A few little observations about our 2005 San Francisco Giants after last nights game:
While the Dodgers rotation is definitely competitive, the Giants look like they're going to really struggle to score runs this year. Four runs in each game, but two of the four in the first game were from defensive gaffes by the Dodgers, and the last three runs of the four they scored last night were in garbage time in the 9th inning. It's only two games, but it seems all too familiar to me.
The bullpen may also be a problem...no, correction -- the bullpen IS a problem. Tyler Walker, Jason Christiansen, and Matt Herges all need to be better than last year for the bullpen to really see an improvement, and they took their first step last night in the exact opposite direction. I've always liked Walker, and feel that sometimes he's just unlucky, but results have to be considered. Christiansen...well, you all know how I feel about him, and that opinion was only reinforced last night after he served up some lovin' to the Dodgers hitters. Herges...well, you all know how I feel about him, and that opinion was only reinforced last night after he served up some lovin' to the Dodgers hitters.
In any case, were I Sabean and co., I wouldn't give these guys much more than a month to suck before calling in the myriad array of young reinforcements from Fresno (and think, we haven't even seen Jeff Fassero suck yet!). While I'm sure they want Foppert to get some starts in AAA, letting the season slip away is inexcusable, and Hennessey and Correia need to be sitting by the phones as well. Heck, add Merkin Valdez to that list, too.
The starting rotation looks strong early, and indeed may have to shoulder the load for the team this year, even if/when Barry Bonds gets back into the lineup. Kirk Rueter just needs to stay competitive, and Noah Lowry and Bret Tomko simply need to repeat their performances from late last season.