2022 San Jose Giants Season Recap
September 20, 2022 - California League (CalL) - San Jose Giants News Release
It was a memorable 2022 San Jose Giants season as the club posted one of best records in the California League, reached the playoffs once again and had several standout individual performers. Behind a powerful lineup and the top pitching staff in the league, the Giants went 74-58 to earn a Wild Card berth in the North Division.
Let's take a look back at the year with the 2022 San Jose Giants Season Recap:
Regular Season Review
The Giants boasted many of the top players in the California League throughout the year on their way to a 74-58 regular season. San Jose was an excellent 40-26 in the first half and finished only one game behind Fresno for the top spot in the division. The Giants then had a 34-32 mark in the second half as the Grizzlies again claimed the division crown. San Jose though earned a trip to the postseason by virtue of their second-best overall record in the North Division - eight games ahead of third-place Modesto.
The Giants' best months of the year came back-to-back in May (16-10) and June (17-9) as the club challenged for the top spot in the division. A season-high 11-game winning streak from June 15-26 included five straight victories at home against the powerful Fresno Grizzlies before a dominant six-game sweep in Stockton. While San Jose spent most of July and August out of playoff position as the team hovered around .500 in the second half, a late push over the final few weeks vaulted the Giants into the postseason. A key series win at playoff contender Modesto followed by five consecutive victories in Stockton led to an outstanding 9-3 record on San Jose's final road trip of the year. A few days later when the club returned home, the Giants officially secured a playoff berth for a third straight season.
The Giants celebrate after clinching a playoff berth
League-Leading Pitching Staff
The Giants pitching staff had an outstanding season and led the California League in multiple categories, including ERA (4.11), lowest opponents batting average (.230) and fewest home runs allowed (92). San Jose was also second in the league in strikeouts (10.9 per game) and second in shutouts (6). The Giants achieved a new team single-season record with 1,443 strikeouts. San Jose broke the record during the final game of the regular season surpassing the previous mark of 1,439 strikeouts set by the 2021 team. The Giants led the league in earned run average for a second straight season.
San Jose had another big year hitting the long ball. The Giants finished the regular season with 149 home runs in their 132 games - the second-most homers in the California League in 2022. San Jose was one home run shy of matching their team single-season record, which was set by the 2021 championship club (150 HR). Seven Giants players reached double-digit home run totals during the year.
Grant McCray led the Giants with 21 home runs this season
San Jose's bid for back-to-back league championships fell short with a quick exit in the postseason. The Giants took on a Fresno team that posted the best record in the league this season and were swept two-games-to-none in the best-of-three North Division Series. The Grizzlies scored six runs in the top of the first inning of Game 1 at Excite Ballpark on their way to a convincing 12-3 victory. The series then shifted to Fresno for Game 2 and while San Jose rallied from an early three-run deficit to tie the score in the top of the fifth, the Grizzlies ultimately prevailed by a 7-3 margin to sweep the series. The San Jose Giants franchise has been in the playoffs an impressive 15 times in the last 18 seasons overall.
The Giants had five walk-off wins at Excite Ballpark this season. Included in the late-game drama this year was a 13-12, 12-inning victory over the Visalia Rawhide on July 14 in the club's longest game of the year. The most memorable walk-off win came on May 14 when Vaun Brown led off the bottom of the ninth inning with a towering 423-foot home run to deep right center as San Jose knocked off the Lake Elsinore Storm. The Giants had overcome a five-run deficit early in the contest with Brown's first homer of the game - a two-run blast in the bottom of the seventh - tying the score. The round-tripper from Brown in the bottom of the ninth was San Jose's only walk-off home run of the season.
2022 was a season filled with excellent pitching performances for the San Jose Giants, but the game on April 20 in Visalia stands above the rest. On a night in which the Giants won by a 1-0 final score, four San Jose hurlers - Nick Sinacola, Keaton Winn, Trevor McDonald and Tyler Myrick - combined on a one-hitter with only one walk and a whopping 20 strikeouts. Visalia's lone hit was an infield single in the bottom of the first inning. 26 of the final 27 Rawhide hitters were retired and Visalia had only one ball that was hit out of the infield for the entire game. Sinacola fanned nine over four scoreless innings in his start before Winn and McDonald each struck out five in two hitless innings of relief. Myrick closed out the game with a 1-2-3 bottom of the ninth. The Giants' 20 strikeouts was two off the California League record for a nine-inning game.
