Juan Marichal never had a run of six straight starts allowing one earned run or fewer. Neither has Tim Lincecum. Gaylord Perry or Carl Hubbell never did it.
Andres Torres's emergence last season was probably the most unexpected performance I've ever watched. He was a 30-something, career minor leaguer who became a lead-off force on a championship team. But that might have everything to do with a medical diagnosis of ADHD. There might be a very good reason why he performed better than ever before.
With Ryan Vogelsong, the explanation is that he's good now because he's good now. Maybe he ate the control taffy that Mike Murphy usually keeps for himself, and now he can spot his pitches like he's Greg Maddux. Maybe he tried keeping his eyes open when releasing the ball, and look at this, he's good now. Maybe he moved away from the neighbor who was secretly storing his solvents underneath Vogelsong's bedroom window.
All of those are better explanations than "he's just good now." But I'm not really caring as much about what's under the hood these days. I don't really care why he's good now, just as I didn't really care about taking a magnifying glass to Torres when he emerged. The only thing that matters is that he is good. And I'm sold.
Remember the Zito-is-an-average-starter-and-those-have-value arguments? Those were cute. Absolutely logical and appropriate, but they do sort of seem more and more embarrassing and awkward -- something like a high-school haircut -- as the weeks pass. It's time for Zeets to start taking grounders at short
It would be a ridiculous story if Vogelsong were just a guy, but he's also a former Giants prospect. This might be the most amazing story of the year.
Also, Bruce Bochy picks the pitchers for the All-Star team. Ryan Vogelsong, Giants All-Star representative, might actually happen. Ten years after we thought it might, but if he even has a couple of average starts leading up to the All-Star Game, he'll be in fine position.
I'm also glad that Vogelsong might get a chance to get the Harry Hoch monkey off his back. He's been in that guy's shadow for far too long.
Seriously, Ryan Vogelsong. They told us there'd be flying cars right now. They lied. But Ryan Vogelsong is back in the majors, back on the Giants, and his ERA is something like -1.93. That makes up for it. This is the strangest, most awesome stretch I've ever seen. I promise, I'll only use that title for five or six more posts this year.