Westwood Blues

Friday, May 30, 2003


Buy This Book

I'm reading Moneyball by Michael Lewis and it has been a very good read so far. Lewis looks into why the Oakland A's have enjoyed success over the last few years despite having a low payroll. I'm still not entirely clear about this whole Oakland concept, but I hear Oakland is a town across the Bay Bridge from The City.

In any event, I've enjoyed Moneyball because it gives a behind the scenes look into the sabermetric philosophies and the inner workings of the A's organization. I particularly enjoyed the chapters on the 2002 amateur draft. The reader really feels like a fly on the wall of the pre-draft meeting and the reader experiences a roller-coaster of emotions during the draft itself as the A's brain trust nervously await word to see if the players they are targeting will still be available when the A's pick.

Moneyball certainly isn't without its faults. To some extent it reads like a fan boy book. I think Lewis is a little too over the top with his praise of Beane. Maybe we shouldn't annoint Beane the model GM and the A's the model franchise until the A's actually win something, like maybe a playoff series, or a pennant.

The whole David vs. Goliath storyline gets a little tiresome too. The jacket of the book proclaims "Big Money (read: the Yankees), like Goliath, is always supposed to win...how can we not root for David?" I don't root for "David," because, oh I don't know, maybe because they swept my team in the World Series. Some things are unforgivable.

Despite its faults, Moneyball is a very thought provoking and well written book. So buy this book! Support our blogging friends and buy Moneyball through The Southpaw or Aaron's Baseball Blog. Click on the Amazon.com link at their sites.

Burn This Book

David Eckstein of the World Champion last place, fluketastic Anaheim Angels is the "author" of a new book called "Have Heart." Here is my one word review - Bleh.

Thank God the Angels are no longer owned by Disney. I could see Disney turning "Have Heart" into a very special, tear jerking Movie of the Week/After School Special with Florence Henderson as David Eckstein's mom, Carrot Top as Rex Hudler, and starring Valerie Bertinelli as David Eckstein.

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Wednesday, May 28, 2003


Help Wanted

Professional baseball team is currently seeking applicants for the position of fourth outfielder. Qualified applicants will be able to successfully go from first to third on a ball hit over the rightfielder's head. Applicants should also be able to distinguish Sonny Jackson v.2.0's "go home" signal (waving left arm in a windmill fashion. You'll see this a LOT) from his "stop sign."

Applicants whose name ryhmes with Henny Wofton are stongly encouraged to apply. Send resume and cover letter to sabes@sfgiants.com.

Green

*Breaking News* - the Neifi Alert status has been downgraded to green - a Neifi start is unlikely. Ray Durham has been activated and Rich Aurilia should be back in the lineup tonight.

All Kidding Aside

That was a huge win for the Giants. Schmdit pitched a masterpiece and The Marquis got a game winning triple to continue his hot streak.

At long last I got to watch a Giants game on TV. The pictures of SF made me long for the days when I called Nor Cal home. If I still lived in SF, I would've been all over last night's game. A weeknight (tickets easier to get), Schmdit vs. Kim, great weather, Giants tied for first place...oh well.

I love LA.

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Monday, May 26, 2003


Welcome Back, Ray

Ray Durham has been activated from the DL so the Neifi Alert status is being lowered to Yellow - a Neifi start is possible. I thought about lowering it all the way to green, but something tells me that Neifarious will get a start at SS since he has an eight game hitting streak and Rich Aurilia is in a slump.

Durham, Barry Bonds, and Jason Christiansen should all return to the Giants lineup at some point during the upcoming homestand. The Giants need to get hot again to fight off the charging Dodgers. The next couple of weeks are as good a time as any for the Giants to get hot - the twelve game homestand is the longest homestand of the season and the Giants only play three games against a team with a winning record (Minnesota).

Coors Field

should be blown up and the Rockies should have to play all of their home games in Death Valley. That is all.

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Sunday, May 25, 2003


Grand Marquis

After Sunday's 2-4 performance, The Marquis St. Everhack now has six consecutive multi-hit games and he's raised his average to .318.

