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All of the Giants runs came in the fifth inning, capped off by a two run double by Cody Ross and a two run Pat Burrell blast to right field. Giants beat writer Andrew Baggerly tweeted this about Burrell after his homer:
Burrell happy with his night. “Got a couple hits against Texas. First hits against them in two years. Too bad they don’t count.”
Too bad indeed. As for the pitching staff Jonathan Sanchez had a decent night, going four full innings and allowed two hits, one run, one walk, and five strikeouts. Jeremy Affeldt also had a nice two inning outing, allowing one hit with no runs and two strikeouts.
It was really nice to hear Mike Krukow and Duane Kiper on television again, especially when they were doing in game interviews with a lot of the Giants, including Bruce Bochy. During the broadcast Boch said that the team has a bit of a swagger to them seeing that they’re World Champions, but aren’t being arrogant about it. He explained they brought a chip on their shoulder to camp because no one thinks they can repeat, but we all know how this team does as the underdog.
PANDA WATCH: Pablo was 1-3 with a walk and a run scored, he also stole a base in the fifth inning. Love to see him run the bases and play the field now, he really has impressed me so far (hence the PANDA WATCH in every wrap up).
The Giants will head to the Peoria Sports Complex tomorrow to take on the Seattle Mariners for the second time in three days. First pitch is scheduled for 12:05 PT (1:05 MT).
Tonight’s matchup of the San Francisco Giants and Texas Rangers is the first meeting of these two teams since November 1, 2010, the last meaningful game for either of these teams. And although it’s only Spring Training and this game is essentially meaningless, it’s still a chance to remember last season’s epic culmination at the Rangers expense.
Tonight is the first televised game of the Giants Cactus League season, with the first pitch scheduled at 6:05 PT (7:05 MT) on CSN Bay Area, as well as mlb.tv (for paid subscribers). Mike Krukow and Duane Kiper will get the call as Jonathan Sanchez will start for the Giants and Alexi Ogando will get the start for the Rangers. Here are the lineups:
That’s a lot of guys that played in the World Series, should be a nice day to reminisce and bask in the glory of last season’s championship.
Tim Lincecum had a another nice showing today, going 3 2/3 innings allowing three hits, no runs, three walks, and a whopping seven strikeouts as the San Francisco Giants beat the Seattle Mariners 6-1 at Scottsdale Stadium. The Mariners had their opportunites against Lincecum, including a loaded bases situation against Timmy in the 3rd, but he got out of it with back-to-back strikeouts with his devastating change-up. Lincecum was also one pitch away from getting four strikeouts in the forth inning after a past ball third strike against Seattle’s Jack Cust advanced him to first base.
Brian Wilson made his Spring Training debut today pitching one full inning no hits, no runs, and two strikeouts. Giants beat writer Andrew Baggerly tweeted this after the game:
Brian Wilson on first inning since World Series clincher: "Picked up where I left off. I like it.
After some criticism of Miguel Tejada’s fielding abilities by beat writer Andrew Baggerly, he made an excellent leaping catch in the first inning to rob Seattle’s Adam Kennedy of a hit and force a double play. He followed that up with a huge two RBI triple in the 3rd inning. Buster Posey smashed a 2 RBI double off the right field wall in the fifth inning making it 7 RBI thus far is Spring Training for him.
PANDA WATCH: Pablo Sandoval confidently blasted a fastball for an RBI single scoring Buster from second base in the second inning, he also reached base on a fielding error in the 6th. Kung Fu also made an agile leaping grab in the fifth inning robbing Milton Bradley of a base hit. With all the weight loss his mobility and range on the field have definitely increased.
Jonathan Sanchez will get the start for the Giants tomorrow as they face the Texas Rangers for their first World Series rematch at 6:05 PT (7:05 MT). It will be the first televised game for the G-Men in Spring Training and will air on CSN Bay Area.
Tim Lincecum is slated for his third start of the 2011 Cactus League schedule today as the San Francisco Giants face the Seattle Mariners at Scottsdale Stadium. Lincecum, who is from Renton, WA and a University of Washington alumni, is looking to shut down his hometown team and continue his progress towards a successful regular season.The Giants are off to a 7-3 start in their first 10 Spring Training games and hope to continue that success against a Seattle team that has started 3-3-1 (no extra innings in early Spring Training games). Southpaw Nate Robinson will get the start for the Mariners today.
Today’s lineup for the Giants:
First pitch is at 12:05 PT (1:05 MT) and will be broadcast live on KNBR 680. Tomorrow will be the Giants first televised Spring Training game of the year as they meet the Texas Rangers in a World Series rematch at 6:05 PT (7:05 MT) and can be seen on CSN Bay Area.
The San Francisco Giants got off to a very slow start at Phoenix Municipal Stadium today and could never recover as they lost to the cross town Oakland A’s by a score of 6-0. The game had a nice mid-season feel to it with John Miller and Mike Krukow on the mic for KNBR today, and with the lack of offense by the G-Men it even had that torturous, mid-season, Giants’ baseball feeling to it as well.
Madison Bumgarner had a decent start for the Giants, going a full three innings allowing two hits and an unearned run, one walk, and one strikeout. Ramon Ramirez on the other hand, had a bit of a rough outing. In 1 and 2/3 innings Ramirez gave up three hits and three earned runs, while walking one and striking out two. Giants pitching walked 8 batters this afternoon, not exactly what Giants fans are used to seeing. Miguel Tejada, Brandon Belt, and Mark DeRosa each had a single, and that was about it for the Giants offense. San Francisco loaded the bases in the top of the 8th and the 9th but couldn’t deliver. The Giants also committed 4 errors as well.
