A Place To Talk About Giants Baseball

MLB is Finally Adding Another Wild Card Team to each League.

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on February 29, 2012

I’m totally fine with this. In fact, there should ALWAYS have been 2 wild card teams in the playoffs (in each league). At least there should have been the year they added the first one. Force those 2 to play each other and after the dust settles that *winner* has to play a REAL winner when they face the division winner in the next round.

I’m tired of the wild card teams sneaking into the playoffs and winning the World Series. I’m not against it, I just don’t think the regular season records reward the teams with the best records the way they should reward them. You win 100 games and your *reward* for that is a single home game in your favor. In a 5 game series, that just doesn’t seem like enough. There are too many examples in recent years of wild card teams (see: the cardinals) getting hot in the last week or two of the season and going on to win the world series. I think what you do for 162 games should count for something, certainly more than a lucky team that gets hot for a week (or even a couple of games as ANY baseball team can do)…..

Baseball is different than other sports, at least in terms of *home field advantage*. In baseball, pretty much any road team can beat any home team on a given day. That’s not the case in football and basketball. I’m not saying it can’t be done in those sports, but if the worst NFL team plays the best NFL team in their house they will almost ALWAYS lose.  But in baseball, the Royals or the Orioles can roll into Yankee Stadium on any given Saturday afternoon, beat them, and it’s not a jaw-dropping surprise. That’s why I think the division winner deserves a little more of a *reward* for winning their division……..

My idea: If a division winner in the first round is facing a wild card team in a 5 game playoff, they get 4 home games. Division winner gets the first 2, then they go to the WC, then they get the last 2. I think it’s idiotic to win 100 games, then host Game 1 of the N(A)LDS vs the WC team and lose Game 1 thus negating your earned home field advantage to  a team that has 12 (or so) less wins than you had in the  regular season (and who didn’t win their division).

Baseball is a grind. It’s 162 games. You should get something valuable for persevering through the longest season in all of sports and winning your division. It’s dumb to take that all away be losing a single game to open the playoffs. Beyond dumb, actually……..

The only negative with this move is that the first year will be a challenge from a scheduling perspective. The schedule was made before this change was agreed upon in the CBA so there are some travel considerations to sort out in 2012.

This is a great idea that’s good for baseball. A one game playoff for all the marbles? Who doesn’t love a Game 7? And it’s between the Wild Card teams so it’s another hurdle they will have to climb to win the world series—something I think they should have to do. Climb more hurdles than they have to now.

And this has nothing to do with ensuring the Yankees and the Red Sox making the playoffs every year. They usually do that anyway. If anything, this ends up hurting one of them. The team that loses the division very likely has to play in a 1 game sudden death against a new wild card team. Who wouldn’t enjoy seeing the Yankees going all out and 10 deep into the pitching staff to *maybe* live to see another game? Or how about this one: Toronto win the AL East and the 2 wild card teams are the Yankees and the Red Sox. A Game 7 with those 2 facing off to start the playoffs? Sign me up……..

Since it’s unlikely that MLB will ever get around to my playoff structure modification, this is at least in the ballpark of what I think should happen to more properly reward a divisional winner. You don’t win your division? Ok, go to a Game 7 sudden death match. You burn through all your best pitchers to win that one? Ok, now you are REALLY gonna have to earn that NLDS win. And that’s how I think it should be in baseball.

And this post isn’t a slam against small market teams. You can compete for the world series without being a big market team. And I’m not talking about the dumb *Tampa Bay* example that so many people always use. You don’t have to look any further than our San Francisco Giants to see how it’s done. True, they had a 96 million dollar payroll in 2010—in the top third of baseball, but not obscene. But 2 of their biggest contracts contributed almost nothing to that season–Zito at 19 mil and Rowand at 12 mil. Take 31 million off that number and you’re at 65 million.

The A’s ’06–’10 payroll averaged 62 million a year……..

So you can win a world series without being the highest payroll team. And I’ve got zero sympathy for the teams in the lower 1/3 of baseball (in terms of team salary). Revenue sharing is nothing more than disguised socialism benefiting some of the richest men in the world. You want to own a baseball team? Then figure your finances out and decide whether or not you want to pony up the dough to be successful. Owning a baseball team isn’t just about your ego……

End of rant……….

MadBum: What to Expect in 2012

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on February 29, 2012

This was from Voggy yesterday…..

“People don’t realize (his youth) because he’s so big — he’s a monster,” rotation-mate Ryan Vogelsong said of Bumgarner, listed at 6-foot-5, 225 pounds. “He doesn’t have a baby face, and he’s so strong that it makes him not look his age.”

I went back to find my earliest impressions of YoungBum and here’s an excerpt from my 6/27/10 post:

“…I was struck by how big he’s gotten. Last year he was a super skinny kid but he’s really filling out nicely. Walking around the other players, he fits right in physically—his shoulders, as I said last year, are wide and he’s definitely growing into that frame…”

I am expecting huge things from Madison Bumgarner this year. All of his numbers, especially his 2nd half numbers from 2011, are pointing to a breakout season. Check out his WHIP dip from 1st half to 2nd half:

1st half: 1.36

2nd half: 1.09. That’s as elite as it gets for a starting pitcher……

He also minimized his struggles vs right handed hitters

1st half: .290

2nd half: .244

One of my favorite indicators of future success for pitcher is their command ratio (strike outs/walks)– a pitcher’s ability to get the ball over the plate. The better pitchers will have ratios in excess of 3.0. Pitchers with ratio’s of 1.0 or less have almost no chance for long term success. By the way, if you want to stay on The Surkamp Train don’t calculate his CR from his short stint in the majors last season…….

MadBum’s first half CR from last year was 3.1. Very nice. His 2nd half CR? A stunning 5.4.

I think he’s going to have a monster year. As it has been with all Giants starters over the last few years, wins might be tough to accumulate. But I still think he’s going to go 16-8, at least, with an ERA around 3.20 and 200+ strikeouts…..

Bee-Wheezy Ready to Go

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on February 28, 2012

I’m giving Wilson the benefit of the doubt when he says he’s pain free and ready to go. I hadn’t stopped to look at his 2011 list of injuries but they are imposing, especially for a pitcher.

1) Spring training: bad back

2) end of Spring training: oblique strain

3) all of 2011– bad hip

4) the 2nd half of the season: balky elbow

If you were gonna list off the 4 worst nagging injuries for a pitcher, those would be the 4 (ok, maybe *shoulder* would be in there too). But none of those injuries required surgery. And as worried as I was about his elbow I’m now willing to chalk that up to the other 3 injuries possibly contributing to it. Think about it, with all that going on in his body last year it’s entirely possible that he was compensating for 1 or all 3 in his delivery—that’s how you can indirectly injure or irritate other parts of your body and maybe that’s why the elbow started to bark at him……

I still don’t understand why the Giants coaching and medical staff don’t get in front of these players and sit them down when they KNOW they have injuries that need to heal. Look, if you’re a professional baseball player, you want to be out there no matter what. Each day you sit is another day someone else might take your job. And Wilson, by all accounts, is the ultimate competitor. Finally last August, they did sit him but that was only after he almost did serious harm to his elbow. It’s the same stupid mindset that the Warriors current management is taking with Stephen Curry. SIT HIM ALREADY!!!!!

