Here’s a new graphic — in its early stages — of something I’m calling Game Flow. The idea is that it’s a simple graph showing the progression of the game from the pitching side of things. I’m still looking for a way to incorporate things like runs, outs, strikeouts, and walks into the graph, but for now this is a rough sketch of what I’m intending to do. I’m not sure it’s particularly useful right now, but feedback is appreciated.
After just three games into the year the Giants are averaging 4.6 runs per game, and yet the team leaves Arizona winless. Go figure, right? Cain, much like Lincecum and Bumgarner, wasn’t exceptionally sharp in today’s loss, but he had moments of looking like the guy we’ve seen for awhile now. Strikeouts, control, and mixing pitches are what Cain generally does for 32 starts each year. Today wasn’t really any different but it was clear that Cain wasn’t on his A-game. The biggest blows against the Giants came in the 6th inning when Ryan Roberts slammed a two-run home run which was followed by a Lyle Overbay solo shot. Playing baseball in Arizona is starting to give me pre-humidor Coors Field vibes. The park was live for all the hitters — except Manny Burriss, who I’m not sure hit a ball out of the infield today.
The Giants wasted quite a few scoring opportunities (each team left seven men on today) and despite Sergio Romo’s ‘Houdini’ impression in the later stages of the game, the bullpen had issues. Affeldt and Casilla had trouble finding the strike zone. Casilla, in particular, looked every bit the part of a pitcher with a career 4.4 walks per nine rate. It’s also going to be really annoying when Affeldt doesn’t pitch well this year, mostly because he’s making $5M to do so. Defensively things weren’t good. Brandon Crawford made a critical error that led to the D-Backs evening the score at 6-6 in the 7th inning. With Javier Lopez in the game to face Miguel Montero with the bases loaded, Crawford bobbled a groundball to short that looked like a sure-fire double play. The result was everyone moved up a base and the game was tied.
The good news for the Giants is that Pablo Sandoval stayed hot and, maybe more importantly, Buster Posey went 2-4 with a two-run home run. The defense still needs to tighten up (Posey made two errors; Crawford made one error) and I have to think once the pitching hits its groove the Giants will be able to win a few games. The best thing to console yourself with at this stage is that the team has played approximately 1.9% of its total games. The season is young. The season is long. Don’t freak out just yet. (If we lose four games in a row, I’m freaking out, man.)
Also, Gregor Blanco was pumped to hit in the ninth. Here’s a .GIF of him air-humping the ground …
He would go on to fly out to center fielder, Chris Young. Baseball.