The A’s Brett Anderson did very well against the Giants today in his three innings of work, allowing only a single hit, one walk, and five strikeouts. The A’s scored their six runs off of 6 hits.
In injury news Giants beat writer Andrew Baggerly tweeted that Matt Cain will miss his next start on Tuesday due to inflammation in his right elbow. Baggerly spoke with pitching coach Dave Righetti today who said Cain played some catch from about 60 feet and felt no pain, and will toss from about 90 feet tomorrow with a possibility of some flat-ground pitching. Definitely nothing to panic about, but definitely not a good thing.
2011 Spring Training is now well underway, and for bay area sports fans they get their first chance to renew the rivalry between the San Francisco Giants and Oakland A’s as they are set to square off at Phoenix Municipal Stadium today at 12:05 PT (1:05 MT). Both teams are off to a good start in their Cactus League schedule so far, and I bet neither one would like to lose to one another. Even though it’s only Spring Training, I love the rivalry games (like last night ‘s win against the Dodgers) and these two teams have one of the best rivalries in all of baseball. Maybe a little Bay Area World Series preview? I’ll keep my fingers crossed.
Here are you lineups for today’s game:
Should be a good game, live broadcast can be found on KNBR 680. Can’t Wait ! (Bart Scott voice)
The second half of a split squad day for the San Francisco Giants produced another Buster Posey home run, Thomas Neal’s first Spring Training homer, and a Giants win 5-3 over the rival Los Angeles Dodgers. I had to listen to a Dodgers radio broadcast to catch this game (I know, gross) but the G-Men getting their second win of the day was worth the listen.
Barry Zito had a much better day then his first outing last week, going 3 full innings allowing two hits, one run, one walk, and two strikeouts. Zito admitted that he was more “results orientated” today after the talk of him being dumped by the Giants a few days ago.
Besides the homers by Posey and Ford, the Giants scored their first run via a Matt Kemp throwing error on a Travis Ishikawa single scoring Cody Ross who reached base on a HBP. The others were by a Mike Fontenot 2 run single in the top of the 7th during a perfectly executed double steal by Darren Ford and Emmanuel Burriss. Even though its only spring training, it’s nice to see the Giants taking care of the little things, especially against the hated Dodgers.
The Giants will have their first Bay Area battle of their young 2011 season when they face the Oakland A’s tomorrow at Phoenix Municipal Stadium. First pitch is slated for 12:05 PT (1:05 MT).
The San Francisco Giants Brandon Belt launched his first Spring Training homer, capping off a 5 run 1st inning that lead the Giants a dominating 7-2 victory over the Milwaukee Brewers at Scottsdale Stadium. Every starter besides catcher Chris Stewart got a hit today for the split squad Giants, who will have their second team play the Los Angeles Dodgers at 6:05 PT (7:05 MT) tonight.
The well rounded offensive day looked like this: Brandon Belt finished the day 2-4 with 2 RBI, Mark DeRosa was 1-2 with a 2 RBI double and a walk, Pat Burrell, Freddy Sanchez, and Aaron Rowand all were 1-4 with an RBI a piece; in fact the only starter to record a strikeout the plate was Rowand. These are the kind of games that make you have to take a step back and tell yourself, “it’s only Spring Training, relax.”
Jeff Suppan had another nice start for the Giants today, getting the win in 3 full innings, allowing only one hit and no runs, walks, or strikeouts.Jeremy Affeldt had a interesting inning giving up 2 hits and an earned run, one walk and one strikeout.
As I previously mentioned, the Giants will face the hated Dodgers tonight at Camelback Ranch for the second half of their spilt squad day. Here is the lineup for the G-Men this evening:
Tonight’s game won’t have any radio or TV coverage, but we’ll have a full post-game recap for your reading pleasure.
After beginning his 2011 Spring Training with some back issues, eccentric closer Brian Wilson will make his Spring Training debut on Sunday against the Seattle Mariners after he threw a live batting practice session at full strength yesterday to some hand picked Giants batters. Aubrey Huff, Freddy Sanchez, Travis Ishikawa, and Mark DeRosa were all selected to be shut down by Wilson and his devastating filth.
Here’s what Wilson told San Jose Mercury beat writter Andrew Baggerly about his choices:
“All quality hitters,” Wilson said. “Guys were getting good swings, as they usually do. I wanted to face those specific guys. DeRosa is a professional hitter, Freddy, jeez, he has a batting title, Ishi we all know gives you a great left-handed at-bat off the bench and Huff’s one of the best lefty hitters in the league.”
According to Baggerly, Wilson looked to be back to full strength:
Wilson looked great today while throwing to hitters. He was exploding off the mound, throwing with maximum effort and running it up there pretty good. Cutter and slider had plenty of movement. Fastball appeared to have life.
It doesn’t take long for Brian to get back into his top form because this guy is a flat out horse. He brings it even in Spring Training BP sessions, where he apparently gave up only a few hard hits to his teammates, and it really was only a few. Wilson’s nice showing produced a sigh of relief for the coaching staff as well as Giants fans, but it also got a different reaction from Aubrey Huff:
“I’m starting to question if he was even hurt,” Huff joked.
Another day, another NL West opponent, another win for the San Francisco Giants.
