SAN FRANCISCO, CA - JUNE 08: Thrown Out On The Bases Like A Hippie (Photo by Jason O. Watson/Getty Images)
Why did we spend our Friday night watching a game like this? We should've all gone to see a movie. Anything. What's playing these days?
::realizes it's a novelty newspaper commemorating this really big fish I caught when I was thirteen::
::views movie listings::
Sequels and remakes? That's it? That's all you've got, million monkeys?!
That's certainly all the Giants had tonight: an uninspired, rote sequel to a popular franchise.
You could argue that tonight was a bad sequel to yesterday's game, but I prefer to use the more obvious comparison: this was a train wreck of a sequel to 2010. The Next Karate Kid bad. Teen Wolf Too bad. Jaws: The Revenge bad. Caddyshack II. The Sting II. And, for the kids, Jurassic Park III bad.
Those movies had a couple of important things in common: (1) none or maybe one of the original cast returning to prop up (2) a story that sleepwalks through the original premise, adding nothing interesting to it.
Quick! Compare the Giants' 2010 World Series Game Five lineup to tonight's!
|RF Andres Torres||LF Gregor Blanco|
|2B Freddy Sanchez||2B Ryan Theriot|
|C Buster Posey||CF Angel Pagan|
|RF Cody Ross||C Hector Sanchez|
|3B Juan Uribe||1B Brett Pill|
|1B Aubrey Huff||3B Joaquin Arias|
|DH Pat Burrell||RF Nate Schierholtz|
|SS Edgar Renteria||SS Brandon Crawford|
|CF Aaron Rowand||SP Barry Zito|
Sweet merciful crap. Brandon Crawford hadn't even been born yet! Barry Zito was looking at magazines to find inspiration for a bad mustache. Gregor Blanco was on walkabout and Joaquin Arias had played for the Rangers that very season! The closest sequel comparison I can think of is what if they had made a Star Wars sequel right after Return of the Jedi starring some of the background actors in the rebel alliance scenes facing off against the revenge-seeking daughter of Admiral Ozzel. Yeah, it's familiar and I'd sure like to sit through a couple more hours of a universe I quite enjoy, but at what cost?
For all our griping and papasan chair managing, it's rare that the lineup performs as poorly as we assume it will. Tonight was one of those rare instances. You just knew as soon as you saw it posted that this was going to be Short Circuit 2.
The night wasn't a total loss, though. We learned something very important:
Adrian Beltre now has two distinct weirdspots on his person: the top of his head and
* * *
My secret is that the Rangers have never scared me, no matter how fearsome their lineup or formidable their pitching. Since 2000, the Giants are 11-2 against them in interleague. Notice I haven't even brought up the most historical aspect of the head-to-head matchup. The Giants have been able to meet the challenge. And, hey, that one time they traded Andres Galarraga and he hit that home run over the left field bleachers. That was pretty cool.
So, the abject effort that was on display tonight can only be described as "a staggering disappointment". Still, injury and resting the star catcher to prevent him from breaking down are decent excuses for the team's first shutout of the season. Consider this: we thought slappy shutouts were going to be the norm in 2012, but the Giants have found a way to melk together a league average offense. *Tonight* is the aberration. Bizarre but also encouraging.
* * *
The pile of laundry made up of Nate Schiertholz, Brett Pill, Emmanuel Burriss, Steve Edlefsen, and Brandon Belt really needs to be sorted, cleaned, tossed, or donated. I don't know what it is I'm looking at but I know it sure does stink.
#SFGiants option Brett Pill to triple-A Fresno. Pablo Sandoval to be reinstated from disabled list.— San Francisco Giants (@SFGiants) June 9, 2012
Bruce Bochy seems to be really worried about first base. Combined with the organization's public condemnation of Sandoval's conditioning, it's not unreasonable to assume that he'll be used to stabilize that position leaving Arias at third. Then again, that would be really reactionary. There's simply no evidence that the Giants overreact to small sample sizes.