San Francisco Giants: Game Six should feature pitching by committee
By Mark ONeill
Jake Peavy, of the San Francisco Giants, is a fierce competitor who would do anything on the face of the planet, to help his team win a postseason game, except-apparently-complete six innings of play. Though he has wanted to go deeper-he always strives to go the distance-he has started eight postseason games in his career, and failed to complete six innings in every single effort.
Patterns do not dictate the future, but they do illustrate strong tendencies. Whether it is the emotion expended on a postseason start, which is responsible for limiting Peavy’s starts to under six innings, or possibly he comes into the game with insufficient stamina due to lack of sleep. No one can say for sure how these things go. For whatever reason(s), Peavy has failed to complete even five innings, exactly half of those eight postseason starts.
Just as Madison Bumgarner is programed to go at least seven innings, and has done so all six of his postseason starts in 2014, Jake Peavy has had eight opportunities to demonstrate that he can turn in a quality start, and has failed every time out.
Let’s face it. Eight starts with no quality outings in the postseason, for jake Peavy. Enough said.
With the Giants wishing to avoid playing two games in front of the rabid Kansas City fans, management should go all out, and avoid the path of the 2002 Giants.
Peavy is not a bad guy because he cannot do what MadBum can do; on the contrary, every Giants fan owes a huge debt of gratitude to Peavy, and most would welcome him back for the 2015 season, as a good teammate, and a guy who knows how to win. It’s just he has not proven he could win in the postseason. It’s that pesky sixth inning that has plagued both teams in this series. So do not give the Royals the opportunity to face a tired Peavy, with just enough gas left, to issue a pair of leadoff singles.
Why not compromise? Why not allow Peavy to start, but plan from the outset that he will not exceed four innings? That way, should he come out fireballing, and keep the Royals off-balance, for those first four innings, Bruce Bochy could bring in Yusmeiro Petit for the fifth through seventh innings, and have his four corner stakes to anchor the game in place: Jeremy Affeldt, Javier Lopez, Sergio Romo, and Santiago Casilla.
The worst that could happen is that Peavy would be off his game, and Petit would be called on earlier. Bad news, but adversity is part of the game, and the Giants have a rejuvenated Tim Lincecum to help out in long relief.
One definition of insanity is to try the same fruitless course of action, repeatedly, even though the results continue to be unacceptable. Jake Peavy has repeatedly failed to go six innings, so change the script.
After all, no one ever accused Bruce Bochy of being crazy.