giant outfield that evolved into Garry Maddox, who was described by Ralph Kiner, Mets announcer, as, "Two-thirds of the Earth is covered by water. The other third is covered by Garry Maddox." (Maddox's best days were as a Philadelphia Phillie.)

There will be more roster moves. I once heard that talk is cheap because supply exceeds demand. So I'll leave it at that, for now.

Kevin J. Marquez

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

So far the 2017 San Francisco Giant season has been Crap!

Brandon Belt, the often maligned ballplayer by his hometown Giant fans, (many of whom feel he is grossly overpaid for his production numbers) truly has fallen into a steady role of: all or nothing.

When he is hot he blasts the ball to all fields and off the walls of home and away ballparks. But when he is cold, a frosty chill effects his ability to hit the ball because he does a whole lot of swinging and missing. 

Listening to the Giants on the radio, when Belt is in one of his frost-bitten slumps you can hear the lilt of 'hear we go again' in the announcer's voice. Regardless of whose turn it is to call the play-by-play.

Are the Giants obligated to stick with Belt? Or is he often a name thrown into trade talks? Because in order to get something you have to give something up but you don't want to give more than you get. It's a fine line in the art of wheeling and dealing. 

Aside from the Adam Duvall trade, the Giants usually get their fair share in trades. But that was a big blunder because Duvall's ability to play left field may have eliminated the early 2017 circus in left field for the Giants. And that alone could have prevented the horrendous beginning to the 2017 season. 

I am inclined to add another player's name to the list of those to be offered in trade talks. Eduardo Nunez. His defensive play is questionable at best. Sure, a ball hit right at him he generally catches, but those he has to go to his left or right get by him at an alarming rate. He doesn't charge the ball or anticipate the bounce of the ball and is often flat-footed when a ball changes direction on its last hop. On fly balls, he would rather let them fall in front of him than hustle in and try to catch it before it lands safely. Jon Miller described him as being timid. The kind of play that has Giants' fans beside themselves. Wringing their hands, disgusted at having to tolerate such a lack of effort.  

So far the 2017 season has been crap. A chance for me to recall, in the book Instant Replay, a time when Vince Lombardi was in newly drafted center, Bob Hyland's face for bad technique. 'You can't go right and you can't go left. You can't pull straight ahead. You have nowhere to go. The only thing you can do in that stance is take a crap.' And that's the Giants as of May 9, 2017.

Kevin J. Marquez