The Giants finished with a 38-28 mark away from Excite Ballpark - the top road record in the California League this season. San Jose had two separate seven-game road winning streaks during the year. The Giants went 36-30 at home.
The Giants' only losing month this season was in August (12-14). It marked the first losing month for a San Jose team since August 2019. The Giants started slow offensively this year batting a league-worst .202 in April while averaging only 4.1 runs per game for the month. Once the calendar flipped to May, however, the San Jose bats exploded. The Giants hit a sizzling .297 in May while their 40 homers in the month led the league. San Jose continued to surge offensively in June with a .285 team AVG and 34 more home runs. The Giants averaged over six runs per game in both months. The hitting numbers dipped a bit in the second half (July .254, August .267) before San Jose finished strong with a .296 team average and over seven runs per game in September.
San Jose's largest comeback win of the year came on June 22 in Stockton. The Giants fell behind by a 7-0 margin after four innings, but would use a season-high five home runs to get back in the game. Solo shots from Riley Mahan, Garrett Frechette and Alexander Suarez in the fifth inning pulled San Jose within 7-3. Victor Bericoto then hit a two-run homer in the sixth inning to make it a 7-5 contest. Aeverson Arteaga singled home two in the top of the seventh to briefly tie the game before the Ports reclaimed the lead with a run in the bottom of frame. Vaun Brown though continued to show a flair for the dramatic as he blasted a pinch-hit solo home run leading off the top of the ninth to bring the Giants even again at 8-8. The homer would turn out to be Brown's final at-bat in a San Jose uniform as the slugger was promoted to High-A Eugene two days later. Carter Williams' RBI double in the top of the 10th would then give the Giants their first lead of the contest as San Jose eventually won by a 10-8 margin in 10 innings. The victory was the seventh straight amidst the 11 in a row for San Jose during their longest win streak of the season.
Odds And Ends
The Giants' highest scoring output this season was their 18-4 win over Rancho Cucamonga on July 26 at Excite Ballpark ... Grant McCray tied a San Jose single-game record with five hits that night (5-for-7, HR, 3 RBI) ... The Giants dominated Stockton this season with a 22-8 record versus the Ports, including a stellar 15-3 mark at Banner Island Ballpark ... San Jose hit 36 home runs in their 18 games in Stockton this year ... The opponent that gave the Giants the most trouble was Fresno ... San Jose went 13-17 versus the Grizzlies during the regular season (5-13 in second half) ... San Jose spent only one day under .500 for the entire season - it was following their opening night loss in Modesto on April 8 ... The Giants won their next four games and stayed above .500 for the rest of the year ... San Jose had only two losing streaks of longer than three games this season (four-game skid June 10-13 & a six-game skid July 6-12) ... 69 players suited up for the San Jose Giants in 2022 (26 position players & 43 pitchers).
A look at 20 individual standouts for the Giants this season
Aeverson Arteaga (.270 AVG, 14 HR, 84 RBI, 11 SB)
19-year old shortstop led the California League in doubles (35) and hits (136). Also ranked fifth in the league in RBI's. Finished the regular season on a 15-game hitting streak. Also voted the "Best Defensive Shortstop" and "Best Infield Arm" in the Cal League this season by the league managers in the "Best Tools" edition of Baseball America.
Aeverson Arteaga had an outstanding all-around season in San Jose this year
Will Bednar (12 GS, 4.19 ERA, 51 SO in 43 IP)
2021 first round draft pick was a key member of San Jose's starting rotation during the first half before a back injury in June ended his season. Limited the opposition to a .167 batting average after allowing only 25 hits in his 43 innings. Surrendered two runs or fewer in nine of his 12 starts.
Victor Bericoto (.265 AVG, 12 HR, 68 RBI)
Steady performer in the middle of the Giants lineup all season. Ranked 10th in the California League in hits (112) and 11th in RBI's. 107 games played was second on the team (Arteaga). Finished the year strong batting .295 from August 1 through the end of the regular season.
Mason Black (8 GS, 1.57 ERA, 44 SO in 34 1/3 IP)
Arguably the top starting pitcher in the league over the first two months before his late-May promotion to High-A Eugene. Gave up only six total runs in his eight starts while holding the opposition to a .198 batting average. Finished his stint in the Cal League with 21 consecutive scoreless innings spanning his last five starts.
