I don’t have to tell you how disappointing a season this has been for the defending World Series champions, the San Francisco Giants. Once thought to have a chance a repeating their championship run, the Giants now find themselves in last place in the NL West and 18.5 games out of first place.
It doesn’t seem like there’s anything left to do but hope next season will be better; however, there are a few things for Giants fans to look forward to—and not just good weather at their home games.
Matt Cain’s return from injury
Last Thursday, Giants pitcher Matt Cain was struck by a hit in the forearm during the fourth inning of San Francisco’s loss to the Pittsburgh Pirates. He left the game. Even though the x-rays came back negative, Cain was place on the disabled list for the injury he sustained.
There was even some speculation about whether or not Cain would be returning this season after being struck by Gaby Sanchez’s groundout. After all, this is his first time on the DL ever in his nine-year career. The starting Giants pitcher will not resume throwing again later this week, however, according to a CSN Bay Area report.
According to a Fansided report, there is a possiblity of Cain remaining deactivated for the remainder of the season for two reasons, the injury and no chance of a postseason. I don’t think this will be the case. Cain told reporters he was more hurt by being placed on the DL than he was by being struck in the forearm on Thursday. Given Cain’s sentiment about the DL, seeing him return to playing is something to look forward to in the coming weeks of the season.
Possibly not finishing in last place
After only winning eight games in July, it seemed like the Giants were going to fall in to last place with no chance of getting out. Even though they’ve only won 11 games so far in the month of August, there are signs of hope that San Francisco may at least pull themselves out from the bottom of their division.
The Giants had a very difficult last two series, one against the Boston Red Sox and one against the Pittsburgh Pirates. The team currently in last place in the NL West avoided sweeps on both accounts, with one win in the three-game series against Boston and two wins in the four-game series against Pittsburgh.
For a team struggling to win ball games, getting victories against a couple of teams at the top of their respective divisions is a big step. After all, if San Francsico can get a win off of the Red Sox and split a series with the Pirates, the Giants should be able to get wins off of other teams, especially those in their division who are also struggling. And if we look at the standings in the NL West, we see the Giants are only .5 games behind the Padres and two games behind the Colardo Rockies.
Watching to see if the Giants can overtake these two clubs is definitely something to cheer for and look forward to for the rest of the season.
Vogelsong is back in the rotation
It seems like forever ago when Ryan Vogelsong broke his right hand and went on the DL. That was back in May. Three months later, the Giants starting pitcher finds himself back in the rotation, and pitched for the his first win, since his injury, against the Pittsburgh Pirates this past Sunday.
He struck out five and allowed only two hits in the eight innings he pitched during the Giants 4-0 shutout victory over the Pirates. This is big for the Giants because it’s more than just a win. Pitching has been a problem for the Giants, and if Vogelsong can bring in a few more wins for San Francisco, it may inspire other pitchers to do the same.
Tim Linecum has also showed signs of life, and if Vogelsong continues to throw well, pitching may be a good reason to watch the Giants play during the rest of the season.