Friday, September 27, 2013

Wilson Not the First to Be Put Off by San Francisco Giants Politics, Shenanigans

There's something about the San Francisco Giants. Perhaps it's the city they're in and their political approach to running the team. We're talking Larry Baer and Brian Sabean in particular.

So Brian Wilson was upset he didn't get his ring?. I would to after waiting a year .  Apparently the Giants wanted to look good, as we see it, in having a ceremony where they would publicly give Wilson his ring. This makes the Giants appear on the outside like good guys, even with ex-Giants they may have alienated.
Perhaps Wilson didn't want to deal the Giants directly after being dragged through the dirt with the local sycophantic media (pro Giants) which suddenly turned  against him after he became a Dodger. Couldn't the Giants must FedEx the ring to him or giveit to one of the Dodgers admin as they finally did? No, the Giants, as usual, wanted to stand on ceremony and look good in the press - and probably get away with it.

But it was probably more than just the ring that got Wilson-normally a likeable team guy- so upset with the front office.   So they didn't like some of Wilson's quirkiness?  It was Wilson's  unique persona which made him ('The Beard') the logo of the team as it were - the guy that best represented an entire bunch of off-beat, hirsuit largely rejects from other teams (and, if you will, suspects of more than quirkiness).  Ever get really upset when you think someone is taking advantage of you and you want to tell them off?  Surprising the Giants wouldn't sign Wilson for the reported $1 million  rather than let him get away to the hated Dodgers.
The Giants, in all their effort to seem 'warm and fuzzy' have hurt a lot of feelings along the way.

So, Wilson did things a little differently, perhaps, but then so do the Giants -  in their way. There should be accommodations for both but , apparently, both the Giants and Wilson didn't see it that way. Despite Wilson's fun /quirky ways (however you look at it),  by all accounts he got along well with his teammates, coaches, broadcasters, etc., except  for the front office.  Perhaps the Giants should refocus   its approach
to dealing with its players- or ex-players. Maybe some don't want to have come back / have a ceremony in order to get their ring.  The Giants may want to look good , like they get along with everybody when they really don't. Just give the guys their rings and be done with it. Don't stand on ceremony, as the saying goes.

These are the same Giants, again, Larry Baer and Brian Sabean in particular, who have alienated people like former boss Bill Newcomb, trainer Stan Conte, announcer Hank Greenwald and now Brian Wilson, not to mention other ex-players. Sure, they've always come back to 'play nice' and , again, act 'warm and fuzzy' with reunions for their 'ex's', many of whom fall for the ploy. These are the same Giants who have looked the other way when it comes to their players using PEDs (having more indicted and suspected users - Mitchell Report  - than any other team.) These are the same guys who turn up the PA when the Giants are at bat. These are the Giants who continue to claim 'sellouts' at the end of a lackluster season when half the upper deck is empty for games of late and tickets are still available at inflated prices throughout the game. These are the Giants who charge different 'dynamic' prices for the same ticket  , taking advantage of tourists and first times who know no better than to go try another window a time or three. These are the Giants who hire 'homer' announcers who go out of their way to criticize umpire calls that go against the Giants and are sarcastic of other team's players.  These are the Giants who are quick to hold a little symbolic tribute for a Dodger fan who is killed by a Giants fan after the Giants-Dodgers game Sept 27 but offer little other mention of the incident as compared to the Brian Stow beating in Los Anegeles, for which they continue to hold benefits.