David Justice made a good point during last Wednesday's ESPN telecast. He said he likes Grissom batting in the leadoff spot becasue it forces him to take pitches and not hack at everything. Grissom normally likes to swing at any pitch that isn't over his head. Since I live on the westside of Hell, I can't watch most of the Giants' games, so I don't know if Grissom really is being more patient. I have noticed that he has 3 walks in his last ten games, which is probably a career high for Grissom. Whatever the case may be, Grissom is on fire.

A Miracle

[cue Handel's Messiah] At long last Adelphia is finally offering Extra Innings in my area![/Handel's Messiah] But I still hate Adelphia because they are charging me full price for EI even though it wasn't available in April and most of May.

Now that I can actually see the Giants play, I fully expect my posts to be at least 7% more brilliant than usual.


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Thursday, May 22, 2003


The Hitless Wonders

It's no secret that the Giants have been stockpiling pitching talent in the minor leagues. Jesse Foppert, Kurt Ainsworth, Jerome Williams, Boof Bonser, and Merkin Valdez are just some of the names that will (hopefully) do well for the big club for years to come.

It's also no secret that the Giants minor league system is very thin when it comes to hitting prospects.

Here's a look at some of them:

Jason Ellison OF

Ellison played well enough in Spring Training to win the Harry S. Jordan award for best performance by a newcomer. He has put up good numbers at Fresno going .319/.384/.430 with 11 steals and 14 walks. Ellison came up for a cup of coffee a few weeks ago and didn't do much in very limited playing time. He seems to fit the new go-go-Alow mode of a speedy player who can steal a base and go first to third.

I wouldn't mind seeing him get an extended look with the major league club. He can play all three outfield positions and he can't be worse than Ruben Rivera, can he?

Todd Linden OF

Linden hasn't exactly been hitting the cover off the ball this year. .272/.353/.318. His power numbers are particularly troubling. He does have 41 hits, good for second on the Grizzlies, but he has only 48 total bases and 0 HRs. The good news is that Linden leads the team in walks with 16 and he has been a fairly patient hitter throughout his career. He probably needs at least another year of seasoning in the minors before he's ready for the show.

Tony Torcato OF/1B/DH

Torcato got off to a very slow start but has rebounded over the last couple of weeks and his average has climbed to .250/.267/.297. Torcato has a sweet left handed swing and has always hit for average throughout his minor league career. The knocks on Torcato have been his lack of patience, his lack of power, and his defense. This year Torcato has only two walks and only four extra base hits in 131 ABs.

A couple of weeks ago, when Torcato was hitting about .200, I e-mailed the Giants blogging world's minor league expert, Steve Shelby, to ask what the heck was going on with Torcato.

"I don't know how to explain the horrendous batting average this year. His .290 last year was the lowest of his professional career. I do know that AVG does tend to vary more (influenced by "luck") than OBP and SLG.

I think Torcato basically projects right now as a pinch hitter, 4th or 5th outfielder type. Defensively, he is no better than average."

Trey Lunsford C

Lunsford has had a good season so far with the Grizzlies .294/.344/.387. Should the Giants not resign Santiago, the Giants could get pretty decent value out of a Lunsford/Torrealba duo next year.

Note: By no means is this meant to be comprehensive review of the Giants hitting prospects in the minors. These are just my thoughts on some of the players that I am interested in. So please do not e-mail me saying "You idiot! How could you leave Orson Spligilicutty off your list, he's tearing it up at Hagerstown." If you want a better review of Giants minor leaguers or want a analysis from someone who knows what they are talking about then go here or here.

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Wednesday, May 21, 2003


When in Rome...

I decided the site needed a facelift, so welcome to the new and improved Westwood Blues (now with links, e-mail, and a title that is centered!). Many thanks to the blogging sage Matthew Durham of The Southpaw for technical advice.

Speaking of Needing a Facelift

Benito Santiago is quietly putting together another solid season. At .323/.379/.512 he continues to drink whatever magical potion he's been drinking the last couple of years. Despite Santiago's solid play, I still think it was wise of Brian Sabean not to extend Santiago's contract before the start of the season. Santiago is 38 years old and he plays the most demanding position on the diamond. He can't keep this up for another couple of years, can he?

