San Francisco Giants podcast with Michael Duca: Will rain postponements put Kapler behind in taking a look at rookies and draftees?

San Francisco Giants manager will regroup after two consecutive days of rained out games to re-evaluate minor league and rookie players. The Giants were rained out in exhibition play on Tue Mar 14 and Wed Mar 15, 2023 (NBC Sports file photo)

On the San Francisco Giants podcast with Michael:

#1 Michael the Giants had two game wiped out due to rain does the postponements put the Giants a little behind schedule in taking a look a rookies and veterans and evaluating at this juncture of exhibition season?

#2 Giants manager Gabe Kapler always wants to get the best out of his players and pitcher Logan Webb is no exception. Webb gets the call for opening day starter Thu Mar 30 at Yankee Stadium followed by Alex Cobb who will pitch on Sat Apr 1st. Kapler has a lot of confidence in his starters going into the season.

#3 Kapler has pitcher Jakob Junis will be assigned to the bullpen talk about Junis his role and what Kapler is expecting out of Junis coming out of the bullpen?

#4 Michael, it’s all in the family as the Giants Brandon Crawford will get a chance to face off against his brother in law Yankee pitcher Gerritt Cole for the opening series. Crawford the longest tenured Giants against Cole a MLB veteran and on the biggest stage in New York.

#5 Webb 26 was 15-9 last season with a 2.90 ERA and got the most innings of his career pitching 192 1/3 innings. Webb said he would like to make 200 plus innings his goal this season can he do it?

Join Michael Duca for the Giants podcasts Thursdays at

San Francisco Giants podcast with Michael Duca: Posey answers questions about managing partner Johnson political donations; plus more

Former San Francisco Giants catcher and part owner Buster Posey talked about team managing partner Charles Johnson and his donation to some controversial politicians this week. (AP News photo)

On the San Francisco Giants podcast with Michael Duca:

#1 Former San Francisco Giants catcher and current part team owner Buster Posey was thrown into the political forum and was asked by the press about managing partner Charles Johnson whose donations in the past have been questioned when Johnson had donated to such controversial Republican politicians as Herschel Walker, US Rep Lauren Boebert, and Rep Scott Perry to name a few. Buster answered saying that while Johnson is a nice fellow he met him just a couple of times.

#2 With the new position as part owner this puts Posey in a new light and with Johnson who donated to extremists, those who supported the insurrection, and Q Anon supporters. Posey told Andrew Baggerly in a Athletic interview “I have only been around him a couple of times. They’ve been wonderful. That’s all I’m going to say about it. I can only speak to my own interactions.”

#3 Michael, talk about some of the young prospects that you’ve seen. Catcher Joey Bart has had a good spring at the plate and calling pitches and working with the pitchers.

#4 Turning to another subject that the players on the field are trying to solve the baseball clock and Giants starter Alex Cobb was no different he talked about working on his rhythm on either the 15 second clock with the bags empty or a runner on for 20 seconds. Cobb was called for a clock violation after pitching to the San Diego Padres Fernando Tatis Jr when the clock ran out. Cobb is not used to pitching as he puts it a bang bang style of game.

#5 With the new rules in place Michael and just using pitchers in the past who pitched in quick games could a Bob Gibson, Gaylord Perry, Juan Marichal. or Sandy Koufax could have kept up with the today’s pitch clock?

#6 Not ready to see double yet: Pitcher Taylor Rogers pitched in his first spring game on Tuesday and struck out two hitters while twin brother Tyler sat because of a scratched finger that was reported to be minor.

Join Michael for the San Francisco Giants podcasts Thursdays at

San Francisco Giants report: Stripling joins Manaea in the latest of signings

By Morris Phillips and Michael Duca

Former Toronto Blue Jays pitcher Ross Stripling throws against the Philadelphia Phillies in the second inning at Citizen’s Bank Park in Philadelphia on Tue Sep 20, 2022. Stripling joined the Giants signing a two year $25 million deal with a option for 2024 (AP News photo)

SAN FRANCISCO– Not waiting for the end of the year the San Francisco Giants made moves this week on Monday they signed former Oakland A’s left hander Sean Manaea who was anchor in the A’s bullpen when he pitched there. Manaea who signed a $25 million for two years with 2024 being a option year.

