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Giant Bats Overwhelm Frazzled Padres

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A game that featured so much offense there are already Tumblr screeds devoted to bringing it down.

Buster Posey can really fly.
Buster Posey can really fly.
Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

The Padres are ingrown hairs. You don't really notice them until you run across them and then you realize there's a sore spot in your life that's been there all along. And then you think you can ignore it, but then it starts causing discomfort, then outright pain. Then you try to pierce it, relieve the pressure, get rid of the damn thing, but that only makes it worse. It bursts and you've got Spangenberg everywhere. The doctor tells you the hair has mixed with the Yangervis and now it's a mild infection.

They're a gross nuisance. And like all gross nuisances, the Padres don't go away easily. They hang around and hang around and sometimes, even when you think they're gone, they come back.

The dinkfest that was the eighth inning -- when the Padres scored six runs -- all started with Jeremy Affeldt coming out of the bullpen like

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┻┳| •.•)  I've got nothing
┳┻|⊂ノ
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Badffeldt opened the door (a home run to Matt Kemp!), Javier Lopez propped it open, and then Sergio Romo walked through and tripped over the ottoman. A healthy serving of bad pitching that led to a gluttony of bad luck. Romo pitched with a sore knee and was able to get a lot of swing-throughs and bad reads (Justin Upton's plate appearance can best be described as "hopeless") but the weak contact found gaps in the defense and, lo, a blowout turned into a one-run game.

But it turns out that the best solution for this particular ingrown hair of a Padres team was a warm compress -- in this case, AT&T Park. It's easy to forget in the midst of the Giants losing every home game (because they hate playing in front of SF fans, of course) the Giants *are* capable of scoring runs... when the temperature rises. The park plays like a sandlot when the weather gets into the 70s and the wind stays mellow.

The warm day game that immediately springs to mind is the 12-11 loss to Cincinnati back in 2010.

Of course, they lost that one because the rally tap eventually dried out, but there was no chance that was going to happen to the Giants' offense today.

You know, because of all them purty triples.

★★★

So many triples today. When are triples ever bad? Triple scoop sundae. Triple feature. Triple rhymes with nipple...

The last time the Giants hit four triples in a game was back in 1960, before color TV was a regular thing. Willie Mays hit three in one game. Brandon Belt had two today. I bet watching Willie Mays running those bases was a thing of beauty. Brandon Belt's gallop was beautiful in the poetic sense, so here it goes:

ODE TO TRIPLES

What a word you are, Triple

What a feat you are, Triple

You're the freedom of three

A near certain run, you see

My tail wags

Because of those three bags

WHAT EXACTLY IS A TRIPLE?

Urban Dictionary defines it as "the unfortunate comedy of watching slow big guys round the bases."

MORE ABOUT THE TRIPLE

Single, double, triple -- baseball's name game is unheralded. Those words sound way better than "3-pointer, jumper, touchdown, extra point, goal" -- okay, maybe goal sounds okay, but it doesn't speak to the quality of the accomplishment. There are 9 people on a baseball field whose job it is to stop your ball from moving so that you can't advance. But if you hit it hard enough, you can claim one or more bags as you run out of the batter's box.

Anyway, I just think the word "triple" is pretty cool, and with this being #YearoftheTriple and all, I just felt it important to say something about that quality word.

★★★

Chris Heston's day ended as it began: with hard hit balls and a general sense that he didn't quite know where the ball was going.

In the first inning, Heston got two outs with his first two pitches. The first pitch was hard hit, the second one not quite as hard, and the third one was fouled off. Plenty of loud contact on seven total pitches thrown in that scoreless first and a clear demonstration of the Padres' gameplan to attack early in the count. But after that first inning, he settled in and commanded his pitches as we've grown accustomed to him doing. There was sharp movement no matter what he threw and some truly terrible swings to match said movement. His 2-1 changeup to Justin Upton had a lot of bite to it and was a confidently thrown pitch in a typically non-changeup situation.

And that's Chris Heston: confident.

Confident Chris

Said Duane Kuiper on the telecast: "That is one of the most confident throws I've ever seen."

The power of positive thinking. Heston's got a no-hitter under his belt and a relatively secure spot in the rotation. Why not be confident? It's worked out well for him and the Giants so far.

★★★

Also from the telecast: Duane Kuiper remarked of Brandon Belt that he's "one of the streakiest Giants we've ever seen." Belt went on to hit his first triple of the game on a hanging curveball.

His second triple of the game was either on a sloppy backdoor slider or a changeup that he managed to yank. They were both things of beauty to watch as sometimes it's easy to forget about Belt's bat speed when he's not making contact. It's also really easy to forget that Belt is a streaky hitter and not a bad hitter.

Yes, I know, some people out there will protest such a label -- ALL BASEBALL PLAYERS ARE STREAKY! THE GAME OF BASEBALL IS STREAKY! -- and these people will be... half correct at best. There are few players in the game today who are simply as contact-deficient and then contact-proficient as Brandon Belt. I'd stake my never-known-for-being-analytics-minded reputation on it. If nothing else, there's an article in this idea. Is Brandon Belt A Unique Streaker? ... or something like that.

★★★

Finally:

The Giants won their first home series in over a month (16 games)...

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That's some decent news for the Giants on the injury front. Romo looked Romoesque, which the Giants really need in light of Affeldt and Machi looking Hergesian.