Still, it looks like we dodged a major bullet and Bee Wheezy is going to be good to go in 2012. With all those nagging injuries behind him, I’m *two flaps up* on how he’s going to do this year. Let’s hope he’s good to go, he’s one of our 5 most critical, irreplaceable players (Timmy, Cain, Panda and Buster being the other 4)………

Keeping Track of “The Surkamp Gang”

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on February 27, 2012

The Surkamp Gang is a little different than The Bowker Gang—those cats had more of an edge to them, more things that they had in common that clearly defined them–young, over-hyped Giant position player prospects who never panned out. But run into them in a dark ally? They’d beat your ass. That’s just how they rolled…..

The Surkamp Gang is different. They’re a little softer, a little more happy-go-lucky. They’ve all got a smile on their face and a song in their heart. Unlike The Bowker Gang who perform community service because they HAVE to, these dudes do it because they WANT to. They don’t care how old you are or if you’re a prospect anymore, they’re just happy to have you on board. They do have one qualification: you have to have at least pitched in the major leagues before. Why? Cause these lovable bastards say you  have to have at least ONE qualification to join their gang! Otherwise, we’d all be in…..

For the purposes of this Spring, we’ll list the gang off as follows:

Eric Surkamp (leader and founder)

Ramon Ortiz

Brian Burres

Shane Loux

Clay Hensley

Travis Blackley

Hector Correa– I’m gonna throw him in even though he hasn’t thrown a pitch in the majors–thiis is the guy we got for Ronnie Paulino.

Some will give me crap about including Surkamp in this gang–certainly naming it after him would seem odd. But most of you know that I am not an *Eric Surkamp* guy. He could prove me wrong and I’d be fine with that. Plus, as their leader and having very little in common with the rest of the guys in his gang, he’s actually the perfect person to lead them…..

I’m not going to get into the individual stats of these guys. They aren’t pretty and are overwhelmingly underwhelming. Only Surkamp, Hensley and Correa are on the 40 man roster. With Ramirez being shipped to the Mets there’s an open spot in the bullpen and there’s a good chance that one of these guys takes that spot. If Voggy’s back keeps bothering him and/or as an insurance plan for the Guaranteed to be Imploding Zito, it probably helps if one of those guys has experience starting– that would be Surkamp, Ortiz, and Hensley……

With expectations kept low and remembering what a nice group of guys they are, it shouldn’t be too painful to follow their Springs…..

And remember, Voggy himself showed up last Spring as a full-fledged member of a group like this……..


As I said in yesterday’s thread, I am starting a list of guys who want to get in on The Flap Fantasy baseball league–see the details below…….

Fantasy Baseball 2012

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on February 26, 2012

We are doing our 4th fantasy baseball league this year. In years past I’ve limited it just to Flappers but we’ve had some trouble with team owners staying involved for the ENTIRE year so I’m opening it up to my facebook friends, too. The guys here who have been in the league in the past and who haven’t crapped out on it will be given priority in the league. If we need a few more committed players I will dip into my facebook pool of friends. A lot of them read the blog though don’t ever post anything……

We are going to be doing a LIVE DRAFT this year. Prepare to attend that for at least 2 hours. The league is at ESPN this year. No cost. As usual, the Rich Aurilia bobblehead is up for grabs to whoever comes in first place. Obviously, that bobblehead resides at Casa de Flavor where most sane prognosticators expect it to remain. But we’ll see about THAT, won’t we? 🙂 I’ve got the league set for 12 teams but will adjust that number accordingly to get the optimum number of COMMITTED team owners…….

Last year, Bozo donated an encased  Jason Schmidt signed ball. On the outside it reads “The Flap Fantasy Who’s a Clown Now? Award”— that was intended to go to the team who came in last place last year. That team owner indicated to me that it didn’t feel right to get a cool award like that just for giving up on the season and I agreed. So I still have the ball. It will still go to the team that finishes in last place this season (again, I am counting on genuine participation for the entire season).

I’m kicking around the idea of the Barry Bonds bobblehead doll that Dirt gave me as a prize too. Stay tuned. The deal with ALL of these *awards* is that you have to agree to send them on to whoever wins it the next season. Honor system.

So email me if you want in on the league. Off the top of my head, the Flappers who participated with the most focus and interest last year were Edd, Blade, Bozo, Dennis, PAWLIE KOKONUTS, NoTalent and Dirt. There were a couple other teams who did and a couple who didn’t and I just can’t remember them without digging around in the Yahoo site (which I’m not taking the time to do right now)……

email: bigflavor77@gmail.com


And as I said on the last thread, we’ve recently joined the Baseball Blogger’s Alliance. The links are to the right. This will allow us to stay connected to other active blogs. There’s other stuff that goes on at the BBA, I just haven’t had time to figure it all out. It’s a very cool idea though, and The Flap is proud to have accepted membership…….

The Chances of Brandon Belt Making the Team Out of Spring Training

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on February 26, 2012

There are two things I’m pretty sure that Bochy is thinking (or should be thinking) right now:

1) Aubry Huff can’t play outfield anymore

2) Brandon Belt needs to be hitting every day

I don’t think either of those are too controversial.

Bochy is saying his outfield is set with Melk, Pagan and Nate.

And you have to believe that Huff is going to at least get a month to 6 weeks to start the season and I can’t see him playing any other position than first base.

We really don’t have any 4th or 5th outfielders to speak of so I guess you would have to count Belt as one of those guys. But that just feels *kludgy* to me. I want Brandon Belt playing every day, whether it’s SF or Fresno.

Here’s what the Giants should do: Start Belt in the OF (you might have to move Melk to RF and have Belt play LF) and relegate Nate to the “super-sub* we know him to be coming off the bench.  I’m tired of trying to force Nate into a starting role. It’s not his gig. He’s pretty brittle, at least in terms of failing to handle the grind of a starting job. I’m not talking about big injuries and a lot of DL time. It just always seems the he stops hitting and then 6 weeks later he tells us he’s been dealing with a balky knee or neck or whatever. And he has proven countless times that he can come off the bench and do something to win a game for you. But, it looks like we are going to see one more run of Nate starting in right field—at least until he hits .239 or strains a knee or something……..

Send Belt down to Fresno to start the season. Call him up when Huff proves he’s done or Nate injuries himself again. That’s how I’d do it anyway…….

Success Comes at a Price–Looking Back on What Happened to Our World Series Heroes

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on February 25, 2012

When you think about the guys who brought the 2010 World Series to San Francisco you probably think of an unlikely bunch of guys. Baggs called his book “The Band of Misfits”. Of course, it takes surprises and multiple career years from players to win a World Series. We definitely got that in 2010. But it’s truly mind blowing how to go back and look at their follow up years. Man, talk about falling off a cliff. Here’s the box score for Game 5 of the Series:

Torres: He had a terrible year that started off with an injured calf. He never got it going in 2011 ultimately getting traded for Angel Pagan.

