Thursday, September 23, 2010

Giants Tie Record, Lose

In the scope of the world, Randy Wells is probably one of the most talented pitchers around. In the scope of Major League Baseball, Randy Wells isn’t terribly talented. People will be quick to point out that Wells pitched great in his previous outing too, against the Cardinals. But allow me to point out that the Cardinals just got absolutely licked by the Pirates last night for the second game in a row – the Pirates who’ve lost roughly two-thirds of their games in the worst division in the NL and have a -274 run differential – and it becomes clear the Cardinals are sinking like a bowling ball in a swimming pool. Just ask Jack Clark.

There’s a running joke between the TV personalities – your F.P.’s – and my brothers and me that every pitcher the Giants face is Cy Young. But we obviously know that the pitchers are made to look brilliant because the Giants hitters are completely lost. Let Andrew Baggarly put their ineffectiveness into perspective:

“Bochy said he and the staff will talk over the lineup, and he didn’t rule out going with a radical redesign after the Giants were shut out for the fourth time in 10 games. (That’s also the eighth time in 13 games they’ve been held to one run or fewer.)”


“…Tonight, the Giants matched the longest single-season streak (16 games) holding an opponent to three runs or fewer since 1920. Yup, the entire live-ball era.

You’ve got the 1981 A’s, the 1972 Indians and the 2010 Giants.

(The Cincinnati Reds had the only longer streak, a 20-game run, but that spanned the 1942 and ’43 seasons.)

Going a little further down the rabbit hole, the Giants haven’t allowed more than four runs in 21 consecutive games. That’s tied for the fifth longest streak in the live-ball era – the longest since those ’81 A’s.

Here are the teams since 1920 with longer streaks allowing four runs or fewer: The 1942-43 Cardinals (25), the 1972 Cubs (23), the 1943-44 Reds (22) and the 1924 Washington Senators (22).

And that’s it.”

Here is the entire blog. Baggarly makes the point that it is understandable the offense has tightened up and is feeling the pressure, because they know they only need to score a few times to win given their literally historical pitching staff. I completely disagree. They should be looking at this in the exact opposite way. What they should really be thinking is: “Gosh, this pitching staff is so darn good we barely have to scratch a run here and there and we win and head to postseason.” Is it that hard to score a run off of Randy Wells at Wrigley Field? His ERA suggests it is not. If anyone should be tight, it should be the pitchers. Unless they are perfect, they get cooked.

I tweeted it last night: Pitching – Dream; Hitting – Nightmare. That about sums it up.

OARD = Opponents Average Run Differential

Padres: OARD = 20.45, 7 Home 4 Away, 1 @ LAD – Lead West by ½ Game
Braves: OARD = 17.67, 6 Home 3 Away, 3 @ WAS – Lead WC by ½ Game
Giants: OARD = 8.50, 6 Home 4 Away, 1 @ CHC – Trail West/WC by ½ Game
Rockies: OARD = 32, 6 Home 5 Away, 1 @ AZ – Trail West/ WC by 3 Games

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