Killing Time

I’ve got baseball on the brain, but at the same time I’m trying not to spend too much time and effort over analyzing every little thing about today’s game.  So instead I revisisited one of my favorite baseball sites, Flip Flop Fly Ball to see what latest and greatest graphs and charts were available to peruse.  And much to my delight, there was a bobblehead chart!  Check it.    

The first thing that came to my mind was which two teams gave away a bobblehead when the Giants were visiting.  Not an easy thing to figure out without researching every teams’ bobblehead activity, which is what I ultimately ended up doing.  (Like I said, this day is crawling way too slowly towards 7 PM!)   So using Flip Flop’s own key, I made my own chart:
2010bobbleheadgrid.jpg
I found a few discrepancies in Flip Flop’s chart, but for the most part they’re the same, square-wise.  I added all the applicable teams though, so on the left side you can see what team was visiting during bobblehead day, and on the right you can see what teams gave away a bobblehead while being visiting. 
I would have assumed that most teams would decide to give away a bobblehead when they’re scheduled to play a bad team in an attempt to generate ticket sales.  The Phillies giving away a Roy Halladay bobblehead on the day they have to play the Pirates makes perfect sense.  (And photos of the sucker blew up all over Twitter, so obviously it worked!)  But then there’s the Dodgers giving away a bobblehead when the Giants came to play, and what would fill seats better than a Dodgers-Giants game?  
Note also that the Braves, Red Sox, Rockies and Yankees are too cool for bobbleheads (or draw enough ticket sales without gimmicks) and the White Sox was the only team to give away a bobble when the Red Sox and Yankees came to town (not enough of a draw for Chicago, I guess).  
I wonder if there’s a bobblehead website…
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We’re Not Worthy

Maybe  July was just an easy month.  Mets, D-Backs, Marlins, Brewers, not the cream of the crop, to be sure.  Yeah, there was the Rockies and Dodgers in there too, so I was thinking the success was legit, but they seem to be sliding now.  There’s a lot of season to go, but its facing the Padres, Phillies, Cardinals, Reds, Padres, Rockies, Dodgers, oh and more Padres and Padres.  We’re five games back and second place in the Wild Card race.  Yes, there’s a lot more season to go, but…

uphill.jpgR.I.P. Bobby Thomson who died Monday at 86.  I’d like to experience something like that with the Giants someday.    The whole jumping up and down thing.  That would be cool.

Disssssss

Well I got what I wanted.

sweeptheleg.jpgTook the series, four AWAY games against a DIVISION rival.  I mean, yeah I guess not really a rival since the D-Backs have been way behind for quite some time, but the Giants are so bad at facing the NL West, a win is a win is a win is a win!  I talked about the first game already, but some things that stand out about the other three:

Posey Keeps On Hitting

And hitting and hitting and…a .371 batting average and an 18 game hitting streak, which places him second to McCovey for rookie Giants hitting streaks.  Is he stoppable?  Probably, but let’s enjoy the ride, eh?

busterposey.jpgVelez Knocked in the Head

The most hated player on the Giants roster, if you go by Twitter, is knocked in the head while drinking his Gatorade by a foul ball from Pat Burrell.  Dislike him or not, that’s still not cool.  Is there no way to keep the dugout safe from such random attacks?  It’s happened at least three times this year that I’ve read about. (Maybe he can do Mountain Dew commercials now, though.)

eugeniobeamed.jpgJuan Uribe’s Grand Slam

My step-daughter and I were shouting the “OOO-RIBEH!” chant in our living room when he decided to hit his fourth career grand slam in the 7th on game three, with two outs and on the first pitch to boot.  I totally think it was our chant that did it.

uribeslam.jpgStill in second place and three games behind because the Padres JUST WON’T LOSE!

Rk Tm W L W-L% GB Strk
1 SDP 58 39 .598 W 3
2 SFG 56 43 .566 3.0 W 4
3 LAD 53 46 .535 6.0 W 2
4 COL 51 47 .520 7.5 L 5
5 ARI 37 62 .374 22.0 L 4
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 7/26/2010.

We’re also first now in the Wild Card race, but who wants to get to the series that way?

