Well, as I said last post, this was always going to be a weird week. It was. It was not good or fun, at least in terms of baseball.
The Giants went 1-4, saw their run differential drop to -44 (oof), and showed that despite their improvements from last year, there is still a significant gap between themselves and MLB’s elite.
And yet, they are still only 3 games out of first place, and they have a 3 game series against the first place Rockies starting today. A sweep would leave them tied with Colorado, potentially in first place, and .500 heading back home for a 6 game stand.
We’ve spent quite a bit of time talking the about the Giants’ injuries, the weird schedule to start the year, and the lack of consistency roster-wide. They are still searching for cohesiveness, making another couple moves today to bolster the bullpen for Colorado’s thin air.
They remain without Joe Panik, Hunter Pence, Mark Melancon, Johnny Cueto, and Madison Bumgarner.
But, most of all, they are proving to be a very bad road team (11-18).
The good news is that they’ve been pretty good at home (14-10). But this is maybe the most obvious indictment of their starting rotation. For a team to be good on the road, in general, it must get good starting pitching. “Starting pitching travels,” is the old adage/cliché.
The stats are somewhat neutral. The Giants have a 4.32 home ERA vs. a 4.76 ERA on the road. Roughly half a run a game. Not great, but not that dramatic.
The one stat that does stand out, though: 19 home runs allowed at home, 33 on the road. And this will be significant in Colorado. Keep the ball in the yard to have a chance guys!
Today the Giants will trot out this lineup:
Buster’s back: Hernandez CF, McCutchen RF, Posey C, Belt 1B, Longoria 3B, Crawford SS, Williamson LF, Tomlinson 2B, Suarez LHP
— Alex Pavlovic (@PavlovicNBCS) May 28, 2018
That’s not bad. And when Joe Panik returns it looks even better.
Andrew Baggarly has been talking up Gorkys Hernandez as the next Andres Torres, and that’s a fun comp. Let’s hope he can keep this up!
Finally, a reminder that all is not lost:
Bumgarner’s final line: 3.2 IP, 1 BB, 8 K’s, 47 pitched, 31 strikes.
Take a bow, sir 🔥 pic.twitter.com/DkxB6DXsRi
— Sacramento River Cats (@RiverCats) May 27, 2018