Oh, what's that? You could not care less about what happened in September because the Giants are still playing in October -- IN THE PLAYOFFS? Well, TOUGH. You're getting a recap of the Giants' home runs from last month because that's just what we do around here, OKAY?
The Giants hit 16 home runs again. That is not as many as they hit in August, which is unfortunate, because dingers are great and the more dingers the Giants hit the more they tend to win (wins by month: 17, 20, 10, 12, 16, 13; dingers by month: 34, 29, 14, 16, 23, 16) . But the Giants averaged 4 home runs along week and were able to win just enough games to finish with an 88-win season. They're playing in October, you know.
Also, the Giants changed AAA affiliates, going from Fresno to Sacramento. This is a big deal in some ways and not a big deal in others. Still, in the spirit of moving cities, I give you the home run names for the Giants' dingers of September, named in honor of the city they moved to after they left the ballpark. Oh, and since these baseballs don't yet have jobs or any source of income other than the notoriety that comes with being a home run ball, they kept their relocation domestic, so no Condom, France.
Now, without further ado...
1. "Humansville" - September 1, 2014
Hunter Pence (398 feet off of Franklin Morales)
This home run moved to Humansville, MO because that's the least likely place the authorities would think to look for a non-human. It's turns out that when Hunter Pence hits a home run, some of his DNA grafts itself onto the ball's, catalyzing an evolutionary reaction that makes the baseball less of earth and more radioactive. Humansville has a population of ~1,050 people, making it a perfect hiding place until the ball can be retrieved...
Actual baseball note: This was one of the 2 home runs Hunter Pence hit in September. Interesting to note that in the clip you'll hear Duane Kuiper say, "Stay hot, Hunter Pence". Well, following this game, Hunter Pence went ice cold. He had two hits the next game, but then only 12 more in 90 plate appearances. Pence's September: .165/.240/.231.
2. "West Liberty" - September 2, 2014
Buster Posey (425 feet off of Jordan Lyles)
A ball born of a patriot's bat could think of no better place to move to than West Liberty, IA. It's real America. What better way to escape the rigors and pressures of a major league season or the hustle and bustle of a major metropolitan city than by relocating to a city with mandatory fall leaf pickup, a weekend power outage, strict Trick or Treat hours, and a Long Night Against Procrastination? Do you smell all that Americana? I can.
3. "Two Egg" - September 2, 2014
Andrew Susac (416 feet off of Jordan Lyles)
"Yes, Two Egg is a real place." This was a depression era town. As such, this is the perfect place for this home run ball to move to because it came into being when the Giants were down 7-2 (depression!) and helped fuel a come-from-behind 12-7 victory (not depression!), just as Two Egg still stands today. Another reason why Two Egg likes Two Egg so much is that, having come from a place that haunted the Giants for so long -- Coors Field -- it has no trouble adjusting to a haunted town. In fact, the ball welcomes the terrors.
4. "Sandwich" - September 5, 2014
Pablo Sandoval (384 feet off of Buck Farmer -- no, really)
The circumstances that led to Sandwich's naming are a bit more creative than you think. First, look a the stands in this clip -- they're empty. Then, look at the score. It's practically a blowout. The home run was a capper... more like a late night sandwich one makes when nobody else is around. You picking up what I'm putting down? Well, what Sandwich can't put down what Sandwich, MA has to offer. Things like local community television on demand and a Sandwich Housing Authority. Okay, so, maybe this home run ball was disappointed to discover that the housing authority had nothing to do with sandwich shops, but the ball remains happy with its decision to relocate here. There's a very good chance it has yet to be tainted by the Is a hot dog a sandwich? debate. Bonus points for receiving Brian Sabean's blessing, as Sandwich is only 20 minutes from a Cape Cod League stadium.
5. "Ideal" - September 6, 2014
Buster Posey (410 feet off of David Price)
Ideally, Buster Posey will be at home as a Giant for life. It is an even greater ideal realized when he, the Giants' best position player, bests the opposition's best starting pitcher. That is ideal. That is what happened here. It gave the Giants a cushion to secure an important win. Winning is ideal. Buster Posey is from Georgia. Ideal is in GA. So, really, this ball is just going home. Home is ideal.
6. "Greasy" - September 12, 2014
Brandon Crawford (399 feet off of Carlos Frias)
Greasy, OK is a wonderful place for a home run ball covered in handsome, greasy hair. What? You didn't know that Brandon Crawford's flowing hair somehow finds a way to attach itself to every home run ball he hits? I thought that was common knowledge. There are 372 people in Greasy, OK, and they've never seen anything as handsome as Brandon Crawford's home run ball. Greasy won both the men's and women's local beauty contest. Greasy even won the neighborhood chili cook-off. You know how? Greasy's Grease Chili was the least greasy chili in competition.
