Baseball is a Funny Old Game  – Giants 12 Rockies 10

Well, that was four hours of total weirdness. To all of you who were saying, “This felt like the Sunday game in Phili, you are right.” It was the same game played a second time.

If you can jump on Matt Cain and get a 5-1 lead, you win. If you don’t, you are wasting a great offensive performance. This is what happened in San Francisco at the start of the second road trip, when DLR gave  up a 4-1 to Baumi and the Giants.  Look, you will have bad games, and your pen will get scored upon. But you cannot have too many of those or you find yourself playing out the string in August . But after the pen coughed up the win in game 4 in Miami, DLR in SF, and the pen last Sunday against the Phils, you figure it will be a while before you see it again. Not true.

On two big swings by Michael Morse, who was long gone from the game when things were determined, the game went from a 5-1 to 5-5 (add in a big fly from 2nd Brandon Hicks). Instead of a walk in the park its 5-5 and Cain looked locked in.

Chatwood who at one point had thrown 30 strikes and 27 balls, somehow, with the bases loaded and 0 outs in the 5th, stayed on the bump, and not only got Morse to line-out to DJ to save things there, but get out of the whole inning without a run. He even gave them a 6th inning  of scoreless work. With Charlie B continuing to act like Barry B, the Rox took a 6-5 lead into the 7th.

Tuesday night Walt Weiss had used the 7 IP by Frankie Morales to setup his pen, and Rex got a nice 1 pitch DP to end the 8th and got the first batter in the 9th. Today….not so much. Rex gave up a huge homer after a walk to Brandon Belt in the 7th, to give the Giants the lead. But showing that ongoing fight we have observed early from this team, after a Charlie  Blackmon walk and stolen base, Nolan Arenado extended his hit streak to 13 games (truthfully one of the quietest hitting streaks in history), to tie it up again at 7-7. Advantage Rox right?

In the 5th Walt Weiss had Tommy Kahnle ready to go but never went to him. Did he use him to start the 8th? No, he went back, as so many managers do, to the more experienced pen arm, Matt Belisle. First pitch, a getover fastball that did get over, the 2nd deck, by Hector Sanchez! Never heard of him? Me neither… but wait, you will. Why is Matt throwing in the 8th still? Because Walt, like so many managers, likes experience in the late innings. But three of the four throw-away loses this team has at this point have included runs given up by Matt.  Matt did managed to survive a double to the next man (caught over the fence by a fan who was politely escorted out).

This team though is very resilent as we all know by now. The Rox took advantage of a single by DJ, a bunt by Culberson, a balk and a hard hit ball back up the middle to plate the tying run. Back even at 8-8.

And so it would remain.  Hawk pitched into and out of trouble in the top of the 9th. The Rox got the bases loaded with 2 outs in the 9th, but DJ lined out just short of the pen where the ball was caught by Pence. 10th inning the same.

Which brings us to the 11th. Baseball is rarely truly a 25-man game, but at Coors it can be. Today it was. Chad Bettis, brought in to go multiple innings in theory, may have already been looking for apartments in Colorado Springs, probably sped up that process. Single to Pence. Walk to Belt. Sacrifice bunt, walk to re-load the bases (I hate walking bases loaded with young pitchers…too much pressure.  So pitching to that guy Sanchez again, count run 3-2 and….you guessed it, the guy with 6 homers and 57 RBIs before today hit a grand slam to deep center field for a 5 RBI 2 homer day. Game over!

Why Bettis instead of Kahnle? Why Belisle instead of Kahnle in the 8th? Who knows. I like Chad and Matt both, and they will be contributors this year. But right now they are not trustworthy enough to give the ball when it matters.

Give them credit though, bottom of the 11th, Tulo singled and Justin Morneau who had left a number of ducks on the pond during the day, crushed one into the wind into the right field stands. Game still on right? Baby Bull, who didn’t have a good game at all, grounded out, but Drew Stubbs was credited with a bad hop single to the 3rd basemen (he had two “singles” today neither of which was beyond the 3rd basemen but speed matters). Can they pull it out? Nope, double-play by Brandon Barnes around the horn, game 12-10.

So, they will head to Los Angeles not in 1st or 2nd place, but 3rd, back to half game out from San Francisco. Had they won today and LA lost to the Phils they would have had an off-day in first-place.

Look, its early. The team is playing pretty good. They have played 11 on the road and 12 at home. They have gone 4-7 on the road and 8-4 at home.  But they have had a chance on this six games to win all 6 but coughed up 2 that they had nice leads with pitchers that they thought they could trust.

I am not going to go negative. Its early. They coughed up the win in Miami in the getaway game. They coughed up the win when up 4-1 with DLR the first game in San Fran. They coughed up that “game” on Sunday against the Phils. And now this one.  Aside from the San Diego getaway game where Kennedy had them no-hit into the 6th,  I don’t think they have stolen one yet. So its 1-4 in those kind of games.

