Here, in the middle of the longest losing streak in five seasons, is where you lose perspective. Even in the bad seasons, there are good things. There are walk-offs and bases-clearing triples, grand slams and one-hitters. There are oases sprinkled around the bad.
Here, in the middle of the longest losing streak in five seasons, is where you have the feeling that you will never see your team hit a three-run homer again. That you will never see a comeback win. That the Giants will go an entire season without storming out of the dugout and mobbing the hero rounding first or second.
That's what you're feeling. This will never end. You will never experience baseball happiness again. We used it all up. All of it. Every single drop.
There are two choices:
Be mad at all the missed opportunities. Because, goodness, there were some missed opportunities. With the bases loaded in the ninth inning, Norichika Aoki never saw a strike.
All sliders. The hitter who swings as if he's playing table tennis still couldn't make contact. In the 10th, Brandon Belt came up with the bases loaded and no out. He never saw a strike.
With the bases loaded and one out -- the game tied now, thanks to Matt Duffy's infield single and general Diamondbacks nincompoopery in the field throughout the inning -- Joe Panik jumped on the first pitch and hit it well enough, just right to first base. With two outs Brandon Crawford came up. He saw several strikes! Two of them, at least. Then he swung at the last ball he saw.
A wild pitch. A bloop. A take. An error. A sac fly. Any of these would have worked at different times after the Panik triple. None of them happened. It was a four-hour 56k modem sound, and the Internet never connected.
You could be mad at all that, or you could ...
Just be grateful that the Giants fought back. Crawford is made out to be the goat because he had the audacity to swing at a 95-mph fastball that was eight inches away from the strike zone, but the Giants were around in extras because of Crawford's two-run homer. The Giants were facing death in the ninth and then in the 10th, and they clawed back for at least one run.
It took gumption just to do that. Heck, the Giants scored as many runs in the last four innings as they did in the 27 innings of the Rockies series. Doesn't that make you feel better?
Yeah, no, I'm sticking with the first one, too. This will all make the division-clincher that much more meaningful. Cough.
The Giants allowed six three-run homers last year. They've allowed four this year.
You don't have to believe in poor luck or unfortunate sequencing to be impressed by that stat. Because look at that stat. Even if you don't care how it happens, it's the reason for the season, this abominable season. Here's the distribution of home runs last year:
That's different from this year.
When the Giants give up a home run, it ruins the game, right then and there. Foooooomp, game over. And here's the worst part: Every single one of those three-run homers came with two outs. Let's just call that out for emphasis:
Every single three-run homer the Giants have allowed this year has come with two outs.
If you're still too chipper, note that the grand slam to Wil Nieves on Sunday was with two outs, too. The Giants have six hits all season with two runners on base in 50 plate appearances. They've allowed four three-run homers in that same stretch.
Part of that is allowing the baserunners in the first place. Part of that is leaving the ding-danged balls over the goshsodden plate, you know? Another part of that is wrong place, wrong time. Did you know that the Giants entered Thursday's game having out-homered their opponents? It's true. They had hit six home runs and allowed five. The difference is the Giants scored eight runs on those six homers. Their opponents scored 14 on their five.
Nothing like losing a Bumgarner start in which he throws well. Nothing like it. Remember this feeling when someone is complaining the Giants should give someone else a turn in the even year. Remember it, fashion it into a blunt object, and wap them on the nose. You've earned a Croix de Complaining already this year.