Rk Tm W L W-L% GB Strk
1 SDP 58 39 .598 W 3
2 ATL 57 41 .582 L 1
3  SFG 56 43 .566 W 4
4 STL 55 44 .556 1.0 W 1
5  CIN 55 45 .550 1.5 L 1
6  LAD 53 46 .535 3.0 W 2
7  PHI 52 46 .531 3.5 W 4
8  COL 51 47 .520 4.5 L 5
9  NYM 50 49 .505 6.0 L 2
10  FLA 49 49 .500 6.5 W 1
11  MIL 47 53 .470 9.5 W 4
12  CHC 45 54 .455 11.0 L 1
13  WSN 42 57 .424 14.0 L 3
14  HOU 40 58 .408 15.5 W 1
15  ARI 37 62 .374 19.0 L 4
16  PIT 34 64 .347 21.5 L 4
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 7/26/2010.

I also saw on the television that we’re number one hits this month.  Not sure if I saw that right and have no idea where to go to validate it but if that’s true?  MAN what a different team post-All-Star game, eh?

Happy All-Star Break

The Giants complete their longest (distance-wise anyway) road tour with much success.  Only 4 games behind (still in fourth place though – bummer) with a 7-4 victory!  I definitely thought it was going to be worse, but I guess seven game losing streaks gives me bouts of pessimism. 

pessimist.jpg

Not to make this a Buster Posey blog, but Buster Posey Buster Posey Buster Posey.  The guy had a great road trip!  His numbers were ridiculous.  Was it a fluke, or is he making the All-Star team next year?  Hoping for the latter.

Date ▴ Tm Opp AB R H HR RBI BA
Jul 1 SFG @ COL 4 2 2 1 1 .297
Jul 2 SFG @ COL 3 0 2 0 0 .308
Jul 3 SFG @ COL 2 1 0 0 0 .302
Jul 4 SFG @ COL 4 0 1 0 0 .300
Jul 5 SFG @ MIL 4 2 2 1 1 .307
Jul 6 SFG @ MIL 3 0 1 0 1 .308
Jul 7 SFG @ MIL 4 3 4 2 6 .331
Jul 8 SFG @ MIL 4 1 2 1 1 .336
Jul 9 SFG @ WSN 4 0 1 0 0 .333
Jul 10 SFG @ WSN 5 2 4 1 3 .351
Jul 11 SFG @ WSN 3 1 1 0 2 .350
SFG 40 12 20 6 15 .500
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 7/14/2010.

In fact, the 7 wins were pretty much all batting, as the pitching was nothing to really brag about.  Lincecum and Bumgarner got their win, but otherwise it was the offense doing most of the bailing.  It’s a crazy focus shift.  It was all about pitching for me before this month, now all of a sudden, it’s the Posey, Huff and Ishikawa show.  Gotta say, killer hitting is pretty fun!

ishikawaslam.jpgI skipped the All-Star game.  I was out, but even so, I can’t say I was overly excited about it.  It’s kind of like when half the Sharks when to the Olympics, and that was the Olympics, this is just the All-Star game.  Lincecum didn’t end up pitching, but according to The Stew, he was the only guy signing balls before the game.  And anyway, that means he gets to start against the Mets tomorrow, which is more interesting to me.

timmyautographs.jpgIt is pretty cool that the National League finally broke their 1996 on up losing streak, though. Also cool that Brian Wilson got the opportunity to keep their lead by throwing a perfect 8th inning.  Go Brian!  Maybe they should swap out the Panda caps for Rooster hats?

therooster.jpgNice cleats, btw…I think…uh.

orangeshoes.jpg

Brew Ha Ha!

So can we like play the Brewers ever day? 

sweeptheleg.jpg
GOD we needed that!  A four game winning sweep.  And it wasn’t even torturous like so many Giants wins.  I don’t even have to talk about awesome pitching today, because there was HITTING to be talked about!  50 hits to be exact, 34 RBIs, 36 runs, EIGHT homers!  Was I watching the right team? 

imposter.jpgGame 3 was by far my favorite.  Right off the bat, home runs by Torres, Huff and Posey in the first inning.  THE FIRST INNING.  Three home runs in the first inning apparently hasn’t happened for the Giants since Bonds, Kent and Burks in 1999.

homerunners.jpgThen in the 4th, they load the bases.  Big deal, they load the bases all the time.  They also leave hitters stranded all the time.  But NOPE! everybody gets in.  Then they load the bases again.  And…GRAND SLAM by Posey for his second home run in the game, and first major league career grand slam. 

