Thursday, August 20, 2009

The PG Beat: Giants on the other side of Lady Luck, Cain unable to get win 13 (again)

I probably should have posted this earlier, but I didn't for two reasons:

1.) I was busy the whole day running errands before I head down to Los Angeles.
2.) I finally was able to get the loss out of my system after almost ten hours after the game was finished.

This definitely was a tough way to lose. The Giants not only lost, but lost by two solo homers from Laynce "Yep, I'm still here even though I was run out of Texas" Nix, and Drew "Boy, do I know when to hit my first home run" Stubbs. I mean, the Reds mustered nine hits and the Giants mustered 11 and still...the Giants found a way to lose.

How do you lose a game 2-1 to a Cincinnati team that really is falling apart by the day? Well...leaving 10 runners on base and going 2-12 with RISP is a start. Also, when your leadoff hitter and second hitter go 0-9 at the dish as well, you're not going to win that many ball games either.

Let's face it. The Giants really got lucky in this series. Any other team that isn't as incompetent as the Reds, and this could have been a series which the Giants got swept. Thankfully, by the grace of God, the Giants won two out of three and head to Colorado for a pretty crucial series at Coors Field.

This game really was amazing because the Giants got some really key performances from some of their players. Sandoval had three hits, Winn had three hits, Schierholtz had two...when your three-four-five hitters produce like that, you think you would be in good shape, right? Yet unfortunately, as has been the case for the Giants all year, guys in the top of the inning didn't get on, and the big Giants hitters were only able to get punchless hits that ended up having no value at all.

Look, I know Eugenio Velez has been playing well, but the kid needs a day off. His day was as atrocious as it could get. 0-5 at the dish. Couldn't come through twice with runners on (including one piss-poor at-bat where he swung at a crappy first pitch inside and popped out in the infield with a runner on third) and he made a grotesque error where he looked more like Manny Ramirez catching a fly ball rather than a decent second baseman. Sure, Velez has speed, but he doesn't get on base, doesn't steal bases (even though on his attempts Giants hitters are idiots and swing at the pitch, even if it is less than two strikes) and he doesn't really produce runs that great in comparison to anybody else on the team. Velez, in all reality, is better suited as an eight hitter rather than a leadoff. The only problem is the Giants have no options at leadoff this point and they're forced to hit Velez there because every other possibility has been a dud (Lewis, Rowand, Winn, Burriss, etc).

All and all, this game was almost practically like last night's game, only it was the Reds getting the breaks rather than the Giants. Hey, I can live with that. It happens,as much as that pains me as a Giants fan to say that. That being said, it sucks for Matt Cain that in the second half the Giants have gone retro-Matt Cain mode and don't even show up in the big spots at the plate. Seriously, Cain must be having that Michael Corleone moment from "Godfather III" right now. I can see Cain in the dugout after the Giants couldn't come through in the top of the ninth and saying to himself "Just when I thought I was out! They pull me back in!" I seriously hope Cain get win no. 13 this year. As frightening as this sounds, I have this bad, lingering feeling that he might not get it. Forget all the Cy Young talk. I just want the kid to win 13 freaking games this year!

So far, the road trip hasn't been too bad. 4-3 so far isn't a terrible number, especially considering how bad the Giants run generation has been this year. All I can hope is that the run production can turn it around in time for tomorrow against a Colorado team that most likely will have no trouble producing runs.

I have been optimistic before...however, I'm not quite so cheery in this series. It either could be a split, or a Colorado bloodbath. I'm praying for the former, but unfortunately, I'm expecting the latter, as down as the sounds.

Postgame box notes:

Winning pitcher: Francisco Cordero (2-3) 1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 1 SO.
Losing pitcher: Bob Howry (1-6) 1 IP, 1 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 1 SO.

Giants standouts: Pablo Sandoval, 3-for-5, 2B (35). Nate Schierholtz, 2-for-5. Randy Winn, 3-for-5. Eli Whiteside, 2B (3).
Reds standouts: Chris Dickerson, 2-for-4. Laynce Nix, 3-for-4, HR (10). Drew Stubbs, HR (1).

Probable starters for Giants next game against Colorado: Sanchez (5-10) vs. Aaron Cook (10-5).
Probable starters for Reds next game against Atlanta: Owings (6-11) vs. Morton (2-6).

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