Wednesday, May 26, 2010


That Boy Ain't Right

On the heels of their depressing five-game losing streak, the Giants at least succeeded in passing the Livan Test, beating everyone's favorite gelatinous mass last night and (supposedly) reigniting the offense with a little home cookin'. If your bats can't get going against El Tubbo and his assortment of 40 mph breaking balls, then it's time to seriously consider some major reconstructive roster surgery, and I don't mean a just a "shuffling of the dreck chairs" (God, I love that headline).

Tonight, though, the bats went quiet against Luis Atilano, a guy whom no one has ever heard of but who came into the game with more walks than strikeouts (and he has that same 15:19 ratio after the game, since he neither walked nor struck anyone out) and a very unintimidating minor league record. He's the very epitome of a guy bad teams throw out to the mound as cannon fodder, praying their lineup has seven runs in them that night. So he should have been easy pickings for a reinvigorated Giants lineup, right?

Nah. The Giants swung early and often at Atilano's assorted crap and hit grounder after grounder, and Atilano came out looking like a modern day, Hispanic Randy Jones. The Nationals, on the other hand, worked Tim Lincecum like a dog, and Timmy threw 96 pitches, couldn't get past the fifth inning, and just generally looked lost all game. Kruk and Kuip noted that in the early going Lincecum kept glancing skyward, wondering where his lost command had run to. Trust me, guys, heavenward is where we'll be gazing a lot if Timmy can't get this stuff sorted out soon.

It's Lincecum's third straight wild start, more concerning this time because it came at home. He doesn't necessarily look fatigued, just out of whack. A lot of fastballs are sailing high and up out of the strike zone, which tends to indicate a mechanical problem. Or perhaps his, um, extracirricular activities are following him onto the field. I wonder if the Giants will have Lincecum skip a start or take an extra day of rest due to the recent struggles.

Speaking of pitchers who haven't looked good lately, Barry Zito goes tomorrow to try to give the Giants the series win. Zito's line looked poor against Oakland, but he basically got dinked and doinked to death, and few balls were hit very hard. My favorite fun fact about Zito thus far this season is that he's only allowed one homer so far in over 60 innings. Anyone want to bet that that rate won't hold over the course of the season?

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