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Quarter Season Review - 2022

LHG

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The next game would put the season just over the quarter mark so I thought I'd look at the different aspects of pitching and hitting, in terms of performance, and grade them.

Starting Rotation - The young Logan Webb had a phenomenal breakout year in 2021 (3.03 ERA, 1.106 WHIP, 9.6 Ks/9) but has seen declines across the board (8 starts, 3.54, 1.26, 6.3) this year. Off season (or early spring really) signee Carlos Rodon has proven to be a shrewd pick up, posting good numbers in the 2nd spot (8 starts, 3.43, 1.16, 12.5). Meanwhile, number 3 Anthony DeSclafani hasn't even looked like a 5th starter when healthy (6.08, 1.80, 9.4) and went down with an injury after 3 starts. Another offseason acquisition, Alex Cobb, looks like a release candidate (6 starts, 5.61, 1.52, 11.2) while the 5th man, Alex Wood, looks like a 5th guy at best (8 starts, 4.82, 1.55, 9.4). The main replacement in the rotation, Jacob Junis, has been extremely awful in AAA but yet has gotten multiple opportunities on the big league roster (3 starts, 2 relief appearances) and made the most of them (2.70, 1.01, 6.7). Sam Long has filled in admirably (3.48, 1.258, 7.0) as an opener (3 starts) and relief (6 games) but is currently in AAA. Grade: C+ (due to Rodon's last two poor starts, Webb's slide and DeSclafani, Cobb and Wood looking mediocre, at best. Rodon's 1st 6 starts and Junis help the grade from being worse).

Bullpen - The closer role started with Jake McGee but his extreme drop from last year to this year (9.58, 1.935, 5.2) necesitated a transition to Camilo Doval. He has struggled at times (1 blown save and a few close calls) have made it a bit rocky, but, overall, he is one of the best in the bullpen (2.70, 1.260, 11.9). Tyler Rogers started well but has recently struggled enough to see his numbers dip below last year (3.78, 1.140, 5.4). Dominic Leone has also gotten worse this year. His ERA is good (2.63) but his WHIP (1.317) is a bit concerning. Meanwhile, John Brebbia is showing that last year's numbers were rust coming off. He is becoming the 2nd best pitcher in the bullpen with a 2.37 ERA, 1.053 WHIP and 9.5 K/9. He follows only Jarlin Garcia, who is unscored upon in 14.2 IP, with a minuscule 0.767 WHIP. Mauricio Llovera is making a strong case he deserves to stay in the bullpen, with a 1.42 ERA, 0.947 WHIP and 11.4 K/9 in 7 appearances. Then there is Jose Alvarez (4.66, 1.345, 7.4) and Zack Littell (6.32, 1.532, 7.5) who are looking horrible after very good 2021 seasons. I have to mention that outfielder Luis Gonzalez has pitched 3.1 innings in 2 appearances and given up only 2 hits and no walks (and no Ks). Gregory Santos and Sean Hjelle have combined for 2.2 innings of no hit, no run ball, with 2 Ks. Compare that with Tyler Beede, Yunior Marte, and Kervin Castro, who have pitched poorly in 20,.2 innings, giving up 28 hits, 14 walks and 18 earned runs (with 15 strikeouts). Grade: B (I may be a bit generous with this group.)

Catcher - Here is where some big shoes were needing to be filled. Joey Bart hasn't even gotten close. Posey had an .889 OPS last year. Bart has a 641 OPS so far this year. Curt Casali has been seeing some increased playing time before going down with a concussion. He is one of the few players with better numbers this year (.816 OPS this year versus .663 last year). Mike Papierski won't be turning any heads with his bat, and he is hitless in 3 at bats (all 3 strikeouts) so far since his recall. Grade: C+ (Mainly due to Casali's hitting).

Infield - It is no surprise that 1st baseman Brandon Belt has endured injuries yet again this year, nor that he has struggled with the bat in the early going. Both are the norm with him. However, there was some hope that his hot production last year would carry over. His 247 point drop in OPS seems to suggest last year may have been a blip. Thairo Estrada has held down 2nd base so far. While his defense seems passable (to slightly above average, at times), his hitting has gone downhill. His on base has dropped 32 points and his slugging 100 points from last year. Shortstop Brandon Crawford hasn't been nearly at the numbers he posted in 2021 either. His OPS has seen a 268 point drop from last year to this year. Third baseman Evan Longoria hasn't played much. He's only gotten into 10 games and has a .344 . . . OPS. Wilmer Flores has covered at 1st, 2nd and 3rd. His offense hasn't slipped as much as the others but there is still a 50 point drop in OPS from last year to this year. Tommy LaStella just got healthy and is off to a .267/.313/.667 start in 4 games. Hope he continues the hot slugging. Darin Ruf has bounced between 1st base, DH and left field, with a drop in production (OPS down 191 points) as well. The only good replacement production has come from Jason Vosler. In 12 games, he's hit .286/.366/.486. Hope he gets another look this year. The group of Luke Williams, Kevin Padlo, Mike Ford and Donovon Walton have combined to hit .200/.200/.280 in 25 at-bats. Grade: C- (this whole group looks bad).