Mason Black was the May California League Pitcher of the Month
Vaun Brown (.347 AVG, 14 HR, 41 RBI, 23 SB, 1.064 OPS)
Had one of the best half-seasons in San Jose Giants history. Was leading the California League in batting average, hits, slugging and OPS at the time of his promotion to Eugene in late-June. Was also third in home runs and fifth in stolen bases. Hit an incredible eight home runs over a nine-game stretch from May 4-14. Was also named Cal League Player of the Month for May after hitting .448 with nine homers and 14 steals in 22 games.
Vaun Brown hit .347 with 14 home runs in 59 games for San Jose this season
Jose Cruz (38 G, 2.06 ERA, 6 SV, 86 SO in 52 1/3 IP)
Named the "Best Relief Pitcher Prospect" in the California League in this season's Baseball America "Best Tools" edition. Also rated as having the "Best Change-Up" in the league in a vote of the league managers. Limited the opposition to a .122 batting average after allowing only 21 hits in 52 1/3 innings. Was a perfect 6-for-6 in save opportunities and finished the regular season on a streak of 16 consecutive scoreless innings.
Jose Cruz was voted the top relief pitcher prospect in the California League this season
Hunter Dula (35 G, 4.10 ERA, 7 SV, 54 SO in 41 2/3 IP)
Key bullpen arm led the Giants with seven saves this season and was third on the club in appearances. Did not allow an earned run during the entire month of April. Also had a stretch through June and July in which he didn't surrender a run in 11 out of 12 appearances.
Jared Dupere (.289 AVG, 10 HR, 29 RBI, .934 OPS)
Was one of the club's top power bats during the second half. Joined the team in early-July and had a memorable debut game at Excite Ballpark (July 16) with a home run in his first at-bat and a walk-off RBI double in the 10th inning. Finished with 10 homers in only 32 games for the Giants before a late-August promotion.
Evan Gates (16 G, 0.76 ERA, 28 SO in 23 2/3 IP)
Had a spectacular stretch out of the Giants bullpen before he was promoted to High-A Eugene in late-June. Gave up a paltry five hits and only two earned runs in his 23 2/3 innings. Had a .065 opponents batting average - the lowest mark on the San Jose pitching staff. Finished his stint in the California League on a streak of 14 consecutive scoreless innings.
Seth Lonsway (26 G, 4.06 ERA, 120 SO in 95 1/3 IP)
Thrived with the Giants this season, whether pitching in the starting rotation or as a piggyback long reliever. Led the staff and ranked second in the California League with nine wins. Was also fourth in the league in strikeouts. Had a dominant stretch late in the season during the club's playoff push fashioning a 0.90 ERA over four appearances from August 13-31 (2 ER in 20 IP).
Seth Lonsway led the Giants in wins (9) and strikeouts (120)
Grant McCray (.291 AVG, 21 HR, 69 RBI, 35 SB, .908 OPS)
San Jose's team MVP. Anchored center field and the leadoff spot in the lineup until his late-August promotion to Eugene. Became the first player in San Jose Giants history with 20+ home runs and 20+ stolen bases in a season. At the time of his promotion, was leading the California League in hits, ranked second in home runs and triples (9), fourth in OPS, fifth in steals and tenth in batting average. Was also voted the "Best Defensive Outfielder" in the league. One of the leading candidates for league MVP.
Trevor McDonald (27 G, 2.39 ERA, 102 SO in 90 1/3 IP)
Named the club's Pitcher of the Year after excelling in both the starting rotation and out of the bullpen. Moved into the rotation early in the second half and became one of the top starting pitchers in the league. Had a 1.67 ERA as a starter and allowed one or no earned runs in seven of his 10 starts. Gave up only two homers in his 90 1/3 innings and had a sparkling 0.77 ERA at home (4 ER in 47 IP) before a late-August promotion.
Trevor McDonald was named San Jose's Pitcher of the Year
Manuel Mercedes (25 G, 5.13 ERA, 67 SO in 80 2/3 IP)
Rebounded from a slow start to the season to become one of the team's most important pitchers throughout the second half, both as a starter and in a piggyback role. Owned a 3.44 ERA over his last eight appearances (six starts) dating back to July 29. Was at his best late in the season during the playoff push fashioning a 1.72 ERA over his last 15 2/3 innings.
Yorlis Rodriguez (.258 AVG, 16 HR, 60 RBI)
Key hitter in the middle of the lineup while also serving as the club's primary third baseman throughout the entire season. 16 home runs ranked second on the team and was seventh-best in the California League. Hit 10 of those homers from July 9 through the end of the regular season (48 games).
