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#pounditFriday, October 7, 2022

Articles tagged: San Francisco Giants

These three teams are reportedly top suitors for Max Scherzer

Max Scherzer

The Washington Nationals appear to be moving closer to a Max Scherzer trade. While many teams are interested, Scherzer’s veto rights over any trade mean only a few are likely destinations.

According to Jon Morosi of MLB Network, the Los Angeles Dodgers, San Francisco Giants, and San Diego Padres are believed to be the three leading suitors for Scherzer. Morosi adds that a deal could be agreed on by the end of Wednesday.

It’s not a coincidence that all three teams are based in California. A Tuesday report from MLB Network’s Jon Heyman stated that Scherzer was believed to prefer a trade to a West Coast contender.

While pitching isn’t necessarily the greatest need for any of these teams, it would be hard to pass up an ace like Scherzer. The 37-year-old has a 2.83 ERA this season with 142 strikeouts in 105 innings. He’s had some lingering injury concerns, but there does not appear to be any reason for concern that Scherzer won’t be good to go for the rest of the year. He could absolutely make the difference in a short playoff series.

Giants pitcher had funny good-luck charm before game

Anthony DeSclafani

San Francisco Giants pitcher Anthony DeSclafani threw one of the best games of his career on Monday night, and the right-hander believes it may have been the result of some good luck that came from an unlikely source.

DeSclafani pitched a complete-game shutout and allowed just three hits in San Francisco’s 12-0 win over the Colorado Rockies. As he wrapped up his press conference following the victory, he informed reporters that a bird pooped on him prior to the game.

A lot of people think being crapped on by a bird is good luck. The same can be said for rain on your wedding day. Is that just a way of making people feel better? Almost certainly, but it’s hard to argue against the results for DeSclafani.

Believe it or not, this isn’t the first time an MLB pitcher has credited bird poop for his goof fortune.

MLB opening night drew record ratings after sports hiatus

Rob Manfred

Major League Baseball officially returned on Thursday night with the start of the 2020 regular season, and the ratings for the two games prove just how much fans missed live sports.

The first game of the night between the New York Yankees and Washington Nationals drew 4 million viewers, which was the largest audience ever for an Opening Night. The contest was also the most-watched regular season MLB game in nearly a decade, according to a press release from ESPN.

Yankees-Nationals drew an 8.4 rating in the Washington, D.C., market, making it the most-watched MLB regular season game ever on ESPN in that market. The 7.8 rating in New York was the highest for a regular season game for the network in that market since 2015.

The second half of ESPN’s double-header was nearly as popular. That game, which featured the San Francisco Giants hosting the Los Angeles Dodgers, drew a 6.9 rating in the San Francisco market, making it the highest-rated regular season game on ESPN in that market since 2013. The 6.8 rating in Los Angeles was topped only by the Dodgers’ 2018 tie-breaker game against the Colorado Rockies.

MLB’s return marked the first night where fans could watch a live, regular season game from one of the four major American sports in over four months. The ratings from “The Match” gave us a hint that Opening Night would be a success for MLB, and the numbers were definitely eye-opening.

Giants reporter addresses now infamous Pablo Sandoval photo

Pablo Sandoval went viral on Sunday after an unflattering photo showed him looking very overweight, and the reporter who shared the image was disgusted by the reaction to it.

Andrew Baggarly of The Athletic tweeted a photo of Sandoval taking grounders at third base during Giants camp, and many were stunned at how big the 33-year-old looked. That led to a number of fans and outlets mocking Sandoval, which bothered Baggarly. In a series of tweets, Baggarly explained why he shared the photo and ripped those who taunted Sandoval over it.

Giants manager Gabe Kapler was also disappointed by the reaction to the photo, saying he “wouldn’t wish it on anybody” and that Sandoval looks “healthy.”

Major League Baseball has implemented a universal DH for the shortened 2020 season, so Sandoval will likely be used mostly as a hitter anyway. As long as his weight doesn’t impact his hitting, Kapler probably is not concerned.

Sandoval was listed at 268 pounds at one point, and one of his former trainers once detailed the extent of Sandoval’s eating problem. Despite that, the former World Series MVP hit .268 with 14 homers and 41 RBIs in 108 games for San Francisco last season.

Giants launch ‘Fan Cutout Program’ for season ticketholders

san francisco giants

The San Francisco Giants are taking a unique approach to filling their seats in 2020.

