Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Predictable Ending-Bullpen Blows NLDS

For eight innings,it looked like the San Francisco Giants vaunted "Even Season Magic" was going to return the NLDS back to Chicago for a deciding game five on Thursday.

Apparently the "Bullpen Voodoo Curse" was larger magic on this night as the Giants Achilles heel arrived once again in the top of the ninth and sent the Giants spiraling out of the postseason in a 6-5 loss.

I'm not going to focus too much on the game,I watched a replay (in live time as I went to bed before the game,Feeling a little old and rundown last few days),but I did want to give a lot of credit to Matt Moore,who really is the guy to feel bad for as he allowed just two runs on two hits and showed some real signs on some occasions of returning to the form that he showed in Tampa in 2013 (17-4 3.29 ERA) after being brought in at the trade deadline.

The Giants rotation looks like it'll hang in there with anyone next year (Bumgarner,Cueto,Samardjza,Moore and a battle among prospects for the 5th spot) ,but they will have to address the bullpen.
That bullpen didn't just lose this game,that could be lived with,it was the key in the second half that saw so many leads turn into losses and it needs a major overhaul.

I'm generally not a guy that believes in spending a massive amount of money on the bullpen,but just for morale reasons,there is going to have to be some expenditures and for competitive reasons,there may have to be more.
The Giants used five guys to protect a three run lead and couldn't hold it-and think that the Giants didn't use the one reliever most fans were frustrated with most in the second half-Santiago Casilla.

It'll be interesting to see the tactics of the Giants and how they decide to retool the bullpen.
Many of the pitchers are free agents,so how many to do you bring back and how many do you allow to look elsewhere after the 2016 season.
Santiago Casilla,Sergio Romo,and Javier Lopez all could be playing in other towns next season.
Will Smith might be be given a bigger role next season and considering the cost of losing Phil Bickford,he likely should be given a chance.
Hunter Strickland has the arm to close,but hasn't shown the ability to do so when given the occasional opportunity and after that,you are looking at young guys like Derek Law or even pitchers from AAA to make a move.
Will the Giants go after veterans to shore this up? Young players?

It's been an interesting season for Giants fans,a first half that was the best in the game and a record settingly awful second half that saw NINE games lost by the pen.
Well worth watching,but sometimes gut wrenching.
I tell people all of the time that I haven't paid my dues as a Giants fan,I started rooting for them when we bought our house,but I didn't have a ton of bad times to suffer through like the Indians and even the Pirates.
I am able to watch the Giants more than the other two because of my schedule and as the years go on,I become more and more invested in the team,but still nothing would rank with an Indians title.
I would trade those Giants championships in a finger snap (if I could snap my fingers that is) for just one Indians trophy.
Perhaps last night,I could have truly become a dues paying Giants fan...

Beginning to work on the Devils season preview to be listed later today or tomorrow...

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