Freddy Sanchez: injured, surgery, etc.

Posey: injured, surgery, devastating……

Ross: a guy known for his hot streaks never got in one in 2011. Giants didn’t even offer him a deal, now he’s a Red Sox looking to re-start his career.

Uribe: He had an abysmal year for the Dodgers. Another guy who was hurt most of the year. His OPS was .749 for us. It was .559 for the Dodgers.

Pat Burrell: career ending foot injury in 2011

Huff: Similar drop in production without the injury. HIs 2010 OPS was .891. In 2011, it was .676.

Edgar Renteria: He actually didn’t have a very good 2010 but it doesn’t matter because he hit the home run that won the World Series for us. Still, 2010 was not kind to Edgar, his .707 OPS in 2010 dipped to .654 last season. Unable to find a job in 2012, he has retired.

I’m not including Rowand or Panda who didn’t have that much to do with the success in 2010.

The pitchers largely held up in 2011 except for Brian Wilson……..

But when you look at those 8 position players, and if you had to list off 8 who were most critical to the 2010 season those would be the 8 that came to almost everyone’s minds first, it’s unreal to see how they all fell off a cliff together like a herd of brain dead lemmings.

We got our World Series. But looking back on it, what weird price did *they* pay to get it?

This Ryan Braun *Nonsense* And MLB’s Epic Fail

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on February 23, 2012

I would have said *Ryan Braun Fiasco* but I can’t use the word *Fiasco* over and over in all my headlines. But the more that I think about this story the more it starts sounding utterly stupid and almost unbelievable……..

Lemme get this straight:

They left the transportation of this sample to a flunky courier?

This is from the mlb link that Chico (State) posted earlier:


“According to one of the sources, the collector, after getting Braun’s sample, was supposed to take the sample to a FedEx Office for shipping.

But the source said the collector thought the FedEx Office was closed because it was late on a Saturday and felt the sample wouldn’t get shipped until Monday.

As has occurred in some other instances, the collector took the sample home and kept it in a cool place, in his basement at his residence in Wisconsin, according to the source.

Policy states that the sample is supposed to get to FedEx as soon as possible.”

If this source is correct and this is how it all went down, then i completely agree with Snarkk. This system is fucking broken. We’re talking about the MVP of the league. Now remember, there wasn’t any urgency at the time, this was just a regular *Braun test*. It was only after he tested positive that the vial became so *famous*…….

But still, this is RYAN BRAUN not some single-A wannabe……

We’re now forced to go with what the flunky courier said happened?  He thought it was too late to get it to FedEx on a Saturday? Maybe he wanted to go bang his girlfriend and this was the excuse he made for not dropping it off at FedEx. Maybe he decided to go fire back a few beers with his bros. Who knows what this courier was doing or thinking at the time? Who knows what happened to the vial in this dude’s fridge? Think about it, if this is actually how this went down, Braun has a pretty good case to challenge. Of course the idea that the vial was altered or contaminated from an exterior source is almost impossible to believe. But if you’re telling me that the vial sat in  *Basement Guy’s* basement for a night, in frickin’ Wisconsin, then anything and everything COULD have happened to it. Maybe he dropped it off in the basement and had a keg party that night. During some beer bongs some of the drunker party patrons decided to mess with Ryan Braun’s urine. Of course it sounds ridiculous, but if this is the way they keep track of the samples then I would think any half-smart lawyer could beat this case in arbitration. How could you lose with all the unknowns that are created by some dumbass courier flipping the vile into his basement for the night before he goes and rails away on his chick upstairs and the roommates decide to go play *fuck with Ryan Braun’s Pee*. Exactly. Anything could have happened to that vile……

Let’s say the flunky courier is telling the truth. Now I’m thinking….huh?…..this happens all the time?????

WHAT??!?!?!?!! How could this happen *on other occasions*? Urine sits in courier flunky refrigerator’s across the country because they look at their watches and realize FedEx is closed? And there is actually an mlb policy (according to the link) that says if FedEx is closed you’re supposed to “get the sample to the lab as soon as possible?” I don’t care is this is mlb’s policy or this esteemed, revered and trusted drug testing company’s policy— THAT is the freaking back up plan? Did I just pass out in a time machine and wake up in 1974? Because this simplistic, casual approach to getting these samples tested sounds like something you’d see done 30-40 years ago…..

Except it’s not 30-40 years ago. It’s 2012 and if this is how mlb is handling the samples and the testing process then It blows my mind that anyone EVER gets busted for steroids…………

Worrying About the Back End of the Rotation

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on February 23, 2012

The Giants are behind a rock and in front of the 8-ball (or whatever) when it comes to the back end of their rotation. Zito’s got a new motion that apparently has him “crouching down” more. That sounds promising. After all his tweeks and changes his set position could ultimately look like this:

Tomorrow’s BBOTD?

But I digress………

So Zito is crouching down and Voggy is right there with him only he’s doing it because his back has locked up on him. I was a big Voggy supporter last year but I’m getting away from him this year at least in terms of confidence. A balky back for a day or so is no big deal, but when you hurt it lifting weights I get extremely nervous of the recovery time. Let’s just say for the sake of *worrying* that Voggy doesn’t repeat last year and instead spends the first month or two of the season crouching down in the bullpen next to Zito. There goes 40% of our starting rotation with no one waiting in the wings. And while you could argue that other teams have crap in the 4 and 5 spots you could also argue that our offense isn’t good enough to make up the difference when you’ve got a #4 and #5 giving up 4 and 5 runs in the 4th and 5th inning of the games they’re pitching in……..

Oswalt probably signs with someone today (Speaking of a bad back). He would be perfect insurance for us but there is no way it would ever come to pass……..

There’s just no solution to this potential problem if it does happen (Zito imploding and Voggy breaking down). Unless you think Ramon Ortiz and his band of renegades can cobble together some type of a rescue.

It’s just something to worry about without a pending resolution. It’s what I do best……..

DirtRocksandReno is packing up his bag of rocks, leaving the dirt pile behind and moving to the Bay Area. He found this in storage and it became an unexpected yet welcomed present. Thank you dude!

#1 (sniped it)

#2 (saved it)


Sorting Out the Angel Villalona Fiasco

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on February 22, 2012

In the scheme of the upcoming season, this is an absolute non-issue. Villalona will have nothing to do with the outcome of  any mlb games, he’ll have no impact at all on the season. But that doesn’t make the news coming out about his failure to secure a P-1 visa  any less interesting.

After the dust started to settle on this last night and I stopped LQTM at my *hilarious* fat-jokes, the official explanation for why he’s delayed really didn’t make any sense. Bobby Evans said that this particular visa requires the player to be “an elite athlete in top physical condition”. I posted the P-1 requirements last night from the US immigration website and read through it twice. I couldn’t find a single reference to “having to be in top physical condition”. Then, according to either Evans or Schulman (it’s not clear in HS’s blog post who said this), “The US government has decided that Villalona does not meet that requirement because of a combination of excessive weight and an ongoing medical condition…”—note: I put that in quotes, it’s from Henry’s blog.  But since he didn’t reference who said this (it appears he’s attributing it to Evans but it’s not in quotes) it’s hard to analyze this statement. Was this an official US statement of some kind? Or did Evans relay this info to Schulman? If he did, why didn’t he put it in quotes? I suppose it’s possible that since it’s HS’s blog post that this is his opinion of what’s happening. Regardless, more bad reporting, in my opinion, but I’m used to that from Bay Area scribes not names “Baggarly”.

