Saturday, March 29, 2014

Contused Tim

Is that even a word? Oh, who cares, it is still Spring Training so I can make up words.

Speaking of which, if there was ever any doubt that Spring Training is TOOO LONG, last night's loss to the Athletics must have ended that debate.  I mean we almost had a major injury in that stupid meaningless game!  By now I'm sure everyone has heard about Tim getting nailed by a Daric Barton line drive. It seems like he will be OK, maybe miss a start, but BOY HOWDY that sure was a moment of sheer dread.

My dreadful feeling of panic was not just over the injury to my favorite all-time Giant, it was more about our horrible lack of depth, especially in the pitching staff.  Isn't lack of depth what did us in last year?  Sure, Hudson is better than Zito (except in terms of injury potential) but otherwise everyone is just a year older. Derek Law may be a big plus, but that is asking ALOT of the youngster.  Unlike Ron, I view middle relief as CRUCIAL to a team's success and Affeldt's injury hurts bad.  Our games are won and lost in the sixth and seventh inning, more like the fifth and sixth when Lincecum and Vogelsong pitch.

So, even though Tim doesn't look to be seriously banged up, I am still quite shaken.  It doesn't help to see the Athletics look like a vastly superior team. Do we ever beat those guys?  Personally, I think a rainout today would be for the best.  Ten days ago I was quite hopeful, now .... Not so much.



Ron said...

Where did you get that I don't think that middle relief is crucial? I do, but I also see other teams having plenty of people to plug into that role, if someone gets hurt. Even George Kontos had his few weeks of unhittability (is that a word), before people figured him out. The Cardinals are the best example (not just corn-fed huge guys, but Latin American flame throwers, too), but there are many others. We don't seem to operate that way, which is one reason that we fell apart last year.

Zo said...

Well, if you wanted a rain out - your wish will likely be granted as it has been raining steadily all morning.

What is "lack of depth?" It seems like the rotation's ability to get us into the sixth or seventh inning is part of it, and the relief's ability to stop scoring for three or four innings is another part. And I am a bit frightened on both ends. If, in fact, the rotation bounces back and is strong, then the need for relief is not as great, likewise, stalwart relief allows the starters breathing room. Looking back, it seems like last year there was not enough of that, and I am afraid that going into the season, we have the same weakness. It's a long season but it starts real soon. Some of our starters did not look good at the end of spring (as opposed to the beginning, when it didn't matter) and our health waned as the season approached. I do not want to see a starter out to start the season - nothing like the extra pressure on an already less-than-healthy relief corps.

My goodness, I have been away for a week and it seems like things have unraveled. Our team was built on pitching, and the addition of a little extra hitting is not enough to make pitching any less crucial. It is nice to think that Sandoval, and Morse, and Pagan, and Belt, etc. will contribute more than they did last year, but that is a marginal improvement. Pitching rules.

M.C. O'Connor said...

Any ballclub loses a starter they are weakened. The Giants got big games from both Petit and Gaudin last season. It wasn't lack of pitching depth that hurt the team. The 6th and 7th starters pulled their weight--the big guns did not.

What hurt the team was Matt Cain's first half, Buster Posey's second half, and both Pablo Sandoval and Ryan Vogelsong both getting hurt and under-performing. Not to mention the injuries to Angel Pagan and Brandon Crawford. Barry Zito fell off a cliff, too. Timmy also pitched well below what we expected.

The fact that the Giants had a bad season does not convince me that they aren't prepared for injuries. If Clayton Kershaw goes down, do the Dodgers really have enough Ricky Nolasco's and Chad Billingsley's to "replace" him? If so, then just give the NL West to them now and quit on the season. I think if LA lost Ryu or Greinke or whatnot they would struggle to fill that gap even with a $200+M payroll.

A crippled 2013 Giants played well against the West and took the season series from LA. The Dodgers went 92-70 in a season where they had a 42-8 stretch, so they went 50-62 the rest of the time. Even with all that money and talent they didn't have the best record, and they had their share of poor play (under .500 for both May and September, for example).

nomisnala said...

Even before Timmy was K'od last night, he reminded me more of the mediocre lack of full control Timmy than the Cy Young Timmy. Maybe it is just me, but I thought some of Posey's poor frame jobs cost Timmy a few keystrokes and you could see Timmy's frustration either with the umps or with his catcher! Despite decent results, Petit did not look as if he was throwing the same stuff as last year. Runzler looked bad last night. Timmy still needs more precise control.

nomisnala said...

I think the auto editing of spell check turned key strikes into keystrokes, apologies!