Category Archives: Crutch’s Corner

Breaking Down A Possible Three Way NL Wild Card Tie

By Chandler Guadagnin

With the NL Wild Card Game scheduled for October 5, the San Francisco Giants are currently in a three way tie, with the St. Louis Cardinals and New York Mets, for two Wild Card spots.

To resolve this issue, the Mets and Cardinals would play on October 3 to determine the first Wild Card team. The loser of the Mets-Cardinals game would head to San Francisco to play the Giants on October 4 to determine the second Wild Card slot.

The winner of the Mets-Cardinals game would host the winner of the October 4 game in the NL Wild Card game.

A tie for the Wild Card game has never occurred since its inception in 2012.

Giants Look Ahead To Big Cardinals Series

By Chandler Guadagnin

After being swept at home in a three game series at the hands of the San Diego Padres, the Giants turn their attention to their next opponent, the St. Louis Cardinals. The Cardinals, who trail the Giants by a half game in the National League Wild Card race, come to San Francisco for a four game series against the Giants.

San Francisco, who is now 5 and 9 in the month of September and 21 and 36 since the All-Star Break, look to turn around their dismal second-half of the season. The Giants have an abhorrent post-All Star batting average of .250. Some keys to the series are:

  • Wake up the bats
  • Work the count
  • Bullpen must stand strong

In a series that is so key for both teams, here are the probable pitching matchups for the series:

Cueto (15-5) 2.90 ERA vs Wainwright (11-8) 4.45 ERA

Moore (10-11) 4.08 ERA vs Weaver (1-2) 3.48 ERA

Samardzija (11-10) 4.07 ERA vs Leake (9-10) 4.60 ERA

Suarez (3-3) 4.20 ERA vs Garcia (10-12) 4.65 ERA

Following the loss to the Padres, the Giants stand 5 games out of first place in the NL West and are in first place in the NL Wild Card, with a 0.5 game lead over the New York Mets and St. Louis Cardinals for the first spot.

Giants Take Series At Home Behind Big Bats

By Chandler Guadagnin

With a 13-4 shellacking of the Braves, Sunday afternoon, the Giants claimed their first home series win since the All Star Break.

The Giants sent Madison Bumgarner to the mound to face off against the Braves’ Aaron Blair. Despite what the score might indicate, the teams were deadlocked for most of the contest until the seventh inning. San Francisco would go on to post an 8 run seventh inning; in which, they sent 15 men to the plate.  The offensive outburst was fueled by a home run,  three triples, a double, and three walks.

In all the Giants received home runs from Joe Panik (2), Denard Span, and Eduardo Nunez. The Giants would also record triples from Brandon Crawford, Jarrett Parker, Connor Gillaspie, and Brandon Belt. With four home runs and four triples in the same game, San Francisco, becomes the first team to accomplish the feat in 18 years.

Bumgarner, who was pinch hit for in the seventh inning, recorded his 13th win of the year; he is now 13 and 8. Blair was handed the loss, dropping him to 0 and 6 on the season. With the Dodgers 1-0 win over the Cubs on Sunday, the Giants remain 2 games out of first in the NL West.

The Giants (71-59) will next send Johnny Cueto to the bump to square off against Zack Greinke and the Diamondbacks (55-76) at AT&T Park on Tuesday. Game time is scheduled for 7:15PM PT. You can catch all the action on CSN Bay Area or listen live on KNBR 680AM.

Important To Note: with a home run in the 2nd and 4th innings, Joe Panik records the first multi-homer game of his career.

A Look At The Giants 2016 Trade Deadline

By Chandler Guadagnin

Now that the Major League Baseball Trade Deadline has come and gone; it is officially time to take it all in. When the San Francisco Giants take the field tomorrow in Philadelphia, there will be plenty of new faces.

Going into the last few weeks before the deadline, it became abundantly clear that, if the Giants wanted to keep their even year streak going, they would need some help. Help was exactly what they got.  Following the All-Star Break, the Giants have gone a dismal 4 and 11; in the process depleting their lead in the NL West from 6.5 games to, at one point, 1 game. During that stretch, the weaknesses in the Giants bullpen showed through.