Here’s a link to Schulman’s article if you want to take a crack at figuring this out: http://tinyurl.com/7j84ks6

Evans specifically said, “We’ve been informed that, in their opinion, he doesn’t qualify as an elite athlete.” This was what I heard him say on KNBR on the way in this morning.

Here is what qualifies you as an elite athlete:

“Before you can apply, a U.S. employer, sponsor or agent must file a petition with the USCIS in the U.S. The petition will include a contract with a major U.S. sports league, team or one that is internationally recognized. It will also include evidence that you are internationally recognized in your sport. Such evidence includes:

  • Your international ranking
  • Significant honors or award you received in your sport
  • Written statements from a recognized expert or sports media
  • Written statements from a major U.S. sports league
  • Significant participation in a U.S. major league season
  • Significant participation in a U.S. college / university season during the intercollegiate season

After the petition is approved, you can apply for the P-1 visa through your U.S. consulate or embassy.”

I don’t see anything in there that would hold up Villalona. And there isn’t anything subjective about being an elite athlete like your height, weight, etc. You just have to qualify with *evidence* listed above. So I guess it’s entirely possible that Evans is clueless on this and never did any information gathering at all regarding what the team’s responsibilities were in all of this.

To be clear, there is nothing about being overweight and/or having a medical condition that would preclude you from qualifying for a P-1 visa–at least nothing I could find at the US Immigration website. Feel free to do your own research on this, too……

In fact, my guess is that the Giants participated in this screw up. You can’t apply for a P-1 visa as an individual, a petition has to be filed by your employer and it has to include all sorts of details. Evans also said “We’re learning as we go here.” If the Giants are learning as they go it’s entirely possible that they didn’t file the correct paperwork or even know what needed to get filed.

More Evans double-speak: “We saw him in December and his weight was pretty close to what we were targeting.” He gives himself a lot of rope with this comment since they could have been targeting a weight of 350. But we don’t know since the beat writers didn’t ask follow up questions (or didn’t get those questions answered).

Who knows why Villalona was denied that visa? Maybe someone was shaking him down for dough again. Maybe he’s 400 pounds and couldn’t physical board the plane safely. How about a conspiracy theory: The Giants paid off someone in the DR to keep Villalona from getting into the US—Villalona is a PR nightmare, not to mention a threat to sue the Giants for *something*–if they thought he was too fat or too untalented to ever play ball again, just keep him out of the States—problem solved…..But I don’t think that’s what’s going on. I suspect the Giants DID play a huge role in all of this but probably just a paper work mismanagement role……

Would it have been too great an expense for the team to just send a rep down there to help get this kid the hell out of there? Sh!t, they’ve got 2.1 million invested in him already, they couldn’t have an intern spend a day doing research on the paperwork needed and then fly down there to walk Vilallona through all this?

Hell, I woulda volunteered to do it (and pay my own expenses) just to get a first hand look at this dude……

Whiteside was Hurt Last Year?

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on February 21, 2012

Reading a Baggs entry this morning, El Presidente is saying he was hurt basically all of last year with a bad elbow. Based off of his comments, it seems like the team was aware of this chronic injury. As if my mind couldn’t be blown any further— we just discovered another galaxy far, far away…..

So not only did the Giants have the worst back up catcher in baseball backing up Buster Posey they knowingly had the worst back up catcher in baseball WHO ALSO HAS A BAD ELBOW. I now think that Whiteside will be our back up catcher as long as Bochy is the manager. He played with one arm last year? Fine. How about if he was suddenly paralyzed from the waist down? No problem. Just plop him in a dolly, roll him out there, and dump him at home plate. He went blind? Sure, just guide him behind the dish and holler at him when the pitch is coming.

I know the deal with back up catching— the bar is set low. But you can’t tell me that there isn’t at least a half dozen guys down at the street corner looking for day-work that couldn’t perform the job AT LEAST as good as Whiteside….

Fast forward back to last season— the Giants were playing out the final few meaningless games. Who was catching the 2nd to last game of the season?

Of course, he and his bad elbow went 0-4 that game. He seemed to go 0-4 every game. At the time we wondered why Hector wasn’t catching. We fooled ourselves into believing that it was Bochy’s way of saying goodbye to his precious Whitey. A swan song. A horse ride off into the sunset……

Well, now we know that wasn’t true. And this year he’s actually healthy. Uh oh, a two armed-Whitey. Oh the humanity!!!!

El Presidente is Bochy’s Guy. And Bochy doesn’t let his guys go easily……

Drive by……

Bochy Tells Buster: Don’t Block the Plate

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on February 20, 2012

Nothing good will come from this *directive* from Bochy. For starters, this is info the opposing team now has that they can use to their advantage. Why tell them this?

And it’s not going to protect Posey at all. Posey wasn’t blocking the plate when Cousins came at him. Take a look:

From the moment Cousins took off from 3rd, his plan was to run Posey over, where ever he was. He went out of his path to the plate and took off in mid air in a altered direction to aim at Buster. There is indisputable video evidence that supports this…..

No one seems to ever talk about this, but that flyball was hit to short right center field. Nate caught it. Everyone in the league knew then about how good his arm was. Only an idiot would think he would beat that throw home. His plan never wavered from the moment he took off: level Posey and hope to knock the ball free.

So Bochy telling the world that he’s going to have Buster catch like a pussy and just swipe tag all the plays at the plate doesn’t make a lot of sense to me. It’s giving the other teams info they shouldn’t have and it won’t protect him. If the team is THAT afraid of him getting hurt again then find him a new position………

Election Day! Cast Your Votes……

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on February 19, 2012

Well, you’re not electing anyone. And there are probably more interesting polls to vote on, these were just off the top of my head before the coffee fully kicks in. But what else do you have to do this morning? I mean, besides enter the “Write that Caption” contest at the BBOTD Page…….

If both start the season slowly, who is more likely to get released? I don’t think this question is as easy to answer as you think. The Giants are already paying Rowand 12 million this year to stay away from the team. They only owe Huff 11 million and they’ve got a lot of options at first base. Conversely, they don’t have that many options at the 5th spot and Zito is still owed $46 million (included the $7 million buy out).

Who’s more likely to hit the DL first, Posey or Freddy? Again, I don’t think this is that easy of a call. Your gut response is *Glass* Sanchez but I don’t think Posey is as good to go as everyone thinks. Plus, he plays the most physically demanding position on the field….

What’s more likely to happen, Crawford holds the SS position till at least June 15th or Belt scores a starting 1-bag job out of ST? I think Belt has more of a shot than many think to win the first base job out of ST. And if Nate doesn’t hit and Huff and Belt do, Nate could find himself super-subbing to start the season. For the sake of the poll, I’ll just say Belt starting ANYWHERE Opening Day since he could score and OF starting job, I guess…..

