THE San Francisco Giants Blog

There’s Nothing Wrong With a Home Run

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on March 9, 2017

It’s hard to find an argument that justifies wanting more home runs from your line up other than “I just dig the long ball.” Last year, the opposition out homered the Giants 158-130. But the Giants hit more doubles (280>262), more triples (54>42) and scored more runs (715>631).

Of course, that doesn’t factor in how much better our pitching is than most teams. But that’s kinda the point. There’s nothing wrong with adding power to a team top heavy in pitching. We have an embarrassment of riches when it comes to our starting pitching and the bullpen has improved. But the Giants didn’t come back to win even a single game last year in the 9th inning. The spring training invites are a clue as to how the Giants brass feel about that. It’s a lot easier to win a game late with a bomb than using the conga line approach.

I’ve always disliked the term “conga line.” It’s what you say when you’re team can’t hit a bomb. But how realistic is a conga line of hitting? Everyone in the lineup has to out perform their OBP average for a *conga line* to actually happen in an inning.

The Giants are barely scoring enough runs to win consistently. I happen to want them to score more because scoring is a good thing. Not every win should have to be achieved by scratching and clawing. And hey, home runs are more exciting for the fans and they are absolutely proven to result in runs scoring. 🙂

More bombs please.

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  1. chipower9 said, on March 9, 2017 at 6:47 am

    I am NOT averse to having players who can knock one outta the yard. But I do not put preeminence on it. Sure, I would love to have one additional bat in the line-up who has potential to hit 20+ and drive in 80-90, but we all know that isn’t gonna happen (if it was, then JD Martinez would be rocking the black and orange).

    I am just saying that overall, I think it is more important to string together a few hits regularly and plate some runs than it is to have a team loaded with boppers. Mix in a bomb now and then…its all gravy baby.

    Where this team is going to win and lose games is overall with its pitching and defense. And yeah, they may win a few with a late inning HR…more power to that, too. If they have a guy or two (and I believe they do) who can hit a HR to win it, I am down with that.

    The HR, IMO is not the be all end all to the Giants season. That’s all.

  2. Lurker John said, on March 9, 2017 at 7:41 am

    Absolutely more bombs. I’ve been lamenting the team’s dearth of homers for a couple of years now. I think it’s the most glaring hole with the offense.

  3. willedav said, on March 9, 2017 at 7:49 am

    Giants are barely scoring enough runs? They won 87 games despite all the pen meltdowns and scored a grand total of 10 less than the dodgers. This year with much improved SPs (Moore over Peavy) and a better closer they shouldn’t need to score as many to win. Plus the D is super.

    I do strongly believe the LH are adversely affected by the yard. Put Belt Craw and even Panik in Milwaukee and they total somewhere between 65 and 75 bombs (as opposed to 40+ from last year), easy. Yankee Stadium, where Posey and Pence can hit them out to RF, same thing.
    Instead Belt and Craw are among league leaders in triples, not some speed guy like Omar Moreno.

    But NL baseball is a lot more complicated than simply saying more HRs = more Ws. Exhibit A—B Dozier.

  4. willedav said, on March 9, 2017 at 7:52 am

    Since we seem to be on this fantasy trip about HRs, how about you go back and fondly remember big bashing teams (non Giants) from the past and post your favs.

    And I’ll tell you one of my all time fav hitters in recent Giants hist has to be Scutaro magic season after he arrived from Colo in 2012, and that guy hardly ever homered. I’d take Marco Scutaro over Mark Trumbo any day.

  5. PaulinAsia Banh Bao said, on March 9, 2017 at 8:07 am

    I’d take Scutaro and what he did in the playoffs that year over just about any player who ever played the game. Need that kind of hitter. And then, after everything Scutaro did to get the team to the World Series, it was Pablo’s 3 homers in game 1 that put a very early stake in Detroit’s heart. Sweet.

    • sfsarge said, on March 9, 2017 at 8:55 am

      Great point. Verlander, who was basically unhittable up until that point, got rocked in game 1 and it just crushed Detroit psychologically and they never really recovered. Although they did put up a fight in game 4.

  6. Flavor said, on March 9, 2017 at 9:21 am

    The one thing I’ll give Belt is that I think it’s obvious this is the wrong yard for him. His best struck balls take him directly into the teeth of triples alley. Another reason we should trade him….

    • sfsarge said, on March 9, 2017 at 10:05 am

      I actually agree with that, and I think they should do it sooner than later, in order to maximize return.

    • willedav said, on March 9, 2017 at 10:16 am

      Might have something to do with all these Marrero (RH hitter?) ABs. Noticed Arroyo has played some SS lately. hmmnn.
      Regardless of who SF keeps as back up IF seems Arroyo is taking someone’s spot, maybe this year.
      Nunez is FA after this year, so he is in a “contract year” and might be playing for a job if not here somewhere else.

  7. alleykat69 said, on March 9, 2017 at 10:23 am

    That’s not the Giants way.They didn’t lock down Belt to trade him. His defense alone probably projects to 5 wins alone. He’s not going anywhere, and yes Posey is the best catcher in the game, and he wants to stay there and 3 rings behind the plate says all that matters on how he handles a pitching staff!!

  8. chipower9 said, on March 9, 2017 at 11:23 am

    I agree with Kat on Belt. I don’t care how Belt projects in other parks. I dig him mainly for his glove work, and his ability around the bag (starting and being a part of DPs, etc.).

    Plus, his lifetime averages are not too shabby:

    .272, .359, .460, .818 – along with averages of 35 2B, 5 3B (there’s those balls flying into triple’s alley), 18 Bombs, and 72 RBI.

    And you would trade him for what? A power-hitting OFer who cannot field?

  9. willedav said, on March 9, 2017 at 12:07 pm

    Take a look at these numbers for Craw:
    at home last year 26 XBH 9 triples (!) 4 HRs
    on road last year 25 XBHs 2 triples 8 HRs

    However, the OPS was 70 points higher at home (.807 vs. .735) because he took twice as many walks and OB was way better.
    so, to me, this points up he was trying to jack stuff on the road and maybe was a less patient hitter. So while he hit more HRs, he didn’t necessarily help the team more. But you can’t blame the guy, just the park he’s stuck in.

    9 triples at home is a mind boggling stat. For a guy who runs like Craw does those had to be crushed, bouncing off the wall in deepest part of the yard. On the road, different story. I just think SF has HR hitters but the LH ones are screwed by where they play. And it’s not like Dodgers (whom Giants owned at home right?) LH walk in here and clear fences tho I will look into this.

  10. unca_chuck said, on March 9, 2017 at 1:33 pm

    It sure seemed like we were out-homered in our own yard last year.

  11. unca_chuck said, on March 9, 2017 at 1:34 pm

    Dead pull hitters (think Kent and Bonds) should if not feast, at least go 20-25 . . .

  12. unca_chuck said, on March 9, 2017 at 1:45 pm

    158-130 them in the home run department . . . I get that the starters are going to give up more HRs than anyone else, but Bummie led the team in bombs given up at 26.

    Smarglebargle was 2nd at 24 (seriously I thought he gave up 35)
    Cueto was a completely solid 15

    Peavey was 18 in half the innings . . .
    Cain was at 16 in less than 90 innings

    The rest of the starters were

    Suarez 11 in 85
    Moore 5 in 63

    Surprisingly TMFLH gave up none.
    Casilla (no surprise) gave up the most (8) of the relievers

  13. snarkk said, on March 9, 2017 at 1:52 pm

    “More bombs please”. Amen…

  14. Irish Kevin said, on March 9, 2017 at 2:26 pm

    Timing is everything, Pablo hitting 3, who was the first baseman/left fielder, damn, I am getting old, his homer was epic when he hit it, got mobbed before he could touch home plate

    • zumiee said, on March 9, 2017 at 3:16 pm

      Ishikawa! Always worth looking at again!

      • Flavor said, on March 9, 2017 at 5:58 pm

        you can say a lot of bad shit about Buck but this was an epic HR call. Simple and timed perfectly.

      • unca_chuck said, on March 9, 2017 at 6:03 pm

        He didn’t even call a HR. The best part about it to me is he shut the fuck up.

      • Flavor said, on March 9, 2017 at 6:08 pm

        come on, “the Giants….win the pennant” just as the ball hits the seats. That was epic.

      • chipower9 said, on March 10, 2017 at 8:56 am

        I thought it was a great call. Love the “Travis Ishikawa…Hits one into the seats…the Giants Win the Pennant,” and then let the crowd and emotions roll. Classic, IMO.

        And isn’t this the game in which Morse hit a HR to tie it earlier?

  15. Flavor said, on March 9, 2017 at 6:09 pm

    this one is cool because of the slight, dramatic quiet pause that the entire crowd does just as he hits the ball. Zumiee (I think) posted this once before

    • chipower9 said, on March 10, 2017 at 9:01 am

      Great video…love it.

  16. Flavor said, on March 9, 2017 at 6:33 pm

    • alleykat69 said, on March 9, 2017 at 6:37 pm

      Think I bought him a few 6 packs myself…

  17. Bozo said, on March 9, 2017 at 6:47 pm

    Love the Ishi dinger, that was epic.

    Home runs are great but a well rounded team is the one that wins the ring, at least that’s how I see it.
    During the regular season last year the Giants had something like 28 games where they hit 2 or more HRs , I think they won 18 of those. So they managed to manufacture enough runs to win another 69. I know of at least 2 games that they scored 10+ runs without hitting a HR. I think they had 7 walkoff Wins and only one was from a HR. They also had 6 walkoffs against them, that and the other late inning losses are what I think killed them.

    Having guys that can hit the long ball is a good thing, besides the HR itself, it can also help the other guys in the order. If healthy, I’m thinking we have four starters that can get us 20, and hopefully our bench will have some power. We still have the guys who can manufacture runs, so IMO it comes down to the Pen and if they hold our leads in the late innings. If they click, I think we could have a really fun season.

  18. alleykat69 said, on March 9, 2017 at 6:50 pm

    Yeah that Travis blast still brings chills and utmost satisfaction.Especially for what he overcame just to make the postseason roster, and the “Guts with a Hunch” Bruce Bochy for adding him!! Truly a epic moment!
    I even liked Harold Reynolds moment later in the video… 6 straight balls and he’s thinking inside fastball and he turned on it, lots of guys would of taken another pitch,but he had the guts to let it fly..

  19. PaulinAsia Banh Bao said, on March 9, 2017 at 7:35 pm

    Catching up on Chris Haft’s reports from Scottsdale, and I’m just wondering if you all who saw the guy more than I did last year can explain why Gorkys seems assured to make the roster. Was he really that good? I don’t recall ever being particularly impressed.

    • Flavor said, on March 9, 2017 at 7:43 pm

      I liked him. Great defense. Fast. Hit a little better than advertised, at least the at bats I saw.

    • zumiee said, on March 9, 2017 at 7:58 pm

      I guess they see him in the Blanco role.

    • PaulinAsia Banh Bao said, on March 9, 2017 at 8:09 pm


  20. Flavor said, on March 9, 2017 at 7:44 pm

    Any Stix updates?

    • chipower9 said, on March 10, 2017 at 9:04 am

      I got a letter from him about a week ago, and sent him some photocopied sections of a baseball pre-season rag, and also some photocopied articles from local rags.

  21. djloo27 said, on March 9, 2017 at 8:34 pm

    Not a homer, but for a long time this was all we had:

    • willedav said, on March 10, 2017 at 7:44 am

      always dug this guy, who was hella b-ball player too. Too bad SF couldn’t hang onto him but he bounced around a lot. Cool vid, thx.

      Btw, never understood why Charlie Ward bailed on football, tho I guess it was just his long term health. Man what a QB he could have been.

  22. PaulinAsia Banh Bao said, on March 9, 2017 at 8:45 pm

    One of my fav homers… Bumgarner off Kershaw (again)….

  23. djloo27 said, on March 9, 2017 at 8:47 pm

    I can’t shake the feeling that this Giant team will basically linger around .500 and is gonna be a little on the dull side…

    • PaulinAsia Banh Bao said, on March 9, 2017 at 8:52 pm

      Kind of the feeling I have too, Loo. I guess that’s why I’ve been craving for this year’s edition to hit the long ball more often; at least it’s more exciting, even if stats might not show it’s the best way to win. I just know I don’t want to be watching a bunch of games this season with the Giants losing in the late innings and I’m sittin’ around waiting for a conga line to form that never comes. Not that it’s any better sitting around waiting for a homerun that also never comes………..

    • willedav said, on March 10, 2017 at 7:53 am

      mm I think the SPs can carry them as long the kids don’t screw up in the pen. I don’t see any team other than Cubs as being much better, and they have to have a hangover after dominating last year. No one repeats anymore.
      Didn’t like offseason much, but Evans dominated mid season last year, might have to again.

  24. djloo27 said, on March 9, 2017 at 9:30 pm

    The Giants need someone young, athletic, talented and colorful.
    His name is Yasiel Puig…

  25. Macdog said, on March 9, 2017 at 9:34 pm

    Watching USC-UCLA. My wife’s reaction to Walton’s commentary: What kind of crack is he smoking?

    • PaulinAsia Banh Bao said, on March 9, 2017 at 9:37 pm

      Knowing what I do of Bill, that would be very good crack…. or more likely just some fine tasty buds…

      • Macdog said, on March 9, 2017 at 9:43 pm

        The best part so far was Walton giving his broadcast partner a Mick Fleetwood-autographed Tusk album — and the guy had no idea what it was.

    • willedav said, on March 10, 2017 at 7:48 am

      Pretty typical of what he’s brought–wonder what over/under is on how many times he says “conference of champions.”. SC is tough they gave them a good game. Really looking forward to how things shake out in Pac12 in regard to seedings, esp with Kansas going down.
      How bout Nova putting 108 on Mullin? I love this week. Hall looks good too.

  26. chipower9 said, on March 10, 2017 at 10:12 am

    Saw the bit of pessimism earlier (Loo and Paul) re: this year’s squad. I actually think our boys will do fairly well this year, and have them either winning the division outright, or getting in as a WC.

    I mean really, if the Giants had a closer along the lines of Melancon last year, they probably advance instead of the Cubbies. We have lost some vet presence in the pen (Casilla, Lopez, Romo, etc.) but I think it was time, and I think the young guys have a good chance to fill those voids. I have said numerous times that I could see Osich being that lefty specialist that Lopez has held down for years. Time will tell.

    The key (as almost all have said) will be health, and consistent contributions from the heart of the line-up.

    I truly do not see how, if they stay healthy and play to potential, that they do not make some noise.

    But then I am more polly than doomer and my glass is almost always half-full (but I am not a blind optimist…I try to keep my optimism rooted in reality, too).

    Play ball…I am so damned ready!

  27. alleykat69 said, on March 10, 2017 at 11:45 am

    All subject to change Chi, but it looks like Osich will be the lefty specialist for the Rivercats. Blach makes the team along with Gearrin according to BR and everybody’s favorite “”The Hung Dong” makes it as a reserve..

    • chipower9 said, on March 10, 2017 at 12:11 pm

      Yeah, I have read some of the reports on how the roster will shake out. And I know Osich has not had the greatest ST, but if you check his lifetime stats against lefties, his numbers are pretty dominant.

  28. chipower9 said, on March 10, 2017 at 1:22 pm

    Eat it up boys…Belt and JRoll with bombs today. JRoll with a bomb? He’s gotta make the team, right?

    • Macdog said, on March 10, 2017 at 1:55 pm

      Yeah, that oughta clinch it for JRoll.

  29. unca_chuck said, on March 10, 2017 at 2:12 pm

    I’m reading Walton’s book, Back from the Dead. ADD theater in action. Good read though.

  30. unca_chuck said, on March 10, 2017 at 2:15 pm

    Shit, I was just reading how bad the vets were struggling in ST.

    I ain’t that thrilled about J Roll taking someone else’s (Specs) spot. I can’t count how many big hits he came off the bench and delivered.

  31. unca_chuck said, on March 10, 2017 at 2:15 pm

    San Dawg, you should read it as it’s all about San Diego in the mid and late 60s…

    • willedav said, on March 10, 2017 at 6:39 pm

      The second half once the injuries start is eye opening. wouldn’t wish what happened to him on anyone.

  32. djloo27 said, on March 10, 2017 at 3:15 pm

    Guerrin on the mound with Miller on the radio is a guaranteed nap…

    • zumiee said, on March 10, 2017 at 3:57 pm

      Joe Torre is such a hypocrite. He’s all about pace of play now, when his Yankees were the slowest paced team around. I hated to watch them play because of that. And when they played the Red Sox, forget it. A regular 4-3 or 5-4 game would take 4 hours to play.

      But having said that, yeah, pace-of-play rules need to be enforced especially against the worst offenders.

  33. zumiee said, on March 10, 2017 at 4:32 pm

    Colombia’s Quintana has pitched 5 innings of no-hit ball vs. the U.S. so far.

    • zumiee said, on March 10, 2017 at 4:43 pm

      Craw singles to break up the no-hitter! Yay!

      • zumiee said, on March 10, 2017 at 4:45 pm

  34. zumiee said, on March 10, 2017 at 4:52 pm

    Craw scores!

    • Macdog said, on March 10, 2017 at 5:39 pm

      I’m rooting for Columbia. There, I said it.

  35. PaulinAsia Banh Bao said, on March 10, 2017 at 6:53 pm

    Chuck, re: your 10:12am post, I generally don’t deal in pessimism much anymore in my older age, but I do still try to deal with realism…. 🙂 We will see what happens re: the hitters and the hitting.

  36. PaulinAsia Banh Bao said, on March 10, 2017 at 7:00 pm

    And also yes, Chuck, Rollins and Belt are now on “my” roster because of the HRs today. Like I said, chances are good that my HR roster will look very similar to Bochy’s real one in the end. Rollins probably had the team made anyway. Belt too. 🙂 My other HR guys include Parker starting in left, Mac makes the team, and I also put Marrero and Hwang on the roster, but those 2 might not make it in Bruce’s World.

  37. snarkk said, on March 10, 2017 at 10:30 pm

    Cal barely beaten by Ducks in Pac12 semi-final, and without Bird the whole game due to early concussion. Finished 21-12, with RPI of 54. IMO they are in the tourney, maybe as a 11 or 12 seed. They played some top teams tough. I think they’d have a shot to win a first round game…

  38. snarkk said, on March 10, 2017 at 10:40 pm

    Bobby a-hole Knight back in the news today by wishing people dead. Dan Patrick today mentioned that most of the Indiana leadership present at the time Knight was kicked out of the program are no longer at the school, or dead. Knight said: “I hope they’re all dead.” Patrick then said some of those individuals are dead, and Knight responded: “I hope the rest of them go.” I’m hard pressed to think of a more disagreeable D-bag in the whole of N American sports…

  39. Ezra Richardson said, on March 14, 2017 at 9:28 pm

    I personally do not dislike homers, but I can see where the Giants are coming from. I do think that power hitting is important, I think that as long you have quality pitchers who can go out and pitch scoreless or low scoring innings like the Giants do, and you have players who are guaranteed to get on base, you should still be able to win games and be in the playoffs. Plus, At&t park is not a hitter’s park and is not known for being a launchpad.

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