As a result, the Giants made it clear that their focus this deadline was to bolster their bullpen. In addition, San Francisco also sured up the infield with the acquisition of AL All-Star utility man, Eduardo Nunez. In all the Giants made deals with three different teams, the Minnesota Twins, Milwaukee Brewers, and Tampa Bay Rays.

Giants Acquire                                                For

SS Eduardo Nunez                                          LHP Adalberto Mejia

LHP Will Smith                                                  C Andrew Susac                                                                                                                     RHP Phil  Bickford

LHP Matt Moore                                              3B Matt Duffy                                                                                                                         SS Lucius Fox                                                                                                                           RHP Michael Santos

Nunez Trade Reaction

Eduardo Nunez comes to the Giants via a trade with the Minnesota Twins. He is listed as a Shortstop however, he can play all over the infield. Nunez will become a free agent at the end of the season. The 29 year old Nunez is having an All-Star season. He is hitting .295 and has an on base percentage of .326. At the time of the trade, Nunez was leading the American League with 26 stolen bases. Since then, he has tacked on two more with the Giants.

Smith Trade Reaction

Will Smith comes to the city by the bay in a swap with the Milwaukee Brewers. Smith has primarily served as a setup man in his career. The Giants shipped away two Top 100 Prospects for Smith. Smith moves to San Francisco with a record 1-3, an ERA of 3.68, and 22 strikeouts in 22 innings pitched. Against Smith this season, left handed hitters have hit at a .316 clip. In contrast, Smith has held right handed hitters to an average of .143.

Moore Trade Reaction

Matt Moore makes the switch from the AL to NL as he previously pitched for the AL East Tampa Bay Rays. This trade was possibly the most shocking of all in that the Giants traded away their everday third baseman in Matt Duffy. Duffy quickly became a fan favorite in San Francisco when he was dubbed “Duffman”. Moore suits up for the Giants with a record of 7-7, an ERA of 4.08, and 109 strikeouts in 130 innings of work. Moore comes from a Tampa Bay team for whom he was a starting pitcher. Moore is under club control potentially for the next three seasons with club options through 2019.

Lucius Fox was ranked by mlb.com as the Giants’ number 3 prospect. Michael Santos is a right handed pitcher and was ranked as the Giants number 24 prospect.

 

No Home Field Advantage; No Problem For Giants

By Chandler Guadagnin

With the National League falling to the American League in the 2016 All Star Game at Petco Park, they have also surrendered home field advantage for the upcoming World Series. While not having home field advantage in the Fall Classic is a daunting task, the San Francisco Giants know what it takes to win on the road, on the biggest of stages.

In their historic five year run, in which they have won three titles, San Francisco has not clinched a single World Series at home. According to www.baseball-reference.com, in 2010, the Giants claimed a 4-1 series victory in Arlington. In 2012, San Francisco would sweep the Detroit Tigers, at Comerica Park, 4-0. In 2014, perhaps their most stressful World Series yet, the orange and black would take care of business at Kauffman Stadium against the Royals in Game 7.

So, if the Giants don’t make it this year; perhaps, whoever does claim the NL crown, can take a page from the Giants playbook.

Postseason Statistics Courtesy Of: www.baseball-reference.com

Bumgarner Flirts With No-No As Giants Nail Down Sweep

By Chandler Guadagnin

Despite the fact that Madison Bumgarner will not pitch in the 2016 All-Star Game, in San Diego, Bumgarner more than  showed why he is a National League All-Star. Bumgarner took the mound Sunday night as the San Francisco Giants looked for the sweep of the Arizona Diamond Backs. Early on it was clear that the Bumgarner-Posey battery was clicking.

