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Preview: Standing on the shoulders of Giants

Standing on the shoulders of Giants

Updated: 2013-03-10T06:58:08.579-07:00


Focus must switch to the 'pen


With Neil McannExpectations are running high in the Bay Area, at least on one side of the Bridge. Despite repeatedly stating that they would not splash out on a marquee free agent, San Francisco have ended up spending more than only the richest (Boston, New York, New York, Anaheim) and the most desperate (Arizona, Los Angeles, Seattle). While preaching restraint and the long term, they have

The Yankee Dollar


It is the season of change. Winter, casting its icy shroud over the land, has confined a thousand gloves to distant cupboards. Yet beneath the glowing embers of the hot stove, baseball burns. Indeed, while it may be snowing in the Big Apple, the grass beneath appears greener than ever. Depending, of course, on which side of the fence you belong.With the start of spring training less than a month

Family Value


An old man and his father: a triumph of familial relations Apparently Moises Alou is taking less money to play for his father. Yet, assuming he doesn't mean compared to the Yankees, it's not really clear what less is supposed to be.How many dads, after all, give their offspring the best part of $7m per year? Alou’s two-year, $13.5m contract, far from resembling a family discount, bears the mark

Not Much "Left" in the Tank


As we've all heard by now at least sixteen times, the market for pitchers this off-season is pretty thin. Somewhat inevitably then -- faster than you can say "mediocre reliever" -- it is the reasoning behind the Giant's latest blunder: the resigning of Jason Christiansen. Christiansen, 35, will earn an inflated $1.1m in 2005; a step down nevertheless from the $2.75m he scammed in the past three

The Winning Catch?


On Monday, Brian Sabean continued his flurry of free-agent spending as the Giants signed long time St. Louis Cardinal, Mike Matheny, to a 3-year, $10.5m deal. Matheny, 34, is a three-time gold glover -- including both this year and the last. Coupled with the recent addition of Omar Vizquel, the Giants infield must now be considered one of the best in the land. At least defensively.Matheny's

The Aard Stuff


With the Giants coffers otherwise kerbed by overpaid overage veterans, young arms could well spring to the fore in 2005. One of the first in line should be David Aardsma, who made his debut for San Francisco on opening day 2004 in Houston, and picked up the win.In the Arizona Fall League, the former first-round pick led the Grand Canyon Rafters with a 2.93 ERA and struck out 17 in just 15 innings



The bullpen, the bullpen, a bat. The Giants, it seems, are fooling no one except themselves. Desperate to capitalize on the inclusion of Barry Bonds in their ranks, the team needs to make moves to bolster their areas of weakness.Instead, San Francisco have confounded even their sternest advocates, offering a 3-year, $12m contract to quasi-legendary short-stop Omar Vizquel. Just when you thought

Squad Profile: J.T. Snow


With Rob Trevelyan2004 was a watershed in J.T.Snow's Major League career. It was also his career year. Largely expected to make way for rising star Pedro Feliz at first, the 13 year veteran provided both stellar glove and batt to defy an army of critics, as he posted career highs in average (.324) and slugging percentage(.529).But that's not even the half of it. It might come as a something of a

Redsox Celebrate, Nation Mourns


Out of the Park, with Neale FennThe defenses were largely as billed: The Cardinals, one error in four games; the Redsox, eight in two. Yet St. Louis made the biggest blunder of all in game three, when Jeff Suppan inexplicably stopped on a routine play between third and home. He claimed he heard "No! No!" instead of "Go! Go!". A bad time to lose your hearing -- as well as your command.As far as

October Musings


By now, our Cody Ransom vodoo dolls neatly tucked away, most of our thoughts have turned to the retooling medicine of the off-season. I have heard rumblings of trade talk in a number of publications, yet none mention San Francisco. That might come as a surprise to some Giant's fans, who continue to harp for a marquee addition to the lineup, knowing all the while that (a) there's no money for it,

Squad Profile: Dustan Mohr


First in a series of player profiles, with Rob TrevelyanLargely confined to a utility role, Dustan performed well above expectations in 2004. Playing second fiddle to Michael Tucker, Mohr split most of his games between left and right field, posting a .981 fielding average, with 8 outfield assists in just 628 innings of work.Mohr handled the bat well, hitting .274 with an OBP of .394. In

Desperately Seeking Tsyoshi


This campaign, many things were lacking in San Francisco, not least a decent storyline. Despite the clamor surrounding Barry "Not on Sundays" Bonds and the benign race to 755, the Giants finished the year as baseballs’ biggest overachievers outside LA. Showcasing the type of depth than would best characterize an evening in with the Bush daughters, the team's demise was good news not only for

