The San Francisco Giants have continued their losing ways after getting swept by the Chicago Cubs this past weekend. After this disastrous home stand, it’s looking more and more likely that Brian Sabean may end up selling by the trade deadline. July 31st is fast approaching, which gives general management very little time to finalize any possible deals. The Giants currently sit last in the NL West with a miserable 46-58 record.
This could easily mark the end of the Giants’ season. They are ten games behind the first-place Los Angeles Dodgers. The Dodgers’ streak continued tonight after rookie Yasiel Puig hit his first ever walk-off homerun against the Cincinnati Reds in the 11th.
Despite falling further behind the Dodgers, there were several positives that came out of these losses. Most importantly, the Giants were able to get consistent pitching of the rotation.
Tonight Tim Lincecum went seven innings strong, while only giving up two runs in the process. More impressive were his ten strikeouts; Lincecum has recorded ten or more strikeouts in three out of his last four starts. Madison Bumgarner continued his breakout season after pitching eight innings of shutout ball. This continued his torrid July, in which he’s boasted a 2-1 record with a 1.55 ERA. Bumgarner’s performance this year has been one of the few bright spots in an otherwise disappointing season. He currently sports a 2.76 ERA, a 10-6 record, a .95 WHIP, as well as 135 strikeouts. Bumgarner is putting his vast potential on display and proving his future as a frontline starter. Matt Cain also put together a good start after pitching seven innings of one-run ball. Cain has struggled all season with consistency, which is why this quality start is very encouraging.
The bullpen cost its club the first two contests, with Sergio Romo taking both losses and a blown save. The first night saw an error from Brandon Belt spur a Cubs comeback in the ninth. The next evening found former Giant, Nate Schierholtz, taking Romo deep in the ninth for the go-ahead run. The bullpen is in dire need of another arm, especially with the injuries suffered by Santiago Casilla and now Jeremy Affeldt.
There are now even more talks of Hunter Pence being moved. It’s been said that the Giants are now willing consider offers for the coveted right fielder. It’s unlikely Pence will be traded due to his contract, but you never know with Brian Sabean. The Texas Rangers have been the most interested, especially considering the injury suffered by Lance Berkman and the possible suspension of Nelson Cruz.
There are only several days left until the July 31st trade line and it will be interesting to see what general management ends up doing by then. They have been very quiet so far and that isn’t likely to change until right before anything happens.