In the first inning, Bumgarner retired the side 1-2-3, with two of the three outs coming via the strikeout. The Giants backed Bumgarner almost immediately; as in the bottom of the first, with runners on second and third, Buster Posey slashed an RBI single to right field. The Giants would go on to add three more runs on ten more hits, but one run would prove to be more than enough as Bumgarner’s first inning was the norm rather than the exception. He cut through the Arizona lineup like butter as he retired the side in order until- with two outs in the fifth inning- Giants right fielder, Gregor Blanco, would lose a fly ball in the sun, resulting in an error. That put  an end to the perfect game bid; however, the no-hitter survived. Bumgarner would continue to pitch his heart out until, with one out in the eighth, Jake Lamb, singled on a Bumgarner curveball. Mad Bum would not lose his focus, however, as the next play was a groundball double play to second base. In the end, Bumgarner threw a complete game, one-hit shutout, on a season high 117 pitches.

With the win the Giants improve to  a Major League best, 57 and 33 on the year and complete the sweep of the D-Backs. The Giants will look to win their fifth in a row following the All-Star break. Game time is schedule for Friday, July 15th at 7:40PM PT against the Padres at Petco Park.

Behind The Numbers:

With the victory Bumgarner moves his record to 10 and 4. In 9 innings of work, the Giants ace culminated 14 strikeouts, 9 of which came on the curveball. The 14 K’s matches a career high for Bumgarner. In this his last start before the All-Star break, Madison drops his ERA to a spectacular 1.94. Bumgarner now has 6 shutouts in his career. Four of the six are one hit shutouts.

Giants Set Best 40 Game Mark Since 1954

By Chandler Guadagnin

With a 5-4 victory over the Philadelphia Phillies last night, San Francisco has improved their record to 48 and 27, extending their winning streak to 4 games, have matched the Chicago Cubs for the best record in the National League, and, perhaps most importantly, increased their division lead over the Dodgers to 7 games. Unbeknownst to many, is that with the win, the Giants have secured a 31 and 9 record in their last 40 games; their best 40 game mark since the 1954 New York Giants went 33-7.

The Giants set the mark with a comeback win. With the bases loaded, one out, and an 0-1 count, Brandon Belt crushed the next pitch from Phillies hurler, Elvis Aurajo, to the right-center field gap scoring 3. That gave the Giants a 2-run lead in the seventh inning. However, it would be the next hitter, Brandon Crawford’s single, scoring Belt, that would give the Giants what proved to be the game winning run. The Phillies would score twice in the eighth inning to cut the Giants lead to one. Despite the slim lead, Santiago Casillia nailed down the save with the help of a game-ending video review.

With the win, Giants starter Jake Peavy improves his record to 4 and 6. Elvis Aurajo, who surrendered the 3-RBI double to Belt, was handed the loss, dropping his record to 1-1; while, Santiago Casilla secured his 17th save of the year. The Giants will send Madison Bumgarner to the hill today to face off against the Phillies’ Jeremy Hellickson. Game time is scheduled for 7:05PM PT and can be seen on Comcast Sportsnet Bay Area, as well as listened to on the Giants radio network, KNBR 680.

Giants Look to Continue Their Dominance

By Chandler Guadagnin

The San Francisco Giants- 13 and 1 in their last 14 games- head to Colorado to take on the Rockies tonight at 5:40 PM PT. San Francisco will hand the ball to Matt Cain, as they look for a win against Rockies’ starter, Tyler Chatwood. In nine games, Cain has posted a record of 1-5, with an ERA of 5.37.

The unusual part about this stretch is how they have been getting it done: with seeing-eye hits, bleeders, bloopers, and just plain luck. As the old baseball adage goes, “When you’re hot, you’re hot”.  In this superior 14 game stretch, San Francisco has averaged 3.5 runs a game and have outscored their opponents, 49 to 30.

During this month of May, in 24 games, the Giants, as a team, have compiled a .243 batting average, a slugging percentage of .360, and a .321 on-base percentage, currently putting them at 13th best offense  in Major League Baseball. These aren’t numbers typical of a team this hot, but since when does baseball follow the rules of logic.

It remains to be seen if the Giants can keep rolling. You can catch all of the action on NBC Bay Area or listen on KNBR 680.