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One third of the 2022 season is in the books - where do we stand?

LHG

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Technically, the season is a 1/3 in the books for the Giants about halfway into today's game but thought I'd get a head start here.

Been thinking about the season thus far. They went 14-7 in April and have gone 15-17 since April 30th. So which record better suggests how this team will finish 2022? If you take the total winning percentage thus far, the team projects to finish 89-73. However, if they continue to play slightly under .500 the rest of the way, they could finish closer to a 80-82 record this year. So what does that mean for postseason contention?

We all know that the postseason has expanded, yet again. Now, there are 3 division winners, plus 3 Wild Card teams per league. Currently, the Giants hold the 3rd and final Wild Card spot in the NL. They are 5.5 games behind the Dodgers for the NL West, 3 games behind the Padres for the 1st WC spot and 2 games behind the Cardinals for the 2nd WC spot. The Braves sit 2 games behind the Giants and the Phillies, Pirates and Diamondbacks are all within 5 games of the Giants. So, for comparisons, how have these teams done in the same time frame the Giants have gone cold? Let's take a look (overall record, record since April 30th).
Dodgers 35-19, 22-12
Padres 33-22, 19-14
Giants 29-24, 15-17
Cardinals 32-23, 21-14
Braves 28-27, 18-15
Diamondbacks 26-30, 16-18
Phillies 25-29, 14-18
Pirates 24-28, 15-15

So, taking these numbers, and using the method that gave the worst of the two scenarios for the Giants, here is how the final standings could look like:
NL West - Dodgers 105-57
WC #1 - Cardinals 96-66
WC #2 - Padres 95-67
WC #3 - Braves 86-76
Giants 80-82
Pirates 79-83
Diamondbacks 76-86
Phillies 72-90

Now, obviously, this is far from a good way to accurately guess final standings but it does give an indicator how teams are currently heading. There are multiple factors that can change these directions. Players get hot, players go cold, players get injured.

There are not many guys who are on the IL right now: Steven Duggar has started rehab and maybe his defense alone could help win a game or two that would otherwise be lost, but his hitting needs to improve for him to see regular playing time. Brandon Belt should be ready to get activated soon but his hitting is the worst we've seen from him in a few years. Hopefully, LaMonte Wade is healthy by the end of the month and can hit like he did last year. Both Anthony DeSclafani and Matthew Boyd could be ready by July 1st. However, neither are a guarantee to upgrade the back of the rotation.

For the Giants, I think there are a few guys who could yet get hot: Duggar and Belt (above) are both candidates, based on past performance and, in Duggar's case, age. Darin Ruf has been up but mostly down. Maybe he gets an extended hot streak. Thairo Estrada's power hasn't showed up this year yet, maybe it will soon. Will Joey Bart finally put it all together and start to hit even close to like he did in the minor leagues? Maybe. Is DeSclafani really as bad as his 1st 3 starts of 2022? Probably not. I'm torn to add him here but there is a possibility that Jose Alvarez starts to look like the 2021 version. Ditto Jake McGee. I know that this may be biased but I really think Tyler Rogers will not end the season with an ERA north of 4.00 (let alone over 5.00) but I've been wrong before. Camilo Doval could be crazy good, maybe that kicks in this year. Logan Webb could make some more adjustments and look like his 2021 campaign.

Yet there are some candidates for leveling down their production: Joc Pederson has been crazy good with the bat the past few weeks but can be notoriously streaky. I doubt his season numbers will stay this good. Jason Vosler goes on here for the fact that he's hit well so far and will undoubtedly be back with the club. However, can he continue to hit well, especially if he continues the yo-yo from the bay to the capital? Is Luis Gonzalez this good? This numbers aren't great but I think Evan Longoria is more likely to get worse then better going forward. Time will tell. I have my doubts that Jakob Junis is this good but he sure is stabilizing the rotation for now. Dominic Leone has gotten away with a lot so far this year, that may catch up to him. Sam Long gives up too many walks and will need to work on that if he wants to continue his success with the big league club.

I think the room for better production probably outclasses the room for worse production so I think it is unlikely the Giants finish below .500 but we've got 109 games left to play. Hopefully, those 109 games go well approximately 60% of the time.
 

jeep99tj

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Get a little more continuity in there and we could be a little better. Last year’s injuries could have hurt but they actually helped when the players called up stepped up and filled in nicely. Not so much this year. I believe we are on a pace to use more players this year then last which is not good. We also seem like o be getting career minor leaguers and throwing them in the starting lineup. I know the analytics were the big thing last year too. Not so much this year.
 