If it wasn't for the wrinkles, Santiago would look like a player in his late 20s. Four words Benny: Beverly Hills Botox Party. I love LA.

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Monday, May 19, 2003


Bullpen Blues

Ken Rosenthal of TSN notes that four Giants relievers (Tim Worrell, Joe Nathan, Felix Rodriguez, and Scott Eyre) are on a pace to make between 77 and 89 appearances each.

Rosenthal comments that the Giants starters need to work deeper into games. Can the Giants realistically expect Kirk Rueter, Damian Moss, and rookies Kurt Ainsworth and Jesse Foppert to consistently pitch into the late innings of games? Rather than hoping the starting staff will go deeper into games, it looks like the Giants just want to spread out the bullpen work among more pitchers. With the recent addition of Manny Aybar, the Giants now have a seven man bullpen.

The bullpen will be strenghtened in a few weeks with the return of Jason Christiansen. Christiansen's return will give the bullpen a boost because 1) it will allow Scott Eyre to return to a LOOGY role (righties are .327/.394/.469 against him over the last three years while lefties are just .250/.339/.365), and 2) Jason Christiansen can take some of the workload of Joe Nathan and Felix Rodriguez. Christiansen is actually more effective against right handers than left handers. Lefties are .244/.348/.405 against him over the last three years while righties are just .228/.306/.337. This will allow the Christiansen to pitch some of the innings normally reserved for Joe Nathan and Felix Rodriguez.

Rear View Mirror

Don't look now, but after sweeping the Marlins this weekend, the LA trolley SUV Dodgers are just 3.5 games behind the Giants. That gap may narrow even further as the Dodgers have an off day today while the Giants get to face Curt Schilling. Good times, good times.

The Miracle on Wilshire

I may actually get to watch the Giants on a regular basis because my beloved cable company, Adelphia, says Extra Innings will finally be available at the end of this week. However, this is Adelphia and I'm sure they'll find a way to screw things up and not have EI available until August.

I love Adelphia. I love LA.

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Saturday, May 17, 2003


Return to Sender II

As if getting Fodgers tickets in the mail wasn't bad enough, yesterday I got a telemarketing call from the World Champion Third place, .500, fluketastic Anaheim Angels. The sales rep wanted to know if I had an enjoyable visit to Edison Field last month. I told her it would have been more enjoyable if the Yankees had won. She then tried to sell me a partial season ticket plan.

I don't think I'll be going back to the Ed anytime soon since it took me two freaking hours to get from Downtown LA to Anaheim.

I love LA.

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Friday, May 16, 2003


Ughh

There are many things that I miss about SF. Glenn Dickey is not one of them. In his latest column, Glenn criticizes Jason Schmdit and says Schmidt is "symbloic of the Giants problems."

I don't feel like expending too much energy over such a silly column so I'll just make two brief points. 1) If I were to make a list of the problems facing the Giants, Jason Schmidt would be one of the last people I'd be concerned about. 2) His mother just died. I think its understandable if he isn't 100% focused on baseball.

Who's on First

One of my concerns going into the year was the offensive production from the first base position. Even though JT Snow has been in a slide, the combination of Snow and Gallaraga has been surprisingly productive and they've definitely exceeded my expectations.

JT Snow .279/.372/.405 with 1HR 22RBI
Gallaraga .388/.434/.633 with 4HR 14RBI

The NL leader among first baseman in RBI is Todd Helton who has 32.

Return to Sender

I hate my cable company, Adelphia. I could write a separate blog about all the things I hate about Adelphia and each post would be longer than all of Aaron Gleeman's posts combined. Yesterday, Adelphia crossed the line. What did Adelphia send me in the mail yesterday? Dodgers tickets. Mother f-ing Dodgers tickets. What did I do to deserve that?

