Sorry for the delay in getting a post up guys. Every now and then it just seems like too much of a pain. I hope you suffered in the absence of my wisdom. That would make me feel pretty cool. Now, on to important things: The State of Stuff.
There is so much stuff to talk about, and so much has changed since my last post, that I feel like we're dealing with another season or something. I'm going to segment this up, so here we go:
Finally, we can say that we have a legitimate leadoff man in a Giants uni. It has been a long time in coming, and I pray that Andy doesn't flame out or begin struggling any time soon. In many ways, Torres has been a gift from the baseball gods, and he's doing his damndest to take full advantage of his first exclusive starting gig in his long meandering career.
There is so much to like about him as a player, especially his speed. As they say, speed is something you can't teach. In addition to utilizing his blazing talents, the man is flat out hitting, and running the bases like a champ. I've even picked him up in a couple fantasy leagues, and he's currently starting over Carlos Lee in one of them. It's truly an amazing development.
In the last month, Torres is hitting .302 with an astoundingly high .922 OPS-- much of which is augmented by a great on base percentage. The man is simply a catalyst, and has been involved the "offensive resurgence" that we've seen over the past two weeks. The second man involved in the resurgence is...
Wow, a legitimate leadoff man AND a textbook #2 hitter? In a row? And Bochy figured this out on his own?
THAT'S A LOW PRICE! I KNOW!
Like Torres, Sanchez does everything you can ask of a second place hitter. He has excellent bat control, he goes the other way in a excellent manner, and he's smart in situational situations. Situational situations. You heard me.
Plus, he's on a 9 game hitting streak, where he's hitting .500 (16 for 32). You know what Krook would say...
"Stay hot Freddy Sanchez."
Huff & Uribe: The Dike Pluggers
Look, I know they're not exactly A-Rod/Teixeira or Braun/Fielder but...
...All of the sudden, I feel wave of something that almost feels like some strange combination of relief and confidence. I'm not used to this, so I don't know if I'm even describing it properly. I never was one for sharing feelings.
I can't say enough about Uribe and Huff. They are the definition of "Gamers"-- not Aaron Rowand or Bengie Molina. Gamers are the ones who play hurt, listen to coaches, and don't complain about playing multiple positions-- all while actually hitting the goddamn ball. Hitting the ball is something that supposed "gamers" Rowand and Molina are currently incapable of, and basically have been for awhile.
Huff & Uribe or "Hurrribe!" have basically kept this team afloat, and seem to be thriving as dike pluggers. Hey man, get your head out of the gutter. Dike plugging is a serious issue in Holland!
Buster & Burrell: Killer B's?
Buster Posey was called up too late. It is a fact. I understand the "Super 2" issue. I understand the idea that he needs reps behind the plate and at 1B in Fresno--- believe, me, I get all of that. However, it just shows that the front office really just doesn't know what it's doing half the time. What I've been saying, what you've been saying, what this guy, and that guy, and this other guy have been saying is:
CALL UP POSEY NOW. WE CANNOT HIT. HE CAN. WTF ARE YOU WAITING FOR?
I can't complain as much now that he's up, but it was obviously three weeks (or more) too late. As we've seen in his 30 or so AB's, is that not only can he play a decent 1B and learn on the fly, but that yes, he really can hit.
I doubt he will ever be a 30 HR hitter, and the power will come at some point, but he's just a flat out smart hitter. He takes pitches, he has a good eye, and he doesn't swing at garbage. He's the antithesis of the type of player who has embodied Giants baseball for the past two seasons.
As for Pat Burrell, I absolutely must praise the move. This is a guy who just two years ago hit 33 dongs in a Philadelphia uniform. I know that he's not that guy anymore, but hey, this worked with Aubrey Huff didn't it? Remember the season he had two years ago? Then he sucked? Now he's good again? Remember?
If nothing else, Pat the Bat is a solid right-handed bat off the bench that is a little scarier than Eli Whiteside or Matt Downs.
Honestly, based on the kind of shape he's in, and the handful of AB's he's had in the orange & black, I say give the guy an every day shot. Seriously. Rowand is simply horrendous in every way, and I will sacrifice a little D in order to have a functioning Pat Burrell in our lineup hitting 6th or 7th and playing LF.
I know many of you were down on the signing, citing his poor defense and steep offensive decline. The defense aside, some hitters just have an incredibly difficult time adjusting to another league (See: Holliday, Matt; 2009).
Burrell is not meant to be a life-saver or the "big bat" that we need, but he's a good player, he's cheap, and if he sucks, we're not hamstrung by the loss of top prospects or an extreme salary. Trust me, he will help us.
Let me preface this rant by saying that I love Pablo and I want nothing more for him than to succeed and be a perennial all-star. With that said, allow me to rip him mercilessly.
Pablo Sandoval is not smart. He has the mind of an 8 year-old child in a large man's body. He doesn't listen to coaches, he doesn't use his brain, and he hacks at slop nightly. If I were Larry Krueger, I'd have been fired for these comments.
In addition, Pablo has zero power, and is not a third place hitter. He is incapable of using his body to drive the ball, and hits off his front foot because he needs ritalin, and no one has taken the time to give him a psychological exam.
