Sunday, April 10, 2011


Whacked-Out Weekend

Quick story about Kyle Lohse. Those of you who, like me, have been obsessing over everything baseball since the turn of the century, might remember Lohse as the pitcher who cut his teeth as a solid back-end starter for the Twins just when they began their franchise resurgence. He had a few good years with Minnesota until 2006, when he was run out of town after posting an ERA over seven. Ever since then, he's been putzing around the National League, finding employment mostly as back-end rotation fodder, only occassionally finding effectiveness.

I know everybody hates it when someone rambles on and on about their fantasy baseball team, but I'm going to do it anyway. Back before the 2006 season, I traded two players for Lohse, hoping to solidify my pitching rotation with a decent innings-eater. I had won the league the previous year, and all I asked for from Lohse was 180 or so reasonable innings. Lohse had just come off a season where he posted a decent-looking ERA, but they were backed by awful peripherals, so I should have known better. The league I play in is a keeper league, and thank goodness the two guys I gave up didn't do jack squat in the majors again (one was Bill Mueller), because Lohse basically failed to live up to even my lowly expectations.

Ever since I traded for him, Lohse has had exactly one even remotely good year, in 2008. Otherwise he's been barely league-average to downright awful. I don't know why I was expecting anything more from him than a basket full of sub-mediocrity, but the disappointment still haunts my roto dreams to this day. I ended up dropping Lohse in disgrace last year when his ERA couldn't get under six, a misguided investment come full circle. So as you might have guessed, it was extremely painful to watch Lohse slice through the Giant batting order this afternoon to prevent an Orange and Black three game sweep.

Despite today's disappointment, it was a very good weekend, featuring two games that the Giants miraculously won after being down to their last out. All of the excitement, however, was understandably overshadowed by slew of ceremonies commemorating both the team's World Championship and Buster Posey's Rookie of the Year Award. When Brian Wilson hoisted the Championship flag on Friday afternoon, the goosebumps nearly took complete hold of me. That was scintillating. I probably would have committed some sort of heinous crime to be there that day.

The Giants could have easily been swept this weekend, but thank goodness Ryan Franklin is still impersonating a major league closer. Late-inning heroics were brought to you by Pablo Sandoval, Aaron Rowand, and the formerly-maligned Miguel Tejada, whose bat came alive in the first two games of the series. From the brink came the Giants, teasing us fans by playing poorly, blowing leads, and generally looking dead, only to roar back to victory and remind us why we love this team so much. I'm not sure you can pack much more drama into an entire weekend. I guess it wouldn't have been appropriate if the first couple of games back at Mays Field weren't reminiscent of the torture days of 2010.

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