I know I haven't written in a long time, and I apologize for that.  It wasn't just that I was busy...

See, the Giants kind of locked me up.  For a long period there, I was deeply invested in our playoff run while listening to the little kid in me argue with the adult in me about whether or not we still had a chance.  "If we go 6-0 and the Braves go 2-4 and the Cardinals go 4-2, we're tied!" said the kid.  He made similar arguments in 1996, but back then it was like "if we go 58-2,  and the Padres go 20-40, we're within 5 games!"  "It's over," said the adult.  "Done."

They were both right.  If we had gone 6-0, we would have played a one-game playoff with the Cardinals yesterday and it would have been Tim Lincecum vs. Somebody Who Is Not Chris Carpenter.   And it would have been in San Francisco.  Holy crap, we would be in the playoffs.  All we had to do was win 4 more games. 

So I was locked up by that dynamic, not willing to commit myself to an inevitably frustrating cause and not willing to give up.  And the emotions...I can't even write about Pat Burrell's last at bat.  It's too much.  So I focused on other things.

Now, however, the off-season is upon us and I'm ready to jump into roster dissection.

But first, before we do that, we have to admit that there are a bunch of other teams still playing baseball.  And the Giants season is not over.  No.  We have unfinished business to attend to.  These playoffs have to go our way for our legacy to be preserved.

See, we are in the midst of an enormous Giants dynasty that has been interrupted only by a ridiculous injury-plagued season.  So who wins this year will matter because it can't be a team who has won recently because then THEY will have a dynasty.  No, that won't do.  There are also some scores to settle.  And there are a couple of teams who I can support.  Sort of.


AMERICAN LEAGUE (by order of preference)

1. Detroit Tigers
The Tigers have one really good pitcher and one really good hitter, which is apparently more than enough to win the AL Central.  How can you not root for the Tigers in this league?  Have you seen the alternatives?  Do you have a problem with the Tigers?  How could you?  I can't remember the last time a team made the playoffs as quietly as the Tigers.  They bring by far the highest quantity of boring to the playoffs, and that's saying something since the Cardinals are in the playoffs.  Detroit could use some good news...

2. Ugh. I guess the Rangers
I hate the Rangers.  That they are 2nd in this list tells you what I think of the alternatives.  If they make the World Series again I'd be fine with that, but I forbid them from winning it.  They are annoying.  Hey, did you hear Eugenio Velez went 0-37 for the season?  That's what being a Dodger will do for you.  How did you like LA, Juan?  What team we were talking about? Oh right, the Rangers.  If they win it all, will George W. Bush go down to the clubhouse and celebrate and get drunk and go off the wagon and start wandering around Dallas with a bottle in a brown paper bag apologizing for all the secret CIA torture prisons in North Africa?  If so, I'm all for the Rangers.

3. Tampa Bay
They tried to steal our team.  And then they complained when they didn't get to steal our team.  That's like somebody coming into your house, right in front of you, tries to rip your TV off the wall, and when he can't do it, he looks at you and says "c'mon, really?  What is wrong with you?  Why can't you make your TV easier to steal?  Jeez!  I'm trying to work here!"  Screw them and their stupid dome.

4. Yankees
Do I need to write something here?

1. Brewers
Are you one of those Giants fans who still hasn't gotten over Prince Fielder's silly homerun stunt two years ago?  Get over it.  It's not that big a deal.  Just because baseball players have a "code" that makes Colonel Jessup from "A Few Good Men" look like a hippy doesn't mean you have to subscribe to that doe too.  Prince Fielder was having fun.  And he was avenged...Barry Zito hit him with a changeup on the butt.  So get over it.  The Brewers are the ONLY team any Giants fan should be rooting for in the National League.  They are scrappy and have never won a world series.  Ryan Braun is awesome.  Their closer has great facial hair.  Their fans are great.  If they are eliminated, I'm rooting for the American League unless it's the Yankees.

2. Ugh.  I guess the Cardinals
They helped us avenge Roger McDowell.  But I hate LaRussa, Berkman, and Holliday, and I hate the Cardinals in general.  Pujols is annoying.  I hope they lose.  Except they're playing...

3. The Phillies
Hippy Trash."  "Fix your teeth."  Last year was not an interruption in the Phillies' dynasty, it was the end of it.  Unless they win the NL this year.  So they must be stopped.  Somebody must bring down the beast.  But not the...

ow that they are in the playoffs, will the scoreboard still need to tell their fans when to cheer?  Never, not once, not ever, has a team/city/fan base been so unworthy. 

I know I sound angry or bitter, but I'm really not.  The Giants were a dominant team this year that had its season destroyed by injuries.  It happens and I'm over it (sort of), but I don't want our failure to be a failure for the sport, and a Yankee, Phillies, Rays, or DBags world championship would be a catastrophe that all people would have to absorb.  Zach Greineke, it's all up to you.  No pressure.