Cubs Fall By the Wayside


Absolutely no one saw this coming. Last Thursday, the Chicago Cubs were game ahead in the NL Wild-card with eight to play. None of those contests would be against teams in a pennant race. Today, they lost 5-4 to Atlanta. In doing so, they dropped their fourth in a row. Now, only mathematics stands between them and elimination.Despite possessing a lauded rotation -- featuring five legimate

To The Wire


vs. The Giants rode a strong outing by Jason Schmidt to oust the Padres -- and their post-season aspirations 7-5 -- at Petco last night. They even leant the National League's best starter a little run support, sending nine men to the plate in the fifth inning.It was a solid display by the Giants, who yet surely look set to finish with the wooden spoon this year -- that is, the team with the best

Giants Turn to Schmidt, Destiny


Everything is in place for the Cubs to win the wild card. Their lead over San Francisco is a full game, after Chicago's 12-5 blowout of the Reds on Monday night. Their final six games are at home against Cincinnati and Atlanta, the latter who will be more concerned with preparing for the playoffs.Yet the Cubs dropped two games to the Walking Dead of Shea Stadium over the weekend. Inexcusable at

The Shape of Things To Come


Pedro Feliz delivered a game-winning grand slam on Saturday vs. LA. The Giants, however, dropped the series and are three games back with seven to play.At this point, San Francisco looks all but certain to play St. Louis should they qaulify for the post-season. Kirk Reuter is 13-5 lifetime against the Cardinals, and the Giants have won the last four series between them, dating back to the 2002

Noah Way!


It's official -- the Giants are coming. No one, it seems, is playing better baseball than the boys from San Francisco. Last night they rode another sterling performance by a starting pitcher, this time Noah Lowry. The rookie is unbeaten in thirteen Major League starts, and upped his record to 6-0 after mowing down the Astros for his second complete game of the season. The Giants have won 18 of

Neifi's Revenge?


After the Giants paid him $700,000 to get out of town, Neifi Perez may yet hold the key to San Francisco's post season. Despite the addition of Nomar Garciaparra, and a league-low OPS of .541 (that's 78 points lower than Barry Bond's OBP) the flashy infielder has done more in 22 at-bats than he did in 319 with San Francisco.Cubs GM Jim Henry must remember Neifi's game winning 2-run shot in June

Rotation Heats Up for the Stretch


The Giants rotation has been formidable of late, losing just three of their past sixteen decisions. Perhaps there is something to said of seasonal play, in which case San Francisco -- 84 and 40 from 2001-4 -- is the best team in September. The starting five, led by Jason Schmidt -- who may not win 20 games because of feeble run support -- has seen a rejuvanted Brett Tomko and Kirk Reuter. But the

Alou Continues to Shuffle the Deck


with Rod MunchSan Francisco leads the National League in runs scored, yet has no hitter with 100 RBIs, and only one with more than 20 home runs. Barry Bonds and his .662 OBP might have something to do with that. The team has lacked the clutch hitting that separates the wheat from the chaff. As a team, the Giants have hit .235 with runners in scoring position. The biggest source of concern however

Swept Away in Philly


With the help of six solid innings, the Giants and their starting pitcher well and truly Tom-KO-d the Phillies on Sunday. With the win, Brett Tomko improved to 6-6 on the year. The Giants have gone 14-8 in his 22 starts. Since June 24th, Tomko is 5-2 with a 3.58 ERA. Two of those wins came within a week against the Dodgers. At almost exactly 6 innings per start, Tomko is on course for his third

The Notepad


Noah Lowry hits the limelight with the NL Player of the Week award.Looking to expand your base-blog horizons? Then look no further than this veritable online encyclopaedia.

Giants Seeing Double


Just when it seemed inconceivable that the Giants could be any more generous, they took their collective charity to a new level on Wednesday night. Losing to Pittsburgh four times in nine innings was bad enough. This time, they prolonged the pain for eleven instead.Neifi Perez, for his part, has a game plan. If all else fails, as indeed he and the team have been, he uses a different strategy. He

Damage is Dunn


SBC Park -- A game that a contending team needs to win. A contest that separates the wheat from the chaff. Cue the Cincinnati Reds and starting pitcher Juan Acevedo, with his tumultuous ERA of 6.74. Yet the Giants fell, 8-7, despite overcoming a 4-0, and then 5-1, deficit. To boot, they failed to harness the momentum of Dustan Mohr's pinch-hit, inside-the-park home run -- the first at SBC.

Giants Accept Defeat, Deal Rodriguez


With Neale FennBy shipping Felix Rodriguez, the Giants have wrapped up their case for 2004. The arrival of perennial bench-warmer Ricky Ledee might have a few misguided fans nodding with approval (under the Pedro Feliz guise of "450 at-bats and he'll drive in 100 runs"), but back in the real world, Brian Sabean has succeeded only in shedding payroll. The $3.15 million Rodriguez was due to earn in