Giants vs Reds Series Preview, May 7-9

Rollercoaster is as cliché of a term that one could use to describe the 2004 campaign for the 2004 San Francisco Giants. When they're up, they're up. When they're down, they're beaten before the first pitch is thrown. Unsurprisingly, the only constant to the first 6 weeks of baseball is Barry Bonds' mind-halting .639 on base percentage and .463 batting average.

With the bat taken out of Bonds' hands by Art Howe and the NY Mets this week, the Giants turn their attention to a weekend series with the surging Cincinnati Reds.

The Reds are 2 games over .500 and are fixing to take over 2nd place. Their 2 big guys, Adam Dunn and Sean Casey, are living up to their potential and putting up the numbers long expected of them. Adam Dunn is tied with Bonds after hitting his 10th home run. Their pitching is hovering around the Giant's staff ERA (5.13), which doesn't bode well for them, but their bats are getting the hits when hits are needed.

The Giants will try to put together their own hitting puzzle this weekend. Since Bond's will probably see as many pitches to hit as a fan in level 3, row G, Manager Felipe Alou might instigate interesting twists on his already mix & match lineup. Expect to see Edgardo Alfonso play 3rd exclusively. Expect to see Perdo Feliz manning first base while his bat remains warm, with JT Snow taking over the position in late innings if the Giants have a lead.

Friday: Kirk Reuter (0-3, 7.06 ERA) vs. Cory Lidle (2-1, 4.75 ERA).
Saturday: Dustin Hermanson (1-1, 4.70 ERA) vs. Paul Wilson (3-0, 4.79 ERA)
Sunday: Brett Tomko (1-2, 6.27 ERA) vs. Todd Van Popple (1-1, 4.50 ERA).

Felipe Alou, frustrated that he is not allowed to play his big weapon in Bonds, bristled at the way the Mets ignored Bonds' presence in the batters box. Alou suggested that he might in turn walk the other big men in the National League. Keep an eye out for the rising OBP for Adam Dunn and Shawn Casey. Considering the way the ball flies out of Great American Ballpark, it wouldn't be a surprise if either team implemented the 4-finger salute.

Jeremy Nunes writes game recaps for He also sits up late at night trying to find a way to become a clever sports writer. He can be praised or berated at

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