San Francisco Giants v Texas Rangers, Game 3

Giants might do well to shut down lefty Jonathan Sanchez


Giants left-hander Jonathan Sanchez allowed four runs on six hits and three walks Saturday in San Francisco’s World Series Game 3 loss to the Rangers.  Before that, he was touched up for two earned runs in a two-inning outing against the Phillies.  He’s in line to make another start at the end of the seven-game Fall Classic, but many are arguing that he shouldn’t be allowed to take the hill again.  And it’s not a bad argument.

Sanchez, 27, threw a career-high 193.1 innings during the 2010 regular season and has tacked on another 20 frames since the playoffs began.  His highest innings total before 2010 was 163.1.  He is tired, and it’s showing on the diminished velocity of his fastball and the lack of effectiveness seen on his breaking pitches.

The Giants might be wise to go with 21-year-old Madison Bumgarner in a potential Game 7.  Sanchez is more experienced, sure, but he bears little resemblance right now to the crafty southpaw that struck out 205 batters during the regular season.  Bumgarner, meanwhile, only seems to be getting stronger.

Sanchez told Tim Kawakami of the San Jose Mercury News that he feels “good” and that he’s not “down” about his poor postseason efforts.  But that’s what any prideful pitcher is going to say.

The right move for Giants manager Bruce Bochy is to trust the youngster.

Photo of the Day: Colby Rasmus just wants to love on everybody

Colby Rasmus

Colby Rasmus hit a big home run last night to set off the scoring and to set the tone for the Astros.

After the game he spoke to Jeff Passan of Yahoo and voiced some nice perspective and maturity as well, acknowledging that his time and St. Louis and Toronto left him with a reputation that he’d rather not have follow him around forever, saying “I don’t want them to say Colby Rasmus was a piece of crap because he had all of this time and just wanted to be a douche. I just try to love on everybody.”

Fair. By the way, this is what Rasmus looked like either just before or just after telling reporters that he “just tries to love on everybody.”


Ready for some lovin’?

There’s no one to blame in Yankees’ loss

Joe Girardi

You’re going to boo All-Star Brett Gardner for striking out against a Cy Young contender?

You’re going to bash Alex Rodriguez for going hitless in another postseason game, three years after his last one?

Maybe you’d prefer to put it all on Masahiro Tanaka for giving up two solo homers to a lineup full of 20-homer guys?

The truth is that the Yankees were supposed to lose tonight. They were facing an outstanding left-hander with their forever-lefty-heavy lineup, and they simply didn’t have anyone pitching like an ace to set themselves up nicely for a one-game, winner-take-all showdown. The 3-0 result… well, that’s how this was supposed to go down.

It didn’t necessarily mean it would; what fun would it be if the better team always won? And the Astros might not even be a better team than the Yankees. However, the Astros with Dallas Keuchel on the mound were certainly a better team than the Yankees with whoever they picked to throw.

I just don’t see where it’s worth putting any blame tonight. Joe Girardi? He could have started John Ryan Murphy over Brian McCann against the tough lefty, but he wasn’t willing to risk Tanaka losing his comfort zone by using a backup catcher.

The front office could have added more talent, perhaps outbidding the Blue Jays for David Price or the Royals for Johnny Cueto, and set themselves up better for the postseason. However, that would have cost them Luis Severino and/or Greg Bird, both of whom went on to play key roles as the Yankees secured the wild card. Would it really have been worth it? I don’t think so.

Tanaka gave the Yankees what they should have expected. Had Keuchel’s stuff been a little off on short rest, Tanaka’s performance would have kept the Yankees in the game.

Keuchel, though, was on his game from the first pitch. The Astros bullpen might have been a bit more vulnerable, and late at-bats from Gardner, Carlos Beltran, Rodriguez and McCann definitely left something to be desired. Still, on the whole, the lack of offense was quite a team effort.

The Yankees got beat by a better team tonight.  I’m not sure the Astros would have been better in Games 2-7 in a longer series, but they had everything in their favor in this one.