Are we happy? No. But there is a lot to be happy about. Think about the next 36 hours until they start against the Dodgers. They showed a lot of bounce back after Sunday, so I doubt this game will stick too long with them. With me…that is another thing.

 

 

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Agbayani
Agbayani
6 years ago

Really nice write-up, Dr. C.! Thanks … I didn’t see the game, so you provided a lot of the flavor of what I missed — details like the fact that Stubbs’ 2 hits never got beyond 3B. And you’re right: I think this one seals Chad’s fate for the moment. He’ll be back in the Springs trying to focus on what he needs to do as a reliever. What can I say … it was a Coors day with the… Read more »

sdcarp
sdcarp
6 years ago

I didn’t/couldn’t watch the game, did follow the middle innings on the Internet. It’s weird to me Bettis was chosen over Kahlne. I would ask if Kahlne was hurt or sick, but apparently he warmed up earlier in the game. Agree with Ag – Bettis isn’t ready. I do really like the fight the guys have this year. They’re never out of games. Next step is learning how to win games like this and Sunday”s Philly game. Looking ahead to… Read more »

Bill
Bill
6 years ago

I’ve always been a guy who thinks that the only reason “so and so is playing” is because he has dirty pictures of the manager. This year the guys with the dirty pictures must be Belisle and Bettis. That’s the only reason I can think why Weiss, for the 2nd time this week, went to those guys before Kahnle and Ottovino. A few days ago we survived. Today we didn’t. I understand Kahnle is a rookie, a career minor leaguer,… Read more »

Pooter
Pooter
6 years ago

The Killer B’s- Belisle, Brothers, and now Bettis are killing this team’s chances of putting together a winning streak!

Sign Betancourt when he is healthy and let Belisle and Brothers pitch in easier situations.

GARY
GARY
6 years ago
Reply to  Pooter

Worth a shot if he can come back at full strength.

Julian
Julian
6 years ago

Is Scahill better than Bettis right now?

When Chacin comes back, it may be that Nicasio goes to the pen. We’re stuck with Belisle unless we waive him. If someone picks him up on waivers do they then assume the remainder of his salary?

sdcarp
sdcarp
6 years ago

If we hang around and are in contention mid-July near the deadline, my opinion is pen help will be our biggest need.

It seems to me adding a cost controlled, good Closer – allowing us to move Hawk to the 8th and essentially reshuffle the other guys to lower leverage situations, is a viable way to tweak things. We’ll see……hopefully we’re in the position where we have to debate things like this.

ProgMatinee
ProgMatinee
6 years ago

I wish I wasn’t a broken record…but another game where better management by WW and a little luck wins the game. Couple opportunities for Cargo to PH slip by.

Agbayani
Agbayani
6 years ago

Sdcarp, if we’re lucky enough to be hanging around the playoff hunt in July there will be plenty of ways to get a little better. I agree — the bullpen usually offers the best bang for your buck, and bullpen help doesn’t usually cost you a top prospect. Betancourt was almost the perfect addition in the 2009 playoff drive. Giambi didn’t hurt either, and an extra experienced pinch hitter who you can carry with expanded rosters would fill a need… Read more »

sdcarp
sdcarp
6 years ago
Reply to  Agbayani

Like I said – lets cross our fingers and hope we can have this debate over fireworks on the 4th of July! To me…..Dickerson, Barnes, and Rutledge are so viable offensively that we might not need the usual playoff PH type. It also seems like, with any luck at all, our newfound SP depth at the major and minor levels will keep us at 5 viable starters. I’m intrigued by a team like Seattle. They’re an offensive disaster. All sorts… Read more »

Julian
Julian
6 years ago

Agbayani, by September Parker might provide some assistance on the hitting side. Aside from him, there’s not a lot of offense in either CS or Tulsa.

Tyler Anderson pitched a good game tonight. In 5 innings he gave up 3 singles, 2 walks, and 1 earned run.

Agbayani
Agbayani
6 years ago

I run kind of hot and cold on Kyle Parker as a prospect. Right now I’m cold — a fairly ordinary start in AAA despite some wild offense in the Springs this year. I was listening to Colin Cowherd on the radio this morning talking about the NBA Charlotte franchise being on the upswing. A comment that rang true: “yes, they whiffed on a number of high draft picks. But after a while when you keep drafting high, sooner or… Read more »

sdcarp
sdcarp
6 years ago
Reply to  Agbayani

FWIW – David Dahl might be better than any of these listed. I know Keith Law (who has almost always been harsh on the Rockies) is back on the Dahl bandwagon to the point I think he’s driving it. The big picture takeaway here is that it’s super that we’re able to have this conversation. You can’t have too many Prospects. The Yankees survived throughout the Steinbrenner era on having super-strong farmhands (ironically, they’re a little down at the moment)… Read more »

sdcarp
sdcarp
6 years ago

Ag – your boy Chris Martin called up! Bettis down……which obviously makes sense. Betancourt (re)signed.

I’m pulling for Martin!

Julian
Julian
6 years ago

I love Martin’s story. I’d love to see him succeed.

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