Tag Archives: major league baseball

INSIDE CHINA BASIN: Panik Focusing On “Contact”-Meulens: Core “Expected To Produce”

Welcome to the INSIDE CHINA BASIN Baseball Podcast

Updated twice a week on TheSportsVirus.com!

Injuries derailed the Giants 2018 season. 2B Joe Panik was one of the walking wounded last year, but now he’s healthy and has been tearing up the Cactus League hitting over .400. Bench Coach Hensley Meulens is optimistic about this season, especially because Buster Posey should be back to his All Star form.

Unlike many hitters in the Major Leagues, Panik is not concerned with launch angle :

“Everybody wants to hit home runs, but the moment I start thinking about that, that’s when I go bad. I’ve been really trying to focus on contact point. If I hit the ball in the right contact point that’s when the ball will go. Don’t think about lifting the ball because that’s when bad things will happen.”

Meulens talked about Posey coming off hip surgery:

“Hitting wise it restrained him (last season) from being at his best, powerful and driving balls. Catching as well he wasn’t feeling like himself…I’m hoping he can get back to where he was the year before (hit .320 with .400 on base percentage).”

Listen To Panik and Meulens

Join us again next week when we hear from Giants 3rd Base Coach Ron Wotus.

Check out our other Podcasts all year long. INSIDE CHINA BASIN is also available on ITUNES. 

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INSIDE CHINA BASIN: Brandon Crawford and Evan Longoria Optimistic About 2019

Welcome to the INSIDE CHINA BASIN Baseball Podcast

Updated twice a week on TheSportsVirus.com!

The Gold Glove left side of the Giants infield is back healthy and ready for a productive season. After injuries derailed SS Brandon Crawford and 3B  Evan Longoria in 2018, they are poised to produce at previous career levels both at the plate and in the field.

Crawford told TheSportsVirus that a knee issue hindered his swing in the second half of last season and he had other problems:

“The biggest thing was swinging at good pitches…When you’re going through a little bit of a dry spell you start getting a little more anxious and you’re swinging at pitches that you that you don’t necessarily want to be swinging at and getting yourself out because of it.”

Longoria has developed a strategy for hitting at Oracle Park:

“You’ve just got to take your base hits here. It is a tough ballpark to leave the yard and it’s just an overall more difficult ballpark to hit in with the weather. I think it’s more about trying to grind through at bats here and hit line drives. It took me probably three quarters of the year to get into that mind set…I’m positive that I’ll be more comfortable stepping into the box in game one this year than I was last year and I think that will translate into some better production.”

Listen To Crawford and Longoria

Join us again next week when we hear from pitchers Chris Stratton and Mark Melancon.

Check out our other Podcasts all year long. INSIDE CHINA BASIN is also available on ITUNES. 

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INSIDE CHINA BASIN: Buster Posey On 2018 “I Wasn’t Able To Swing The Way I Always Had”

Welcome to the INSIDE CHINA BASIN Baseball Podcast

Updated twice a week on TheSportsVirus.com!

Giants catcher Buster Posey and outfielder Mac Williamson join us for our first Inside China Basin podcast of 2019. Both players are trying to get back to normalcy. Posey underwent hip surgery and is getting back to 100%, while Williamson feels great after dealing with concussion symptoms for much of the 2018 season.

Posey explained to TheSportsVirus about his swing not having as much power in 2018:

“I think mechanically I wasn’t able to swing the way that I always had and I’m sure that had something to do with it overall, but I was kind of having to tweak things to change my mechanics which I hadn’t had to do in the past.”

Williamson thought back on the circumstances that caused his concussion last season:

“I’ve thought back on that night countless times, but I wouldn’t change it. I was going after a ball, trying to catch a ball in foul territory that was a meaningful out in our game…What are you going to do, let it drop? Pack my bags to Triple-A? It’s an unfortunate series of events…I just need to be more athletic and not trip (over the bullpen mound).”