The Giants confirmed in a letter to season ticketholders on Thursday that games at Oracle Park will be played without fans this season, according to ESPN. However, they’re granting fans an opportunity to attend in spirit — by sending in an image to be printed onto a cardboard cutout and placed in the stands.

The plan, which the team is calling the “Giants Fan Cutout Program,” will see the cutouts placed as close to the individual’s season ticket as possible. Fans who do not have season tickets will also be allowed to participate in the program for a $99 fee.

Prepare to see a lot of teams get creative with ideas like this. We’ve seen it overseas, and it’s only a matter of time before we see it here as well.

While the Giants have already ruled out the possibility, some teams are already eyeing up ways they could play with at least some fans in attendance in 2020.

Report: Giants commit to paying minor leaguers through rest of season

san francisco giants

The San Francisco Giants are making a financial commitment to their minor league players.

The Giants committed to paying their minor league players through the end of the minor-league season, Robert Murray reported Wednesday.

The minor-league season is not going to be played, which marks a significant lost opportunity for player development. Some teams have even planned to cut pay for their minor league players until changing their minds.

MLB originally announced in March that minor leaguers would be paid $400 a week through May 31 since they would not be able to play due to the coronavirus shutdown. The Giants will continue to pay their organizational minor league players through Sept. 7. They have about 270 players in the United States and Dominican Republic who will continue to be paid, costing the organization an estimated $1 million.

Report: Giants interested in Yasiel Puig

San Francisco Giants fans used to hate Yasiel Puig while he played for the Los Angeles Dodgers, but it sounds like there’s at least a chance the outfielder could be playing for his former rivals in 2020.

According to baseball writer Robert Murray, the Giants have interest in Puig, who remains a free agent with spring training looming.

We haven’t heard much about Puig in a while. He’s still in search of a job a year after hitting .267 with 24 home runs with the Reds and Indians. He and the Giants have not gotten along over the years, but with Madison Bumgarner departing the team, he may receive a warmer welcome if both sides make this happen.

The Giants brought back Hunter Pence on Friday. It’s not clear if this will dissuade the team from making any pursuit of Puig, but the Cuban outfielder’s free agency is still worth following either way.

Gabe Kapler linked to Giants manager job after being fired by Phillies

Gabe Kapler

Gabe Kapler was fired by the Philadelphia Phillies on Thursday after just two seasons with the team, and some think he should have been given a better shot after compiling a .500 record over that span. However, it seems like there is a good chance the 44-year-old will not be unemployed for long.

Several teams are looking for new managers this offseason, and Kapler is hoping to score one of those jobs. The San Francisco Giants may make the most sense, as Kapler has a strong relationship with president of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi.

While the Phillies fell short of expectations by missing the playoffs this season after spending a ton of money, Kapler’s time with the team was far from a disaster. He had some miscommunications with players and made his fair share of mistakes, but ultimately guys like Bryce Harper did not earn their paychecks. Philly also dealt with some key injuries early on, most notably when star outfielder Andrew McCutchen tore his ACL in June and was ruled out for the remainder of the year.

Even Kapler’s own boss gave him a huge vote of confidence less than four months ago, so it would not be a surprise to see him get another shot as a manager immediately.

Giants to retire Will Clark’s No. 22 in 2020

san francisco giants

The San Francisco Giants are making what many fans will think is a long-overdue step to recognize one of the franchise’s finest hitters.

During a reunion of the 1989 NL Champion Giants, the team announced Sunday that they would retire Will Clark’s No. 22 in a ceremony in 2020.

Will the Thrill was the star attraction on the Giants teams of the late 1980s and early 1990s. In eight years with the organization, he hit .299 with power, making five All-Star appearances and finishing in the top five of NL MVP voting on four different occasions. He was also a Gold Glove winner at first base in 1991.

One has to wonder if it will be the only Giants’ jersey retirement in the near term, with a beloved figure currently finishing out his last year with the organization.

Report: Giants ‘still listening’ on Madison Bumgarner

Madison Bumgarner

The San Francisco Giants are taking the Madison Bumgarner sweepstakes down to the wire.

According to Jayson Stark of MLB Network, teams in contact with the Giants say they are still talking about big trades, and are listening on Bumgarner with roughly an hour and a half to go until the trade deadline.

To say that the Giants have sent mixed signals on Bumgarner would be an understatement. They’re in a tough spot, sitting just 2.5 games out of the second wild card in the NL, and Bumgarner is set to become a free agent at the end of the season. They seem inclined to keep him for one last run, but have discussed Bumgarner deals with contenders. The odds seem to favor him staying, but it’s anyone’s guess at this point.