Landen Roupp (14 G, 2.59 ERA, 69 SO in 48 2/3 IP)
One of the top pitchers in the league during the first half before his late-June promotion to High-A Eugene. Limited the opposition to a .188 batting average and had a better-than 4-to-1 strikeout-to-walk ratio with the Giants. Voted as having the "Best Breaking Ball" in the Cal League this season by league managers in Baseball America's "Best Tools" edition.
Landen Roupp fashioned a 2.59 ERA in San Jose before his promotion
Eric Silva (22 GS, 5.88 ERA, 99 SO in 85 2/3 IP)
Top prospect starting pitcher was a key arm in the Giants starting rotation throughout the entire season. Was one of the younger pitchers in the league (19). Best months of the year came in May (3.27 ERA in five starts) and July (3.71 ERA in four starts). Led the staff in starts and was fourth in strikeouts.
Eric Silva was among the team leaders in innings pitched and strikeouts
Nick Sinacola (25 G, 3.86 ERA, 116 SO in 102 2/3 IP)
One of the top starting pitchers in the California League this season. Led the Giants staff in innings pitched and ranked seventh in the league in strikeouts. Dependable arm allowed two earned runs or fewer in 10 out of his final 13 starts dating back to early-June.
Nick Sinacola posted a 3.86 ERA in a team-high 102 2/3 innings
Alexander Suarez (.231 AVG, 12 HR, 47 RBI, 13 SB)
Emerged offensively for the Giants in the second half of the season. Finished the year fifth on the team in home runs and third in stolen bases.
Adrian Sugastey (.240 AVG, 5 HR, 32 RBI)
One of the top catching prospects in the Giants system. Was a key player on the club, both offensively and defensively. Hit .279 in May before suffering a leg injury on June 1 that led to a six-week stint on the IL. Returned in the second half to anchor the catching position and a spot in the middle of the lineup for the playoff push. Batted .272 over his final 28 games.
Carter Williams (.386 AVG, 7 HR, 38 RBI, 1.094 OPS)
A key contributor on last year's championship team, returned to the Giants in mid-June and was one of the top middle-of-the-order hitters in the league during his two-month stint this season. Maintained a nearly .400 batting average, had more walks than strikeouts and possessed an OPS over 1.000 while with the Giants. Had the longest hitting streak on the team this year when he hit safely in 17 straight games from July 4-28 (.406 AVG).
12 of the 30 players on the current MLB.com San Francisco Giants Top Prospects list saw time in San Jose this season:
4. Grant McCray, OF
5. Aeverson Arteaga, SS
7. Carson Whisenhunt, LHP
9. Eric Silva, RHP
10. Vaun Brown, OF
11. Mason Black, RHP
13. Will Bednar, RHP
15. Ryan Murphy, RHP
19. Adrian Sugastey, C
22. Trevor McDonald, RHP
24. Matt Mikulski, LHP
28. Landen Roupp, RHP
The Giants saw significant changes to their club late in the season with several standouts promoted to High-A Eugene. Meanwhile, 13 players were added to San Jose's roster from the Arizona Complex League (Rookie-level) over the final three weeks of the year giving fans a possible preview of the 2023 team.
Among the newcomers were nine players from San Francisco's 2022 draft class: LHP Carson Whisenhunt (2nd round), RHP Will Kempner (3rd round), RHP Spencer Miles (4th round), RHP Liam Simon (5th round), RHP Hayden Birdsong (6th round), C Zach Morgan (7th round), OF Wade Meckler (8th round), LHP John Michael Bertrand (10th round) and INF Andrew Kachel (16th round). Whisenhunt, rated the second-best pitching prospect in the system according to MLB.com, pitched 4 2/3 scoreless innings in his two late-season starts in the California League. Kempner is a San Jose native who played at Excite Ballpark while attending Valley Christian High School. Meckler emerged as a top hitter for the Giants late in the season batting .439 in 11 games. OF P.J. Hilson and INF Diego Velasquez were also notable additions from the Complex League late in the season and could play leading roles on the '23 San Jose squad. Hilson hit .375 with a pair of homers in his 11 games with San Jose after a standout summer in Arizona.
The 2023 San Jose Giants season is scheduled to begin on Thursday, April 6. The Giants will open next season at home with a matchup against the Fresno Grizzlies. Visit sjgiants.com throughout the offseason for more information on the 2023 schedule, ticket packages and promotions.
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