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San Francisco Giants: Handing out team awards for April

TORONTO, ON - APRIL 24: Kevin Pillar #1 (C) of the San Francisco Giants and teammates celebrate following victory over the Toronto Blue Jays in a MLB game at Rogers Centre on April 24, 2019 in Toronto, Canada. (Photo by Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images)
TORONTO, ON - APRIL 24: Kevin Pillar #1 (C) of the San Francisco Giants and teammates celebrate following victory over the Toronto Blue Jays in a MLB game at Rogers Centre on April 24, 2019 in Toronto, Canada. (Photo by Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images)
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San Francisco Giants
OAKLAND, CA – JULY 21: Reyes Moronta #54 of the San Francisco Giants reacts after getting Marcus Semien #10 of the Oakland Athletics to ground into a double-play to end the ninth inning at the Oakland Alameda Coliseum on July 21, 2018 in Oakland, California. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)

San Francisco Giants—Cy Young of April

Madison Bumgarner and Jeff Samardzija have been the pick of the Giants starters so far this season, although neither has managed to find anything approaching consistently high levels of performance.

Bumgarner’s ERA of 4.30 suffers from having given up five home runs in his first six starts, whilst Samardzija, boosted by a strong outing against the Dodgers at the end of the month, has posted a more respectable 2.53 ERA.

The true standout pitching performers for April have all been relievers, and that has led to the bullpen collectively ranking at the top of MLB leaderboard for ERA (2.86), FIP (3.05) and HR/9 (0.63).

Closer Will Smith has converted all seven of his save chances, though his 3.38 ERA, 3.4 BB/9 and 10.1 K/9 all represent movement in the wrong direction.

Offseason-addition Trevor Gott has been excellent. He has 15 strikeouts and has walked just three batters en route to a 1.80 ERA in 15 innings of middle-relief work.

Mention must also be made of Mark Melancon, who seems to finally be putting a couple of difficult seasons behind him with a strong April. His first 11.2 innings of the season yielded just two earned runs, and the only real blemish on his 2019 slate is the home run he gave up against the Yankees on Friday night.

However, the team’s best reliever, and best pitcher overall has been Reyes Moronta.

He has a 2.08 ERA over 13 innings and has been striking out batters at an exceptional rate. His K/9 of 14.54 ranks him sixth among relief pitchers in MLB.

One exceptional appearance that springs to mind came in against the Colorado Rockies on April 13. He entered in the eighth inning and inherited a runner on second from a then-winless  Bumgarner, and proceeded to strike out the side, mixing his fastball, slider and changeup to devastating effect.

Hopefully, he will continue to be as dominant as the season progresses.

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