Who is most likely to have a big Spring with the bat? Pagan and Cabrera are new and wanting to impress, Belt and Burriss are fighting different fights to save/score a job…..

Who will have the lowest Spring Training ERA? Timmy and Cain could care less about ST numbers. Voggy has security and probably doesn’t care, either. MadBum? Likely more worried about breaking his snot-rocket record (distance only. He has “most snot rockets in a 9 inning game record wrapped up with 276. He put that one totally out of reach). Zito needs a big Spring but Zito is a terrible baseball pitcher. Or maybe you fancy someone from The Ramon Ortiz Gang?

Will Angel Villalona have more than 20 spring training at bats?

Pitchers and Catchers Report……Finally!

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on February 17, 2012

Today is the day. Actually, TOMORROW is the day but I’m so excited about this long awaited date that I’m slappin’ this bad boy up here tonight. Plus, I’m going to be at Golden Gate Fields all day tomorrow (going old school and actually ATTENDING the races instead of betting on them in my living room). Anyway, early day tomorrow. They’re all early days, I’m “king of the 4am crowd”…..

One Weirdo-Random Prediction for each team in our division:

Arizona: Cahill is going to have a very good year. I’ll say 17-8, 3.21 ERA

Dodgers: Jansen saves 31 games after taking over the closing duties from Guerra (maybe before ST ends but definitely by May 1st).

Colorado: Tyler Colvin finds a way into that outfield at some point and has a big year. 20+ hrs will happen………

San Diego: Yonder Alonso hits 30 b0mbs.

The Giants: Pagan’s hits+steals out number Melky’s hits+steals. 191-172

And now for a pic of my kid. Look at this freaking purple starfish we found at the beach today. It was sucking the hell out of her hand when I took this photo….

The Giant’s Long Term Financial Commitments: $0

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on February 17, 2012

I posted a thread about this earlier in the Winter but it’s worth taking a look again and comparing the team to the rest of the league. I’m getting my numbers from an article I read yesterday at mlbtraderumors but I can’t find the link right now. Sabean gets an awful lot of crap for his long term contract signing success but the reality is, we are in fantastic shape to sign free agents in the next couple of years. Just looking at financial commitments from 2015 on……..

The Giants: $0

The Angels: $274 million

Colorado: $167 million

Detroit: $166 million

Boston: $159.5 million

Yankees: $154 million

The Dodgers: $107 million (this number will probably double, at least, over the next year or so. The new ownership group, whoever that ultimate is, will be making it rain in LA for years to come)……

Brewers: $103 million

Minnesota: $92 million

Washington: $89 million

I’m not going to do all of them…..

Toronto: $21 million

Atlanta: $13 million

Oakland: $10.5 million

Pittsburgh and Tampa Bay: $8 million

Along with the Giants, the Orioles, Cubs, Astros, Indians, Royals, Mets, Padres and Mariners are at $0.

Sabean, whether he’s been instructed to or not, has exercised great restraint on doling out any long term, bloated deals. I’ve come to understand that most owners don’t give a crap about the back end of the deals they’re giving out. They’re living for the *now*. The Zito contract gets so much attention because there was never any *now* with him. He sucked from the start. Rowand pretty much sucked from the start, too, though not as badly as Zito.

We’re in good shape going forward. Now all we have to hope is that Sabean picks the right free agent to shower with cash. He’s gonna have a lot of it to spend starting in the next few years……..


Going with the Clean Shaven Look….

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on February 15, 2012

Our loyal Flap friend *AlleyKat* reported on the last thread that Flemming said on KNBR this evening that Wilson isn’t expected to be ready to start the season. That’s an obvious concern. I’ll tell you, this entire Wilson situation has been handled in bizarre fashion. This guy was basically shut down in the middle of August, though he wasn’t ever really *shut down*. They *half way* shut him down, rested him and evolved his plan into the *we’re out of it* approach and THAT turned into the NEW reason of why he wasn’t pitching. Then he randomly pitched twice in September, getting one save. There was also an ominous, unreported (at the time he went) overnight visit to Dr. Andrews. He checked out but that was clearly a red flag (or was it a white flag?). Anyway, he checked out with “Dr. A”(OK) so if he had nothing more than a strain I thought AT THE TIME that  it was a good idea to get the dude back on the horse to get at least some work in before ST ’12. Otherwise, he would have spent the Winter wondering about the *game condition* of his arm. If that’s the situation, I’m glad he threw an inning or two before the end of the 2011 season. But that was under the condition that there was nothing more than a strain going on in his arm. Now I’m not so sure what’s going on…..

The off season started and Wilson followed his *don’t touch a ball till Jan 1* plan. According to Sabean, this was the cautious approach that they decided to take. And, I’m still semi-fine with that, though now a little nervous. But I’m going with what the doctors are recommending….

Now, at least according to Flem on KNBR today, it sounds like Wilson won’t be ready for Opening Day. Again, TOTALLY FINE WITH THIS (nervousness growing)—-as long as it’s just him missing the season by a couple of weeks as it relates to his conservative rehab plan outlined by the team doctors at the end of the season….

But let me say this and I will be crystal fucking clear about it: If Wilson can’t go by late April or if it turns out some *missed injury* is found or if he comes back and his arm snaps clean off the first pitch he throws….I will be infuriated with how the team and their doctors handled this problem. Disgustedly infuriated. *Heads Must Roll Infuriated*. We knew he had a possibly serious arm injury last August—He took a midnight trip across the country to confirm it. He gets news that isn’t *the worst* so they let him pitch twice in September. Huge, MAJOR fuck up if it turns out they were wrong about this being *just a strain*. Ask yourself, how many “just a strains” end up shutting you down for 6 months? Actually, Josh Johnson (Marlins ace)  dealt with a similar *strain*  last year, though I think it was in his shoulder. He was finally shut down too, sans surgery. But I digress. Again, if it was *just a strain* and they went conservative with the rehab, and he comes back this season maybe a couple weeks late, this is no big deal at all…..

But if it’s more than that, and if the rehab could have been handled differently or if they should have done surgery…..I am going to be pissed off to no end at the team (medical and otherwise) with how they handled this……

Now, having ranted about all this, it’s time to focus on the Bee-Weezy alternatives. We actually have 3 viable, short term alternatives.

They are:

1) Sergio Romo: *Wanna-be-Beardo* has entered “Eck like” territory, at least in terms of numbers. He had a 31/1 K/bb ratio over his last 32 innings. That’s sickeningly absurd. He’s throwing his slider 54% of the time now and I say, throw it 84% of the time. Or more. It’s un-hittable. His late season arm problems bear watching as does the fact, according to him, that he doesn’t have the make up to be a closer (stresses out too much, holds on to losses to long, etc). Yes, that’s a big deal. But if those two things are straight he’s ready to save 40+ games TODAY.