It was a beautiful day at Salt River Fields at Talking Stick in Scottsdale, and with the Giants taking out their NL West rival Colorado Rockies 7-5, it made the day just that much better. With Matt Cain missing his start due to inflammation in his right elbow, Ryan Vogelsong stepped in admirably pitching three scoreless innings with two stirkeouts and one walk. Cain will hopefully only miss one start.
Reigning NL Rookie of the Year Buster Posey blasted a two run center field bomb in the in the 3rd and finished the day 2-3 including a single and a walk. Darren Ford flexed some muscle with a left filed homer in the 3rd, as well as a single and stolen base in the 1st, he finished the day 2-4. Emmanuel Burriss had himself a great day, going 2-2 with an RBI single in the 2nd and an RBI triple in the 4th. Thomas Neal had an RBI single in the 7th.
The Giants held the Rockies hitless until Todd Helton hit a leadoff, stand-up double in the bottom of the 5th off Sergio Romo. Giants lefty Alex Hinshaw gave up 4 runs in the 8th to bring the Rocks back into the game. Colorado added another run in the 9th, but they couldn’t complete the comeback.
PANDA WATCH: Pablo Sandoval was robbed on two hard hit balls, but he looked good doing so, so he is forgiven.
The Giants move to 5-2 in the Cactus League and will have their first split squad day of 2011 Spring Training tomorrow as they face the Milwaukee Brewers at 12:05 PT (1:05 MT) and the Los Angeles Dodgers at 6:05 PT (7:05 MT). Jeff Suppan will get the start against the Brewers who give the ball to Tim Dillard for the start. Barry Zito will get the start against the Dodgers and thier starter Jon Garland.
In their first night game of the Cactus League the San Francisco Giants took out a split squad Arizona Diamondback team 4-2 at Scottsdale Stadium.
Jonathan Sanchez went three full innings for the Giants giving up four hits and two runs (one earned) striking out three Diamondbacks and walking one. Jeremy Affeldt had his first appearance of spring training pitching a perfect 4th inning for the G-Men.
Freddy Sanchez made some nice contact in the 1st inning for a single while bunting himself on in the 2nd. San Jose Mercury News beat writer Andrew Baggerly had a funny tweet about Sanchez’s at-bat in the 4th inning:
Freddy Sanchez had one of best hit-and-run protection swings ever. Literally jumped to foul off high fastball. Pinata swing. Candy came out.
Just another way Freddy gets it done. Nice showing by Sanchez.
Non-roster invitee Chris Stewart went 3-2 from the plate including a huge 2 RBI triple in the 2nd inning, and added a double in the 6th. Aaron Rowand had a sacrifice fly in the 2nd, Charlie Culberson had an RBI double in the 6th. Eli Whiteside had a couple of AB’s but still can’t return to his catching duties until his throwing elbow is back to 100%.Cody Ross had a single and two walks while Brandon Belt had an 8th inning single, making it 4-9 thus far for him in Cactus League action. He also stole a base.
PANDA WATCH: Pablo Sandoval was the DH today, going 1-2 with a single for the day. Pablo is staying hot and I like it.
The Giants will face the Colorado Rockies tomorrow, first pitch is scheduled for 12:05 PT (1:05 MT). The Giants will have Ryan Vogelsong getting the start, Matt Cain will get the day off due to elbow inflammation. Jorge de la Rosa will get the start for the Rockies.
The San Francisco Giants spring training schedule keeps on keeping on this evening as the G-Men square off with the Arizona Diamondbacks for the third time in five spring training games at Scottsdale Stadium. This will be the first night game for both teams thus far in the Cactus League, with Arizona taking part with a split-squad. Jonathan Sanchez will be the starter for the Giants and Zach Duke will start for the Diamondbacks. A few of the starters (most notably Buster Posey) will get a night off but will participate in full practice with the team today. Freddy Sanchez is in his second start of spring training, look for him to get some good wood at the plate with his rehabbed should getting closer to 100%.
First pitch will be at 6:05 PT (7:05 MT) this evening.
Starting lineup for your San Francisco Giants:
P J. Sanchez
Bruce Jenkins of the San Francisco Chronicle reported today San Francisco Giants pitcher Barry Zito is allegedly “walking a fine line with the organization” and the team is considering buying out the last three years of his 7 year, $126 million contract and cut him loose all together.
Well according to Jenkins, the team is serious.
Jenkins uses phrases like ’a healthy sense of urgency" and ’the fan base has completely given up on him" to drive his point home, while using players like Jeff Suppan or AAA lefty Clayton Tanner as possible replacements for the 5th spot on the roster.
Personally, I’m not buying it Bruce.
Aaron Gleeman on NBC Sports Hardball Talk made some very compelling counter-arguments in his piece today, including the fact that Suppan hasn’t had an ERA under Zito’s 2010 mark (4.15) since 2006. Yes, he is grossly overpaid but he still is a decent 5th starter, and in actuality, he’s probably one of the better 5th starters in the league. How many 5th starters right now have a Cy Young Award? Not too many (if any at all).
The $65 million Zito is still owed over the next few years is a whole lot, but unless something better than Jeff Suppan comes around Zito should probably stay. As a Giants fan, I haven’t given up on Zito, in fact I still have faith in Zito. Well, I have enough faith in him that he won’t single-handedly lose us games and can give the G-Men around six good innings every 5th day. He’s not the Zito he once was, everyone knows this. But he can be the Zito who’s better then the Jeff Suppans and Todd Wellemeyers of the world, which is alright with me.
