There’s a rule of thumb in managing people that goes like this: For every piece of criticism you give an employee, you should provide two compliments.
I must say, I have been IMPRESSED with your commitment to getting regular haircuts, and you certainly have MASTERED holding a telephone right-side up. HOWEVER, you are stealing money from the register, which actively HURTS my ability to make money.
Like that. And while the Giants aren’t necessarily our employees, we can pretend they are in a just-got-pulled-over "I PAY YOUR SALARY" kind of way. And what are we doing? Complaining, complaining, complaining. It can’t feel good on their end, and that’s wrong of us.
So it’s time to say nice things about the Giants. Let’s boost their morale! Go team and what have you. Here, I’ll start:
The Giants have not been accused of using sea lion meat in their hot dogs
Unlike some NL West rivals we could name. The ones putting their team name on the hot dogs, cough.
But, no, try harder. Really look for nice things. This team still has a chance to make the postseason, so they must have done something right this year.
Buster Posey is the best catcher in the world at framing pitches
It’s true! Again! According to StatCorner, Posey has been 22 runs above average when it comes to stealing strikes, which is the best mark in baseball. That’s about two extra wins for the Giants, just based on strike-stealing alone.
You can see the effects of that here:
.@mccoveychron inspired this with a question— Mark Simon (@msimonespn) August 18, 2016
Most called strikes above avg -relievers
Jesse Chavez 19.6
Santiago Casilla 16.5
Posey helps Bumgarner repeatedly pick off the outside corner as the image below shows. He has produced 33 "framed strikes" (pitches with less than a 25 percent chance of being called a strike) against right-handed batters, second-most in the majors.
Buster Posey might not win the MVP this year, but don’t forget that his value extends far beyond his bat.
Brandon Crawford is the best defensive player in the National League
And he’s about a month away from catching up to Kevin Pillar, outfield demigod. This is according to FanGraphs’ defensive metrics, but you can also find similar sentiments when it comes to DRS, UZR, dWAR, whatever you use.
That means that even if Crawford weren’t hitting better than a league-average player, he would still be absurdly valuable. But he is hitting better than a league-average player. Which makes him absurdly valuable.
Madison Bumgarner might win the MMMMMPRMRPFFFFF
SHHHHH, YOU FOOL. DON’T JINX IT. But let’s just put it like this: Over the next week, when the Dodgers play their 121st game, Clayton Kershaw (DL - ingested sea lion) will not qualify for the ERA title.
wink wink wink
Let’s just leave it at that, and there’s no possible way this would jinx anything before his start on Thursday.
The Giants are outstanding at the plate with nobody out
Check these splits:
No outs: .280/.354/.457
1 out: .257/.328/.377
2 outs: .235/.312/.352
That means that they’re adept at setting the table, collectively acting like an All-Star when the inning starts, and then slowly crushing our spirits as the inning progresses.
Which, wait, that’s not good at all. But I should note that the Giants are tied for the fewest double plays hit with two outs.
Giants pitchers have been better in high-leverage situations
According to Baseball-Reference, the Giants have been better in sticky spots, moving from a .704 OPS allowed in low-leverage situations to a .656 OPS allowed in high-leverage situations.
Which, wait, that would mean that they’ve been a little luckier than we might have realized. Because that’s what I think about with the Giants right now. Pure, unadulterated luck.
Will Smith’s FIP with the Giants is 10 runs lower than his ERA
That’s a good sign that he’s been extraordinarily unlucky in his 3⅔ innings.
Which, wait, uh, okay. We’re kind of scraping the bottom of the ...
Jake Peavy’s strikeout rate is better than Jeff Samardzija’s now
Phil Bickford has made two starts for the Brewers’ Class-A team, striking out 15 batters in 9⅔ innings
maybe if i just unplug this article and plug it back in
Matt Duffy is on the Rays now
GET BACK ON TRACK. GET BACK ON TRACK.
The starting lineup is (mostly) healthy again
Oh, yeah, this is probably a good thing. I know it hasn’t seemed like it over the last couple weeks, but Joe Panik and Hunter Pence being healthy and in the lineup will eventually help the Giants win. Buster Posey’s back made me put the "mostly" in parentheses, but it’s not like he stopped hitting or catching a mean game.
So there you have it. Nice things about the Giants. Derek Law has been outstanding, Jung Ho Kang dinger aside. Matt Moore probably won’t keep walking seven betters per nine innings. This team should eventually win more than two games in a row. Or one game in a row.
Remember: Two positive notes for every negative. It makes your message that much more effective. Now as soon as I can find 733 more positive notes for everything negative I’ve written or tweeted in the second half, I’ll even up the score. I’ll hop right on that. Don’t move.