Braves-Giants Game 2 & 3: Blind Luck

Unlike the Yankees and Phillies, who have swept their opponents and are on their way to the Championship Series (again – congrats!) the Giants are 2-1 against the Braves and need one more.  I should be somewhat happy (at least we’re ahead) but I’m not.  Let’s recap:

GAME 1 – Giants score the only run of the game because an error by the umpire let’s Posey stay in scoring position when he should have been out.
GAME 2 – Start off really strong (for the Giants) with a 4 run lead by the 2nd only to lose it in the end by a failed bullpen lead by Romo.
GAME 3 – Giants again score first, thanks to an error by Brooks Conrad, only to lose the lead towards the end because of Romo again, only this time they come back and take the lead again because of another error by Brooks Conrad.  
To me it feels like we’re back in April.  Starting pitching is ridiculously awesome, the bullpen (*coughROMOcough*) keeps giving it up, players are stranded on base over and over (how many bases loaded scenarios did they waste this weekend?) and every game is decided by one lucky or unlucky run.  
When they went into this, I was living off the high of winning the NL West, and truthfully didn’t care if they got any farther.  Why be selfish right?  Well now I want them to win.  Maybe not take everything, but I want them to beat the Braves.  I don’t want to get schooled by the Wild Card (sorry Twins!).  I want to make it to the Championship.  
More importantly, I want them to play better then they’ve been playing.  I know they’re better.  They need to dominate a game like I know they can.  I want to see 14-2 tonight.  I want to see hitting tonight. I want to see a win because they deserved it, not because they got lucky.  
Because luck isn’t going to beat Philadelphia.  
P.S.
Shave off your stupid beard, Romo.  It’s not working.

Well Shut Me Down!

What’s with me and the Star Wars references this week?  I’ll balance it out with some Star Trek in a minute.  Anywho.

c-3po.jpg
Pablo? Buster? Aubrey? Anybody?  Talk about a pitching war.  No denying Chad Billingsley was pretty amazing, throwing his second career shutout and third complete game.  But y’know, even though we lost, Zito had a steller performance as well, making it to the eighth inning and allowing only six hits and two runs, the second run chalked up to Romo allowing one hit in the 0.2 innings he pitched. Yeesh. 

yeesh.jpgThis is the second time in a row we’ve lost the last game of the series.  Both times I’ve felt bummed afterward, which is kind of a negative considering we still won the series.  In fact we’ve won the last FOUR series, and are still ranked #2 in the division, with only FOUR games behind the Padres.  Today’s blog post is sponsored by the number…

number4.jpgOff to face Arizona in a FOUR game series.  The D-Backs are trailing the division, 19 games behind the Padres and 15 games behind us.  Please please PLEASE let us slaughter them! 

bully.jpg

Gone Fishing

As if in honor of Willie’s birthday Giants finally swept again!

sweeptheleg.jpgAre we sick of the Karate Kid references yet?  Yeah, me too.  Anyway, I can’t remember who said this, I think it was on the post game show, but it’s completely true.  Giants Baseball = TORTURE!

torture.jpgTwo out of three games they won by the skin of their teeth.  That first one especially, they “went plaid” again with 13 innings.  Thank god Rowand tied it up in the 9th with that very timely home run. 

aaronrowand.jpgSecond game, the Marlins load the bases, what?  Twice?  With zero outs.  I can’t remember if that’s what really happened, but if felt like it.  Thank god for Romo, who bailed us out and let us keep our one run lead.  Can’t believe I’m saying, because I’ve been kind of despising Romo this season.

lovehate.jpgYesterday’s game was a little less pressure, as we had 3 runs on ’em by the end, thanks to Cain’s 6 inning shutout, but the Marlins still managed to squeeze one more out before the Giants ended things, and I admit I got a little nervous, because this season has proved that it ain’t over until it’s over.

fatladysings.gifOur starting pitchers keep the other team at bay. Our weak hitting keeps the other team competitive, despite our starting pitchers.  Our bullpen seems to drop the ball and ruin our leads around the 8th or 9th inning every game, which makes being cocky and confident an impossibility. 

overconfidence.gifBut I’m not here to complain.  We swept!  We took the last series. Whatever we’re doing is currently working, it just makes for some real nail biters. 

nailbiter.jpgOff to New York, #1 again in our division, with a three game winning streak under our belt.

