1979 in a Box

Giants Checking In:  Jeremy Affeldt, Phoenix, AZ

Eliezer Alfonzo,Puerto La Cruz, Venezuela

Clay Hensley, Tomball, TX

Steve Holm, Sacramento, CA

Lance Niekro, Winter Haven, FL

Ryan Theriot, Baton Rouge, LA

Tony Torcato, Woodland, CA

Juan Uribe, Palenque, Dominican Republic

Eli Whiteside, New Albany, MS



Giants Checking Out:  Freddie Fitzsimmons, Yuca Valley, CA

Alex Gaston, Marina del Rey, CA

Clyde Kluttz, Salisbury, NC

Wally Kopf, Cincinnati, OH

Sam Leslie, Pascagoula, MS

Jim Mooney, Johnson City, TN


Record:  71-79, 4th in the National League West, 19.5 games behind Cincinnati

Pythagorean Record:  73-77, (672 runs scored, 751 runs allowed) 3rd in the National League West

General Manager:  Spec Richardson

Managers:  Joe Altobelli, 61-79 (3rd season, 225-239, .485, through 1979)

Dave Bristol, 10-12 (1st season, 10-12, .455, through 1979)


Ballpark:  Candletick Park    Attendance:  1,456,402 (9th in the National League)

Full House:  Tuesday, April 10, Opening Day vs. San Diego, 56,196

Friends & Family:  Wednesday, September 12, vs. Atlanta, 1,878

Park Factors:  Batting – 92, Pitching – 93  (Over 100 favors batters, under 100 favors pitchers)


Days in First Place:  7, last on May 25

Best Month:  May, 16-12, .571

Worst Month:  April, 9-14, .391

Largest Margin of Victory:  beat Cincinnati, 12-2, May 22 at Candlestick Park

Largest Margin of Defeat:  lost to Montreal, 15-5, July 22 at Candlestick Park

lost to Chicago, 14-4, August 16 at Wrigley Field


Longest Winning Streak:  4, May 1 to 5, May 19 to 22, and September 15 to 18

Longest Losing Streak:  8, April 21 to 30

Longest Game:  13 innings, June 15, beat St. Louis, 9-6; July 10, beat Montreal, 11-7

Loved to Face:  Cincinnati, 12-6, .667

Hated to Face:  Los Angeles, 4-14, .222


Most Home Runs:  Mike Ivie, 27

Highest OBP:  Bill North, .386

Highest OPS+:  Mike Ivie, 152

Most Stolen Bases:  Bill North, 58

Highest Position Player WAR:  Jack Clark, 3.5

Different Batting Orders:  92


Most Innings Pitched:  Vida Blue, 237

Most Strikeouts by a Pitcher:  Vida Blue, 138

Best Starter ERA+:  John Montefusco & Ed Whitson, tied at 89

Best Reliever ERA+:  Greg Minton, 196

Highest Pitcher WAR:  Gary Lavelle, 2.7

Complete Games:  25

Shutouts:  5


Career Best Seasons:  Mike Ivie, Phil Nastu

Career Worst Seasons:  Ed Halicki, Greg Johnston, Dennis Littlejohn, Randy Moffitt, Ed Plank, Max Venable


All-Stars:  Jack Clark, as a reserve

Received MVP Votes:  No Giant received votes for MVP

Cy Young Award Votes:  No Giant received votes for the Cy Young Award


Rookies of Note:  Max Venable

Say Hello To:  Greg Johnston, Bob Kearney, Bill North, Joe Strain, Max Venable

Say Goodbye To:  Rob Andrews, Hector Cruz, Greg Johnston, Bob Kearney, Bill Madlock, John Tamargo


Playing Time:

Youngsters (25 or under):  2,186 PAs (35.6%);  407.2 IP (28.4%)  RF Max Venable, 22, is youngest

Prime (26-29):  1,820 PAs (29.7%);   590 IP (41.1%)

Past-Prime (30-33):  1,728 PAs (28.2%)   396.1 IP (27.6%)

Old Timers (34+):  399 PAs (6.5%)   42 IP (2.9%)   1B Willie McCovey, 41, is oldest



Stretch (Willie McCovey)

Howdy Doody (Darrell Evans)

Jack the Ripper (Clark)

Mad Dog (Bill Madlock)

Heity (Hector Cruz)

The Count (John Montefusco)

Moonie (Greg Minton)

Mr. T (Al Holland)


Key (or at least Rather Large) Transaction:  On June 28, traded Bill Madlock, Lenny Randle and Dave Roberts to the Pittsburgh Pirates for Fred Breining, Al Holland and Ed Whitson.

Top Prospect:  Chili Davis, Fresno Giants (Class A), .269/.371/.467, 21 HR, 30 SB




Minor League Affiliates:


Phoenix Giants (PCL)



Shreveport Captains (TL)


Fresno Giants (CAL)

Cedar Rapids Giants (MIDW)



Great Falls Giants (PION)



What Went Right:  The Giants led the league in runs at the All-Star break, and Willie McCovey passed Mel Ott, Ernie Banks, and Eddie Mathews on baseball’s all-time home run list.


What Went Wrong:  The pitching collapsed, and the starting pitching was a disaster. No Giant who started regularly had an ERA+ above 89.



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