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Tuesday, May 13, 2003


Beating a Dead Horse

I think I need to upgrade the Neifi Alert status to "super-duper Red level with flashing lights" when Neifi not only starts but bats leadoff. In case you're keeping track (and oh by the way, I am), after an 0-5 performance in last night's game, Neifarious Perez is now hitting a sintilating .247/.272/.312. One sprained ankle makes the Giants go from a team with one of the best leadoff hitters in the NL (Durham is .309/.425/.473) to a team with the worst leadoff hitter in the NL.

Fortunately for the Giants, the Dodgers are scoring as often as AC Green, so the Giants should be able to weather the storm. Get well soon, Ray.

A Gentle Reminder

I'd like to remind Giants fans sitting in the stands at Pac Bell that when a ball is hit in play and heads in your direction DO NOT DO NOT DO NOT TOUCH THE FUCKING BALL!! Thank you.

Attack of the Clones

The Giants new third base coach, Sonny Jackson v.2.0, is doing his best to emulate his predecessor. The new Sonny Jackson model doesn't get quite as many runners thrown out at home, but he makes up for it in style points. I don't catch all the Giants games, but was Cruz, Jr. about the third player this year who has been thrown out at home by about 20 feet?

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Monday, May 12, 2003


Being Nitpicky

I usually do not like to criticize managers when they give their starters a rest. It goes without saying that a manager certainly knows his team better than I do. Having said that, I have two small complaints about Felipe Alou's starting lineup on Sunday.

1) Benito Santiago. I've read many quotes from Jason Schmidt where Schmidt says he loves pitching to Santiago. Schmidt even admitted that Santiago was one of the reasons he took less money to return to the Giants as a free agent. I have been delighted by Yorvit Torrealba's play this year, but if Schmidt and Santiago have great chemistry, then why not start Santiago for all of Schmidt's starts?

2) The Marquis St. Everhack. If there is one thing Grissom does well, it's mash lefties. Over the last three years he is .283/.323/.510 against LHP and this year he is .286/.333/.393 against lefties. Grissom is also .273/.317/.509 with 3 career HRs in his career against Sunday's opponent, Mike Hampton. It would be one thing if Grissom's backup, Ruben Rivera, hit well against lefties, but Rivera not only shops like Winona Ryder, Rivera hits like her too.

I should also note that The Marquis St. Everhack is .220/.228/.374 against RHP this year and .229/.269/.367 against RHP for the last three years. This is yet another reason why the Giants would be well served to acquire a left-handed hitting fourth outfielder come late July.

The Bell Who Got Away

As much as I would've like to have seen the Giants re-sign David Bell, 4 years and $17MM was far too much money to give him. Not getting into a bidding war to resign Bell looks like another good move by the Giants front office. Bell is traditionally a slow starter, but as of today he is .200/.282/.264, including an 0-for-last-week where he failed to get a hit in 17ABs and reached base only once in 18PAs. I'm sure the warm hearted fans of the Phillies won't boo him.

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Sunday, May 11, 2003


Red

** NEIFI ALERT **!!!!! The Neifi alert status has been raised to red - a Neifi start is imminent. Ray Durham was injured in Saturday's ballgame and he will be out "several days." The story on sfgiants.com contains the nine words Giants fans fear the most, "Neifi Perez will take his place in the lineup." I can only offer two words of comfort - "duct tape."

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Friday, May 09, 2003


Thanks Lefty!

Many thanks to The Southpaw for plugging Westwood Blues on his site. Also, a tip of the cap to Waiting For Boof for adding my site to his links.

Green with Neifi

**Fox News Alert** The Neifi Alert status has been downgraded to Green - a Neifi start is unlikely. In yesterday's game Neifarious Perez went 0-3 (surprise!) while his replacement, Cyclops (I kid because I love), got the winning hit.

Leading Off

Henry Schulman of the Chronicle notes that Ray Durham is sixth in the NL in OBP (.444) and is tops among NL leadoff hitters in OPS (.935). Just for fun:

Ray Durham .935 OPS with .324/.444/.490
Jeff Kent .935 OPS with .325/.387/.548

I smell an All-Star campaign for Mr. Durham.