standing20100507.jpg 

Rockin’ Weekend

Kinda.  Didn’t get the sweep.  I guess Jhoulys Chacin knows the crane kick because he shut us out for seven innings in the last game. 

cranekick.jpgSpeaking of shut out, no game two on television?  The one day I actually could have sat down and watched a good chunk of it, and it was know where to be found on Direct TV.  What’s that about?

tvsucks.jpgTrying to recap the last game on baseball-reference.com, but how do ya read all this stuff?  How can I tell who started for the Giants?  How can I tell who was pitching in the 5th when the Rockies scored 3?  That information has to be somewhere amongst all these numbers and abbreviations, but I’m sure not finding it. 

confused-baby.jpgAnyway, congrats to Cain for finally kicking *** in game two!  Only gave up one hit and zero runs in eight innings.  Fantastic!  And congrats to Zito for his first ever 4-0 record, with the help of Romo and Affeldt.  Cliff Lee thinks you’re all very cool! 

awesomepitchers.jpgOne final thought on this series…what’s with the jerseys?

rockiesjersey.jpgNow off to Florida to face the Marlins.  They don’t sound especially scary, so let’s not let them whup us!  Should I do the prediction stat thing again?  Meh, who cares?  What happens happens.  Our W-L% is .583 and the Marlins have a .520, so we should win, right?  Right?  Exactly.

Well…

Going into this series, on the losing streak we were riding, against a division leader and last season World Series contender, I was praying to at least win won game.  So the fact that we won the series should be making me happy, and it is for the most part, but man that last game was a heart breaker! 

We beat them with Sánchez and Wellemeyer starting, but not Lincecum?  Oh the…well not irony, but… heart break!  Said it twice. 

Don’t know who to blame really.  Want to blame someone, but who? 

I was following the game on MLB.com’s cool “Game Day” digital thing while following posts on Twitter.  Man were they hating Bochy!  Everyone was blaming Bochy for taking Lincecum out in the 9th.  We were winning at that point.  Timmy had only given up three hits and two runs in 9 innings, we were ahead!  How dare Bochy take the freak out and replace him with Wilson!  They got two hits off him and that’s how they took over the game and we lost.

brucebochy.jpg Well yeah, I guess you could argue that, but I think Lincecum was tired.  He got lucky with Dobbs and he walked Victorino.  Utley and Howard were coming up.  I could see why Bochy would want a fresh arm to finish off the game. 

Of course, it kind of reminded me of the last Dodgers game where Bochy replaced Zito, who seemed to be doing just fine, with Romo because Ramirez was coming up, and then Ramirez ending up hitting the game winning home run.  So…maybe Bochy should put more faith in his starters? 

But hell, he gave Tim eight innings.  That’s a lot.  And Wilson had given up zero runs in his last seven games, so it’s not like Bochy picked a sucky replacement.  Just an unlucky one.  I hear Werth is good, so y’know…he’s bound to hit regardless of how good a pitcher he faces.

We had the game, we only need two outs, the Phillies just rallied or got lucky and fought us off.  It could have happened to Lincecum too, and then everyone would be bitching that Bochy should have replaced Lincecum in the last inning with someone fresh.

damnedifyoudodont.jpgIt’s just one of those things.  I can’t find myself blaming anyone in particular. 

Then the game went to what seemed like the longest set of extra innings every.  We tied in the 10th, and got eeked out by one in the eleventh.  Bummer. 

The other Twitter bitch fest was geared towards Euginio Velez.  I guess he should have caught that ball.  Didn’t seem that easy to me though.  I mean, he hit the wall for crying out loud.  Maybe Romo should have been able to strike out Valdez in the first place, seeing as the guy’s only had two hits in his last six games.

And here’s another thing, summed up quite nicely by my favorite Twitter quote of the evening:

“Only the Giants could get 17 hits and not win a game on extra innings.” – @artsyfartsyalex

Totally!  How come it takes us 2.83 hits to get a run and the other team 1.14?  What’s better?  Shooting 200 arrows at a target and getting three bullseyes or shooting four arrows at a target and getting three bulleyes?  The latter of course, duh! 

hitthetarget.jpgPeople say our team can’t hit.  Oh we can hit.  We just can’t score! 

But there’s more blaming again. Really we had the game in the 9th, and the Phillies just took it from us.  Good on ya Phillies.  We take your first place standing, you take ours. 

Let’s move on…to the Rockies!