Outfield - Joc Pederson has become the main guy in left field this year. He started off really hot, got sidelined in late April and hasn't been the same since then. His .791 OPS is a 59 increase from last year but illustrates why his signing was a bit odd. However, it is also an improvement over Alex Dickerson's .725 OPS last year. Center field has been a hodge podge of players, with Steven Duggar the primary guy before getting injured last month. His OPS dropped 258 points from last year. Austin Slater has seen the most starts there since Duggar went down. He's bounced back a bit from a down 2021, hitting 35 points better in OPS this year. Utility man Mauricio Dubon also got some time in center, and posted yet another career low in OPS, continuing a downward trend from his debut since in 2018. He, of course, got shipped to Houston for Papierski. Over in right field, Mike Yastrzemski has overcome a slow start to possibly show 2021 was an aberration. His .860 OPS (up 92 points from last year) is a team best at this point in 2022. Luis Gonzalez has been a pleasant surprise, hitting .324/.376/.459 in 74 at-bats, yet is the odd man out when the outfield is mostly healthy. LaMonte Wade just has not been able to show much because he's been injured almost all season, getting into only 10 games, going 6 for 25 with a home run and 5 walks. The trio of Jason Krizan, Heliot Ramos and Ka'ai Tom have gone 3 for 15 with no extra base hits and 3 walks. Grade: B (Yaz and Gonzalez, and at times, Pederson carries this unit. Slater has been decent)

Overall grade: C+ Yet their record grades closer to a B or B-
 

calsnowskier

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You can get away with really good deals on bubblegum and drink enough water to get a good volume of spit, and that can carry you if everything works out right. But sometimes you just have to splurge on the 3M duct tape. Sometimes you do actually get what you pay for.

While I liked the results of last year (even though it ended badly), I, to this day, can’t explain it. It is hard to defend a strategy you don’t understand. It is hard to cheer for something you don’t know.

I have watched at least part of every game this year. But I have found myself wanting to bail early in most games. Outside of Craw and Webb, there aren’t any players on this roster who “excite” me. No one who I get excited about because they are at bat or on the mound.

I dog Belt, but I really don’t hate him. But I also can’t stand his Linus walk back to the dugout. Or his constant time spent on the IL. Or his prolonged slumps (though his hot spells are, admittedly, quite fun to watch).

Rodon is good, but he is a mercenary who will likely be gone after this year. I am not investing emotions into him.

Yaz is grossly over-rated. He is a face of the Org almost entirely because of his name. Dude has zero personality and plays at a level of approx an MLB average starting player. Wake me up when I should get excited.

Dugar, Slater, Bart are guys I like since they were developed by us and I have followed them all essentially their entire careers, but none are game-breaking players. I would guess they will have very nice, longish careers, but I would be shocked at this point if any become non-sarcastic Forever Giants.

Longo, Ruff, Flores, Babe, Pedo are all just merc’s in my eyes. None are Giants we will remember well in 20 years (even though everyone on this board would be happy to remember anything in 20 years).
 

SF11704

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For me last year was magical. I had zero expectations. I would have been happy with an 81-81 season. But they played exceptional ball. All year long. Every game seemed exciting and it always seemed that when we were down someone would rise to the ocassion. Even though we won 107 games, the division wasn't clinched until the very end. Every damn game counted. It was fun to be a Giant fan. That was 2021.

2022 isn't quite the same. Sort of figured we'd never see another 107 win season but 90ish was very possible. We started out pretty good. Made me start to think that maybe we are better than I expected. Over the next stretch of games we played some good ball and some ... not so good ball. Wasn't to sure what to expect moving forward. The last few weeks have been somewhat painful from a fan's perspective. Many of the things i thought were strengths ... really aren't. LHG's post pretty well sums up what is really happeng with this team. Nothing to write home about.

Then, as Cal said .... there is nothing that really excites me as a fan. No one player that I'd like to follow. No one pitcher that makes me want to look through all their box scores. Not winning games doesn't help either.

I'm starting to believe .... that when Posey retired .... we lost the heart of this team. I just don't see anyone on this team that can step into his shoes. We need someone or something to breathe life back into this team. Just don't see any easy fixes here.
 

LHG

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You can get away with really good deals on bubblegum and drink enough water to get a good volume of spit, and that can carry you if everything works out right. But sometimes you just have to splurge on the 3M duct tape. Sometimes you do actually get what you pay for.