Manaea pitched for Oakland from 2016 until the end of the 2021 season. He joined the San Diego Padres soon after his former manager Bob Melvin went to manage in San Diego. Manaea’s 2022 season record 8-9 ERA 4.96. Manaea is being considered for the fourth or fifth spot in the Giants rotation. The Giants despite Manaea’s struggles in San Diego say they like what he brought to the Bay Area when he pitched here and he can adjust and the Giants are confident they can get him back on track.

Ross Stripling signing: On the heels of the Manaea signing the Giants signed right hand pitcher Ross Stripling in a $25 million two year deal. The contract call for an opt out after the first season. If Stripling pitches anything like he did in 2022 the Giants may not even give that opt out even a second thought. With Toronto Blue Jays Stripling went 10-4 with impressive 3.04 ERA in 134 plus innings.

Stripling 33, gets a $5 million signing bonus and will receive a $7 million salary for the 2023 season and Stripling who can reach for the brass ring and get a second year will get $12.5 million for the 2024 season. The Giants are looking to replace an effective pitching staff from the 2021 season in the pitchers of Alex Cobb, Anthony DeSclafani, Alex Wood and the Giants are looking for Alex Wood with Logan Webb, Jakob Junis, and Sean Hjelle to fill that void.

Now with Stripling and Manaea joining the pitching staff they could very well get an effective performance that the Giants have been looking for in their rotation. No doubt about it Stripling and Manaea bring lots of experience to the pitching staff. Manaea had had some arm problems in the past when he pitched in Oakland and was looking forward to working that out when he was in San Diego but will get a chance to work with Giants pitching coach Andrew Bailey.

Michael Duca and Morris Phillips both podcast Giants baseball for

Scott Alexander, save us from ourselves!: Weary, cranky Giants record eventful 3-2 win over the Braves

By Morris Phillips

SAN FRANCISCO–The adjectives surrounding the disappointing 2022 Giants–streaky, weary, cranky, engaged–collided Monday night in an eighth inning pitching change that said everything about the club’s mindset entering the final weeks of a trying season.

What’s clear? They’re not calling it in.

The Giants built a three-run lead, and almost squandered it in the tumultuous eighth, only to emerge with a 3-2 win over the NL East-contending Braves. The Giants’ third straight win after a five-game slide was improbable, to say the least, given their circumstances.

Alex Cobb was the focal point for the first seven innings by scattering six singles and no walks. Cobb’s performance was critical as he was the only member of the team’s contingent to avoid a trying night of travel back from Chicago that saw the team arrive at SFO airport at 4:18am.

At 4:18am, Cobb was undoubtedly tucked away and asleep at his Bay Area home, as it’s common protocol to send the pitcher designated to start a home stand on an earlier flight, insuring him a regular night’s rest. In this case, that rest was apparent.

Also avoiding the difficult travel after a head-scratching Sunday night game on ESPN between two teams that have been eliminated from post-season contention was Willie Calhoun, a Vallejo native who posted credible numbers in his 41 games at Triple-A Sacramento since being acquired from the Rangers.

It was Calhoun that got the Giants ignited with an RBI hit off the bricks in right that scored Brandon Crawford with the game’s first run. Luis Gonzalez followed with a RBI single that gave the Giants a second-inning lead on Braves’ starter Spencer Strider.

Head scratching could describe the Giants’ breakthrough against Strider, unquestionably the hottest pitcher in the National League with a 6-1 record in his previous eight starts, including 16 strikeouts against the Rockies on September 1. Strider posted his typical strikeout numbers with nine but uncharacteristically allowed a season-high nine hits. He departed after the Giants scored an unearned run in the fifth trailing 3-0.

“For those guys to get a few hours of sleep, wake up, do their routines and go out there and get three runs off probably one of the better pitchers in all of baseball and play the type of defense they did, just gutsy,” Cobb said.

