Giants, Fathers, Cardinals...Oh, Lord
(originally written 4/27/10)
⦁ The Giants bottled all the crappy luck thrown at them during their three-game set at San Diego, sealed it, and sprayed it all over the St. Louis Cardinals upon returning home to AT&T Park. How else do you explain the reversal of fortune by a Giants team that threw a 1-hitter and lost days before?
Cases in point: Felipe Lopez’ non-tag of Andres Torres at 2B in Game 2 when he should have been out by a mile. Torres’ failed sac bunt becoming an RBI single later in Game 2—the game-winning RBI, in fact. Barry Zito getting the call on a slightly-inside third strike to Albert Pujols in a dangerous Game 2 situation. The Giants’ early Game 1 scoring coming from two Cardinal errors, the latter by Skip Schumaker especially heinous. Multiple infield hits.
⦁ The Giants didn’t sweep St. Louis because they basically traded Brad Penny there for Todd Wellemeyer. Penny, who I was not a fan of until he added needed toughness to the Orange and Black, hurled 7.2 strong innings at San Fran in Game 3, keeping a fat goose egg in Matt Cain’s win column—though that was his first 2010 start he didn’t deserve to win at all—and preventing a sweep. Penny complimented his ex-rotation mate after the game, calling him a “great teammate”.
⦁ Future Hall-of-Famer Albert Pujols (we can call him that now; this is season 10 for him) made sure to go deep before he left town in that Game 3, after being mostly stifled by Tim Lincecum and Zito in the first two games. Might I remind you that he wasn’t even supposed to make the Cardinals’ roster his rookie year, only doing so after an injury to the washed-up Bobby Bonilla? We will not see Albert in San Francisco again unless the two teams square off in the playoffs, or the Giants offer St. Louis Lincecum, Cain, Sandoval, Uribe, $5M, a player to be named later, two bosomy administrators to be named later, and ⅗ of AT&T Park in a trade.
⦁ Hate to dwell on the past like this, but the 2002 Angels struck again—David frikkin’ Eckstein hits a tape-measure walkoff against Jeremy Affeldt in Game 2 against San Diego. How come practically their whole team is still in the league—with ex-members facing the Giants each series--while all but four or five of the 2002 Giants have faded away? Don’t answer that.
⦁ Mike Krukow remains one of the funniest guys around, in baseball or otherwise. Listening to the Giants’ postgame show on KNBR riding home from Saturday’s Zito/Wainwright duel was almost as fun as the game itself. Here’s why:
(On the crowd cheering Zito’s first name)
“The crowd was chanting ‘Barry, Barry, Barry’. For a minute there I thought Bonds was walking through the stands.”
(Playing the role of Zito, paying homage to the infamous [NFL coach] Dennis Green rant)
“I AM WHO THEY SAID I WAS!!!”
⦁ In the “Zito Game”, Mark DeRosa was plunked twice by ex-teammate Adam Wainwright, and though clearly displeased, things remained calm. Not at all like last year when Mark Teixeira was twice drilled by ex-teammate Vicente Padilla, and seemed ready to break him in half.
⦁ Though I made it to the game, I did NOT get my Panda bobblehead because two of my friends somehow graduated college without learning how the hands of a clock work. Did YOU get one? Wanna sell it?
⦁ In closing, while Aaron Rowand continues to heal from his beaning, Juan Uribe was scratched from Saturday’s game with an elbow injury, and remains sidelined. Zito’s 1.32 ERA is only sixth in the league, just behind Lincecum’s 1.00. Tim is 4-0 and on his way to consecutive Cy Young #3 if Ubaldo Jiminez of Colorado ever loses a start (He’s 5-0). The Giants staff overall ranks second in the N.L. with a 2.78 team ERA entering the Phillies series.