SF11704

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I think the game is still evolving ... and the team isn't keeping pace. Pitching continues to move in the direction of an Opener plus a cast of mostly one inning Relievers. MSG called this when it first started to appear in the game. CAL refers to it almost daily. Some of the relievers are actually specialists. One batter only. The idea is to get clean innings as much as possible. Little or no wiggle room with this format. Every inning needs to be a SDI. This current format almost demands it.

IMHO . The Doggies are the best using this format. They been very successful for at least 3 years using this formula.

Last year it looked as if we found our answer too. Our pen was our greatest strength. We did struggle early on but eventually settled in with a 'winning' combination. We were able to win 107 games using that combination.

Not so much in 2022 though. What looked like a proven combination is now faltering. Littel is looking somewhat like Tzill's version of Shittel. Alverez hasn't looked any better either. McGee is not even an echo of what he was last year. Rogers has been very hittable this year. Even Doval has seemed to become somewhat hittable. Last year it was more of a control issue. This year it just seems like almost every batter is making contact with his pitches.

Playoffs .... I dont see us catching the Doggies or the Pads. I think our only shot will be to stay ahead of the Braves. For that to happen.. . The pen will have to perform much better than it has.

Lastly ... I like what Kapler has brought to the table .... but ... I'm also starting to wonder ... can he manage this new type of game ... can he effectively manage the pitching staff? There have been many posts this year that ring of ... one batter to late ..... and that seems to be the key to managing in this new style of the Opener and cast of Relievers. You can't be one batter too late!

You almost have to 'stop the bleeding' at the FIRST sign of blood.
 

LHG

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I think the game is still evolving ... and the team isn't keeping pace. Pitching continues to move in the direction of an Opener plus a cast of mostly one inning Relievers. MSG called this when it first started to appear in the game. CAL refers to it almost daily. Some of the relievers are actually specialists. One batter only. The idea is to get clean innings as much as possible. Little or no wiggle room with this format. Every inning needs to be a SDI. This current format almost demands it.

IMHO . The Doggies are the best using this format. They been very successful for at least 3 years using this formula.

Last year it looked as if we found our answer too. Our pen was our greatest strength. We did struggle early on but eventually settled in with a 'winning' combination. We were able to win 107 games using that combination.

Not so much in 2022 though. What looked like a proven combination is now faltering. Littel is looking somewhat like Tzill's version of Shittel. Alverez hasn't looked any better either. McGee is not even an echo of what he was last year. Rogers has been very hittable this year. Even Doval has seemed to become somewhat hittable. Last year it was more of a control issue. This year it just seems like almost every batter is making contact with his pitches.

Playoffs .... I dont see us catching the Doggies or the Pads. I think our only shot will be to stay ahead of the Braves. For that to happen.. . The pen will have to perform much better than it has.

Lastly ... I like what Kapler has brought to the table .... but ... I'm also starting to wonder ... can he manage this new type of game ... can he effectively manage the pitching staff? There have been many posts this year that ring of ... one batter to late ..... and that seems to be the key to managing in this new style of the Opener and cast of Relievers. You can't be one batter too late!

You almost have to 'stop the bleeding' at the FIRST sign of blood.
The game is evolving but Dodgers are actually sticking with a fairly traditional starting rotation model. If you look at their top starters (Buehler, Urias, Anderson, Gonsolin and Kershaw, before he got injured) they are all averaging over 5 innings of work per start. They've used a couple of guys that pitched closer to opener status (Grove and Pepiot) but each of their starts went at least 3 innings. The current 5th starter (White) started the season in the bullpen so his first start was only 2+ innings but he's worked up to 4 innings in his 2nd start and now 5 innings his last 2 starts.

There are other teams out there that are leaning more towards openers but the best team, thus far, in our division just has a lot of starting pitcher talent.
 

catman

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Seeing how Bart looks I agree, but that's hindsight.
Bart should be a decent player, possibly not a star, but a solid regular. Baseball America has him rated as a 55 player, just above major league average. I think that's about right. Posey was a 60-65 player.
 

msgkings322

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Bart should be a decent player, possibly not a star, but a solid regular. Baseball America has him rated as a 55 player, just above major league average. I think that's about right. Posey was a 60-65 player.
Bart just got sent back down to the minors....
 

LHG

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I created threads for the quarter mark and 1/3 mark of the season. Today's game officially wrapped up the 1st half of the 2022 season for the Giants. I don't feel like creating a whole new thread. Instead, I will only note that the Giants are now at close to .500 (41-40) and are 27-33 from May 1st onward. April looks more and more like an aberration, remnants of a magical 2021 season that faded into the dust.

Time for this team to seriously consider selling.

