Kuiper on Pagan, Strasburg, and Naptime


Duane Kuiper was on the Murphy and Mac show on KNBR this morning talking about the series with the Washington Nationals that begins today and also dropped a few nuggets about the state of this season.

May 25, 2013; San Francisco, CA, USA; San Francisco Giants center fielder Pagan (16) scores the winning run after hitting an inside-the-park homerun in the bottom of the tenth inning against the Colorado Rockies at AT

One of the better parts this morning was his comments about Angel Pagan and how big of a factor his absence has been on the Giants’ season.

"The single most exciting play of the year was the Angel Pagan, inside the park park walk-off, and he never played after that. Sometimes you don’t know the value of a guy until you don’t have him, and I think that’s been the case with the Giants this year with Pagan."

He thinks the team, and particularly Buster Poseylooks tired.

"When you’re playing everyday you have no idea if you’re tired or not. Maybe your at-bats should tell you if you’re tired….It’s hard to give Posey 3 or 4 days off. I don’t want to see that. Fans at AT&T Park don’t want to see that. It’s not going to happen."

He says that the long run in the post season 2 of the last 3 years has likely contributed to the fatigue, and also some things like the WBC.

"The WBC, I think that probably hurt a couple of guys. Maybe organizations are gonna say now, ‘Done. We’re not gonna do it’."

He also talked about how the Nationals season has likely been more disappointing than the San Francisco Giants. I mean, at least we won a World Series last year. The Nats possibly could have, but they choose to sit Stephen Strasburg, one of the best starters in baseball, out for the postseason to limit his innings after Tommy John Surgery. Kuiper had a few comments about that decision.

"If you do not pitch Stephen Strasburg in postseason last year, then what are you telling everyone? Well this is a slam dunk that we’re gonna be back in it next year, correct? …. There are no guarantees for next year, that’s why you have to pitch Strasberg. I get what the whole philosophy was in not throwing that kid, but you may not get another shot, and if you don’t take it when you can, you may regret it when you look back 2 or 3 years down the road."

I’m pretty sure the Nationals and Strasburg have probably questioned that decision a few times already this season.

One of the funny parts of his interview this morning came at the end. Still talking about fatigue he says:

"You’re saying, it should be like Kindergarden. Right around 3 o’clock, Bruce Bochy walks in clubhouse, puts off the lights and says “Naptime!”I’m not even going to tell you what we did in the mid-80s. a Psychologist came in because we were bad. So we had quiet time. From 6:30 until 5 minutes until 7 it was quiet time in the (Giants) clubhouse. It did not work. If you’re bad, you’re bad. It doesn’t matter if you have quiet time."