Hello everybody. Happy Wednesday, and happy tax day. We’re rewatching the 2016 Wild Card Game tonight at 6 p.m. if you’d like to join.
The San Francisco Giants start the season (insert obligatory “if there’s actually a season” disclaimer here) in just eight days when they take on the Los Angeles Dodgers on ESPN. And while the season won’t be normal in any sense of the word, there will still be one a happy designation that has some normalcy attached to it: Opening Day starter.
The Giants made it official on Tuesday, naming Johnny Cueto the Opening Day starter roughly four months after he was named the Opening Day starter for an Opening Day that never came. Better luck this time.
It’s only the second time since Matt Cain took the mound in 2013 that the Giants have had an Opening Day starter not named “Madison Bumgarner.” Bumgarner — who will likely be the Arizona Diamondbacks Opening Day starter — got the nod for five of the last six first games, interrupted only by the hilarious Ty Blach start of 2018.
The Dodgers, meanwhile, have named Clayton Kershaw starter, and he’ll get the Opening Day call for the ninth time in the last 10 seasons.
Did Barry Bonds hit a home run today?
July 15, 1994: Against the Montreal Expos, Bonds hit a pair of home runs. A 2-run shot in the 5th inning off of Butch Henry scored Steve Scarsone, and gave the Giants a 4-2 lead. A solo home run in the 9th inning off of Gil Heredia gave the Giants a 7-3 lead, which was the final score. They were his 24th and 25th homers of the year.
July 15, 1997: Against the San Diego Padres, Bonds hit a pair of home runs off of Andy Ashby. A solo home run in the 4th inning tied the game 1-1, and a 2-run shot in the 6th inning scored Jose Vizcaino and gave the Giants a 3-2 lead. The Giants would win 16-2, thanks to a 13-run 7th inning. They were his 22nd and 23rd homers of the year.
- Grant Brisbee explores the Giants catcher options (The Athletic, subscription required)
- Kerry Crowley’s notes from Tuesday’s workouts (Mercury News)
- Maria Guardado on Evan Longoria embracing a leadership role (MLB)
- Alex Pavlovic on Jeff Samardzija wanting to carry a heavy workload (NBC Sports Bay Area)
- Kerry Crowley on how you should expect an unconventional bullpen approach (Mercury News)
- Mark W. Sanchez on Evan Longoria’s role getting bigger (KNBR)
- Andrew Baggarly on how the Giants are turning to Evan Longoria to lead them in Buster Posey’s absence (The Athletic, subscription required)
- Matt Kawahara on how the Giants (and A’s) are trying to stop spitting, high-fiving, and finger-licking (SF Chronicle)
- Alex Pavlovic on the Giants focusing on the next wave of talent rather than veteran free agents (NBC Sports Bay Area)
- Craig Edwards on Evan Longoria and the Giants ranking 25th at third base (Fangraphs)
- Dan Szymborski on Mauricio Dubón and the Giants ranking 27th at second base (Fangraphs)
- John Shea on Chadwick Tromp’s push to make the roster (SF Chronicle)
- Mark W. Sanchez on Conner Menez’s rising stock (KNBR)
- Dieter Kurtenbach says the Giants should start the Joey Bart era (Mercury News)
- Mark W. Sanchez on how Joey Bart is impressing, but the Giants aren’t budging (KNBR)
Have a wonderful Wednesday, everyone!