I’m all for cutting costs and trying to make the team better, but I don’t feel dumping Zito right now would be anything but a panic move because he walked some people in spring training. Everything around Zito is so magnified because of his egregious contract (which was the Giants’ fault for signing, not Zito’s). In a perfect world I’d like to see that contract restructured to save the team money, and take some pressure off Zito, but would you give up millions of dollars that is basically guaranteed? Didn’t think so.
Fault the team for the terrible contract, not the player who has been haunted by his unprecedented success of a couple of seasons in Oakland.
Despite a late inning push by the San Francisco Giants they came up just short as they lost a close one to the Chicago Cubs 3-2. Today was probably the least productive day thus far for the Giants’ offense with only 6 hits and 2 runs, but there were some definite positives to take away.
Tim Lincecum had a strong outing for the Giants going three full innings allowing no hits or walks while striking out two Diamondbacks. Today was also the first game the Giants haven’t had a DH, so Timmy got himself an AB this afternoon, producing a strikeout. Madison Bumgarner had a decent day for the Giants pitching two plus innings allowing six hits and 3 earned runs but had four strikeouts as well. Good sign that MadBum is getting some K’s under his belt before the regular season.
Freddy Sanchez had a couple of nice at bats, getting some solid contact off of Ryan Demptster in the 1st inning, but ended the day 0-3. Good to see Freddy’s shoulder isn’t inhibiting his swing and that he will be raring to go come opening day. Thomas Neal had his first hit of Spring Training, an RBI single in the 8th inning.
Pablo Sandoval continued his terrific Spring Training start going 2-3 with two doubles and an RBI. His double in the 4th inning was a deep shot to center that with a little more breeze would probably have been a homer. I think it’s safe to say folks, Panda Watch is in full effect. Keep your eye on him.
Former Giant Todd Wellemeyer pitched a couple of innings against the G-Men this afternoon allowing only one hit with two strikeouts. Unfortunately for the Cubs Spring Training is the only time Wellemeyer has scoreless outings, no matter how short they are.
The Giants will face the Arizona Diamondbacks for the third time in five days tomorrow for their first night game of Spring Training at 6:05 PT (7:05 MT). The Giants will have Jonathan Sanchez starting with Zach Duke getting the nod for the D’Backs.
The San Francisco Giants’ second baseman Freddy Sanchez will get his first Cactus League start of the season today against the Chicago Cubs at Scottsdale Stadium. Since having off-season shoulder surgery in December Sanchez has been doing rehab and slowly increasing his level of baseball activities, although his shoulder has affected his hitting more than his fielding/throwing. But after taking part in practice at full strength last week (including live BP) Freddy will get the start at second for the G-Men.
This game also involves a mini-duel between the Giants Tim Lincecum and the Cubs Ryan Dempster, both elite pitchers in the National League who are looking to have big seasons for their respective clubs. Let’s see if either of them will go a full three innings, the maximum usually allowed pitchers this time of year.
The lineup for the Giants will be:
F. Sanchez 2B
First pitch is at 12:05 PT (1:05 MT). You can listen live for FREE thanks to the Giants' G-Cast right here.
It was a slug-fest at Scottsdale Stadium this afternoon, and it came down to the very last batter to decide a winner.
Despite a bottom of the ninth scare by the Milwaukee Brewers the San Francisco Giants squeaked out a 10-9 victory with catcher Jackson WIlliams throwing out the Brewers’ Thomas Mittlestaedt for the final out of the game.
Barry Zito had a rough time in his first Spring Training outing of the year, walking 5 of the 13 batters he faced as well as 3 hits and 2 earned runs in 1 and 2/3 innings pitched; not exactly the vote of confidence the Giants were looking for from Zito. Zito also shared some words with Milwaukee’s Prince Fielder, who you may remember has beef with Zito, or Zito has beef with him (depends on how it’s construed).
But another veteran, Jeff Suppan, had an excellent outing, pitching a flawless 3 innings allowing no hits or walks while striking out 2 Brewers. The 36 year old Suppan was signed to a Minor League contract and is looking to work his way onto the Giants’ Major League roster. Days like this are going to help his chances significantly.
Mark DeRosa continued his hot Cactus League start with a 5th inning home run that brought his batting average up to .750 in four Spring Training games thus far. Brandon Belt had an impressive day in his first Spring Training start with 4 RBIs, going 3-5 highlighted by a 3 RBI double in the 7th. The Giants scored 6 runs in that inning that included RBIs by youngsters Terry Evans and Francisco Peguero.
Andrew Baggerly of the San Jose Mercury News tweeted an astute observation about Pablo Sandoval and his new physique:
Pablo Sandoval dropped almost 40 lbs over the winter. He’ll look even skinnier if he gets on base and stands next to Prince Fielder.
And when he singled in the 3rd inning:
Pablo Sandoval singles. He looks like Kate Moss standing next to Prince.
Gives the rest of us who haven’t seen Pablo in person yet a nice visualization of Kung Fu Panda’s transformation.
The next game for the G-Men is tomorrow against the Chicago Cubs at 12:05 PT (1:05 MT). Tim Lincecum will be getting his second start of Spring Training for San Francisco while Ryan Dempster will get the nod for Chicago.
After starting their Cactus League schedule looking very good, the San Francisco Giants suffered their first loss of their 2011 campaign. The GIants blew a three run lead in the bottom of the 8th inning their Spring Training games as they lost to the Arizona Diamondbacks for a 4-3 loss at the brand new Salt River Fields at Talking Stick in Scottsdale Arizona
With RBI singles by Ryan Rohinger and Emmanuel Burriss, and another Kung Fu Panda home run it was looking good for the G-Men headed into the bottom of the 8th. Then Casilla and Hinshaw gave up 4 earned runs in that inning eventually leading to a disappointing loss for the Giants (even though these games don’t matter).
