In another universe, the Giants would be the Angels: a team stacked top to bottom with the finest talent and prospects in all of baseball, with a front office that isn’t afraid to back to Brinks truck up and deal out 20-year contracts to the biggest names on the free agent market.
That Angels team, in this reality, has a nearly identical record to the Giants and just got swept in a brutal, backbreaking series to their in-region rivals and American League counterparts.
That means that the team with Mike Trout, Anthony Rendon, Jo Adell, David Fletcher and Andrelton Simmons is essentially performing exactly the same as the team that’s trotting out the 2020 versions of Hunter Pence and Pablo Sandoval and Brandon Crawford and Brandon Belt every day.
That’s wild. And it’s a much-needed dose of perspective after this past weekend.
Of course, the rubber is likely to meet the road and the Giants are going to get trucked by the Angels over the course of the next four games, because they are VERY different teams with VERY different ability levels.
But the perspective! It’s neat!
Who: Los Angeles Angels (7-15) vs. San Francisco Giants (8-15)
Where: Angel Stadium of Anaheim, Anaheim, California
When: 6:40 p.m. PT
Regional broadcast: NBC Sports Bay Area (available through fuboTV)
National broadcast: None (MLB.tv Free Game of the Day)
Radio: KNBR 680 AM/104.5 FM
The first five spots remain the same as Sunday’s lineup, but Pablo Sandoval returns to DH in lieu of Wilmer Flores, Mauricio Dubón moves up to the eight-hole, and we hope that the legend of Chadwick Tromp will continue.
- RF — Mike Yastrzemski (L) — .305/.430/.646 — 193 OPS+
- LF — Alex Dickerson (L) — .245/.322/.415 — 105 OPS+
- 2B — Donovan Solano (R) — .403/.429/.569 — 177 OPS+
- 1B — Brandon Belt (L) — .186/.271/.349 — 72 OPS+
- 3B — Evan Longoria (R) — .228/.270/.386 — 81 OPS+
- DH — Pablo Sandoval (S) — .174/.250/.424 — 23 OPS+
- SS — Brandon Crawford (L) — .224/.286/.293 — 63 OPS+
- CF — Mauricio Dubón (R) — .250/.271/.321 — 66 OPS+
- C — Chadwick Tromp (R) — .211/.225/.395 — 69 OPS+
LHP — Tyler Anderson — 0-1, 3.63 ERA, 6.25 FIP, 9 K in 17.1 IP
Giants vs. Trout: Yaz RF, Dickerson LF, Solano 2B, Belt 1B, Longoria 3B, Sandoval DH, Crawford SS, Dubon CF, Tromp C. Anderson LHP— Alex Pavlovic (@PavlovicNBCS) August 17, 2020
And here’s the Anaheim squad!
- SS — David Fletcher (R) — .300/.369/.467 — 128 OPS+
- 2B — Tommy La Stella (L) — .277/.382/.415 — 119 OPS+
- CF — Mike Trout (R) — .301/.354/.685 — 175 OPS+
- 3B — Anthony Rendon (R) — .203/.420/.542 — 162 OPS+
- 1B — Albert Pujols (R) — .186/.238/.356 — 60 OPS+
- RF — Jo Adell (R) — .214/.241/.214 — 27 OPS+
- DH — Justin Upton (R) — .107/.190/.214 — 11 OPS+
- C — Max Stassi (R) — .250/.326/.550 — 134 OPS+
- LF — Brian Goodwin (L) — .288/.364/.593 — 156 OPS+
RHP — Griffin Canning — 1-1, 4.42 ERA, 4.70 FIP, 18 K in 18.1 IP
Anderson’s Demons: Tyler Anderson has started a game against the Angels once before, in 2018. He gave up four runs in five innings, or as we refer to it, “a good Jeff Samardzija outing.”
Bullpen, a China shop: Andrew Baggarly took a very close look at the Giants’ bullpen over at The Athletic. They have been bad, and we should have expected them to be bad, but there’s really no explanation for them having been THIS bad.
Roster moves: Alex Pavlovic reports a roster move and discusses the Giants who will pitch on the road. Also, another Giants legend is going to get bumped down a list this season:
Abiatal Avelino cleared waivers after getting DFA'd. He'll return to the alternate site in Sacramento.— Alex Pavlovic (@PavlovicNBCS) August 17, 2020
Tyler Anderson and Trevor Cahill will start the next two days in Anaheim. It's rare that Giants get a look at Mike Trout, so that should be fun to watch. Albert Pujols is one homer away from tying Willie Mays.— Alex Pavlovic (@PavlovicNBCS) August 17, 2020
Enjoy the baseball, everyone. Brady will be back soon and your long local nightmare will be over.