Saturday, March 24, 2007

Giants vs Cubs it was threatening rain again. I was feeling much better, but once again, I did not bring either scorebook or camera. The Giants lost 3-2, but the pitching was much better than we have seen in earlier games.

Barry Zito pitched 4 full innings, giving up 1 run on 2 hits (a HR and a single) and 1 walk. Zito pitched very well, but I was surprised to see him leave the game after 4 innings. I read where he pitched on only 3 days rest.........but I was still surprised to see him leave the game anyway. I did not have a pitch count, but I would be surprised if Zito threw more than 50 pitches. His curveball was looking good again today. The one run he did give up was on a lead off HR by Aramis Ramirez in the 2nd.

Zito was followed by David Cortes. Cortes pitched 2 innings with 1 run scored on 3 hits and a walk. Scott Munter pitched the 7th and did a very good job. Although Munter gave up 2 hits, one of them was a groundball single and 2 of his three outs were on groundballs. As I have said many times, Munter's success is 100% due to his sinker. So.......Munter had a good day because the sinker was working. Brian Wilson pitched the 8th and was victimized by the sun. He gave up 2 hits and an earned run, but the earned run was scored because Todd Linden lost a Derrick Lee flyball in the sun for a double. As I have said before......early in the game, left field is a nightmare for balls hit high into the sun. Later in the game, the sun field moves to CF. Armando Benitez, finished the game off with another perfect 9th. Mando gave up no hits and no runs while striking out one.

Offensively, again the Giants didn't have much. Once again they started only 4 starters, with Dave Roberts, Bengie Molina, Rich Aurilia and Ray Durham taking the day off for mostly minor injury reasons. Ryan Klesko, Todd Linden (again) and Mark Sweeney were the only Giants to have multiple hit days. Sweeney had, easily, his best day of the spring. He came in as a pinch hitter for Cortes in the bottom of the 6th and went 2 for 2 with a double, a HR, a run scored and 2 RBI.

Today's game was a very quick (2 hrs - 15 minutes) game. The pitching was good....but the offense did not do as well against the Cubs pitchers (Wade Miller, Angel Guzman and Will Ohman) as I would have hoped. Once again the Giants were not able to play their starters. I really hope this does not become the pattern for the season......but with Roberts' sternum, Aurilia's groin and Durham's hamstring.....the Giants just weren't able to field their best team.

Tomorrow will be the Giants vs. the Padres at Peoria. According to the Press Notes, Scott Atchison will get a chance as the starter in the game. Atchison has pitched very well this spring with a 2.89 ERA so far. I am sure that the Giants are giving him the chance to prove he is worth an opening day position. Since no other Giants' reliever has stepped up.......why not Atchison? I would never have thought this in early February .....but with the way the Giants relievers have performed.......Atchison, Sun-Woo Kim and Cortes still have a chance to make this team.


mameluke said...

I was at this game, Hank. What did you think of the call at 3B with Sweeney's "triple"?

Agree with everything you said... hitting just didn't put it together. Zito's curveball was *great* though.

mameluke said...

Also, I'll try to stop by on Monday... I was just too into this game. ;)

Giantfan9 said...

Actually Daniel.....I thought Sweeney was safe. It all occurred right in front of me. Looked safe to me.