Matt Cain had his first session in the Cactus League and went two scoreless innings, allowing three hits and one stirkeout.
Another cloudy February day in Scottsdale, another win for the San Francisco Giants.
Behind a Nate Schierholtz triple, a Pablo Sandoval Homer, and a couple of RBI’s peppered in by Huff, DeRosa, and Torres, the Giants took out their in-state nemesis the Los Angeles Dodgers by a score of 8-3. Jonathan Sanchez started the game for the G-Men and lasted 1 and 2/3 innings giving up 4 hits, no runs, 1 walk, and 1 strikeout in his first action of the Cactus League season.
Mark DeRosa is showing some promise through two games of the preseason, going 3-3 today and 4-5 overall in his first two games. This is the kind of production the Giants are going to need form him once the regular season starts, lets hope that wrist is finally healed.
San Francisco will be heading out on the road tomorrow (a couple of blocks) to the Salt River Fields at Talking Stick, the brand baseball complex and staium built for the Arizona Diamondbacks and Colorado Rockies as their Spring Training headquarters (which supposedly is really sweet). First pitch is at 12:10 PT (1:10 MT) with Matt Cain starting for the Giants and Ian Kennedy starting for the D'Backs.
The San Francisco Giants have kept their winning mentality of last year intact thus far into the Cactus League Schedule (1 game) and look to continue their hot streak against a split squad Los Angeles Dodgers team this afternoon at 12:05 PT (1:05 MT) at Scottsdale Stadium in Arizona.
Jonathan Sanchez will get the start for the Giants while Tim Redding is slated for the start for the Dodgers despite being sent home from camp on Friday with an apparent flu. Like yesterday’s match between the Arizona Diammondback, bot the Giants and Dodgers will use a DH to save their pitchers, with the lineups for both teams as follows:
The Game will be broadcast live on KNBR 680 as well as MLB.tv (if you are a subscriber). Regardless of if the Giants play the Dodgers in the end or September or the end of February, you know they don’t want to lose to them. And considering the Dodgers only have half their team playing the Giants while the other half plays their cross town rivals the Angels (wow the Dodgers are really starting off with some venom-filled meaningless games). Should be a good time had by all, hope you can catch the game.
It sounded like a beautiful day in Scottsdale with a buzz in the air as I excitedly listened to the Giants first Cactus League game against the Arizona Diamondbacks on KNBR 680. Jon Miller and Dave Flemming sounded like they were in mid-season form already as they called quite the first game for the Giants, who held off the D’Backs for a 7-6 win.
This is a huge blow to Lincecum’s Cactus League Cy Young Award hopes.
Sorry Timmy, maybe next spring.
Other highlights of the game included a 10 batter, 5 run 2nd inning for the G-Men with RBI hits by Pat Burrell, Pablo Sandoval, Aaron Rowand, Mark DeRosa, and Miguel Tejada, a two out, 2 run double by Buster Posey in the 4th, a Kung Fu Panda walk with him laying off a high fastball on a 3-2 count (maybe Barry Bonds is rubbing off on him), Javier Lopez pitching some unhittable filth in the 5th, and Brandon Belt turning a nice double play in the 8th.
The game also had some late inning drama with the Giants holding a 1 run lead with 2 outs and 2 on, but youngster Casey Daigle held on to give the Giants their first win. Even in the Cactus League the Giants stay true to form with some tourtureous baseball.
Another funny tweet came from the San Jose Mercury News’ Andrew Baggerly:
Edgar Renteria just walked into Giants clubhouse for a visit. Getting huge hugs. “Where’s my locker?” he joked.
Nice to hear Edgar still has love for the G-Men. But will Juan Uribe? We’ll find out tomorrow as the Giants take on their perennial antagonists the Los Angeles Dodgers at Scottsdale Stadium, with Jonathan Sanchez getting the start. Game starts at 12:05 PT (1:05 MT) on KNBR 680.
The wait is over. It’s finally here.
The San Francisco Giants are ready to kick off their 2011 season today as they take on the Arizona Diamondbacks at Scottsdale Stadium. You can listen to the game live at 12:05 PT (1:05 MT) on KNBR 680 or watch on MLB.tv (with purchase of a MLB.tv regular season package). For the majority of you that don’t have MLB.tv (it is rather expensive) you can get your fix for Giants Spring Training action on the MLB Network or CSN Bay Area starting March 11th.
Tim Lincecum will get the start for the Giants and will square off against Arizona’s Joe Saunders. Even with both teams being from the National League a DH will be used for this game, with Andres Torres getting the nod for the Giants. A few key players will sit out for the G-Men; Aubrey Huff is nursing a sore wrist but will play in tomorrow’s game, and Freddy Sanchez who is rehabilitating his surgically repaired shoulder will start taking live BP tomorrow and is recovering nicely.
Bochy’s starters for the Giants will be:
The San Francisco Giants were immediately made a better team last year when Buster Posey was called up from the minor leagues, eventually winning the World Series with Buster taking home Rookie of the Year. This season, the Giants are looking to make it back-to-back in both categories with their incredibly talented youngster Brandon Belt. Belt was on Comcast Sports’ Chronicle Live earlier today to talk with host Greg Papa about trying to make the 40-man squad, his versatility, and his goals for the upcoming season.