Zach Littell, not John Brebbia, was the first reliever to appear in the eighth and the departure from manager Gabe Kapler’s normal bullpen deployment created chaos. Littell allowed the first four Braves he faced to reach (two singles, a double and a four-pitch walk to No. 9 hitter Robbie Grossman) and the Giants’ cushion vanished.

Littell recovered by inducing the run-producing Austin Riley to hit into a double play and–in that moment–felt he had regained ownership of the inning.

Kapler felt otherwise and in a typical decision rooted in left-right matchups summoned Scott Alexander. As only the myriad of ballpark cameras can capture, the Oracle Park crowd was witness to the angry exchange of the baseball with Littell offering a few words to Kapler as he departed with the manager and catcher Austin Wynns left stunned.

“I wanted Olson,” Littell said afterwards, referring to the ensuing Braves’ batter. “Not that I pitched well enough to deserve it.”

“Obviously he’s a competitor and wanted to finish that inning. And I think it was just his wanting me to know that he wanted to finish that inning,” Kapler said. “We discussed it and it and he knows when I come out to get the ball he needs to put the ball in my hand and we’ll talk about anything later.”

The hero in the maelstrom? Alexander, who induced an inning-ending flyout, then returned for the ninth, and recorded the four-out save.

Bum Bashed: Giants take advantage of their Series hero in 6-1 win over Arizona

By Morris Phillips

SAN FRANCISCO–Madison Bumgarner competed “mad” as always, but he didn’t have the substance to match his familiar style.

The Giants did, winning 6-1 over the Diamondbacks and wearing down Bumgarner in the process.

The 2014 World Series hero cruised through the first three innings but ran into adversity in the fourth when J.D. Davis doubled and Evan Longoria homered for a 2-0 Giants’ lead.

Joey Bart, swinging a hot bat for the first time in his big league career, doubled in the fifth ahead of Austin Slater’s RBI single. That increased the lead to 3-0 and the Giants added three more in the sixth to chase Bumgarner, who exited to extended applause.

Bart’s two-run single highlighted the final rally, and stood as the biggest piece of his three-hit night. The young catcher has a seven-game hit streak for the first time, and after his hitting struggles needed to be rectified at Triple-A Sacramento.

“What it means is we have a threat at the bottom of the lineup, somebody that can drive the baseball, keep the line moving and is really grinding out at-bats right now,” manager Gabe Kapler said. “Not to get too far ahead of ourselves, but now it’s starting to get a little consistent. It’s very encouraging.”

Alex Cobb survived a lengthy first inning by striking out Carson Kelly with the bases loaded. Cobb went on to throw six innings, winning for the fourth time with a Christian Walker home run as his only blemish.

The Padres were blanked in Miami allowing the Giants to gain ground in the wild card chase. With 47 games remaining, the Giants are 5 1/2 games behind San Diego, and 3 1/2 behind Milwaukee. The Brewers were shut out at home by the Dodgers on Monday.

On Tuesday, the Giants face 10-game winner Merrill Kelly, who already has a win over them this season. Jakob Junis will start for the Giants, another chance for Junis to regain his early-season form.

Snatched By Snakes: Giants can’t rally late, lose to the D’Backs 4-3

By Morris Phillips

SAN FRANCISCO–When the losses pile up, they fall into categories. For the stumbling Giants, home losses by two runs or less are starting to multiply.

Monday’s opener with the Diamondbacks went to the snakes as they established an early 3-0 lead, and led 4-1 when they held the Giants off in the eighth and ninth, winning 4-3. In the process, Brandon Crawford failed to come up clutch, and Lamonte (Wade Jr.) didn’t do anything spine tingling in the late night. The Giants were 2 of 8 with runners in scoring position and left eight men on base.

The Giants have lost nine of 13, and they failed to win a third, consecutive game for the first time since June 14. And six of their last eight losses at home have been by two runs or less.