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Thursday, May 08, 2003


Required Reading

I'd like to instruct both of my readers to check out some of the other Giants blogs on the web:

The Southpaw is a Giants blog featuring lots of Giants talk, video game reviews, arm chair GMing and more. The writer has a great, self-deprecating sense of humor and I'm very jealous of the site's nice layout. Go there now!

Waiting For Boof is a Giants blog run by a fellow Primate. Very witty writing and lots of fun to read. Floyd's Benard Theorem is brilliant!

The New Giant Thrill Other than Barry Bonds, The Thrill is my all time favorite player, so anyone who waxes nostalgic about the Humm Baby Giants is awesome in my book. Oh, and "free hacking circus midget" is an absolutely perfect nickname for Marvin Benard.

Only Baseball Matters is just about the best baseball blog out there. OBM offers great analysis of the Giants and its gotten about 77,100 more hits than this site.

The Yannigan You've got to love a blog that gets e-mail from the relatives of Giants' farmhands. Go there now!

SS's SF Giants News Diary offers a daily news summary of all things Giants. I particularly enjoy the prospect updates.

Baseball By the Bay is another blog by a primate and it also offers updates on the Giants farm system. The site also has content about some other baseball team in the Bay Area. I think I speak for all culture snobs from The City when I say, "What's Oakland?"

Note: I've tried to establish permanent links to these pages but I've been unsuccessful. This is because either a) my knowledge of HTML is analagous to Neifarious Perez's knowledge of the strike zone, or b) Blogger isn't working correctly. I think it's some combination of the two. This is ironic since Al Martin and I both have a Ph.D.s in Computer Science from Stanford.*

*Edit: To further clarify this bad joke, I should also add that Al Martin and I both have Ph.Ds in English from Harvard. That's where we learned to spell the word "copius."
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Ever get caught off guard by seeing Neifarious Perez's name in the starting lineup and begin to choke on your garlic fries? To warn Giants fans of potential Neifi appearances, The Westwood Blues Department of Infield Security is proud to announce its new color coded Neifi alert system.

Red Level - A Neifi start is imminent. The Department of Infield Security recommends that Giants fans have copius amounts of duct tape available. During Neifi's at bats, fans can cover their eyes, ears, televisions, and radios with duct tape to prevent self-inflicted injuries arising from Neifi's strikeouts.

Orange Level - A Neifi start is likely. Giants fans at the game are encouraged to bring eyedrops to share with the Giants training staff.

Yellow Level - A Neifi start is possible, but a Neifi pinch hitting appearance is likely. Just fill in the K next to Neifi's name and cover your eyes.

Green Level - A Neifi start is unlikely. Praise Jesus...or in this case, praise Jesus' brother Felipe.

Blue Level - Neifi is unavailable because he is on the DL, has been released, has been sent to AAA, or had his contract voided. Hey, I can dream can't I?


The Neifi Alert status as of 5/8 is Yellow. While not specifically naming Neifi, manager Felipe Alou said that the Giants would "refresh the lineup on Thursday." The Neifi Alert Status will be updated as needed.

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Wednesday, May 07, 2003


Six Mile

[rant]There are some newspaper columnists who drive me absolutely crazy. Bob Padecky of the SR Press-Democrat is one of those columnists. Dr. Padecky, staff psychologist, has performed a deatiled psycho-analysis of Felix Rodriguez and has concluded Rodriguez "may not be mentally tough enough" for the closer's job, and he "doesn't have the closer's temperament." If bouncing back from giving up the biggest 3 run HR in the most devastating loss in the history of the SF franchise by posting a 2.50 ERA, with 6 holds and a save through the first few weeks of the season isn't the sign of a "mentally tough" person, then what is? What more do you want from him? A 0.00 ERA? That's not good enough either. Joe Nathan has not allowed a run this year, but according to Padecky, Nathan is "too green" for the closers job.