Listen To Posey and Williamson

Join us again next week when we hear from the left side of the Giants infield, Brandon Crawford and Evan Longoria.

Check out our other Podcasts all year long. INSIDE CHINA BASIN is also available on ITUNES. 

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INSIDE CHINA BASIN ’18 FINALE: The Future Is Now For Chris Shaw And Aramis Garcia

Welcome to the INSIDE CHINA BASIN Baseball Podcast

Updated twice a week on TheSportsVirus.com!

In our final Giants podcast of 2018, we look forward to 2019 with September call-ups Chris Shaw and Aramis Garcia.

It was a season of many injuries and much disappointment. A second straight losing season with no post season berth cost GM Bobby Evans his job. But, the future is bright for some of the young Giants. Shaw blasted 24 home runs for AAA Sacramento and Garcia has been producing in San Francisco while playing catcher and first base.

Shaw talked about what he wants his approach to be in 2019:

“When I put the ball in play I’m usually putting it in play pretty hard. If I can come out next year and cut down my strikeouts by 30 strikeouts on the year, that could be 50 extra points on the slugging percentage, that could be 5 more home runs. I think that big guys, we just have to put an emphasis on just putting the ball forward…That’s ultimately my goal.”

Listen To Shaw and Garcia

Join us in 2019 for another season of Giants podcasts.

Check out our other Podcasts all year long. INSIDE CHINA BASIN is also available on ITUNES. 

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INSIDE CHINA BASIN: Bobby Evans Steps Down As GM, Plus Stratton & Powell Join Us

Welcome to the INSIDE CHINA BASIN Baseball Podcast

Updated twice a week on TheSportsVirus.com!

Giants RHP Chris Stratton and Hitting Coach Alonzo Powell joined us from AT&T Park on Monday afternoon.

Plus, with the announcement that Bobby Evans will not return as Giants General Manager, we hear from Chief Executive Officer Larry Baer and Executive Vice President of Baseball Operations Brian Sabean.

Baer on what the Giants will be looking for from their new GM :

“Somebody who’s going to come in and 24/7 is going to immerse himself or herself in the baseball operation and is going to be fully accountable for the results and putting together the blueprint of the future, sort of the Next Gen for the Giants.”

Listen To Chris Stratton and Alonzo Powell

Join us again later this week for our final podcast of 2018 featuring Giants rookies Aramis  Garcia and Chris Shaw.

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INSIDE CHINA BASIN: Larry Krueger Part 2, What MLB Should Change / Not Change

Welcome to the INSIDE CHINA BASIN Baseball Podcast

Updated twice a week on TheSportsVirus.com!

Larry Krueger from KNBR joins us to talk about what changes should and should not occur in Major League Baseball in  part 2 of our conversation.

Krueger on the possibility of mechanical umpires :

“The game is played by people and it should be officiated by people and it’s watched by people. If you start doing it any other way it loses an awful lot of spontaneity maybe. To me, maybe I’m old school, but I think a sport that goes back to 1870 to make overwhelming, sweeping changes to a sport that’s that old is kind of disrespecting the sport…It was a great, great sport and it doesn’t need massive alterations.”

Listen To Larry Krueger

Join us again Monday when we podcast from AT&T Park in San Francisco.

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INSIDE CHINA BASIN: KNBR’s Larry Krueger ’19 Success “Predicated On Who Plays OF”

Welcome to the INSIDE CHINA BASIN Baseball Podcast

Updated twice a week on TheSportsVirus.com!

Larry Krueger from KNBR joins us to talk about what the Giants should do this off season in part 1 of a 2-part conversation.

For Krueger, the solution is pretty simple:

“If they came back next year with the same rotation, the same bullpen and the same infield, I think most people would be pleased with that. Their success or failure in 2019 is going to be predicated on who comes back and plays that outfield…Can you count on (Steven) Duggar? He’s a very good defensive player, but I think if he’s in your lineup, you’re hitting him 8th. He’s not a foundation piece outfielder at this point until he proves he’s a Major League hitter.”

