Ten things to know about Giants' 2018 schedule


Ten things to know about Giants' 2018 schedule

SAN FRANCISCO -- After Monday night's marathon game, the Giants were probably not too eager to take a look at a 162-game schedule for 2018. But the next Even Year will be here before they know it, and on Tuesday morning MLB released the schedules for each team. 

The Giants do not yet know game times, although they should catch more breaks thanks to the new CBA. For now, they know their opponents, homestands and road trips, and so do we. Here are 10 things that stand out from the 2018 schedule:

On the Road Again: The Giants prefer to finish the season at home and have more home dates when kids are out of school, so they always request a road start. The 2018 season kicks off Thursday, March 29 at Dodger Stadium. Giants fans were already going to root hard against the Dodgers this October, but more is at stake now. That weekend series would be a four-day banner-and-ring festival if the Dodgers end their title drought this fall. 

Home Cooking: The new CBA includes four additional off days during the season, and the Giants got all of them at home. They have eight full off days in the middle of homestands after having just three this season. The schedule also includes several other days that will turn into full days off at home because of getaway day travel plans. For an aging team without much depth in recent years, that should be a slight boost. 

Opportunities Out West: Even with the current standings, Giants fans traveled pretty well to San Diego and Denver in recent weeks. The dedicated ones will have some opportunities to explore different West Coast cities next season. The Giants visit Anaheim in April and Seattle in July. With a season against the American League West, they also have four games against the Astros (two at home, two on the road) and three home games against the Rangers in August. 

Bay Bridge Twist: The first half ends with three home games against the A’s and the second half kicks off with three in Oakland. It’s weird, and makes for a sort-of six-game series. It’s a nice break from travel, though. Both teams will get plenty of time at home, and because the first half ends with a three-opponent homestand, the Giants will spend 18 consecutive nights in their own beds. That’s just about unprecedented. 

Stanton Goes Home: Giancarlo Stanton will visit his former team on June 11 as part of a three-city trip for the Giants. (Just had to make sure you’re still paying attention.)

The Downside: Up until now, you’ve read a lot about how home-heavy parts of this schedule are. Well, the flip side of all those days at home is a bunch of three-city trips. The Giants have five of them after having just one this season. After the season-opening series in Los Angeles, the next four trips are three-city swings. A reminder: This roster is 24-51 on the road this season. 

The Superstars: Aside from the usual meetings with Kershaw, Arenado, Goldschmidt, Hector Sanchez, etc., the Giants will host Bryce Harper on April 23, Bryant-Rizzo on July 9 and Jose Altuve on August 6. They face Mike Trout next year, but only on the road. Oh, and assuming Stanton is still a Marlin, you can try to woo him June 18-20 at AT&T Park. 

Round II: As mentioned above, April 23 will be Harper’s first game at AT&T Park since the fight with Hunter Strickland. Also, circle that May 7-10 series with the Phillies. The Giants believe Hector Neris threw at Buster Posey last month, and it's a pretty good bet they'll do something about that. 

Holidays in Denver: Trips to Coors Field are always quirky, but the 2018 schedule includes an odd twist for those Denver visits. The Giants will be in Denver for Memorial Day, the Fourth of July and Labor Day. That’s a lot of smoke, and also a lot of fireworks. 

Finishing Strong? September doesn’t matter this season. August didn’t, either. Actually, basically none of the games since sometime in May have really mattered. But the front office believes this group can compete next year, and if the Giants can start strong and stay in the race, they’ll get a chance to close with a flourish. Twelve of the final 18 games are at home, with three off days mixed in. The Giants finish the 2018 season with a six-game set at AT&T Park against the Padres and Dodgers. 

Report: Giants discussed Panik, top prospects in potential Stanton trade


Report: Giants discussed Panik, top prospects in potential Stanton trade

On Monday morning, some important details emerged.

The Giants discussed Joe Panik and top prospects Tyler Beede and Chris Shaw with the Marlins in a potential trade for Giancarlo Stanton, according to sports radio host Craig Mish.

Last week, San Francisco reportedly made an actual offer for Stanton.

The Giants selected Beede, 24, in the first round (14th overall) of the 2014 draft.

The right-handed pitcher went 6-7 with a 4.79 ERA over 19 starts in Triple-A last season.

[RELATED: Healthy Tyler Beede shows why he's Giants' top pitching prospect]

The Orange and Black took Shaw, 24, in the first round (31st overall) of the 2015 draft.

In 37 games for Double-A Richmond in 2017, he hit .301 with six home runs and 29 RBI.

He was promoted to Triple-A and hit .289 with 18 home runs and 50 RBI in 88 games.

Shaw recently played in the Arizona Fall League, but only saw action in five games because of a sore shoulder.

Duffy family cat, Skeeter, passes away at 15

Matt Duffy/Instagram

Duffy family cat, Skeeter, passes away at 15

We have some sad news to report.

Skeeter, the lovable four-legged member of Matt Duffy's family, passed away in Long Beach on Saturday night. He was 15 years old.

Duffy made the news public with an Instagram post on Sunday evening.

"Even when it's expected, losing a member of the family is never easy. Sometimes you'd forget this little guy was even a cat. After 15 awesome years, last night we had to say goodbye to Skeeter boy. Thank you for all the love and support that Skeets has gotten over the past couple of years. Our furry little light has gone dark," Duffy wrote.

Skeeter, slightly overweight for his size, stole the hearts of Giants fans after Duffy made his debut with the Giants in August of 2014.

When Duffy was traded to the Tampa Bay Rays at the 2016 trade deadline, Skeeter remained in California with Duffy's parents.