While I liked the results of last year (even though it ended badly), I, to this day, can’t explain it. It is hard to defend a strategy you don’t understand. It is hard to cheer for something you don’t know.

I have watched at least part of every game this year. But I have found myself wanting to bail early in most games. Outside of Craw and Webb, there aren’t any players on this roster who “excite” me. No one who I get excited about because they are at bat or on the mound.

I dog Belt, but I really don’t hate him. But I also can’t stand his Linus walk back to the dugout. Or his constant time spent on the IL. Or his prolonged slumps (though his hot spells are, admittedly, quite fun to watch).

Rodon is good, but he is a mercenary who will likely be gone after this year. I am not investing emotions into him.

Yaz is grossly over-rated. He is a face of the Org almost entirely because of his name. Dude has zero personality and plays at a level of approx an MLB average starting player. Wake me up when I should get excited.

Dugar, Slater, Bart are guys I like since they were developed by us and I have followed them all essentially their entire careers, but none are game-breaking players. I would guess they will have very nice, longish careers, but I would be shocked at this point if any become non-sarcastic Forever Giants.

Longo, Ruff, Flores, Babe, Pedo are all just merc’s in my eyes. None are Giants we will remember well in 20 years (even though everyone on this board would be happy to remember anything in 20 years).
I won't argue with just about all you wrote (even about Belt). However, I do think Yaz isn't as over-rated as you think. He may be over-rated but considering that he wasn't even on a major league team's radar 3 years ago, I think he's done pretty well for himself. However, his pedigree may over-rate him just based on that.

As for Duggar and Slater, both are a bad season from bouncing from one AAA team to another. Duggar's injury prone-ness, combined with his lack of hitting (last year excepted) may do him in more quickly.

Bart, well, I'm not sure what to think. He's got a prospect pedigree but he's from the old regime. Frankly, I'm surprised that he's last this long. I don't know what FZ & Co will do with him. I assume he will be gone next year if he doesn't heat up this year.
 

LHG

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For me last year was magical. I had zero expectations. I would have been happy with an 81-81 season. But they played exceptional ball. All year long. Every game seemed exciting and it always seemed that when we were down someone would rise to the ocassion. Even though we won 107 games, the division wasn't clinched until the very end. Every damn game counted. It was fun to be a Giant fan. That was 2021.

2022 isn't quite the same. Sort of figured we'd never see another 107 win season but 90ish was very possible. We started out pretty good. Made me start to think that maybe we are better than I expected. Over the next stretch of games we played some good ball and some ... not so good ball. Wasn't to sure what to expect moving forward. The last few weeks have been somewhat painful from a fan's perspective. Many of the things i thought were strengths ... really aren't. LHG's post pretty well sums up what is really happeng with this team. Nothing to write home about.

Then, as Cal said .... there is nothing that really excites me as a fan. No one player that I'd like to follow. No one pitcher that makes me want to look through all their box scores. Not winning games doesn't help either.

I'm starting to believe .... that when Posey retired .... we lost the heart of this team. I just don't see anyone on this team that can step into his shoes. We need someone or something to breathe life back into this team. Just don't see any easy fixes here.
When the team was winning, it was easy to embrace this interchangeable parts mentality for building a ball club. And we had Posey and a couple of other recognizable names on the team to root for as a fall back. Now, its really just Crawford (Belt is still too much of a lightning rod for many fans to root for him, whether justified or not) and maybe Yaz (if only because of his grandfather). An interchangeable roster on a mediocre or worse season will lose fans quickly, especially if they don't understand the method to rebuilding the club.
 

SF11704

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When the team was winning, it was easy to embrace this interchangeable parts mentality for building a ball club. And we had Posey and a couple of other recognizable names on the team to root for as a fall back. Now, its really just Crawford (Belt is still too much of a lightning rod for many fans to root for him, whether justified or not) and maybe Yaz (if only because of his grandfather). An interchangeable roster on a mediocre or worse season will lose fans quickly, especially if they don't understand the method to rebuilding the club.
I never understood FZ's approach to a rebuild. Just seemed like he cornered the market on just about every option that he could afford at the time. Then he put them all on the field and let it work itself out. Had a bunch of people that never played together and cobbled together a team that won 107 games. He seemed to be able to extract maximum return on each and every gamble.
This same set of people haven't produced near the 2021 levels. Not sure why. Lost Gausman but for me Rodon is comparable. Posey is another story. I didnt really root for an individual player last year. It was more of a team thing. All the parts were interchangeable and you tend to root for the 'whole' rather than an individual piece.
Posey was the last 'face' of the Giants. Not sure who it is now. Crawford or Belt seem to be the only options. Not sure either one has the profile of a leader.
 
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