2) Affeldt: the best thing you can say about him is that he’s a ground ball pitcher who is tough on lefties. I don’t know if that’s enough to close for us for an extended period of time, but he COULD do it and he might be a perfect *closer match* for…..

……3) Santiago Casillia. He throws hard, he’s a GB pitcher, he’s death to righties (they batted .155 against him last year) and he was a total stud in the 2nd half of 2011. But his control problems are obvious and can crop up at any time. That along makes him sketchy at best to use as a closer and unusable at worst….

Heath Hembree is waiting in the wings but I just can’t see the Giants using him in the early part of 2012. Not with these other 3 options available, at least for the short term…..

Night time Thread? Hey, when I can’t be certain that I can get my usual 6am thread up tomorrow and I have to go *Night time Thread* tonight it must mean I’ve got an extreme amount of sh!t to do tomorrow, right? Hmmmmm. I should still be able to work in some BB of the Day Action…..

Packing His Baggs and Moving On

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on February 15, 2012

Someone mentioned this a while back and I didn’t take notice of it until it actually happened and he wrote a *goodbye post* the other day at the Merc. The reality is, this doesn’t change anything for me except where I click on the internet. Baggs is still going to be churning out his excellent blog, it’s just found in a different spot on my bookmark bar. Here is the tiny url for you to do the same:


I can probably count on one hand the number of San Jose Mercury’s I’ve bought in my lifetime. I was a die hard Chron guy. At least, until they did a hatchet job on Barry–I cancelled my subscription the same day and haven’t bought a single paper since. It wasn’t that hard to do, I read pretty much everything on the internet these days. I didn’t start reading Baggs’ blog until probably 2008. I think I clicked on a link someone posted and I’ve been hooked ever since. I don’t think it would be a stretch to say he’s the hardest working beat writer out there. He often talks about being the last one in the press box after a game and I think it’s obvious that his attention to detail, and the homework he clearly does for an article, shows his commitment to his trade. His first article for Comcast is classic Baggs. I hope he got a big raise to make this career jump, he clearly deserves one….

Outside of reading a Kawakami blog post every now and again, I can’t imagine why I’d ever go back to the Mercury website……


That Ankle Better be Good to Go

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on February 14, 2012

I know this has been discussed but I’ve got nothin’ this morning. Our entire season hinges on the health of Buster Posey’s ankle. It’s just a feeling I have, but I don’t think his ankle is going to be ready to catch regularly at the major league level. And all this *play him at first base v. lefties* is a nice idea but it means Eli or VP Stewart are gonna have to get behind the dish (until I actually see Bochy give Hector a shot I don’t consider him a possibility).

And what if Buster goes “Kendry Morales” on us and it turns out the ankle needs more surgery?

Maybe I’m being paranoid–nightmares of another season of Eli Whiteside will do that. But I jut don’t think this transition back from his horrific ankle injury is going to be as smooth as everyone wants us to believe….

Barry Zito Makes More Money than You Do…

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on February 12, 2012

I’m not sure which is my more favorite website: 1) baseball-reference.com or 2) Cotts baseball contract website which was apparently purchased by baseballprospectus.com some time in the last year. Good for the dude who started that site.

Anyway, you get a lot of info at both. Barry Zito has been with us for 5 long, hard, arduous, painful (i could list off a lot of adjectives here but I’ll stop now) years and he’s about to start his 6th season as a Giant. Last year we saw a new approach to dealing with his failures: DL him witih a phantom injury. I’m assuming the club came up with this one in Year 2 or 3 but decided they couldn’t activate the plan until Year 5. I’m not saying Zito wasn’t hurt last year, he was. But his sprained ankle didn’t require even 1/5th of the DL time he spent (2 separate stints, right?). Expect the DL move to get used more often in 2012. The plan for 2013 might be to get him a gig as the next Spinal Tap drummer (that one was for ‘Tap enthusiasts, I hope there are some Flappers out there who claim that group)….

Let’s take a look at the contract, shall we?

Before the 2007 season he signed a 7 year/126 million dollar deal. Sabean’s contribution to *screwing* Boras was the *club option* in 2014. Ha, Sabes will have him right where he wants him come *club option* time!!!!!

Here’s what Zito’s made in his career:

Now, I’m not gonna say the A’s got the best years of this dude, cause Zito could go out and win 70 games over the next three years and show Beane he’s a penny pinching pussy and Sabean is a free-agent signing savant. But let’s just say that, for now, the A’s seem to have gotten the best years of Barry Zito. For n……o……w….

My favorite thing about the Zito contract? He gets a suite at every road game to pack his whores into. He’s married now so I’m not sure where he’s going to have his wife sit. Having her sit next to D’antoni’s 2 whores just seems uncouth. Problems waiting to happen. Oh well, he’s got the dough, he can buy a suite for his girl and her friends  too.

The last year of the deal is the best. There’s an 18 million dollar team option in 2014 if Zito pitches 200 innings in 2013 or 400 innings total in 2012+2013. But if this option vests, Zito can opt out and recieve a 3.5 million dollar buy out (theoretically allowing him a chance to hit the FA market again for ANOTHER 100 billion dollar deal). If the option doesn’t vest, the team gets to give him a 7 million dollar buy out for his *troubles*. So Zito better not hit his innings-vest number or he loses 3.5 million…..I know it wasn’t Sabean’s decision to sign Zito, it was a management team thing, but he got hoodwinked at best and fucked at worst on the back end of this contract…..

Anyway, this was my 5 minute Barry Zito Rant, of which they’re have been many. They beat Haiku by about a minute. Ok, now, dinner time. Have a good one…..



It’s August 2nd, 1988. All in all, ’88 was a pretty disappointing year. We finished 4th, never led the division. This would have been a wild game to go to. Astros won 13-10. They scored 4 runs in 3 single innings. Reuschel started and got lit up. Bockus also got lit up. Two guys named Ron Davis and Roger Samuels pitched the final 3 (also getting lit up). Who are these guys?


Angel Villalona, Come on Down!

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on February 11, 2012

I don’t know about you guys, but if I worked for the Giants I would volunteer with both hands up to be the team rep who greets Villalona when he gets off the plane next week. This guy was either in jail or under house arrest for 2 years. What kind of shape is this guy in? He was already a pretty big cat. He’s listed at 6’3 200 lbs but I could see him being a doughy 250 (or more) easily. For his sake, I hope he’s traveling *business class*.

He’ll be starting his career all over again, most likely in San Jose. Heck, he’s only 21, who knows what he’s going to do. But he was a strikeout machine BEFORE all this happened. Whatever the minor league strike out record is for a season I expect him to challenge it……

Between all the fake murder plot accusations and the kidnappings of ballplayers (and their family members) I don’t understand why a player with ANY money at all would ever return back to their homeland. You’re just a target, you’re asking for major trouble. In fact, if you’re a relative of a player still in the Dominican and you find out your uncle just scored a big mlb contract your first reaction is probably “Oh, shit. I’m fucked.”