Alex Cobb had an uneven performance, pitching six innings, allowing three runs while walking four. Daulton Varsho’s hard hit single off the low wall in right field knocked in two runs in the third, and registered as the big blow against Cobb. The Giants off-season acquisition hasn’t won any of his last five starts, dating back to May 17.

Mauricio Llovera walked two batters in the eighth, and that set up Sergio Alcantara’s pinch-hit, RBI single that put the D’Backs up 4-0.

The Giants struck back with a pair of runs in the bottom of the eighth, but blew a big occasion when Brandon Crawford grounded into a double play with the bases loaded to end the inning. Wade got his opportunity with one out in the ninth and Thairo Estrada on first base, but the slugger fouled out near the third base bag.

The Giants (43-42) will have their 275-game streak of maintaining an above .500 record on the line on Tuesday. Logan Webb will face Arizona’s Dallas Kuechel in that one.

Mets Wallop Giants: Losing skid grows to five games in 13-3 loss

By Morris Phillips

SAN FRANCISCO–Gabe Kapler chose to remain positive in the face of the Giants’ four-game losing skid and mounting personnel issues.

But then the Giants did little to change the narrative Monday night, falling to the visiting Mets 13-3.

What’s clear? The Giants are further off their desired A game than anyone indicated, and given their difficult schedule a quick turnaround might not be possible. Their immediate goal may not be desirable, but avoiding an 0-6 homestand is foremost right now. That, and staying positive.

Starter Alex Cobb kept it positive, which wasn’t easy after he got burned for six runs and ten hits, some of which were downright frustrating in that they came on softly hit balls that could have easily been outs. Still Cobb departed after six innings trailing 6-2.

“All we really have to focus on is executing pitches, and then the results happen,” Cobb said. “I felt like I was executing some pitches tonight, and the results weren’t quite there.”

Cobb couldn’t quibble over Pete Alonso’s two-out, three-run homer in the third that put the Mets in the driver’s seat up 5-2. But other than that his pitches were fairly effective.

The Giants did strike first when Brandon Crawford homered in the second with Evan Longoria aboard. But they wouldn’t score again until the ninth on Tommy La Stella’s RBI single. In between those two occasions, the Giants went 0 for 6 with runners in scoring position spoiling any push for a comeback.

The Giants have been outscored 33-12 in their last four games illustrating how little has gone right. But a deeper disappointment maybe their overall performance against winning clubs. The team has dropped 14 of 21 to teams with winning records.

“There are some challenges right now. We’re not making as many plays as we can,” manager Gabe Kapler said.

On Tuesday, former Athletic Chris Bassitt pitches for the Mets in a match-up with San Francisco ace Logan Webb, seeking his sixth win of the season.

Rockies Roughed Up… Again: Giants complete sweep with 7-1 win over Colorado

By Morris Phillips

SAN FRANCISCO–For the Giants, beating the Colorado Rockies isn’t routine, but there is a routine to it.

A tenth consecutive win over their division rivals featured ten hits for the Giants, extending an incredible streak to–you can’t make this up–ten games of ten hits or more. Not only did the Giants sweep the three-game set, winning 7-1 on Wednesday afternoon, they slugged their way throughout leaving themselves elated and the visitors dejected.

“When we’re together and we’re near healthy, and with new contributions, we’re a deep offensive club,” manager Gabe Kapler said.

“We all knew this is us, but it’s nice to have confirmation that this is the way we should be playing,” said starting pitcher Alex Cobb, who pitched into the sixth inning and allowed just three hits.

The win allowed the hosts to complete the rarity of five, consecutive losses followed by five, straight victories. The streak coincides with the returns of Brandon Belt, LaMonte Wade Jr., and on Wednesday, the season debut of Evan Longoria. The streak also timed up with the appearance of the Rockies, who are having a rough time achieving anything positive these days. Colorado won just one time on their completed road swing to Phoenix and San Francisco, scoring 13 runs total and failing to hit a home run.

“We got outpitched, we got outhit,” manager Bud Black said. “We’ve got to clean up a couple of things defensively.

“But we’ll bounce back, we’ve got a good group. The guys are frustrated, but you know, it’s part of the long season.”

