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On the patience of fans.

Usually, this site isn't big on science. It's more about typing out the first thing that pops into my head, like the time I ran into a guy I sort of knew from high school at a post-Series celebration at a bar. We made eye contact from across the room, mutually decided, nah, not worth it, both being fine with it, and then being shoulder to shoulder as we both ordered drinks a few minutes later.

Weird. And awkward. And weird. Also, he was wearing a Marlins hat. That was the weirdest part. It's weird enough to see a Marlins hat, much less know the guy underneath it. That's like turning on the news, and there's a story about "Man fits entire kitten up nose for charity," which makes you go, "Wait, what?", and then you see the guy, and you used to work with him at the car wash. Just like that.

That's pretty much this site, distilled into two paragraphs. Research takes time. Typing stream-of-consciousness nonsense: easy.

But here's an effort to categorize the patience fans have for certain Giants. It's hard, cold science. Or it might be pulled from my nether regions again. Here goes, from least patience to most.

Player who wasn't on the team a month ago

example: Orlando Cabrera, Carlos Beltran

It's a little weird to lump those two players together. One is good, and one is terrible. But they both cost a prospect to do good right now. Now now now now. And when they don't, it takes about a week for fans to turn.

Player who wasn't on the team last year

example:: Miguel Tejada

Tejada has the stink of the old days upon him, the broken-veterans-are-the-new-market-inefficiency Sabean years. His best years were in the AL, which we didn't see. He's probably the guy in the clubhouse who says, "Ah, that Mat Latos isn't so bad once you get to know him," based on his time with the Padres last year. And he didn't hit at all, so it took about a month for him to be the worst everything in the history of everything.

Player who wasn't homegrown, but helped the team win the World Series (with homegrown player fighting for time behind him)

example: Aubrey Huff

Huff shouldn't take 95% of the crap he's gotten from fans this year. If you think Belt should play, all of the vitriol should be directed at Bochy. But Huff still got a longer leash than Tejada from most -- about two months before the angry mob started in. The extra time was because he was a freaking World Series hero. But what have you done for us lately?

Player who wasn't homegrown, but helped the team win the World Series (without homegrown player fighting for time behind him)

example: Pat Burrell, Cody Ross, Andres Torres

All of those guys have struggled this season. At some point, they've all looked lost. That point might have been from yesterday back to April. But they've all received a healthy amount of patience. We all want Torres to be what he was last year. Ross can be a very good player. The Burrell from one year ago is exactly what this team needs. The patience for all of them is running out. With Burrell and Torres on the DL, it's pretty much gone already. Took a while, though.

Homegrown player who didn't help the team win a World Series

example: Brandon Belt

If Belt hit .188 for the rest of the season, I know I'd dig for reasons to still support him. BABIP! LD%! ZiPS! There'd be something for me to champion, and if all else fails: small-sample size, baby. He'll be good! Just give him time!

Homegrown player who helped the team win a World Series

example: Matt Cain, Tim Lincecum, Sergio Romo, Buster Posey

They can struggle for years, and I'm pretty sure I could never be upset at them. These are the untouchables. Pablo's between this category and the last one, but closer to this one.

I'm reading a book about the history of the periodic table, and there are a lot of anecdotes about the elements that didn't fit into the early attempts at categorization. There were elements that were different enough to screw everything up. Jonathan Sanchez is one of those elements with this. Just ignore him, and those classifications work fine. Just ignore him. Except, for, you know, tonight. I'm sure if he walks four guys in the first couple of innings, we'll have all sorts of patience.

Horrific control is like that strip of lanthanoids at the bottom -- screws up all of the classification efforts. It's where Brian Wilson is heading. Also, Rowand and Zito contracts are the actinoids. If I'm screwing up the chemistry, it's because I'm an English major.

But that's my attempt to place players on a sliding patience scale. It's why Tejada became a scapegoat before Huff, why Huff came before Ross, and why Buster Posey can hit .250/.290/.340 for the next four years before we complain. It's science! Except for the parts that aren't.