It never bothered me that Mac Williamson's career didn't start with a bang. Baseball is hard, decades are long, and don't trust the first look you get. It's like Churchill said, "Better to start like a Crawford than finish like a Bowker." Williamson had 50 career at-bats coming into Wednesday. I've had dreams that mean more than 50 career at-bats.
At the same time, there wasn't one lousy homer mixed into those 50 career at-bats. Do you know who's had a home run in his last 50 at-bats? Trevor Brown. Ehire Adrianza. Jake Peavy. Sometimes home runs just happen, for no rhyme or reason. And they sure tend to happen when the hitter is built like a cell phone tower and swings ridiculously hard.
But it took Williamson almost nine months to get that one lousy homer. Every time he would come up, especially in high-leverage pinch-hitting spots, I would think, "Here it comes. Here we go. Mac Williamson's first home run would be perfectly timed .... here."
It took a bit, but we can all agree this was a perfectly placed time for that first home run. Williamson was the hero before he was the goat before he was the hero again, and we get to spend an evening talking about his heroics. Mac Williamson hit a home run, and it landed on the head of that stupid car on the left field fence. Perfect.
An inning before, Duane Kuiper called Trevor Brown's warning-track out like it was going to land on the Bay Bridge. I thought the same thing, so I'm not complaining. But it would explain the understated is-it-or-isn't-it call here, and that call improved everything. So much tension. So much grandeur.
The Giants, again, don't have a lot of games where they hit two home runs. This was their 11th such game this season. For comparison, the Red Sox have done it just 17 times, and they play their home games in a Minecraft level designed by someone before television was invented. When the Giants hit two home runs, they should win a game.
On the other hand, they were two solo home runs. When the Giants hit just two solo home runs in a game in franchise history, they're 30-105. They were one for their last 10, and you don't need all the horrible details, other than that five of them came against the Dodgers. The Giants were unlucky that they couldn't get more runners on before the home runs; they were lucky in that two solo home runs were enough in the first place.
Oh, and they were lucky that they had two runners, much less two home runs. David Price was on, and the Giants' cleanup hitter had a .326 slugging percentage. Brandon Crawford was hitting fifth against a left-handed ace, and Brandon Belt was hitting third. Trevor Brown -- career .316 slugging percentage in the minors -- was protecting the middle of the order, and a pair of rookies were behind him. Are you surprised that Price pitched a complete game and allowed just three hits and two walks? Based on the Giants' lineup, you were not surprised.
It's not the number of hits, it's how you use them, as Churchill said. Brandon Belt hit a home run that wasn't too unusual, you know, pretty standard stuff, nothing too weird, other than IT WAS A LITTLE HOME RUN WE LIKE TO CALL
oh man okay oh man do i look okay how do i look i wasn't prepared for this okay how do i look
It feels like we see those kinds of swings about 40 times a year, with nothing that comes of them. They're too high, or the wind knocks them back, or we misjudge them.
This one wasn't like that. It got wet, alright. Belt was the likeliest candidate for #Splash69. He was the one who hit it. Sometimes you can predict baseball.
It helped win the game, you know.
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Have we mentioned there are shirts you can buy to commemorate the occasion?
Probably not. Please buy them.
BUT ANYWAY, this is a Giants win that we're talking about. David Price pitched well. Madison Bumgarner pitched well. It was the only show in town, as far as Bay Area sports goes, so we were all treated to a show. It was lefty-on-lefty skirmishin', and because Price and Bumgarner were both drafted within the first 10 picks of the 2007 MLB Draft, it allows us to remember some important facts:
- The Rockies drafted a college closer instead of Madison Bumgarner
That's all I have, really. The 2016 Draft starts tomorrow. The Giants don't have a pick in the first round, but please remember that the Rockies drafted a college closer instead of Bumgarner. And Greg Reynolds instead of Tim Lincecum! Really, everything we have we owe to the Rockies.
Forget gold. I'm going to invest in 1993 karma and bury it in my backyard.
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♬Even yeaaaaars/thoughts arriiiive like butterfliiies♬
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The Dodgers lost, 1-0.
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There were complaints about the bullpen on Tuesday night. Those complaints were logged, and we thank you for your feedback.
On Wednesday night, the bullpen was incredible. Cory Gearrin looked like he had been an eighth-inning pitcher for 10 years, just waiting for his chance to close. Javier Lopez was careful enough to pitch around David Ortiz and dominant enough to javier Travis Shaw straight into the ground. Derek Law was fantastic, and Hunter Strickland was in the game for a few seconds.
Santiago Casilla gave up a runner on an infield grounder. Please don't be silly with that information.
It takes a village to win a 2-1 game in which the starting pitcher goes six innings. The bullpen helped. The bench helped. A winning streak was started. A losing streak was snapped. