Sept. 17, 2011BOX SCORE GIANTS VIDEOMLB PAGE MLB SCOREBOARDDENVER (AP) -- San Francisco manager Bruce Bochy said the task at hand is straightforward for the Giants in the waning days of the regular season."We just got to go out there and try to win ballgames," Bochy said. "It's pretty simple at this point. And obviously, we need some help."The Giants suceeded on both counts Saturday night. They scored four runs in the eighth and then held on to beat the Colorado Rockies 6-5 and extend their winning streak to seven games.The Giants moved five games behind the Arizona Diamondbacks in the National League West with 10 games to play after Arizona lost at San Diego. San Francisco has made up 4 12 games on Arizona in a week.The Giants are also five games behind the Atlanta Braves in the wild-card race where they are third and trail the St. Louis Cardinals by a half game.San Francisco scored once in the sixth to go ahead 2-1 only to have the Rockies take a 3-2 lead in the bottom of the inning. That was the Giants' plight in the eighth, when Huston Street came on for the Rockies and Andres Torres led off with a single."We feel we've got a shot," Torres said. "I got a base hit and everything started. We just got to play hard and win some games."Street (1-4), pitching in a set-up role after Rafael Betancourt took over as the closer in mid-August while he was on the disabled list, then fielded Jeff Keppinger's bunt, but threw the ball wide of shortstop Hector Gomez, allowing Torres to take third."That's a good throw, it's probably close to being a double play ball," Bochy said. "But we caught a break there."Carlos Beltran followed with a run-scoring double that sent Keppinger to third. Street then struck out Mark DeRosa.But Brett Pill, who tripled home the Giants' first run in the sixth off Matt Belisle, tripled again and two runs scored."I don't think I've ever had two triples in my life (in a game)," Pill said. "It was hard to breathe when I got to third."Pill said he benefited from watching Street throw sliders exclusively to DeRosa. Pill fought back from a 1-2 count and drove a 2-2 slider to the gap in left-center."He kind of left one over the plate with two strikes, and I just barreled it," said Pill, a 27-year-old rookie who is 7-for-21 with one double, two triples, two homers and six RBI in his first six games in the majors."I think the problem area for Huston tonight simply boils down to the inability to make a two-strike pitch," Rockies manager Jim Tracy said. "He had Torres right where he wanted him at two strikes, but he left a changeup enough to where he could serve it into left field. We had an out at second base on the hard bunt by Keppinger. He was going to be out with a good throw...He had two strikes on Pill and left a slider up in the zone. We were in the position we were in to wiggle ourselves of the inning. We weren't able to get out of it."Matt Lindstrom relieved Street and got pinch hitter Aubrey Huff to ground to first baseman Jordan Pacheco. He was slow throwing the ball home, and Pill scored to make it 6-3.Santiago Casilla, filling in for injured closer Brian Wilson, earned his fifth save but not without a few anxious moments. He gave up a one-out single to pinch hitter Seth Smith and walked Ty Wigginton. Mark Ellis doubled to score Smith, and Wigginton scored when Wilin Rosario grounded out.Gomez had gone 2 for 3 in his first major league start, one night after his major league debut, but Casilla struck him out to end the game.Waldis Joaquin (1-0) retired the two batters he faced in the eighth to earn the victory.Notes: Giants outfielder Cody Ross, who came out of Friday's game in the sixth, underwent an MRI that confirmed a strained right hamstring. He's expected to miss about a week. ... Rockies manager Jim Tracy said center fielder Dexter Fowler would not be in the lineup Sunday. He has started every game since Aug. 15. ... Rockies shortstop Troy Tulowitzki (left hip), first baseman Todd Helton (back) and right fielder Carlos Gonzalez (right wrist) didn't play. Tulowitzki has missed four straight games and six of the past eight. Helton has missed four straight games and 10 of the past 12 games, and Gonzalez missed his second straight game. ... Brian Wilson (right elbow inflammation), who has been on the disabled list retroactive to Aug. 16, played catch Saturday, and Bochy said, "There's a good chance if he comes in tomorrow and feels fine that we will activate him." ... Giants pitcher Jonathan Sanchez (left ankle sprain) could throw off a mound Monday or Tuesday, Bochy said, and might pitch "an inning or so" before the season ends. ... Esmil Rogers, who is 6-5 with a 5.88 ERA overall but 1-2 with a 9.86 ERA at Coors Field, will start for the Rockies. Matt Cain, who is 11-10 with a 2.79 ERA will make his 26th career start against the Rockies and fourth this season. He's 12-7 with a 3.16 ERA against the Rockies.
There was something almost disturbingly surreptitious about the Giants’ decision to announce Dave Righetti’s removal as pitching coach (for a front office job) Saturday. Saturday, after all, is the day you typically bury sports news that isn’t football, or related to football in some way.
But that could just be us being needlessly conspiratorial. We’re willing to bestow, if not the benefit of the doubt, at least the lack of doubt.
Still, Righetti’s reassignment, and those of bullpen coach Mark Gardner and assistant hitting coach Steve Decker, makes it clear that however the Giants want to avoid the use of the word “rebuilding,” they are indeed rebuilding – just not in the traditional new-players-for-old way.
General manager Bobby Evans made it clear without saying the words that Righetti’s messaging had lost its efficacy with the younger pitchers, who for the most part had not been part of the franchise’s most glorious times. And since the only pitchers still on the 40-man roster who had been with the club for its last World Series parade are Madison Bumgarner and Hunter Strickland, Evans clearly concluded that the message to the new staff needed to come from elsewhere.
Now this assumes that the problem with the Giants’ pitching was not the talent level or the execution, of course. Typically, it takes a lot for a manager or coach to screw up his job so profoundly that he needs to be replaced – mostly it’s considered an environmental matter that a new voice saying the old stuff is sufficient. It’s really more alchemy than science, and alchemy is fairly hit-or-miss.
But it is change where the Giants feel they can change; their four starters (Bumgarner, Johnny Cueto, Jeff Samardzija and Matt Moore) and closer (Mark Melancon) are in for $70.8 million this coming year, so a full-on demolition is not cost effective, and the young’uns (Chris Stratton, Strickland, Cory Gearrin, Derek Law, et. al.) remain in that tenuous middle ground between dependable and disposable. In other words, there aren’t a lot of options for dramatic player change, and the Giants don’t look to be aggressive buyers in the off-season, crackpot Giancarlo Stanton rumors notwithstanding.
So this is the face of the Giants’ rebuild so far – Dave Righetti, Mark Gardner and Steve Decker. Make of the act and the circumstances of the release of the information what you will, but as it is neither the manager (Bruce Bochy is golden) or the players (who with only a few exceptions are decidedly meh, with a side of feh), it will have to do as the first answer to the question, “What do they intend to do about 64-98?"
I mean other than keeping a low profile about it.
With free agency set to begin five days after the World Series ends, two hitters that played for the Giants during the 2017 season have put their names on the open market.
Veteran third baseman Conor Gillaspie and longtime minor league outfielder Carlos Moncrief have both elected for free agency, according to Baseball America.
The 30-year-old Gillaspie appeared in 44 games for the Giants this past season. He hit just .168/.218/.288 with four doubles, two home runs and eight RBI. He was designated for assignment on August 3 and outrighted to Triple-A Sacramento on August 5. With the River Cats, Gillaspie hit .375 with four doubles in 15 games in August.
Prior to the 2017 season, Gillaspie signed a one-year, $1.4 million deal with the Giants.
As for Moncrief, the soon-to-be 29-year-old finally got his first call-up the majors this past season after eight and a half seasons in the minors. He debuted for the Giants on July 29. In 28 games, he hit .211/.256/.237 with one double and five RBI. While he didn't do much with the bat, Moncrief showed off a cannon for an arm when he patrolled right field.