The Giants took advantage of pitcher Chad Kuhl the second time through the batting order with three runs in the fourth, and two more in the fifth. Joey Bart abandoned his struggles with the bat, contributing an RBI single in the fourth. And a suddenly quiet Brandon Crawford hit loudly in the fifth with a two-run shot.

Kuhl hurt himself by issuing a walk to Mike Yastrzemski, then throwing the ball away on a pick off attempt. Crawford’s run-scoring, ground ball out followed. After Bart knocked in Thairo Estrada, Belt capped the scoring with a sacrifice fly plating Crawford.

Longoria’s debut wasn’t pretty, he struck out three times and went hitless in five at-bats. But Rockies’ third baseman Ryan McMahon inadvertently included Longoria in the parade, by booting his ground ball in the eighth, which keyed a two-run rally that put the Giants comfortably ahead.

A day off for travel precedes the Giants’ series opener in St. Louis on Friday night. Logan Webb gets the start in a match-up with the Cardinal’s Steven Matz.

Blame The Rain: Hot Giants cooled by Metropolitans’ slightly warmer temps and rain, rescheduled DH for Tuesday

By Morris Phillips

The lockout and the protracted negotiations that delayed the baseball season put the Giants in a worrisome spot: just one day off through April 27, and 19 games in 20 days to start the season.

But in stepped mother nature, and the Giants have a treasured day off today, after their opener at Citi Field in New York against the Mets was canceled due to rain and the timing of the storm.

The team will hole up in a cozy Manhattan hotel and prepare for a rare, doubleheader on Tuesday with a nice caveat: staff ace Logan Webb will pitch Tuesday’s second game. The Mets made the announcement at 4:00pm in New York as the expectation of two inches of rain came into focus. Tuesday’s doubleheader will start at 3:10pm in New York with the second game 30 minutes after the first.

Alex Cobb will face the Mets’ Taylor Megill in the opener. Although the other scheduled starter, Max Scherzer could move up and pitch the opener with no confirmation from the Mets at press time.

The Giants-Mets four-game set looms as one of the early season’s best matchups with the Giants 7-2 and the Mets 7-3.

That’s Amaury’s News and Commentary podcast: Major League Baseball locks out tonight; MLB clubs dealing before window closes

Former Los Angeles Dodgers shortstop Corey Seager, left, puts the tag on Atlanta Braves’ Eddie Rosario on an attempted steal during game 5 of the NLCS Oct 21, 2021. Seager joins the Texas Rangers after signing with them on Mon Nov 29, 2021 (AP file photo)

On That’s Amaury:

#1 Amaury the window is closing as the lockout deadline is approaching and tonight this will be the last day of doing business as tonight at midnight Major League Baseball will enter it’s first work stoppage since the unforgettable 1994 baseball strike.

#2 MLB teams are on the move and trying to clean house before the work stoppage kicks in tonight the Los Angeles Dodgers and Texas Rangers are no exception last night dealing shortstop Corey Seagar to the Texas Rangers a ten year deal worth $325 million and on Sunday the Rangers signed second baseman Marcus Semien for seven years at $175 million, Semien played for the Toronto Blue Jays last season.

#3 Former Dodger pitcher Max Scherzer will be throwing for the New York Mets he signs a three year deal for $130 million. Scherzer was 15-4 ERA 2.46. Talk about how much of an addition he will be for the Mets.

#4 Former Toronto Blue Jays pitcher Cy Young Award winner Robbie Ray will be joining the Seattle Mariners Ray and the M’s agreed on a five year $115 million deal and with Ray’s experience and accomplishments both will be expecting big things. Ray was 13-7 ERA 2.84 last season for the Blue Jays.

#5 Former Los Angeles Angel Alex Cobb will join the San Francisco Giants details of an agreement has not been disclosed on Monday night. Cobb was 8-3 with an ERA 3.76, he’s 34 years old how much do you see him helping the Giants in 2022?

Join Amaury Pi Gonzalez for News and Commentary for exclusive coverage of the Major League Baseball lockout 2021 at