The hoopla surrounding Opening Day is unparalleled and the electricity pulsating from AT&T Park this weekend for the home opener will be second to none.
But from a pure baseball perspective, the most intriguing game of this opening week will be today, when Tim Lincecum will take the hill to close out the series against the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Lincecum, entering his last year under contract, is coming off a disastrous season in which he posted a career-worst 10-15 record with a 5.18 ERA. That was followed by a 10.57 spring ERA. Read More
LOS ANGELES — Madison Bumgarner pitched two-hit ball over eight innings, giving the San Francisco Giants a 3-0 win against the Dodgers while overshadowing the major league debut of high-priced Los Angeles pitcher Hyun-Jin Ryu (He-YUN Jin Ree-YOO) on Tuesday night.
Bumgarner (1-0) struck out six and walked none in the second straight gem at Dodger Stadium. The only hits were a pair of doubles by Andre Ethier and A.J. Ellis. Left-hander Clayton Kershaw homered and pitched a four-hit shutout in the Dodgers' 4-0 victory on opening day Monday. Read More
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — Felix Hernandez struck out eight on opening day in his first start since signing a $175 million, seven-year contract in February, and the Mariners beat the reigning AL West champion Oakland Athletics 2-0 on Monday night.
King Felix surrendered one walk while pitching 7 2-3 scoreless innings. He didn't allow a hit until John Jaso doubled to left-center with one out in the fourth, only a couple of hours after the pitcher gifted his former backstop with a Rolex watch for catching his perfect game in August against the Rays. Read More
LOS ANGELES — After an erratic first inning, Matt Cain settled down and tossed six scoreless innings for the San Francisco Giants.
It still wasn't enough, not on a day when Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw outdueled him on the mound and at the plate.
Kershaw launched his first career home run to break a scoreless tie in the eighth inning, then finished off a four-hitter Monday that led Los Angeles to a 4-0 win on opening day.
"That's definitely what you expect when you go out there and face Kershaw," Cain said. "You know he's going to bring it." Read More
OAKLAND, Calif. — His usual carefree self, Felix Hernandez danced in the visitors clubhouse to his techno "house music" Sunday.
It's fitting that Hernandez will make his season debut and first outing since landing a $175 million, seven-year contract against the Oakland Athletics.
The Seattle ace always faces them to start, or so it seems to the A's.
"A lot," Hernandez said with a smile. "I've faced the A's a lot." Read More
The Kansas City Royals have been absent from the playoffs since the day Billy Butler was born. They've barely had a winning season in the last two decades. They've often lost 100 games in a year.
And yet, buoyed by the best record in spring training, hope abounds — for the Royals, for most everybody putting on a big league uniform.
"There's no reason we shouldn't be better," said Butler, the Royals' All-Star slugger. "How much better that is? I'm not a mind reader. I'm not a projector."
Ah, opening day. Read More
Throughout the offseason and the preseason and all the way up to the Giants’ season opener against the rival Los Angeles Dodgers today, much of the national attention seems to have turned away from the defending World Series champions from San Francisco.
It’s Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw who graced the cover of Sports Illustrated last week, and his team that has been picked by many to finish atop the National League West at the end of the season. Read More
Everyone seemed to be healthy again, back at work after that seasonal bug, commonly known as March Madness, tore through offices across The City a couple of weeks ago.
But in the waning hours of Easter Sunday, a cacophony of sniffles could be heard off in the distance as another virus swept through town: Opening Day Delirium.
You’re probably unfamiliar with this malady as it isn’t an annual affliction like March Madness. In fact, it’s fairly uncommon. With a 162-game season, it’s rare for one baseball game to be so dizzying, infectious like the bubonic plague. Read More
Andres Torres burst onto the scene for the Giants in 2010, and was a big part of the team’s first World Series title since moving to San Francisco. He hit .268 with 16 home runs and 63 RBIs atop the lineup to set the table for the heart of the order.
Already 32 years old at the time, Torres was somewhat of a phenomenon — a journeyman minor-leaguer finally getting an extended opportunity with a competing club and thriving. Read More
It’s getting increasingly difficult to get people to bite on April Fool’s pranks, isn’t it? If you don’t pick someone off very early in the morning, before they’ve gotten their wits — dim or otherwise — about them, good luck to you. It probably ain’t gonna happen.
More than likely, it’s a mere reflection of these media-saturated times; everything is viewed with suspicion, with borderline disdain, so everybody’s always “on guard.” Read More