The first 14 games of this 2015 Giants’ season resulted in a 4-10 record, including an eight game losing streak. This led to concern and unrest amongst the fan base and raised questions about whether or not this group of players was the right mix to play the Giants’ brand of championship baseball. The G-men have since won 8 of their past 11 games, including sweeps over Los Angeles teams in consecutive weeks. With a record now of 12-13, the Giants are beginning to resemble that championship team that provides great pitching and defense, mixed in with timely hitting. Ah, Giants’ baseball.
Tim Lincecum was simply brilliant yesterday, going eight innings, allowing just three hits and a walk while striking out four. At 2-2 with a 2.40 ERA, Timmy looks like he’s in a groove and has overcome the mechanical issues that affected his consistency over the past few years. This writer also believes that it took that long for Timmy to reinvent himself, as his velocity slowed from the mid-90’s during his back to back Cy Young years to the current version of himself. With Lincecum’s resurgence, and the surprising success of rookie Chris Heston to go along with ace Madison Bumgarner, this rotation is once again looking like a Giants’ strength.
Yesterday started off with a bang, as the Giants nearly pulled off back-to-back-to-back home runs to start off the bottom of the first inning. After Nori Aoki and Joe Panik homered, Angel Pagan drove a pitch to deep right field that hit near the top of the brick wall, resulting in a triple. With no outs and Pagan on third, it looked like the Giants might break the game open early. However, Pagan was stranded at third and the Giants would settle for a 2-0 lead. The Giants would add a run in the third inning and two more in the fifth, on a two-run double by the hot hitting Brandon Crawford.
In total, the offense produced five runs on 10 hits, five of them for extra bases. Aoki continued as Mr. Consistency, adding his first home run of the season. It seems like he’s on base one or two times every game. Panik went 2 for 4 with his first home run of the season and scored two runs. Buster Posey continues to hit well and went 2 for 4 with a run scored. And Crawford now leads the team in RBI with 14, after picking up two more yesterday. In fact, Craw also leads the team in home runs (5), slugging percentage (.500), and on base percentage (.859). Even Timmy contributed to his own cause, reaching base in all three at bats, going 2 for 2 with a walk.
Tonight, the G-men start a three game series against San Diego as they continue their quest for a ten game, home stand winning streak. A sweep of the Padres will also move the Giants into second place in the NL West. Madison Bumgarner will oppose Tyson Ross, with a Giants’ victory tonight moving their record to .500 at 13-13, extending their win streak to four games.