7. "Fairfield" - September 12, 2014
Travis Ishikawa (388 feet off of Kevin Correia)
So this home run came in a blowout against the softest part of the most chewed up bullpen you can imagine and it came off the bat of an emergency reserve (who's now an out of position starter for a playoff team), but all in all, home runs aren't so bad and hitting one against a blood rival is actually a pretty sweet deal. Kind of like Fairfield, CA. It's neither the worst nor the best. It's got a Jelly Belly factory, a Budweiser brewery, every kind of fast food restaurant in existence (and, like 12 McDonald's, so you're never more than four or five blocks from a McFlurry), some nice houses, a mall, and some parks. There's also gangs, grime, and every kind of fast food restaurant in existence, with no non-chain sit-down restaurants. You'd be hard-pressed to find originality in Fairfield. Some might find that inspiring, some might find that stifling. For Fairfield, it just considers it home.
8. "Success" - September 16, 2014
Buster Posey (367 feet off of Josh Collmenter)
Success, MO wasn't ready for Buster Posey's Success ball. Success rode into town full of city knowledge and an explorer's heart. Success wanted to expand the town and the citizens' minds, bring to it what his creator, Buster Posey, brought to him: a sense of accomplishment, of boundless possibilities. But Success, MO used to be known as Wye, MO, and it's not difficult to understand the reason: people there were just plumb stupid. They'd ask "Why?" to everything, and not out of a fascination or natural curiosity, but because every little thing had to be explained to each and every one of them. Success wasn't used to having to explain itself or its mindset. Success assumed everyone thought as Success did. But Success learned that wasn't the case and, so, the citizens of Success, MO eventually de-stitched and splayed poor Success.
9. "Eek" - September 20, 2014
Hunter Pence (387 feet off of Andrew Cashner)
Eek the ball got out of there quickly. Eek didn't even stop to look back, Eek just kept on spinning until it was gone. Eek, AK was cold, but Eek didn't mind. If anything, Eek had gained so much elevation off of Hunter Pence's bat that Eek and icicles were goo pals already. Also, Eek's favorite TV show is Eek! The Cat.
10. "Pie Town" - September 21, 2014
Chris Dominguez (352 feet off of Ian Kennedy)
Chris Dominguez's first career HR. His only career hit. That deserves a delicious pie. And, really, this ball should really take its time in Pie Town, NM. It won't be joined by other Chris Dominguez dingers -- let alone hits -- any time soon. Yes, enjoy the sweet, sweet pie.
11. "Dinkytown" - September 22, 2014
Gregor Blanco (419 feet off of Dan Haren)
This is a derisive name that Gregor Blanco's dinger reclaimed and made a badge of honor. And why shouldn't Dinkytown be proud? Dinkytown, MN is a vibrant community that borders a major university. There's lots to do in Dinkytown, from partying at the Kitty Cat Klub to sipping a piping hot cup of joe from Dunn Bros Coffee. Sample exotic cuisine from Mexican to Vietnamese. And there's not a better barber in Dinkytown or the surrounding areas than Milo's on Fourth. Yes, Dinkytown is a happening place. You should take another look.
12. "Toad Suck" - September 23, 2014
Madison Bumgarner (394 feet off of Zack Greinke)
"SUCK A TOAD, Zack Greinke!" said the ball as it left Bumgarner's bat. After the game, as it hit the ol' dusty trail, the ball realized that Toad Suck, Arkansas was the perfect place to live. Toad Suck knew it was best to go out on top, and what better way to celebrate showing up an all-star pitcher in Zack Greinke than by enjoying a great steak at a laid back place?
13. "Chocolate Bayou" - September 25, 2014
Brandon Belt (399 feet off of Andrew Cashner)
At first, Brandon Belt's home run thought it was suffering from post-concussion syndromes, too. "Chocolate Bayou? Those words don't go together. Where did that come from, brain?" But then Chocolate Bayou remembered how Belt used to dream of visiting this place as a young boy. Could there really be such a thing as a bayou of chocolate? Was it a colorful metaphor for a municipal disaster? Or is it named after some plantation. Oh, looks like that's where it got the name from. Classic Belt blunder. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
14. "Carefree" - September 25, 2014
Brandon Crawford (400 feet off of Andrew Cashner)
Carefree is in Arizona -- a terrible place for sure -- but what the state lacks in social graces and intelligence it makes up for with a lush upper Sonoran landscape. Carefree took to this place because once everybody starts homering off of Andrew Cashner you can relax. He's a tough pitcher, but if he can be homered off of then life can't be so hard.
15. "Freedom" - September 28, 2014
Buster Posey (387 feet off of Robbie Erlin)
After Buster Posey went "weapons free" and really let out some shaft on a pitiful Robbie Erlin pitch, this dinger knew it had to go to Freedom, New Hampshire. After all, it was freed from the confines of buckets, ball boys, and umpire pouches. Free to roam the sky, the bleachers, the garlic-stained fingers of a Giants fan... do you smell it? That's freedom.
16. "Boring" - September 28, 2014
Adam Duvall (423 feet off of Tim Stauffer)
Boring, but Boring ironically. As in, how could a pitch that crushed be boring? And off of Tim Stauffer? A hipster retro vibe for sure, making a town in Oregon the perfect spot to take root. Boring is in Clackamas County, the pronunciation of which will always remind Boring of the sound Duvall's bat made as it shot it into the air.