Every story on this website needs to have a picture attached to it. Even the stories without pictures have a picture attached to it somewhere in the coding bowels. That's just how it's set up. Usually that's a good thing, except there are nights where it's a problem to pick just one picture. Buster Posey hits for the cycle on a night where Madison Bumgarner pitches a shutout: Which picture do you pick? It can be tough to select just one.
And then there are nights where it isn't so difficult.
That's the closest to ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ you'll ever see in a baseball picture. It's not like Chris Heston was trying to shrug or hint that he's at a loss for words. But the picture, man. It's just what you'd expect to come out of a gross loss against another eliminated team. You can't get mad at the game, and you know it. You have to save those cares for the next contending Giants team. In the absence of those cares, you have whole lot of ¯\_(ツ)_/¯.
I love that picture so much.
That game? Not as much! In a meaningless game, you root for a positive outcome. Fine, the Rockies skunked the Giants, a positive outcome didn't occur. So you root for great individual performances. A two-homer game, or a stellar nine-pitch/three-strikeout appearance from a reliever. That didn't really happen, though. So you root for... someone to fall down while running around the bases, I don't know.
In the place of all that fun: Heston continuing his slide down the fire escape of the Ryan Jensen Tower of Terror ride. He waited in line forever, and it was fun for a while, but then he had to get out of there. He was destined to get out of there. At least the offseason isn't going to be confusing.
The thing that bugs me is that everything caught on fire after a Carlos Gonzalez squib. Heston was doing well, and then Gonzalez swung a breadstick with his feet, and that somehow became a rally-starter. Then Heston's ERA was pushed toward 4.00, and everything interesting about the game jumped out of the moving car.
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Nolan Arenado is on my fantasy team, but I will not win money in this league because every other one of my players is hurt. You might think my fantasy team is the 2015 Giants of fantasy teams, except I'm pretty sure the 2015 Giants are the my fantasy team of baseball teams. Felt like I should point that out before continuing.
The list of homers in a single season against the Giants since they moved to San Francisco:
That is a list of fantastic players. Who's the worst on that list? If you're going to count defense, sure, it's Stuart. As hitters, though, they're all pretty talented and intimidating. Nolan Arenado is a ridiculous player in select company, talented in so many respects. I look forward to watching him on the Blue Jays in a few years.
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Was that mean? I apologize, I'm just lashing out. He's going to be on the Dodgers. And now we all feel awful.
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Matt Duffy won the Willie Mac Award. You might not care, possibly because you weren't held as a baby, but possibly because you're just cynical. This is a mistake. We make a point to care about these baseball games, and the people who live those games vote at the end of the year to celebrate one of their teammates. I know because I've been hoping to win the Tyler Blez Award for the last few years.
2012: PFT Commenter
2013: PFT Commenter
2014: PFT Commenter
This year's ceremony is coming up, but I'm not optimistic.
The way to appreciate the Willie Mac Award, then, is to look at the players who haven't won it. Think of Matt Williams, chewing gum, swatting dingers, and imitating Babe Ruth in a rain delay. He impressed people after his playing days enough to get a coaching gig that transmogrified into a manager's gig. He never won it. Will Clark, who would chew through first base to get to the nougaty win inside, never won it. Kirk Rueter, who makes everyone in the entire world feel five times better than they otherwise would have just by existing, has never won it.
Kirk Rueter never won the Willie Mac Award.
So, yeah, this is a big deal. And Duffy did it as a rookie. A rookie who will apparently be around for the next decade, doing excellent things.
If you're feeling bad about the Giants losing to the Rockies by a billion runs, think about Matt Duffy. He's good. His teammates and coaches respect him. Appreciate the good things this season has brought before grumbling about the bad things.
Then grumble about the bad things.
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That was awesome, though.