SAN FRANCISCO—The San Francisco sky may not be falling after all.
Following a nightmarish 4-10 start, the defending champion San Francisco Giants may have just pulled through their springtime doldrums. A resounding sweep of the Los Angeles Dodgers and a series split with the Rockies has the Giants entering tonight’s contest with Los Angeles at 8-11.
As the Giants slowly work to dig themselves out of their early-season hole, manager Bruce Bochy has managed to find a nice balance in mixing things up and maintaining the status quo. Awaiting the return of slugger Hunter Pence, Bochy has stayed the course with his healthy crop of athletes, keeping faith with players like Casey McGehee, who has struggled mightily in his first season with his hometown Giants.
In spite of a few shining moments, such as a crucial home run against the Diamondbacks and a rally-sparking single against the Dodgers, McGehee has suffered a nightmare start.
“He’s a good player and a good hitter,” Bochy said of McGehee. “Hey, we all go through our tough times. Go back to last year. Hunter, he had probably as tough a month as he had in his career and he came out of it, and (McGehee) will come out of it.”
Though Bochy didn’t entirely rule-out the possibility of benching McGehee, it appears that at least, for now, he is holding onto faith that his proven roster will eventually iron-out its kinks and round itself into playoff form.
In the “mixing it up” department, Bochy got himself thrown from the game after contesting a strike-three call against Brandon Crawford. Managers often make such statements to fire-up an underachieving team. Will the bold move help maintain the team’s recent momentum?
Tonight’s game against the Dodgers may very well serve as a turning point in San Francisco’s turnaround. A win would solidify their early season dominance of their in-state rival. A loss would throw into question Bochy’s tactics as well as the legitimacy of last week’s series sweep.
Of course, there’s those that will argue that it’s pointless to begin judging a Giants season until September. Those looking for an early-season storyline, tonight’s game, broadcasting on Comcast Sports Bay Area, begins at 7:10 p.m. in Chavez Ravine.