Thursday, July 22, 2010

Game Recap: SF 3, ARI 0

Matt Cain is back. He pitched a gem tonight, going 8 innings, giving up no runs, only 3 hits, while walking 3 and striking out a season high 9 batters. And before you chalk this performance up to fact that he was pitching against the last place Diamondbacks (vbgirlie!), realize that the D-Backs are in fact a pretty good offensive team. They are 5th out of 16 NL teams in OPS, and are 2nd in walks. They've also got a lot of power throughout their lineup. Cain's two magnificent starts this season against Arizona are anything but a product of a weak opposing offense.

It's actually pretty lucky that Cain pitched so well tonight, because the offense had a lot of holes in it tonight. Freddy Sanchez, to put it bluntly, needs hitter's viagra. He is just not swinging a powerful stick right now. And while he's going through this stretch, there's no reason for him to stay in the 2-hole. And so much for Sandoval's magical comeback, huh? But Uribe got a couple hits tonight, so that's good. Do it again, Juan. I want to believe.

At least the Usual Suspects are still producing. Andres Torres, featured early in the day on this very blog, had a Bonds-like HR to center field, and then made a beautiful catch in left field. Buster Posey gave the Giants their first run of the game, and extended his hitting streak to 16 games. I'm happy for Posey, but can we all remember for a moment that hitting streaks are kinda stupid? Until you get to about 30, they're about as gimmicky as the cycle. Or an unearned runs streak. Actually, unearned runs streaks are pretty cool. Can anyone tell me the longest streak of a pitcher not giving up an unearned run? That would be awesome to know.


  1. Do you really mean an "unearned runs streak"? (i.e., a streak where a pitcher can give up EARNED runs, but not any unearned runs?)

    Of course, if you're just referring to consecutive shutout innings, that would be Orel Hershiser's 59 consecutive scoreless innings.

    Do you remember the big controversy in Orel's streak that occurred in a game against the Giants? Hershiser's streak appeared to be history at inning No. 43. With one out and Juan Uribe's second cousin Jose Uribe on third base and Brett Butler on first, Ernest Riles hit a ground ball to second baseman Steve Sax, who threw to shortstop Alfredo Griffin for the force play. As Uribe crossed home plate, Butler's slide took out Griffin, whose throw sailed over first baseman Tracy Woodson's head for an apparent 1-0 Giant lead. But second base umpire Paul Runge ruled that Butler had interfered with Griffin, and the television replay showed that Butler had swung his arm into Griffin's leg. Hence an inning-ending double play, and the run was taken off the scoreboard. So, the streak continued...

  2. I don't think it is too surprising that Freddy Sanchez isn't swinging a powerfull stick. He has never really had much pop in the bat. He has allways been a slap and poke the ball through the hole kind of guy.

    The thing that is really killing his value is that he isn't showing his signatue bat control to keep his batting average up. He doesn't take many walks so when he isn't hitting he isn't getting on base.

    Fortunatly it hasn't hurt the scoring too much because of the crazy hottness of Buster Posey. Just check out everything he has done in July:

    Good read.

  3. Yeah, definitely no surprise that Sanchez isn't hitting any homers. But when he came to the Giants he was advertised as an "All-Star doubles hitter" and unfortunately he hasn't come close to living up to that billing. I'm okay with no homers because that's not his game, but some doubles would be nice.

    Yeah if you check back a couple of days ago on this site, we too did a piece on Buster Posey's streak of beauty in July, so you should check that out too. He's basically been the best player in baseball for the past month.

  4. I am adding you guys to the blog roll, I am liking what I am seeing here.

  5. I agree about Sanchez, he's been sucking for a long time already, I've been thinking the same thing, take him out of #2.

    I disagree about Sandoval. One or two bad games don't mean that he is regressing, whereas the games before was a huge difference from before, he was hitting for zero power before that.

    Also, according someone commenting with no verification (so take it with a grain of salt) that reportedly Sandoval is flying out Sunday to his homeland to finalize his divorce, so he could be distracted again and not able to focus on his hitting as much.

  6. FYI, the streak for shutout innings in the World Series for a long time was held by none other than Babe Ruth.

  7. Hey Don, thanks for the comment. Interesting Hershiser story too. I actually was talking about an "unearned runs streak". I remember hearing earlier this year about someone having such a streak, but I can't remember who it was. The internet isn't helping find anything about it, cause it's such an obscure and, in the end, completely useless achievement. But for that very reason it's fascinating.

  8. Thanks Scott, we really like what we've seen on your blog as well, and we'll return the favor.