I don’t care or even have an opinion about Villalona and the murder charge that was dismissed. All we know is that he paid a sizable settlement to the victim’s family. That doesn’t necessarily mean he did it. But I’m am all for some good theater and having him show up for Spring Training definitely qualifies as such. The photographers should all have their cameras set to *wide angle* when they try to fit him in a *shot*………


Retro Tiempo Bebe

Sunday, October 5th, 1987. The final day of a season where we finished in first place. We beat the Braves in 10 innings on a walk off Bob Brenly home run. Randy Bockus got the win. Drafted in the 34th round by the Giants in 1982, it was his first career win. He would go on to record one more in his career…….

Billy Beane is Full of Shit

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on February 10, 2012

I watched MoneyBall  the morning of the NFC Championship Game–needed to take the edge off before the big game. Assuming it’s true that Boston offered him a gig to be the highest paid GM in baseball (at the time) I have to conclude that Billy Beane is nothing but a smoke and mirrors guy. He NEEDS the built in excuse that he’s always going to have while he toils away in Oakland. He can’t lose.  Maybe it’s a self esteem thing. As long as he cries about not having any money to sign the players needed to be competitive he can keep re-building and re-starting the franchise for as long as he chooses. It must be nice to be a genius that can’t win because he’s shackled by the inequities of a failed system. That’s what he wants everyone to believe anyway…..

Since 2006, the A’s have had an average team payroll of $62,000,000 per season. Beane cries and moans that this means he can’t win.

So sad. The whole world is against him. If only the playing field was level. His great genius would dwarf us……

In 2010 the Giants won the World Series with a payroll of $96,000,000. But $32 million of that was being paid to Barry Zito and Aaron Rowand–two guys who had nothing to do with that Series win. Take their dead pay out and you get $64,000,000 for your payroll…….

I’m just sayin’……..

Another Vote

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on February 10, 2012

Just took a look at the poll from yesterday, the only player to NOT get a vote was Angel. So, either no one knows who he is or everyone has ultimate confidence in him. Let’s do another poll with the same criteria from yesterday but going the other way. Of the 10 listed, what is the MOST LIKELY to happen. Freddy edged out Zits for LEAST LIKELY to happen….

Let’s see if the inverse response is in effect…….

7 days till pitchers and catchers report. One week. Me likey…….


Retro Game of the Day!!!!!!!

It’s Sunday, August 16th, 1987 and 52,374 showed up for this epic game vs the Dodgers. LaCoss vs Welch. This one was still 0-0 going to the 10th and LaCoss came out and retired the side for his 10th inning of the game. Robby came up to start the 10th and struck out looking. Uribe grounded out and it looked like we would be going to the 11th. Chili pinch hits for LaCoss who must have been doing a slow burn in the dugout. He singles. Eddie Milner comes up and doubles to left. Chili beats the throw home and the Giants win 1-0. LaCoss gets the win. Insanity ensues…..

Ten Question Marks for the Giants Entering the 2012 Season

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on February 9, 2012

Below are 10 question marks going into the 2012 season. Until I wrote them all down I didn’t realize how horribly wrong this upcoming season could go if some or all of these don’t happen. Since at least a few (and maybe several) of these things aren’t going to happen, I know this is am impossibly difficult poll to take but give it a shot anyway……

1) Buster Posey catching at least 100 games in 2012

2) Ryan Vogelsong pitching as good (or close to it) as he did in 2011

3) Brandon Crawford hitting well enough to keep SS job

4) Melky Cabrera repeating (or coming close to) 2011

5) Angel Pagan bouncing back to his 2010 season

6) Huff bouncing back to his 2010 season

7) Barry Zito holding on to the #5 spot all year

8) Nate Schierholtz retaining the RF job and remaining injury free all year

9) Brandon Belt having a break through season

10) Freddy Sanchez staying healthy all year

The *Most Popular* Threads of the Quarter

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on February 8, 2012

I was taking a look at the stats of the blog this morning–We actually had approximately 2000 more visitors in January ’12 than we did in January of ’11. That’s a little surprising to me since we were coming off a WS win last year and this year we’re not really coming off of anything. I guess we’re coming INTO something. There are many reasons to be extremely hopeful for this coming season…….

Here’s a list of the top 21 posts since 11/10/11. You’ll notice the *BB of the Day(!)*  at the top–that’s a little misleading because I just change out the pics and the comments every day but it remains the same page. If you never check out that page you should should give it a go. It’s evolved into a daily *write the caption* contest and there are 7-10 regular Flappers who have me laughing my ass off on a daily basis. I’ve expanded the the criteria of what it takes to *qualify* for BB of the Day–I found this loosening of the standards encourages more creative captions. Anyway, as usual, you guys churn out the best of this blog with your comments………

Remembering Candlestick Park

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on February 7, 2012

As I usually do at least once an off season, I’m having some Candlestick Park moments this morning. I’ve always wanted to find a better pic than the one SI ran of the Dave Dravecky comeback game. I had that SI copy for years and then lost it somewhere. I remember the day my friend Jason came over to my house with it, proudly pointing out the image of he and I cheering in the crowd in the bleachers that day. He was right, you could totally see us. Man, what a day. I remember everything about that game. We decided to go at the last minute only because we had nothing else to do. Had no problem scoring a bleacher seat….

Here are some random pics I found this morning……

Super Bowl is Over. Hello, Boredom.

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on February 6, 2012

There is literally no event in the sporting world that i care about (I’ll have the slightest interest in the AT&T) until February 18th when pitchers and catchers are slated to report. You know it’s quiet when someone showing up to work is interesting to you…..

The Super Bowl was most definitely interesting. As I predicted, the Giants won but I thought  it would be a higher scoring game. In the end, it was very much like a 49er game–good defense, great special teams (Weatherford did a pretty good Andy Lee impression, didn’t he?) and someone making a play late (Manningham) that was the difference. The Giants were also quite effective in running the ball late. I also want to give Belichek big props (that’s hard for me to do since I hate him) for having the nut sack to tell his D to allow that late TD. Most coaches cling to the stupid approach of NOT doing that even though failing to do so ALWAYS leaves you with no time left on the clock. In this case, Brady got nearly a minute to work with. Weird scene watching Bradshaw TRY to sit down on the one yard line, he just couldn’t do it……..

I listened to a bit of the game on the radio. I think it was early 3rd quarter and the announcer was gushing over Brady and his epic performance, I think he’d completed like 14 in a row at that point. What an over-exaggeration. Most of his passes were dump offs. In fact, both quarterbacks had Y/A’s that were quite pedestrian (Eli 7.4, Brady 6.7).

This game was hardly a QB vs QB game that the network tried to bill it as. It was 2 football teams facing off with a player Manningham) making an unreal catch to essentially win the game for them. That’s what football games always are: who’s going to make a play that is the difference in the game. Yesterday it was Manningham. As usual, the brain-dead approach to picking the SB MVP was in effect–give it to the QB. In my book, Manningham is the MVP. That catch was better than the catch that the Giants receiver (can’t remember his name) made in ’07 to set up the game winner to Plaxico…..

It’s dark outside my window still. Cold, a little foggy….dark. I hate this time of the year……..


Retro Temps of de Jour!