Here is what the contending teams' (whom I listed in post #1, plus the Marlins) records are from June 7th forward:
Braves 21-8
Phillies 19-10
Dodgers 18-10
Marlins 16-12
Padres 15-14
Cardinals 13-17
Giants 12-16
Diamondbacks 11-16
Pirates 10-21

Basically, the Pirates faded while the Marlins replaced them in the race for the 3 Wild Cards.
 

calsnowskier

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I think I would be more forgiving of this level of play if we were in a rebuild / sell off. But being told that this is a contending team makes it unwatchable.

Saying that, I am not attacking the FO with the comment. They actually have NOT said this is a contending team. They have actually been pretty open with the fact that the team has been playing like shit.

TBH, I think last year caught them by surprise almost as much as it caught us by surprise. Last year was supposed to be a rebuild. Adios Posey. Adios Crawford. Adios Belt. Adios Longoria. Adios Cueto.

Then, the luckiest team, arguably in the history of the MLB, happened. It fucked up all plans. They didn’t want to purge Canario and Kilian, but they HAD to (and I support them doing it, btw).

Now the team is playing more consistent with what they expected last year. The casual fans are pissed because, well 107. The smart fans are pissed because, well, 107 as well.

I mean, Jesus fucking Christ. THIS team won 107 games last year. None of us have experienced that before. None of our parents have ever experienced that. No Giants fan, EVER, has experienced that. Only a small handful of teams in the history of the MLB have even been close to that.

And now the team is performing closer to what we would expect.

But our compass’s are all out of whack, so we are pissed.

Time to reset. Time to shake 107 off and HOPE for 87. It won’t happen, but that is a somewhat attainable expectation. Time to wrap up the “IFZWT” throw aways. He doesn’t deserve that anymore. Not only is the churn not working like we thought it was last year, but it is messing with our enjoyment of the game / team.

Time to just root for the kids.

Webb
Bart
Villar
Hjelli
Ramos
Gonzalez
Doval
Luciano
Harrison
Dabovich
Castro

from today forward, I am in a rebuild mindset. I don’t really care about wins/losses. I want to see players who will help next years team. I want Doval out there so he can gain confidence in his FB. Or send him down to work on it in a less stressful environment. Whatever the coaching staff thinks is right, I am AOK with it. I want to see Ramos get 3 weeks of playing time with SF. I want Bart to get his feet under him. Even if that means sending him down again. I want Hjelli in the rotation, but only if that is where his future lies. If he is a reliever, than fine. But give him some SF run as well. Put Long in the rotation. Even if he is only a 4 IP guy.

anyway…

I mean everything I said here, but it is also just a rant. So don’t hold my feet to it too much.
 

SF11704

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I agree with Cal on al points, but I'm not sure that FZ does. This decision will revolve around a bunch of personality traits more than it does about statistics and performance. To do what Cal is suggesting would require FZ to acknowledge that the postseason is a lost cause. I'm not sure he can do that untill this team is mathametically eliminated. I also think that the constant churn is very much a part of this process. He's always looking for an edge. Always looking for that one missing link that may be sitting out there.
 

LHG

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I agree with Cal on al points, but I'm not sure that FZ does. This decision will revolve around a bunch of personality traits more than it does about statistics and performance. To do what Cal is suggesting would require FZ to acknowledge that the postseason is a lost cause. I'm not sure he can do that untill this team is mathametically eliminated. I also think that the constant churn is very much a part of this process. He's always looking for an edge. Always looking for that one missing link that may be sitting out there.
The problem is that this team has multiple missing links. I'm sure FZ knows that and that the churn cannot answer all those missing pieces. However, the big variable is ownership. Are they willing to recognize that last year was a fun aberration and its times for a more thorough rebuild? How much independence does FZ and Harris have from ownership in making roster decisions?
 

SF11704

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The problem is that this team has multiple missing links. I'm sure FZ knows that and that the churn cannot answer all those missing pieces. However, the big variable is ownership. Are they willing to recognize that last year was a fun aberration and its times for a more thorough rebuild? How much independence does FZ and Harris have from ownership in making roster decisions?
Ahhhhh ...and LHG is on the money ... FZ is only an agent here .... you are right .... ownership has to make the decision ....
 

calsnowskier

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Ahhhhh ...and LHG is on the money ... FZ is only an agent here .... you are right .... ownership has to make the decision ....
The Salary number this year is the lowest it has been since ‘13 per COTs (ignoring ‘20). And isn’t even top 10 in the league anymore (they are #13).

I agree that money should not be spent just for the sake of spending. But they need to do SOMETHING to fill the holes. Sifting through the bargain bin is fine. But that can not/should not be the primary source of our groceries.
 