Nen's injury leads Padecky to conclude that "the Giants will not get within six miles of the World Series now." It seems a little odd to be making such a bold statement about the team with the best record in the NL, but hey, Joe Nathan and Felix Rodriguez didn't score high enough on the Padeckian mental toughness exam, so I guess the Giants should begin scheduling their October tee times.

By the way, why is the media auditioning potential closers for the Giants and talking about trading for a "Proven Closer?" The Giants incumbent closer is 9 for 10 in save opportunities (if I recall correctly, the one blown save came when Worrell inherited a runner on 2nd), with a 2.00 ERA and 16 SOs in 18IP. If and when Worrell gets shelled, then maybe we should talk about obtaining/auditioning a new closer. So until then, take your psychobabble, your wannabe GM trades, sit on them and shut up. Thank you. [/rant]

Many thanks to SS's SF Giants News Diary for the link. I was going to complain about Skip Bayless' column (Juan Cruz for Pedro Feliz?? Why in the Game 7 DH's name would the Cubs want Pedro Feliz Cumpleanos) as well, but I only have so much time.
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Start Spreadin' the News

For some reason I feel like I'm just about the only person in the world reading my blog, so I've decided to promote the site a bit. Westwood Blues is now sponsoring the Ray Durham page on Baseball Reference. Go there now! Today's Ray Durham fun fact: Durham is a career .290/.389/.710 hitter in the post season. Ooooh...Ahhhh...

Escape From LA
I bet half of the visitors to this site come here by mistake. Despite the name "Westwood Blues," this is not the blog of Steve Lavin. To read Steve Lavin's blog go here.

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Tuesday, May 06, 2003


Schmidt, Rueter, Moss and Then Comes a Loss

Ken Rosenthal of TSN notes that Jason Schmidt, Kirk Rueter, and Damian Moss are a combined 9-1 with a 2.43 ERA. However, the other starters for the Giants are a combined 4-5 with an ERA of 6.86. That's somewhat deceiving since Ryan Jensen gave up 674 ER in his 7 innings of work this year.

I wouldn't be surprised if another starter is on the trading deadline wish list of Brian Sabean. One, Sabean has a warm spot in his heart for Proven Major LeaguersĀ®, and two, young pitchers not accustomed to pitching into October tend get tired arm syndrome and stink it up down the stretch (see Washburn, Jarrod and Jensen, Ryan).

The Line of the Week

Ben Couch, a reader of "Giants Guy" at the SF Chronicle, had a great line about the batting average of our favorite overpaid outfielder, Marvin Benard, saying Benard "is currently hitting Larry Eustachy's blood alcohol level."

Die, Rick Reilly, Die!

Glenn Dickey points out another reason why the best use of a Sports Illustrated is to line your rabbit cage:

"In 1993, Barry Bonds kept a Sports Illustrated writer waiting six days for an interview. SI has retaliated in various ways. The magazine cover featured Bonds with the heading, "I'm Barry Bonds and You're Not." When the magazine picked all-star teams from different geographic areas, it left Bonds off the American team. Last week, it left Bonds off a list of the 101 most influential minorities. Bonds hasn't wasted a second worrying about this, but it makes the magazine editors look very petty."

I usually take any Top 100 list with a grain of salt, especially a list coming from the vapid brains of the SI editorial board. But Warrick Dunn and Stuart Scott are more influential than one of the greatest ever to play the game of baseball? It just goes to show that spite and vindictiveness now qualify as journalism to the self-absorbed busybodies at SI who fully believe that recliners, lockers, and Rick Reilly's deadlines are more important to the game of baseball than homerun records, batting titles, and pennants.

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Monday, May 05, 2003


Some Like It Hot

Felipe Alou brought up an interesting point about notorious slow starters like Edgardo Alfonzo. He said that Latin players (especially hitters) have a tough time adjusting to the colder climates that are so dramatically different from the tropical climates of their native countries. Alfonzo spends his winters (which is the summer in the Southern Hemisphere) in his native Venezuela, so Fonzie only sees cold weather for a couple months a year.

The Giants have played in almost nothing but cold and rainy weather for the first month of the season. That will change soon as the Giants head for Florida and Atlanta. Let's see if Alfonzo's bat stays hot.

