30 April 2011
Well, here we are. No offense. Lots of injuries. And now, the big blow, the news that Pablo Sandoval is out 4-6 weeks with a fractured bone that nobody has ever heard of and that Pablo probably couldn't even see or feel until about four months ago when he lost a layer of himself in the Arizona desert.
To review, our lineup is decimated top to bottom. Our leadoff hitter is injured, replaced by a guy who continues to refuse to completely suck but is slowly, inevitably, headed in that direction. Our #2 hitter is painfully average. Our #3 hitter is completely awful. Our cleanup hitter is a shell of last year's hitter. Our #5 hitter is injured. Our #6 can hit homeruns but otherwise does little else. Our #7 hitter is hovering around the mendoza line. Our #8 hitter makes the rest of them look great.
So there's two ways our season can go at this point....we can either fold up and finish a "not-particularly-competitive-3rd-place" as Rob Neyer predicted and we swore was a figment of the East Coast Media's collective lack of imagination, or we can find a way forward.
And it's that way forward that leaves us slapping our foreheads, yelling "of course!" and then apologizing to startled bystanders. Of course! How else could it have been? There's only one way for the Giants to win enough games in the next 4-6 weeks to stay in the NL West race. We have to out-torture our opponents. It could only be this way.
Today's game was, to say the least, a good example of this. Jonathan Sanchez's outing might have been the highest torture-rific performance in Giants history. In the first two innnings he walked 5, hit 2 batters, watched another hitter reach on an error, threw a wild pitch, and allowed one bloop single that bounced off our shortstop's glove. The damage? One run. Incredible.
The winning run was torture too, a sure RBI-double negated by a painful bounce of the ball over the wall, but then an intentional walk to our backup catcher so that our supposed best hitter could bat with the bases loaded, at which point he draws a walk on a 3-2 pitch.
And then the 9th. Oh, Brian. We love you. But we also want to kill you.
So dig in, folks. It's torture time. Maybe it's a little earlier than last year, and maybe that's a good thing. Get the unwatchable games out of the way while the NBA playoffs are at least on to distract us. Say this for the Memphis Grizzlies. They've never once made me want to gouge my eyes out with a rusted spoon.
That's more than I can say for some teams.