Brandon was selected by the Giants in the 5th round of the 2009 draft and put up ridiculous numbers last year in the Minors (.352 AVG, 23 HR, 112 RBI), and at only 23 years old, his best is yet to come. San Francisco is looking for Belt to have a productive Spring Training and could conceivably be on the opening day roster for the G-Men. Whether he makes it on the team now or is brought up from the minors later, Brandon is a player who will make a serious impact in the major leagues. Is he the next Giant to win rookie of the year? That's yet to be seen. Regardless he’s someone that will help the Giants win games.
The wait is finally over everybody, the San Francisco Giants first spring training game is today! (sort of)
The Giants play an intrasquad game today at Scottsdale Stadium around 12:05 p.m. Pacific Time. The San Jose Mercury News beat writer Andrew Baggerly tweeted the Giants lineups this morning:
Giants minors intrasquad lineup #1: CF Brown 2B Burriss LF Neal 1B Eldred RF Peguero 3B Noonan C Sanchez SS Adrianza DH Williams
Giants minor intrasquad lineup #2: CF Ford 2B Culberson 1B Belt C Joseph LF Evans 3B Gillaspie SS Crawford RF Perez DH Stewart
For those of you unfamiliar with intrasquad games, they are basically games that last no longer than a little league matchup, with team A squaring off against team B. These games are always the young guys trying to make the squad, pretty fun to watch up and coming talent honing their craft.
In injury related news Henry Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle reports that Freddy Sanchez was finally allowed to take some light BP the last few days and hit a home run against bench coach Ron Wotus. I’m sure Ron Wotus is no Timmy, but it’s a start and a good sign that Freddy can take free swings without worrying about injury.
Brian Sabean was on the Murph and Mac show on KNBR this morning and announced the Giants 2011 pitching rotation as follows: Tim Lincecum, Jonathan Sanchez, Matt Cain, Barry Zito, Madison Bumgarner. I think this lineup is great, good idea to break up the lefties (Sanchez and Zito) and the workhorses (Cain and Lincecum), the group has a nice mix of pitching styles that will keep opposing hitters (hopefully) out of sync from game to game in this order. Andrew Baggerly tweeted another thing of note with this lineup:
This means Jonathan Sanchez would get home opener April 8 when team raises WS champs banner. Cain gets night opener when team gets rings.
Pretty sweet stuff, can’t wait for opening day!
Today the San Francisco Giants took time out of their busy spring training schedule for their annual media day at their Arizona headquarters at Scottsdale Stadium. An array of media personnel were in attendance including the Associated Press, MLB.com, Comcast SportsNet Bay Area, Topps, and the Giants photography crew amongst others. All of the coaches and training staff had to participate, as well as some minor league coaches and of course, the 62 players involved in the Giants’ spring training.
The media and photo extravaganza kicked off at 7 A.M. this morning, and consisted of 12 stations that took about 25 minutes to complete a piece. Starting with coaches and staff, one by one they went through the media gauntlet, followed by the players themselves; the players with the least amount of time with the club (i.e. minor leaguers) went first and moved up the list until they finished with all the veterans. It’s good to see some of the younger players in the clubhouse get some media attention, at least to get to know them a bit better if nothing else. A few players like Tim Lincecum and Matt Cain did shoots with some of their sponsors (Timmy had a Red Bull Shoot while Cain had one for Mizuno). You can check out some of the photos from media day here or here.
San Francisco Giants skipper Bruce Bochy was on the Murph and Mac radio show on KNBR yesterday, and gave a sort of ‘state of the team address’ talking about how last season’s success affects this season, offseason roster moves, pitching rotation, and how a successful spring training equates to a successful regular season.
Bochy said he was impressed with how the players conducted themselves within all of the hoopla surrounding being World Series Champions, saying that the players will not rest on their laurels of last year and are excited to get back to work. He also spoke about the Giants new (but kind of older) shortstop Miguel Tejada. Bochy talked about how Edgar Renteria was a crucial part of last year’s team becuase of the mentoring role he would have with other players on the team, especially ones of latin decent. Tejada apparently is already stepping into that role, trying to help out any way he can (Tejada already volunteered to be Pablo Sandoval’s workout parter). In terms of the ptiching rotation, Bochy admits that he will announce his rotation later inthe week, but will probably go with 5 guys for most of the season. Boch also had a few things to say about Brian Wilson. Check out the whole interview, it’s interesting stuff.
Bochy will be on the Murph and Mac show on KNBR again later in the week.
The San Francisco Giants spring training is now well underway, only three more days until the first Spring Training game!
One of the most integral parts of spring training are in camp competitions. Whether they’re between two up and coming youngsters, a youngster and a seasoned veteran, or veteran against veteran, very few jobs on the field are ever safe, and The Giants are no different. One that is shaping up to be a doozy is the battle for 3rd base between Pablo Sandoval and Mark DeRosa. Pablo is coming off his worst season as a pro while DeRosa is finally healthy after almost two years are wrist issues. Pablo’s background is mainly as an infielder, his experience is at 1st and 3rd (with a little bit of catcher peppered in there) while DeRosa has played all over the infield and outfield, making him more flexible to be used somewhere besides 3rd base.
Can Kung Fu Panda’s weight loss help improve his fielding or can DeRosa prove that he’s back and ready for action? My early guess would be Pablo will be at 3rd most of the season, but the way that Bochy loves to rearrange his lineups, I wouldn’t be surprised to see some variations. I’ll be looking at positional battles between Giants players throughout spring training and DeRosa is going to be in the running for multiple positions. Look for him to compete (and possibly succeed) in almost all of them.