Call them the all-business,  win-at-all-costs, political San Francisco Giants. These are not the nicest of guys. Ask  ex-Giant's announcer Hank Greenwald about his dealings with Larry Baer. Ask Bill Newcomb how he was pushed out of the top spot after he was most responsible for bringing the Giants their first World Series in 50 years (aside for the PED players hired by Sabean). Ask Stan Conte about his days having to kiss butt with Barry Bonds and his cast of drug characters. Neucomb and Conte are gentlemen who chose who, rather than comment , simply left the organization rather than try to fight the politics. Greenwald has had a little more to say. Ask other teams who have tried to deal with GM Sabean and have difficulty getting a return phone call from him .  Even Peter McGowan, who ran the team with Baer for many years , was a good guy who probably got tired of the same politics and sold his share of the team earlier than he otherwise might have . And now, it's Brian Wilson, who has come out, even in the face of the sychophantic media, to criticize to Baer's face.  Of course, the Giants' 'homers' thought it shameful for Wilson to embarass his former boss.  Perhaps Wilson had had it up to here and was trying to make a point and be done with it. (He refused to discuss the incident with hounding press.) Good for Wilson , we say. And we feel bad for Barry Zeto, the way he's been treated .  He will be one of those who goes quietly, although he showed a little anger on his last pitching assignment, given him by a schedule 'opening' and was unceremoniously lifted from the game against the Dodgers after only five innings in which he was pitching well and were winning, before he could get a last ovation from the fans. (Bochy promised to make this happen later)  Sure,  Zeto got the money but to be kept off the squad for the 2010 World Series and be left out many times as a punching bag, only being allowed to pitch if there was an opening and then being  pulled from games prematurely?  All business.  Your San Francisco Giants

The way the Giants manipulated and basically conned their way to two World Series is another story we've told before and won't go into here, but it's pretty amazing. You can read about it elsewhere in these blog pages. To whet your interest and give you just another taste of what's been going on in the Giants organization for over a decade , here are a couple recent articles we came upon - more Giants PED allegations you probably never heard about (or may not care about -but we know some do  ARTICLE ONE -  Journeyman ex-minor leaguer says Giants coach suggested PEDs to improve his game. ARTICLE  TWO - Giants minor leaguer busted second time for PEDs THIS YEAR!  And this ARTICLE  THREE S.F. Giants pay $545K in back wages, damages
August 29, 2013 • The Associated Press
San Francisco • Federal officials say the San Francisco Giants have paid nearly $545,000 in back wages and damages to dozens of clubhouse and administrative employees for violations of minimum wage, overtime and record-keeping laws. The U.S. Depart... Full Story

By contrast, across the bay you have the Oakland A's. Maybe with as curmudgeonly and an all-business  owner like Lew Wolf, at least the Oakland A's aren't run with a tyranical -like power. The A's have built a legitimate contender (with the possible exception of one veteran pitcher) by   good old wheeling and dealing by Billy Beane and associates. S

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Now Giants Pitching Raises PED Questions with Petit's Sudden Surge

He had never pitched a shutout before , let alone a complete game. He had only won 10 games and lost 20 in a journeyman 10 year career. Now at an age when pitchers with his history are already out of the game or close to it, Yasmeiro Petit is suddenly pitching better than all the other Giant starting pitchers - and most in baseball for that matter.
So, he didn't quite get the perfect game September 6, coming just one hit away, the Giants fans are ecstatic, of course. But before we get too excited, one has to question this picture. 
When the Giants top starters Bumgardner, Cain, Linsecum haven't come this nearly close to a perfect game how the heck can  an over the hill nobody  do it. Think Brady Anderson suddenly nitting 40 homers onoe year after never hitting more than 10  before or after. 
In three years with Arizona, before coming to the Giants he had over a 5. ERA with less than a strikeout per inning. After leaving baseball for two years he comes to the Giants at age 30 and cuts his ERA nearly in half and more than a strikeout per inning. He's never been known as a velocity pitcher yet his velocity, if anything has gone up a little since 2009 instead of beginning to drop as it usually does for pitchers around age 30

