Over at Pravda.com, there's a vote going on for the top five Giant plays of the year. The choices for 2004 were simple. Pick your three favorite plays involving Dustan Mohr banging his skull against the turf or wall, sprinkle in a couple of Barry Bonds homers, and resume napping. The 2005 options are a little tougher to sift through. The choices:
Tucker's clutch grand slam - 4/9 vs. COL
Exciting? Yep. Considered for the top play of the year? That's a sad, sad, sad year. It wasn't a walk-off home run, like the one hit by Marquis Grissom against the same Rockies. The only thing Tucker's shot had going for it the Grissom shot didn't was the grand slam part.
Tucker's second grand slam - 9/17 at COL
Uh, Tucker wasn't really on the team on 9/17, so let's assume they meant the grand slam on 4/17. The same points apply from above, except this had the "again?"-factor going for it. I still can't believe they left Byung-Hyung Kim in to face Tucker. I could deal with this selection being included more than the first Tucker slam.
Winn's triple completes cycle - 8/15 at CIN
Great moment, to be sure, but I'm not as emotionally attached to the idea of the cycle as most. It's a cute little quirk, not some dramatic achievement. It's like a pitcher named Sam Sunday striking out Rick Monday on a Tuesday with the actress who played Wednesday on the Addams Family in attendance. To paraphrase Homer Simpson: "Ain't that something. A single, a double, a trip...oh my god that dog has a puffy tail! Here, Puff! Here, Puff!" It still deserves to be on the list.
Linden's acrobatics - 8/12 at FLA
Great catch. But Omar Vizquel catching a moth in a Dixie cup would be more interesting than almost anything Linden could ever do.
Bonds' first at-bat - 9/12 vs. SD
This would have been number one in a landslide if it really did leave the park. Maybe even if it were just a standard double, but the "it's gone! Wait, no. Yes! Wait, no." thing just killed the sense of drama. Still an unbelievable moment.
Bonds' 704th homer - 9/16 vs. LAD
Obviously. Sit on it, Penny.
Linden's catch - 9/20 at WAS
So, if I fall asleep while smoking, start an apartment fire, then rush in to save Flapsy, my pet parakeet, am I a hero? I guess so. Linden broke on this ball like a Marvin Benard with cataracts, but the situation and end result definitely make this a play of the year.
The not-sure-if-they-qualify omissions, mostly because they are more than just one play, would include Tyler Walker getting the last strike with the bases loaded against the Tigers, cementing one of the greatest relief performances we will ever see, and Matt Cain getting the last out of his complete game.
The can't-believe-they-didn't-include-them omissions would include Omar Vizquel turning a ridiculous double play in the ninth inning of an Opening Day battle against the Dodgers, about 1,289 other Vizquel de Soleil plays,the aforementioned Grissom shot, and, of course, Randy F. Winn's game-tying triple against Trevor Hoffman. That last omission was the list's worst hellomcflyism.
I suppose, limited by the choices in bold, I'd go with Bonds' first homer. The Linden catch against the Nationals is a close, close second though. And I'm sure there are some games I forgot in my cursory glance.