In pseudo-baseball related news, Brian Wilson apparently was at Chalie Sheen’s house, but not to party. He was there along with a few other players to talk to him about the upcoming addition to the ‘Major League’ movie franchise Sheen will be starring in. Now that you mention it, isn’t Wilson just the ‘wild thing’ reincarnated? All he needs are a pair of black-rimmed glasses and he’d be good to go.
Also for all of you who are addicted to Giants baseball (like me) you can stream the live spring training practices from Scottsdale. Sort of cool to see the guys doing their thing.
When it comes time to talk to the team, Bruce Bochy doesn’t beat around the bush.
During the Giants first weekend of full-squad workouts Bruce Bochy took some time to talk to his team about the importance of staying focused and hungry for another championship title. Chris Haft of MLB.com reported that for approximately 30 minutes Bochy incorporated his observations about the team’s progress with a little bit of motivational flare (he even threw in some Winston Churchill quotes). Bochy had this to say about his speech:
"A lot of your meetings, you talk about what it takes to get there. These guys have been at the top, and as I told them, you’re never more vulnerable to complacency, arrogance, sloppiness, indifference, than when you’re riding a wave of success. That’s why we have to keep our focus on what we do to get ready for this season…I hope these guys have had time to savor what they’ve done, because it really is unbelievable…But with that said, success is never final. You have to earn it over and over again. We know that. It’s a new year, it’s a new season, it’s a new race."
In other spring training news Chris Haft of MLB.com reports that the Giants are trying figure out how to piece an outfield together that would prove most effective for the regular season, and the G Men sure do have some options. The term ‘open-minded’ was Bruce Bochy’s mantra about the state of the outfield yesterday, with a slew of competitors vying for playing time, particularly left field. With guys like Pat Burrell, Cody Ross, Nate Schierholtz, Andres Torres, Aubrey Huff, Mark DeRosa, Aaron Rowand, Travis Ishikawa, and (possibly) Brandon Belt as potential outfield contributors, a proverbial game of musical chairs is inevitably on the horizon for Bochy. When it comes to center field, Bochy admits thats Aaron Rowand will most likely stay there which, like last year, will leave Andres Torres as odd-man-out to probably fill in somewhere else in the outfield. But for the rest of the group Bochy will have to take his time and evaluate everyone:
"These aren’t going to be easy decisions, believe me," Bochy said. "They always tell you that’s a good problem."
The MLB regular season is just around the corner, and today marked the first full team workout for the San Francisco Giants this spring training.The team will have six days of full team workouts before they play their first exhibition game February 25th against the Arizona Diamondbacks. Can't wait!
Andrew Baggarly of the San Jose Mercury News reports that Giants' third baseman Pablo Sandoval lost 38 pounds during the offseason, reducing his body fat percentage from 30% to 19%. Sandoval's trainer, Ethan Banning of Triple Threat Performance, estimated that his total fat loss was closer to 45 pounds with the added muscle that he put on. Thats a lot of weight to lose in just a bit over 3 months, very impressive. Looking good Panda, looking good.
In other news CSN Bay Area's Mychael Urban posted on twitter that Giants' star closer Brian Wilson missed workouts again on Saturday due to tightness in his back, making it four straight days he sat out. Wilson played some catch on Friday, but the team is in no hurry to get him back before he's 100% healthy.
After having to watch the San Francisco Giants battle their way to a World Series title from the dugout last year, veteran infielder Mark DeRosa and his beleaguered wrist are finally 100% healthy and ready to compete. Spending all but 26 games of the 2010 season riding the pine, DeRosa can now take pain free BP for the first time in a long time, and wants to get back to being an every day player.
It must have been difficult to sit back and watch as the Giants climb to the mountain top, but DeRosa was anything but stagnent as he recouped his injury. As Henry Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle writes, Mark was actively involved with the players everyday, giving advice and support whenever necessary. Second baseman Freddy Sanchez put it this way:
“I’ve never seen any player who was hurt and not able to play have a bigger impact on a group of guys. He had the ‘it’ factor. He was the glue that kept our team together. When things weren’t going well, everyone went to talk to Mark.”
Being the team’s soothsayer is all fine and good, but for a competitor like DeRosa, he wants to be out on the field. Offensively, Mark has always put up decent numbers when he’s getting regular playing time (.272 career BA, 440 career RBI in 13 seasons) and has always been solid with the glove. But his long absence has raised the debate on where he would make the biggest impact for the team. Can he be an everyday player? He probably could. Would that be the best course of action for the team? Probably not. I foresee Mark being a sort of super-utility guy, as Juan Uribe had been the last few seasons, playing infield and out while getting clutch hits when necessary. Either way, it’s good to see him out of the shadow of the dugout and into the Arizona sunshine this Spring Training.
As the players for the San Francisco Giants gear up to defend their World Series title, there are a few things fans can watch for as spring training unfolds:
1) New Faces
The Giants have a few new players that are worth taking a look at during spring training. One of which is the minor league standout Brandon Belt. Belt led the minors in OPS during his first pro season, batting .352 with 76 extra-base hits, 93 walks, and 22 steals in 136 games. Now, Giants brass has not decided on whether or not he will be on the opening day roster, (my guess would be no) but will likely be a mid-season call up (a la Buster Posey) once the team decides where he would be most useful to them. Belt will get lots of time around the clubhouse and good major league at bats in Arizona this spring, I urge you to check him out, this kid is worth your time.