Standard Pitching  YASMEIRO PETIT

  • YearAgeTmLgWL
    201227SFGNL00 3.861100004.27220401001221002.35713. 
    6 Yrs1220.3755.37753915000251.1277157150518352001271102831.4329. 
    162 Game Avg.712.3755.3745239000150165948930503119114657831.4329. 
    ARI (3 yrs)919.3215.05563510000203.020512111443664156126879911.3359. 
    SFG (2 yrs)201.0003.2743000022.0268818024001941081.54510. 
    FLA (1 yr)11.5009.57151500026.146282879120000129462.08915. 
Velocity Charts show all of his pitches improving 1-2 mph between 2009 and 2013 with the Giant
2007Diamondbacks87.9     82.373.7  80.4  
2008Diamondbacks87.1     81.074.0  78.3  
2009Diamondbacks87.388.1    78.074.5  77.7  
2012Giants87.6 85.9   80.476.6  80.5  
2013Giants88.1 87.5   83.276.3  80.4  
Total- - -87.488.187.0   80.074.6  78.4  

A player just doesn't cut his lifetime ERA in half at an advanced age over a prolonged period. We saw the same thing happen with Scutaro last year, raising his average nearly 100 points the second half of the season after coming to the Giants from Colorado.  Granted it's been only three games so far with the Giants but Petit looks like , if anything, he's improving his numbers and the fact that the Diamond backs showed no improvement but hit worse against him the second time around makes one further ask questions.
-Its not like the Diamondbacks had never seen him before the         Sept 6 one hitter...the Diamondbacks had a good look at him last week already.

- You've got the perfect candidate for using PEDs.. the 30 year old pitcher at the crossroads of either retiring  or going for it with PEDs.  At least one minor league Giants coach is known to even have suggested to such action to a player in a similar career situation.
- Latin players, particularly those from Venezuela have been the big culprits in the recent PED busts, with another Venezuelan and Giant, Melky Cabrera , leading the pack last\
We've seen Venezuelan pitchers for the Giants such as Machi and _____ improve their numbers once with the Giants, but not like what we've seen from Petit in the last three games since coming up to the Big Leagues.  It's reminiscent of Chad 'the incident' Gaudin who suddenly became the no. 2 most successful starter after coming up midseason. He may not be from Venezuela but we have questions about him, too, and not just his penchant for visiting young women on gurneys in hospitals.

We're  afraid It's the same old Giants story, that of bringing in players, mostly Latin, er Venezuelans, in recent years - players who've done virtually nothing to distinguish themselves but once with the Giants they almost always hit 30-50 points higher than their career average - or the last team they came from. I know we're not supposed to talk this way but by now it's our strong belief that GM Sabean purposely goes after these rejects in hopes of catching lightning in a bottle, or , more likely something else in a bottle and syringe, perhaps. It's happened year after year in the lax state of baseball testing , which, by the way, hasn't caught a single player all year; baseball had to go after Biogenesis to save face since its own testing is well behind the curve of designer PEDs that go undetectable to their tests. You can chalk up some of the past to lack of good judgement  and the influence of Bonds around them - decent guys like Aurilia, Matt Williams, Santiago .  Then there were Mendoza guys like Marvin  Bernard  who were still able to raise their numbers into the respectable range. There was more innocense back then, except for Bonds  . Today, players should no better and we cant feel sorry for them .

We don't know where Petit is getting his stuff but it would seem there's plenty to go around once players land on the Giants. San Francisco is, after all, the BALCO and BONDS capital where it all really began in the most liberal city in America where the smell of canabis in the stands was rampant during their World Series home games. You can throw in local guys McGwire and Conseco, too , yet that was from a slighty earlier, not so much designer drug era.  If the Giants didn't have such a consistent history, year after year , of having convicted PED users (not to mention the ones not caught) we wouldn't be as quick to jump on this.  Just to many dots connected. Remember, it took almost 10 years before a couple of brave reporters  broke the Bonds  story

- And, just an afterthought or sidelight that we thought it rather bizarre that the Giants would  interview Petit - in Spanish , no less (Petit doesn't speak English after playing American basebally nearly 10 years)  over the PA system after the game.  If it had been  no hitter or perfect game
 it might be understandable but one there's a big difference between a one hitter and perfect game - agt least in status.