July 5th, 1987. We are in Chicago. I usually only do home games but this was a great day–Kevin Mitchell had just been traded to the Giants (along with Dravecky and Lefferts) and he promptly banged out 2 bombs to help us win. The Giants were losing 5-2 going to the 6th where they scored 2 and then 3 more in the 8th. Seeing Robby lead off it reminded me of how were really didn’t have  a leadoff hitter in ’87.

Fan Fest(ival) and The Great Panda Mystery Unsolved by The Chronicle

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on February 4, 2012

As I often do on the Day of Fan Fest I regret not going. This year I’m gone all weekend so I couldn’t go anyway. But I’d love to walk the park and just get a look at the guys.

I would have appreciated more information from John Shea on his article about The Panda.


The picture tagged to the article is of Panda’s left hand on his head with a look that seems to say “Uh oh, what have I done!?!?!”. The caption under the pic says “Pablo Sandoval gained weight this winter, which he blamed on his workouts but he looked good Friday.” Hmmmmm. Ok, that’s a little ambivalent. He *looked good Friday* but Pablo is *blaming* a weight gain on his Winter workouts. And it’s not like I can gather my own opinion because it’s just a picture of his head. Looking for more info I decide to read the article.

Problem: Shea gives very little information about these mysterious *workouts* that are blamed for the weight gain. Sandoval appears to make a veiled reference to it by saying part of the extra weight is from his Winter workouts in Arizona. Ok, so does that mean he was lifting a lot more and doing less cardio? The article isn’t clear about that. Using a caption that says he is *blaming* weight gain on workouts suggests something bad, like his body didn’t respond to the training the way it did last Winter. But if he’s adding muscle as the weight gain (because he’s lifting more and doing less cardio)  I don’t have a problem with that. Muscle is good. Muscle weighs more than fat. I’m fine with a muscular Panda. I’m not fine with a fat doughy Panda. Again, I am looking at a picture of Pablo with his hand on his forehead, no body shot, and he’s looking totally bummed out. There’s also a quote from Bochy about him saying “Pablo knows he’s got to lose weight, but he looked better than he did 2 weeks ago.”. Again, I have to say, huh? That sounds like a manager who’s saying his added weight was fat, not muscle. But Pablo’s saying it’s muscle…….

Bottom line: The Chronicle, either intentionally or not, published a story that left more questions than answers. I don’t mind that if it’s a picture to lure me into reading the article but the article created way more questions than it provided answers. Poor journalism, in my opinion……

As I said last night, I’m not worried about the Panda’s conditioning. I have to assume that if the team decided to hand him a LT deal for 17.15 million they must have done their due diligence on his level of commitment to conditioning his body. He would have to pass a physical to sign the deal so they obviously got a look at him. The Panda from November/December 2010 could not have passed a physical. So am I concerned about him despite the many questions left from the Shea article? No, I’m not……..


Retro Tiempo!

It’s April 18th, 1987. The Giants were down 1-0 going to the 9th against the Braves. Candy tied it with a single in the 9th, Thrill ended it with a single in the 10th. 22,054 fans attended…….

Looking Back at the 2002 World Series Team

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on February 3, 2012

After seeing Livan sign yet another deal to play in the major leagues in 2012 (well, it’s  a minor league deal but we all know this dude will be pitching into his 50’s. Hell, he might ALREADY be pitching in his 50’s) it got me to wondering who else from the 2002 team might still be playing ball.

Here’s a link to the roster from baseball almanac.


According to them, 38 players made at least an appearance for the Giants in 2002. Besides Livan there is a single player who played in the major leagues in 2011: Cody Ransom. He hit .667 for us in that magical year with a mind blowing OPS of 1.417! Of course, he did that in only 7 at bats.

It’s a trip to see the names on that list and not really connect to many of them. Chad Zerbe? Tom Goodwin? Jay Witasick? I remember them, I just don’t remember them any more fondly than I remember the guys from the 2007 roster. Or the 1982 roster. They were just guys, a lot of them……

Ryan Jensen? I was surprised to see that he started 30 games for us in 2002. He went 13-8 and finished 6th in ROY voting. That was easily his best year in the major leagues:

What an improbable single season Jensen had for us in 2002……..


Retro Time

Hello, 1987. It’s Opening Day, April 6th. Bring it. Kevin Mitchell and Dave Dravecky (in July), first place and, apparently, Will Clark leading off the home opener. He went 3 for 6. I swear to God, it still blows my mind that Will Clark never had 200 hits in a season. We won the home opener 4-3 in 12 innings on a Chili Davis single off Dravecky to score Hacman. Sounds like a fun game.

What is So Great About Getting a Player’s Autograph?

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on February 2, 2012

FanFest is this weekend. Giants are expecting less people, less problems, say they’ve improved it, etc. I haven’t been to a Fanfest but if I did go it would just be to walk around the field, take a look at how the players took care of themselves over the off season, snap pictures, stuff like that.

What I would NOT do is ask a player for his autograph. I don’t get why fans seek out autographs. I get the OBVIOUS answer that certain autographs have value and can be re-sold because there’s a market out there for it. But outside of that, I don’t see what’s so great about someone signing their name for you. I’d much rather snap a candid picture, something you wouldn’t find in an everyday google search.

I’d be interested in a player GIVING me something they had USED, like a bat, a ball or their batting gloves. That would be cool. Study it, imagine them being used in game situations. I wouldn’t spend more than a second looking at an autograph no matter how cool their signature looked…….

Anyway, good luck to those of you who are brave enough to sludge through Fanfest. My dad went a couple of years ago and got some awesome pics of the players. He didn’t get any autographs…….


It’s Retro Time…….

10/2/86. Final game of the season. 8K fans showed up. Pathetic. We lost 2-1 in DISaster fashion. Garrelts blew the save in the 9th, Caveman lost it in the 10th. Mike Woodard led off for us and played 2nd base. He had nearly 200 at bats for the Giants over the course of 3 years. I can’t remember anything about him…….

Livan Hernandez

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on February 1, 2012

I just saw that Livan signed a minor league deal with the Astros. Man, 2012 and that dude is still pluggin’ along. It’s a pretty dark morning here at The Flap so I thought I’d toss out a *Livan* thread and see if any of you want to share your best memories of him. It doesn’t get much darker than this, does it?

First, some info/highlights of his career:

He claims to be 36 years old.

He was traded to us from Florida for Nate Bump and Jason Grilli in 1999.

In 4 seasons for us he was 45-45. In 4 seasons with Florida he was 24-24. Over 16 seasons and 7 different teams, he’s 174-176.

Here’s the dough he’s made:

And that’s about it for my Livan memories. You guys got any?


Retro Game ‘0 da Day!

It’s 9/11/86 and we won 2-1. I couldn’t let this game go by without a shout out to our starting catcher, Phil Ouellete. Signed by the Giants in ’81 he was released in December of ’87. Here is the stat summary of his career in the major leagues:

I always trip out on dudes like this……..Anyway, looks like he caught a hell of a game. In the bottom of the 6th, he singled with one out. He did not advance. It would be 1 of 4 hits he’d get in his career. I bet his heart was pounding through his chest that inning……