2) Old Faces
Giants fans know that we won the World Series last year because our ridiculous pitching and team-first mentality, which hopefully will overflow into 2011. Luckily for us, we have players like Tim Lincecum to shore up our rotation and our clubhouse. It’s crazy to think that a guy so young is a veteran already, but with two Cy Young awards and a W.S. championship to his name I would bet that he’d be someone who brings stability to the team as a whole. He’s upped his game, just check out what Anthony Witrado from Sporting News had to say about him. Hopefully all that hard work by Timmy will help carry the Giants back into the playoffs come October.
3) Promising Turnarounds
Coming off of his worst season in the big leagues, there really is no where to go but up for Pablo Sandoval. And after his second go round of an offseason weight loss program (for those who don’t know it’s called Operation Panda and the first time failed) Pablo is ready to work. He’s looking much slimmer, it’s obvious that he’s been working his tail off. Kung-Fu has spent most of the offseason working out with personal trainers in Arizona, and was one of the first people to report to spring training. I know, some fans say we went through this last year with Pablo, but this year he actually lost the weight and is fully committed to being a better player. I expect him to be more like his 2009 self (hit .330 with 25 HR and 90 RBI) than his 2010 self (hit .268 with 13 HR and 63 RBI).
4) Back to the Grindstone
For some players the joy of the game comes from the journey of the season; the routines, the workouts, gradually improving and honing in your skills. This is true for the fans as well. Personally I love the grind of the season, and I especially love the players who are grinders. Like Freddy Sanchez. Here’s a guy who puts on his hard hat everyday and comes to work, constantly fine-tuning himself for the long haul of the season and the difficulties it entails. He has a clubbed foot for Pete’s sake! This guy is scrappy and a downright winner, which is was why I’m glad he wears the black and orange. Can you believe he arrived to spring training early too?
5) Brian Wilson
The San Francisco Giants defense of their 2010 World Series championship is officially underway as their pitchers and catchers reported to Scottsdale, Arizona today. Additionally, some veteran position players reported today to get an early jump on their workouts. These include Pat Burrell, Cody Ross, Buster Posey, Pablo Sandoval, and Freddy Sanchez.
It’s safe to say fans are pretty high on this team. How can you not love the first question in a Giants mailbag being whether the team can win 100 games in 2011. The Giants will be favored in the National League West, but they won’t be sneaking up on anybody this time around. Even as they rolled through last season’s playoffs, they seemingly came out of nowhere (at least to the rest of America) to stun the Phillies and Rangers en route to the first San Francisco-based Giants world championship.
This year’s team returns almost the entire lineup, minus infielders Edgar Renteria and Juan Uribe. Last year the roster came together late in the season as well as could possibly be expected. The question now is whether that carried through the offseason.
The final weekend of no baseball is upon us as the magical phrase "Pitchers and Catchers Report" takes hold starting Monday. Valentine's Day may be important for couples, but for San Francisco Giants fans, their love affair with the now defending World Champions picks back up on February 14. The Giants pitchers and catchers report on Monday the 14th, with the full squad reporting February 18.
The Giants had a relatively quiet offseason as far as player acquisitions are concerned, but when you win the World Series the general goal is usually to bring back the talent that got you there. The Giants were incredibly active outside of the front office this offseason and it will be interesting to see if they suffer any sort of hangover. Repeating as world champions is a difficult task and they'll need to get past the potential World Series hangover.
We'll be here through the entire 2011 baseball season, starting with spring training.
San Francisco Giants Spring Training Schedule (all times PACIFIC):
Pitchers and Catchers: Feb. 14
First Workout: Feb. 15
Position Players: Feb. 18
First Full Workout: Feb. 19
2/25: vs. Diamondbacks, 12:05
2/26: vs. Dodgers (SS), 12:05
2/27: @ Diamondbacks, 12:10
2/28: @ Brewers (SS), 12:05
3/1: vs. Cubs, 12:05
3/2: vs. Diamondbacks (SS), 6:05
3/3: @ Rockies, 12:10
3/4: vs. Brewers (SS), 12:05; @ Dodgers, 8:05
3/5: @ Athletics, 12:05
3/6: vs. Mariners, 12:05
3/7: vs. Rangers, 6:05 (TV: CSN Bay Area)
3/8: @ Mariners, 12:05
3/9: vs. White Sox, 12:05
3/10: @ Reds, 12:05
3/11: @ Padres, 6:05 (TV: KTVU)
3/12: vs. Dodgers (SS), 12:05 (TV: CSN Bay Area)
3/13: @ Rangers, 1:05
3/14: vs. Brewers, 1:05
3/15: @ Diamondbacks, 6:40
3/17: vs. Angels, 7:05
3/18: vs. Dodgers, 1:05
3/19: vs. Royals, 1:05
3/20: vs. Athletics (SS), 1:05; @ Cubs (SS), 1:05
3/21: vs. Rockies, 1:05
3/23: @ Angels, 1:05
3/24: vs. Indians, 7:05
3/25: @ Royals, 8:05
3/26: vs. Reds (SS), 3:10 (TV: NBC Bay Area); @ Indians, 7:05
3/27: @ Royals, 1:05
3/28: vs. Athletics, 7:15 (AT&T Park, TV: CSN Bay Area)
3/29: @ Athletics, 7:05 (Oakland Coliseum, TV: CSN California)
3/30: vs. Athletics, 12:45 (AT&T Park)
3/31: @ Dodgers, 5:00 (TV: ESPN)
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