Mahogany Revisited

While I am excited that the Giants bench (notably El Gato Grande and Yorvit Torrealba) is improved from last year, I think its a far cry from "the best bench in the league," as Duane Kuiper claims. I have a suspicion that a left handed outfielder will be one of the items on the trading deadline shopping list of Brian Sabean.

Didn't Mean to Jinx You, Jack.

Ever since I started the JT Snow for All-Star team campaign, JT has been in a slide (now out of the top 20 in NL OPS) and Richie Sexson has been awesome. With Bagwell and Helton as All-Star locks and Sexson surging, it now looks like Snow could be a on a couch in San Mateo come mid-July...unless he's voted in as a starter :). Vote Snow and Cruz or die!

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Sunday, May 04, 2003


Mr. Perfect

Congrats to Giants farmhand Clay Hensley of the Class A Hagerstown Suns for throwing a perfect game on Saturday.

From Pine to Mahogany

Extra! Extra! The Giants have a bench.

Andres Galarraga .379/.438/.655, 10 RBI, 2HR, in 29 ABs.
Yorvit Torrealba .294/.306/.559, 8RBI, 1HR, in 34 ABs.

Marvin Benard is filling the Tom Goodwin role of doing nothing except get hits against the Dodgers and giving Barry an occasional rest. Albeit, Benard is filling the Goodwin role for about 12 times the salary of Goodwin.

And Ruben Rivera is hitting...well, ok, you can't win 'em all.

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Saturday, May 03, 2003


Off The Scrap Heap

Let's play a game - I'll give you a AAA pitchers' numbers and you guess who it is. 18 2/3 IP, 1ER, 0.48 ERA, 8 Hits, 11 SO. A young phenom? Nope. Those are the numbers of the Iowa Cubs' Rod Beck.

Every time I think of Rod Beck, two games come to mind. 1) The Brian Johnson Game. The Dodgers had the bases loaded and there were no outs with future HOFer Eddie Murray at the plate. A double play and a strikeout later, Beck was out of the inning. 2) The 1998 Wild Card game. Having absorbed a heavy work load down the stretch, Beck's fastball in that game was topping out in the 80s. I remember Jon Miller and Joe Morgan debating whether a Beck pitch clocked in the 80s was a fastball or a changeup. Whatever it was, it was good enough to send the Giants home.

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Thursday, May 01, 2003


About Schmidt

Way to go Jason Schmidt! All hail the King of Pac Bell. Schmidt is now 14-5 in his starts at Pac Bell and his Pac Bell ERA is slightly above 2.00.

May Day

April is officially over, so it is about time the Giants should be getting at least a little concerned about Edgardo Alfonzo. The low batting average is one thing, but what concerns me is his lack of power. Fonzie has only 3 extra base hits in 90 AB and has a paltry SLG% of .244. Moreover, Fonzie's OBP, usually one of his strong suits, is only .276.

Fortunately for the Giants, the production they've gotten from most of the rest of the lineup has made up for Alfonzo's slow start. And make no mistake about it, even at this point I'd rather see Alfonzo in the lineup than Pedro Feliz Cumpleanos.
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Eat your heart out, James Carville

There are few things in life as enjoyable as mean spirited, mud slinging, negative campaign commercials. If you've ever had your TV on the week before a major election you know exactly what I'm talking about. So I humbly submit this:

[scary announcer voice] Who is Richie Sexson? Richie Sexson plays for the Milwaukee Brewers, a team once owned by the anti-christ, Bud Selig. (show grainy, black and white video of Sexson striking out) And Richie Sexson was a DH during his days in the American League [/scary announcer voice].

[cheery announcer voice] JT Snow has a .338 batting average, a .437 OBP, and 21 RBI.

Call Richie Sexson and tell him to stop DHing and tell him to start rescuing bat boys.

[cue patriotic loop music] Vote JT Snow. He doesn't DH and he saves innocent bat boys from Bengie Molina's shin pads. [/cheery announcer voice][/patriotic loop music]

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