There was a point at the end of the Mets series where I was going to do a whole thing about rock bottom. Here it is. Drink it in. Smell the subterfuge. Rock bottom. This is what things have become. It was going to be apocalyptic, dire, but with a splash of optimism. It was optimistic because things could only go up from there. There was no way they could get worse.
After a pretty good chunk of time writing something with that theme, I stopped. I wasn't sure why at the time, but it wasn't working. I stopped and started over, carefully wrapping some of the best stupid jokes in Saran Wrap and putting them in the freezer for later use.
It makes sense now. That post-game thread would have aged like a peeled banana. My idea of rock bottom was a first-place team going through a bad stretch of seven or eight games. Quelle horreur! You poor thing! And your team stayed in first place. Oh … oh, I can't even imagine …
Then you watch the Rockies.
Their whole season has been them jamming to the tune of this exact game. They stretch it out and do variations on a theme, playing around with the suck, feeling what kind of mood the crowd is in. Usually the crowd isn't in the mood for that much suck. But, well, that's just, like, their opinion. Someone has to be digging it. And they'll do an extended three-hour version of suck they hope will blow everyone's mind.
The Rockies are the Widespread Panic of suck. They're kind of successful when you think of it like that. Another, more practical way to describe it is that they've been very much unsuccessful. You see a 6.00+ ERA from a starting rotation, but you can't comprehend it. What does that mean? How bad can they really be?
It means they can allow runs to the Giants. Not a few. Dozens and dozens. Every start for them is a bad Zito start. For 105 games, they've had bad Barry Zito starting for them. Every game. Barry Zito without his contact lenses. Barry Zito after going over Niagara Falls in a barrel. Barry Zito with a case of the grippe. Every game. We're talking over 100 of them now.
Rock bottom? The Giants got to walk through rock bottom quickly, head down, holding their keys in their fist in case anyone tried any funny business. We don't know what rock bottom is really like, son. We can't remember it. Other people really live this way.
The Rockies have a pretty good idea. I thought they were going to win the division last year and keep getting better.
Other assorted news from tonight: Buster Posey is still a baseball player who is very much more talented than his peers. Melky Cabrera had some sort of prop bet going on with someone else in the clubhouse about taking walks. Madison Bumgarner can throw a baseball real nice-like. Everything makes sense now.
But there is actual news from a post-deadline Saturday. The Giants signed Xavier Nady. Now the Giants can sell … uh, X-Files hats, or something. Like, they'd have a … glow-in-the-dark were-alien on it. Because that's pretty much what I've always thought the X-Files was about. I'll check it out one of these days, but it seemed a little Scooby Doo to me. I'll buy one of those X-Files hats, though. Xavier! Now we got some power! Xaaaaavier!
Nady has literally had one good season in his career, and it was four years ago. He's a corner outfielder and first baseman, and not an especially good fielder at either position. He's been hurt and bad and hurt and bad lately. Also, bad.
As an insurance policy against Brett Pill getting hurt, when Pill is an insurance policy against Aubrey Huff getting hurt, when all of that is pretty ridiculous to begin with, it's hard to get too righteous. Xavier Nady is minor-league depth. Don't make too much of it, I guess.
But here's the funny thing, the part that slays me: Nady was Fred Lewis. He was Nate Schierholtz. Back in 2004 and 2005, he was the top prospect getting hosed by veterans. When Phil Nevin was struggling, Bruce Bochy kept running Nevin out there. And Padres fans raged. Play Nady, you dunderhead! Play Nady!
Turns out Bochy was right. Nady was sort of bad. All signs point to the Padres being better with Nady on the bench.
It's seven or eight years later. And Nady might come back to play for Bochy after establishing that he's not good. That's when Bochy is going to say, heyyyyy, this guy can really help a team now. Welcome aboard, friend.
It's just funny. It makes you think about how Brandon Belt will help the Bochy-managed 2022 Diamondbacks, or how John Bowker is going to help the 2013 Giants. Nady used to be a cause celebré. Now he's just bad. Guess which period interests Bochy?