No new content today because I’m in the middle of finishing a PITCHf/x analysis of Tim Lincecum’s 138-pitch complete game on Saturday against the Padres.
Sneak peak early analysis: Dem’s alotta pitches he threw
Any how, stay tuned for the PFX article, it might go up tonight or sometime by early-ish tomorrow. I probably would have had it finished sooner but I just updated to Excel 2007. Excel ’07 has the weirdest interface ever. I’m so accustomed to 2003 interface that the interface in ’07 is almost what I would call ‘drastically different’. It took me about a half-hour to get comfy, but I can finally click around with ease and bust out some functions again. Nerd cred re-established.
So, while I don’t have anything new to offer you, I can peddle off a series of links in an attempt to make it look like I actually know something. Some links, thoughts, and other pieces of information from around the Giants blogging community.
~ Lefty Malo has a level-headed approach when talking about Lincecum’s complete game. It was nice to see but we won’t know what damage — if any — is being inflicted onto Tim’s golden right arm by pushing him so deep into meaningless games. Shaving off productive years, innings, or games off future Lincecum starts for instant gratification right this-very-moment still seems like a very poor decision to me. Time will tell.
~ Gary Huckabay, from Baseball Prospectus, is a little more harsh than Lefty. He calls the move to let Lincecum throw 138 pitches: “utterly, completely, and colossally reckless, stupid, arrogant, and just plain lazy”. I can’t say I strongly disagree with him. In my opinion, the Giants have been reckless with one of their strongest assets this year; their pitching. Think for a moment what this team looks like if you remove Lincecum or Cain. Not pretty.
~ To emphasize my last point, consider the last Barry Zito start. Pitching in the strongest pitching park in the majors and against one of the worst hitting teams, Zito was knocked around for 5 earned runs in less than 5 innings pitched. Zito’s K/BB continues to spiral downward as he walked 5 hitters on the day and only struck out 1. Not surprising, his Game Score of 22 isn’t his lowest on the year.
~ Some discussion on Pablo Sandoval can be found on Minor League Ball. Through 28 games and 117 PA’s, Pablo has hit: .330/.350/.486. I’m worried about his tiny BB% of 3.4% but he’s been very fun to watch so far. He even took Jake Peavy deep on, you guessed it, the first pitch of the AB.
~ Speaking of Pablo, SFGiants.com has an article that’s humorously titled ‘Sandoval succeeds with free swinging‘. Pablo might swing more than anyone in baseball right now. The League Average Swing% — the overall percentage of pitches a batter swings at — in 2007 was 45.9%. In ’08 Sandoval has swung the bat 63.51% of the time. If you ranked hitters with at least 100 PA’s by Swing%, Sandoval is currently #1. He swings more than Miguel Olivio (62.71%), Humberto Quintero (61.59%), Alexei Ramirez (61.18%), Vlad Guerro (60.37%), and Delmon Young (59.81%). Bengie Molina (57.85%) isn’t that far behind Pablo. Unless he’s another Vlad, he might have to refine his approach next year some.
~ Giants prospect LHP Madison Bumgarner has won the unfortunately titled ‘Most Spectacular Pitcher’ award. The award is given to the minor leauge pitcher with the lowest ERA and Bumgarner’s season of: 1.46 ERA, 141.2 IP, 164 K’s, earned him the honors. Last year, Giants prospect Kevin Pucetas also won the award when he posted a 1.86 ERA for the Augusta Greenjackets. This year Pucetas posted a 3.02 ERA in 125.1 Cal-League innings.