Tuesday, April 18, 2006


A Great Win in the Dunes

The Giants' 10-9 win last night was a great one. A fabulous win. Seriously, it was the kind of game that can decide a division winner, a game that bad teams lose and never recover from. A game that seperates the cream from the crap. The Giants of '05 blew many a big lead and you just never got the impression that they were going to recover and win. Even last night, with two out and nobody on in the eighth, you were thinking, "well, if Vizquel can just find some way to get on, then Sweeney has some pop. And this is a bandbox ballpark..." Then bam, game tied.

As Duane Kuiper was saying on the KNBR post-game wrap, if the Giants had lost the game, it would have been brutal just because of the fashion in which they squandered it. Losing a game 9-7 after you're down like 9-0 early is one that you can probably bounce back from without too much trouble, but giving up a 7-0 lead and losing, as Krukow put it, "sucks".

Randy Winn had his first cycle-threatening game of the season, something which he seemed to have like twice a week in the last two months of last year. After a slow start we're starting to see the Randy we know and love, and he continues to bizzown the DBacks. Yes, not just own, but bizzown. I loved his hustle around the bases to score when Shawn Green was treating his double like a rabid porcupine.

I think that's about all I want to see of Jeff Fassero starting. Yeah, he gave us basically what was expected of him, but every inning was excruciating, with runners all over the bases. He was lucky he even made it to the fourth inning. He had a larger contribution on offense than on the mound. And the less said about Tyler Walker, the better. When he takes the mound, he might as well attach a gas can to his belt for symbolic value. I'm still willing to give Jack Taschner a little more time, but my patience is waning, and Jim Poole/Alvin Morman-land is starting to open its gates.

Mike Matheny dropping down a bunt in the ninth inning was one of the most inexplicably brilliant plays I've seen. I had just always assumed that Matheny regarded a bat as some sort of strange alien artifact, so the fact that he had the smarts to drop a bunt, when the entire ballpark was expecting him to be hacking away, caught me by surprise. No one looks for a bunt in that situation from a catcher who is as slow as Starr Jones running into a crosswind. Hey, it looks like a line drive in the box score, and Matheny is slowly climbing his way to the point where I might stop harassing his punchless bat so much.

No such luck for poor Pedro, though, who is just completely worthless at the plate. I must say, though, that his glove sure is sweet. If the Giants can find a good lefty hitter who can man third base in a platoon, I'd likely get off Feliz's back a little. But please, not Vizcaino.

Russ Ortiz goes tonight against Matt Morris, a matchup I love for the Giants. Ortiz's 4 year, $32 million contract was a disaster for all involved. It was questionable for Ortiz because he's a fly ball pitcher who walks a lot of guys and a lot of his success came from pitching in pitcher-friendly ballparks, and stupid on the part of the DBacks for not realizing all this.

A little math for y'all: Ortiz+his usual penchant for issuing walks+thin desert air=we're on an express elevator to hell...going down! The Giants have beaten Ortiz like an Irishman in Springfield since he left in 2003, so if they can just be patient and let him walk the bases loaded like he always does, they should batter him.

Of course, if Feliz is in the lineup expect the usual pop ups on first pitch sliders.

Random Stankeye Stuff

-Ok, now we know why the Nationals suck so bad. This explains everything.

-I'm sitting in my school' s computer lab and I see a girl who looks exactly like Charles Grodin. How weird is that? If I go up and start reciting Deniro lines about being sexually attracted to chickens, do you think we could get a whole Midnight Run dialogue going? I'll be Farina, constantly telling the bookman guy from Seinfeld to go grab himself a cream soda.

-Last but not least, Bob Dylan, eat your heart out...

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