grandslambyposey.jpgIt was definitely Posey’s weekend.  9 hits, 9 RBIs, 6 runs and 4 home runs, in four games.  I’ve said it before, but I’m repetitive: you can’t be named Buster Posey and not be a good baseball player.  Forget skill and hard work, it’s the name.  His parents were geniuses.  (Unless they liked football or something.)  In 2083, there will be documentaries interviewing old, denture wearing dudes who can’t stop talking about what a great ballplayer Buster Posey was.  “He had it all!”  It just sounds right.  Buster Posey. 
vintageposey.jpgToo bad he’ll probably be traded to the Yankees.

cliffleetraded.jpgAnywho, we face the media circus tonight.  Strasburg!  Say that with a heavy German accent.  Sounds scary, right?  Bit worried of course, but I’m also feeling cocky after a four game winning streak and the fact that we did alright against Jimenez.  Besides he’s only one guy and one game.  We’ve got a 2-1 record against the Nationals this year and 225-207 all time.  We’ll be alright.

liljinx.jpgStill in 4th place, but only 5 games behind now.  Crawling our way back up!

Rk Tm W L W-L% GB Strk
1 SDP 50 35 .588 W 1
2 COL 47 38 .553 3.0 W 4
3 LAD 47 38 .553 3.0 W 1
4 SFG 45 40 .529 5.0 W 4
5 ARI 33 53 .384 17.5 W 1
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 7/9/2010.

SF @ MIL | CHC @ SF

I LOVE the new scoreboard layout on MLB.  Way cooler. 

SF @ MIL

milatsf20100329.jpgHow many times can you beam Fielder and call it an “accident?”  Seriously, enough’s enough!  The first time was too much, let’s not create a new “beam Fielder” tradition every time we play the Brewers.  It’s beyond childish at this point. 

CHC @ SF

chcatsf20100330.jpg

Only one more spring training game and then we’re on to the real thing.  The world seems excited about this team, and I am too.  On the other hand, it’s a clean slate for everyone, so if you have a team you’re not excited about, that sucks.  It’s also unlikely.  Which coach is on television this season saying “Yeah, we probably don’t have a chance…”?  None of them, for sure.  Everyone thinks their team is going to be it this year, that’s why the beginning of the season is so great, nothing bad has happened yet, and there’s plenty of time to get there. 

Spring training means nothing, but if it did, we’re looking pretty good!

standings20100331.jpgOnly one more fake game to go, and it’s a biggiee.  Can we lock it in and take them out twice?  Random guy says YES!

beatla.jpg

SEA @SF | SF @ COL | OAK @ SF | SF @ SEA | MIL  @SF

Eeks, I’m behind.  That’s what happens when your weekend looks like this, I guess!

fixafaucet.pngSEA @ SF

seaatsf20100311.jpgSigh.  7-2.  Creamed too.  Three hits in five innings.  Sounds like the the hitting problems of last year may not be completely fixed, eh?  Lincecum still not doing so well because he had a huge raise and contract now and that’s why the word “ironic” was invented.  Actually I’m going to chalk that up to it being spring training and he’s just experimenting.  Yeah, that’s it.  DeRosa continues to play some decent small ball.   

SF @ COL

sfatcol20100312.jpgYay!  8-2.  Creaming the opposition this time.  (Wait, that sounds gross.)  Way to go Todd Wellemeyer on having your best spring training game yet, four scoreless innings and no walks!

OAK @ SF

oakatsf20100313.jpgAwww, bummer!  8-3.  First “rivalry” loss, and soooo close too.  Better than being clobbered, I guess.  Matt Cain not doing so hot this round, giving up five runs and eight hits.  Buster Posey still making hits though.  I like that name, Buster Posey.  Totally “famous” sounding baseball name.  How can a guy named Buster Posey not make it in baseball?

SF @ SEA

sfatsea20100313.jpgW00t!  Fine, you clobber us?  We’ll clobber you back!  9-3.  Kevin Pucetas retires nine Mariners and extends his scoreless inning streak to lucky number seven.

MIL @ SF

milatsf20030314.jpgAnd we end with a bummer.  9-4.  Nuff said.

Three wins, two losses and one new faucet.  Not a bad weekend, all-in-all.  It feels kind of redundant to keep recapping all this stuff, especially when there are people out there doing a way better job of it than I.    But I guess I’ll keep doing it, because what else is there to talk about?  Would be great to actually SEE one of these games sometime, but apparently MLB.tv only likes the Yankees and Red Sox. 

Still on fake-top!

nlstandings20100315.jpg