Listen To Larry Krueger

Join us again Thursday for Part 2 of the conversation with Larry.

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INSIDE CHINA BASIN: Bob Nightengale From USA Today Sizes Up Giants Future

Welcome to the INSIDE CHINA BASIN Baseball Podcast

Updated twice a week on TheSportsVirus.com!

As the Major League Baseball regular season winds down, Joe Castellano gives his thoughts on some areas of concern in the current game. Mechanical umpires? More or less replay? Limit defensive shifts?

Then Bob Nightengale from USA Today joins us to take a peek into the Giants future. Will it include Madison Bumgarner?:

“I think he’s staying, I really do. Let’s be honest, he doesn’t have same the trade value as he once did. He’s not that same guy. He’s still a very good pitcher, but not a bona fide ace type guy that he was…I think they hang onto him, then see where they are next July at the trade deadline.”

Listen To Bob Nightengale

Join us again next week as the Giants hit the road to visit San Diego and St. Louis.

 

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INSIDE CHINA BASIN: Red Sox Scout Gary Hughes Says Panda Is “Still A Talented Guy”

Welcome to the INSIDE CHINA BASIN Baseball Podcast

Updated twice a week on TheSportsVirus.com!

After the Giants losing streak reached 11 games, Joe Castellano gave his thoughts on what the ball club should do to improve in 2019. Our special guest is Boston Red Sox scout Gary Hughes, who is a Bay Area native. Here’s what he told The Sports Virus on Inside China Basin about Pablo Sandoval:

“He’s still a talented guy and it didn’t work. To our credit we ate the whole (contract) and that was a big meal. That’s why we are where we are now. We didn’t sit and hold onto that contract and keep hoping something would happen. We just went out and made something else happen.

Listen To Gary Hughes

Join us again Thursday when Bob Nightengale from USA Today is our guest.

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INSIDE CHINA BASIN: Ryan Vogelsong Reminisces, Brian Anderson Talks Brew Crew

Welcome to the INSIDE CHINA BASIN Baseball Podcast

Updated twice a week on TheSportsVirus.com!

Former Giants pitcher Ryan Vogelsong’s journey to the AT&T Park Wall of Fame is a story of great perseverance and determination. Now, he is passing on his knowledge to SF pitchers as a roving instructor. Recently he helped turn around the fortunes of RHP Chris Stratton. Here’s what he told The Sports Virus on Inside China Basin on Thursday morning:

“He was getting a little rotational and coming off the ball a little bit and that does two things, it’ll make the ball flatten out, it’ll make it cut. The biggest thing for me when you do that is the hitter sees the ball early…I just talked to him about two little keys that helped me stay on line and hide the ball.

Vogey also reminisced about dreams coming true in a Giants uniform:

“There’s probably not a day that I wake up now and kinda look at myself in the mirror and I’ll see a picture on the wall and I kind of don’t believe that’s me in those pictures. I know it happened, but it doesn’t seem possible that it happened.”

Brewers and Turner Sports TV voice Brian Anderson is also our guest, setting us up for the Giants series in Milwaukee this weekend. Even though San Francisco has dropped out the pennant race, Anderson still has a lot of respect for the Giants organization:

“The Giants are one of the gold standard organizations in baseball and it’s been a few down years here, but I think it’s gotta be 5 or 6 down years for people around the game including me to look at the Giants in any other way than this is a first class organization that has not made great decisions on players here recently, but made so many great decisions that they’re still way ahead of the game in that regard. I don’t question anything the Giants do.

Listen To Vogey and Brian Anderson

Join us again Tuesday when we’ll be at AT&T Park in San Francisco as the Giants take on the NL East leading Atlanta Braves.

Check out our other Podcasts all year long. INSIDE CHINA BASIN is also available on ITUNES. 

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