I'm serious. He has ADHD, and he needs medication. I'm not laughing. Anyone who is incapable of waiting .005 seconds more for a pitch to reach the plate has some sort of issue.
Now-- judging by his 2 hit day against the Pirates Sunday (a day after being demoted to the 8th slot by our resident genius Bruce Bochy), it's possible that he may begin to understand this whole "pitch-taking" and "pitch-waiting" thing-- much like an infant realizes that if they cry, their mother comes to hold them.
If he calms down at the plate at some point, it's possible that he could hit 25 HR a season. Until then, I'd much rather that his singles and doubles power be utilized in the 5th spot in the order, a spot where he has the potential to knock in a run or two. His penchant for grounding into double plays has killed 14 potential rallies already this season, and that enough is reason to move him the eff down in the order.
On that note, time for the...
Notice who's missing? (Other than the injured DeRosa)
Yeah, our resident "gamers" Rowand, Molina, and Renteria.
They simply don't belong in the starting lineup any more and this type of thing is exactly what drives us Giants fans absolutely crazy about Bochy. The past three weeks has really lead me to believe that his brain, much like Felipe Alou's did, has turned into Cream of Wheat.
Bochy's bizarre use of Buster Posey and Bengie Molina in the lineups, as well as the "Sandoval hitting 8th" thing leads me to believe that this man is no longer fit to lead. Take the pinch running incident that took place Sunday in Pittsburgh. You know the one. The one where Bochy pinch-runs for Posey, one of the guys who can hit, in the 7th inning of a tie game.
Memo to Bruce: Posey is not slow. Just because you and Bengie and Whiteside are slow, doesn't make Buster slow too. Leave him in the game. Aggghhhh! Exasperating.
And how about Bengie Molina hitting 4th and Posey hitting 7th? Huh? Are you high?
I'm sorry. I'm officially on the "Fire Bruce Bochy" bandwagon. He has to go. This is ridiculous. He's acting like Tom Cable taking orders from the ghost of Al Davis. Nothing makes sense.
This next thing makes even less sense...
The DeRosa DeLemma is officially pissing me off.
What we need to do right now is forget about the wasted $6MM we paid this dude this year. I like DeRosa, and he's a very good complementary player when healthy.
Unfortunately, he was never healthy, and the Giants made a mistake. I won't say they made a mistake with Freddy Sanchez, because he's currently worth his weight in a metal worth less than gold, but more than silver. Maybe copper? Anyway...
DeRosa needs to stop trying to be a "gamer" and just get the goddamn tendon sheath repaired, and he needs to do it two weeks ago.
This is an injury, that as he knows, takes 3 months to recover from, and 5 months to be normal again. Every day that management has wasted by trying to save face by putting him in Fresno, is a day that he's unavailable for the stretch run.
This man should have been under the knife the day he was put on the DL and not a day later. With that timetable, he could've returned, potentially healthy by mid-September. Now? Maybe 2011.
Again, it's just incredibly frustrating that we, the fans, know better than management with lineups, DeRosa, Posey, Wellemeyer, etc.
Isn't that crazy?
Lincecum has a combination of issues going on. Firstly, he absolutely HAS a blister problem. Someone close to the situation told someone else, who told me. That's good enough for a fan blogger like me.
The reason that they've all downplayed it is because Timmy also has mechanical problems, mainly out of his windup. Something is amiss, and since his father is the only one who can fix it, we need to get Chris Lincecum to SF immediately, an idea that this dude had last week.
Lincey is walking too many dudes, his control has been off, and he's been average at best. Unfortunately teams have begun to adjust, and have been taking a ton of pitches, rather than be overly aggressive-- the previous approach to taking on the Timster.
My question is, why exactly, if Timmy has a blister problem, didn't he get one of his starts skipped? Food for thought.
The Wellemeyer Experiment is over
I won't get into any of the stats. We all know they're bad. Wellemeyer cannot be relied upon to be a 5th starter. He's okay at home, but basically throws like Chet Steadman in the last Rookie of the Year scene without the theatrical shoulder grabbing by Gary Busey.
The question is not whether Wellemeyer needs to leave the rotation, but whether we cut ties with him completely, put him in the bullpen, or send him down to Fresno. The secondary question is, who do we call up in his place?
Knowing the team we're dealing with, it's safe to say that Madison Bumgarner will not get the call. Although he's been dealing pretty solidly against PCL competition and hasn't allowed more than three earnies in his last 9 starts (and did that only once), I have a feeling the 'tards up in the front office will be too gun-shy to promote the 21 year-old after his ridiculously poor Spring Training.
My opinion? Bring the kid up. Seems like he's gotten it together.
The other options are Eric Hacker and Joe Martinez.
Unfortunately for Hacker, his window may have passed. Until his last three starts, he'd had an ERA under 3 and a K/9 of nearly 9. His last 3 starts have yielded 18 earned runs. Soooo.... yeah, he's out.
J-Mart is sporting a 3.32 ERA and threw a complete game 9 hitter against the Las Vegas Bastards a couple days ago (Dodgers AAA team), and looks like he's ready for the big club again.
Either of these dudes should get the call, if not both, should a bullpen injury occur.
Obviously, there are a million more things I could talk about, but that's about as many words as I can string together without losing all of you. I hope you enjoyed the State of Stuff and remember to follow on Twitter @TheDodgerhater.