LHG

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The Salary number this year is the lowest it has been since ‘13 per COTs (ignoring ‘20). And isn’t even top 10 in the league anymore (they are #13).

I agree that money should not be spent just for the sake of spending. But they need to do SOMETHING to fill the holes. Sifting through the bargain bin is fine. But that can not/should not be the primary source of our groceries.
Here is where I prefer free agents, when a team with multiple holes and is sinking fast wants to trade off prospects to fill some of those holes. Maybe they fill enough to tread water as a contending team the rest of the way and possibly enough to make the 3rd Wild Card spot but it wouldn't be enough to win a World Series with this group (although stranger things have happened) and then the team is missing more possible long term building blocks for some rentals.

At least on the free agent market, there are guys who won't come at the price of prospects (as fickle as their potential can be). The down side to that is signing guys who block prospects or whose performance doesn't look much better than those they replace but who cost a lot more.

I guess there are downsides to any avenue of roster building (prospects, churn, trades, free agents) and I just have more preferred method of roster filling. Of course, I'm convinced that is the best primary method of doing so but I also acknowledge there is a reason I don't have a job in a baseball's front office (besides the fact I've never actually applied for one).
 

SF11704

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IMHO ... nanaagement has to make a decision on what course they want to take. I see two possibilities.
1. Build from the ground up ... trade everybody that you can because they will most likely not be in our window ro compete. But this is a tough road. You need lots of blue chip prospects and a young core team to build with.

2. Buy a contending team. Fill as many holes as you can with FAs. You need money to do that ... but that is the one thing we have. Money.! This path means you keep Webb and Rodon and Doval at a mi nimum. Buy a Judge or something similar as a centerpiece and construct around that. Similar what I thought we would have done with Harper. Purchase as many pieces as you can to fill the gaps. The objective is to become immediately competitive. If you reach that level ... then you just concentrate on new and replaceable pieces the following few years. Not easy to do but I do think it's possible
.

.
 

LHG

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IMHO ... nanaagement has to make a decision on what course they want to take. I see two possibilities.
1. Build from the ground up ... trade everybody that you can because they will most likely not be in our window ro compete. But this is a tough road. You need lots of blue chip prospects and a young core team to build with.

2. Buy a contending team. Fill as many holes as you can with FAs. You need money to do that ... but that is the one thing we have. Money.! This path means you keep Webb and Rodon and Doval at a mi nimum. Buy a Judge or something similar as a centerpiece and construct around that. Similar what I thought we would have done with Harper. Purchase as many pieces as you can to fill the gaps. The objective is to become immediately competitive. If you reach that level ... then you just concentrate on new and replaceable pieces the following few years. Not easy to do but I do think it's possible
.

.
With number 2, add "and hope it isn't all sunk cost free agents like the Angels have".
 

calsnowskier

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IMHO ... nanaagement has to make a decision on what course they want to take. I see two possibilities.
1. Build from the ground up ... trade everybody that you can because they will most likely not be in our window ro compete. But this is a tough road. You need lots of blue chip prospects and a young core team to build with.

2. Buy a contending team. Fill as many holes as you can with FAs. You need money to do that ... but that is the one thing we have. Money.! This path means you keep Webb and Rodon and Doval at a mi nimum. Buy a Judge or something similar as a centerpiece and construct around that. Similar what I thought we would have done with Harper. Purchase as many pieces as you can to fill the gaps. The objective is to become immediately competitive. If you reach that level ... then you just concentrate on new and replaceable pieces the following few years. Not easy to do but I do think it's possible
.

.
The Giants will never do the full tear down. that is only for the small market teams (like Chicago and Houston, LOL). And I don’t think the full tear down is needed for this team anyway. Just small sales.

I would love to keep Rodon, if he were interested, I just don’t get the sense he is. Not that it is a BAD fit, just he is in the MAKE MONEY stage of his career, and I think he will find bigger money from a contender elsewhere. No hard feelings, it just isn’t a match, time wise. Trade him for a bounty. He might be the biggest trade chip on the market if we make him available.

Webb stays. He is the new Cain/Timmeh/Bum. He can anchor the rotation for the next 5-6 years.

Doval stays. He is hard to watch right now, but I think we all see the STUD that is buried inside that emotional child.

Trade Belt. Won’t happen, because his trade value is next to zero right now. But if we can get a semi-decent haul, go for it.

We are “stuck” with Craw. But I don’t think this is a bad thing. He is a Giant for life. And while his D is falling fast, it is still passable. Keep him around and let him retire as a Giant. He is a borderline number retirement player (though probably not).

Trade Longo if you can (I think he has no trade rights, though). But he is likely done after this season.

Trade Yaz, Wood, Cobb, any bully arm…
 
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