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San Francisco Giants: Curt Young Deserves Credit for Giants Pitching

Nick San Miguel
LOS ANGELES, CA - APRIL 01: Pitching coach Curt Young #43 of the San Francisco Giants, right, visits the mound to talk to pitcher Roberto Gomez #67 in the eighth inning during the MLB game against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Dodger Stadium on April 1, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. The Dodgers defeated the Giants 9-0. (Photo by Victor Decolongon/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - APRIL 01: Pitching coach Curt Young #43 of the San Francisco Giants, right, visits the mound to talk to pitcher Roberto Gomez #67 in the eighth inning during the MLB game against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Dodger Stadium on April 1, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. The Dodgers defeated the Giants 9-0. (Photo by Victor Decolongon/Getty Images)
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When the San Francisco Giants decided to fire long-time pitching coach Dave Righetti and reassign him to the front office last off-season, it raised the eyebrows of many fans, mine included.

Righetti was instrumental in the development of home grown arms such as Tim Lincecum, Matt Cain, and Madison Bumgarner. The San Francisco Giants opted to go with former A’s pitching coach and former pitcher himself, Curt Young. This knowledge didn’t exactly break the bank. The general consensus was that Young was a solid choice as a replacement for the legendary “Rags” and would at the very least be a new and refreshing voice in the ear of veterans on the pitching staff.

However, with all of the injuries to the pitching staff, especially the starters, it’s a marvel that they’ve fared as well as they have. Derek Holland has been a real standout considering he wasn’t sure he’d have a job in Spring and he hasn’t allowed more than three earned runs in all of his starts in June.

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Chris Stratton has remained solid and has delivered mostly what one would’ve expected at the start of the year. Stratton and Holland have been the two constants in an otherwise hectic rotation that has had to deal with injuries to its best three starters in the form of Madison Bumgarner, Johnny Cueto, and Jeff Samardzija.

This is where it gets exciting for Giants fans, because we’ve had the delight of getting to watch Andrew Suarez and Dereck Rodriguez. Both have done outstanding given the circumstances and even though they’ll likely be sent down upon the return of Cueto and Samardzija, it’s comforting knowing the Giants have some young arms on the farm who can compete at the big-league level.

It’s impossible to know just how much of a role Curt Young has played in the success of these starters. Even if the starters were spitting the bit, it would be tough to put the blame on him given all of the injuries.

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But, since the starting staff has fared so well thus far, I think he deserves at least a tiny slice of the credit. Even though this staff is pretty different from the one that Righetti had to work with last year, it’s commendable what they’ve done.

At the end of the day, the guys who are actually throwing the baseballs deserve the credit, but it doesn’t hurt to give the pitching coach a little love every now and then. Though I’ll admit, it is still a little weird to see Young pop out of the dugout whenever a pitcher is out of wack instead of Rags.

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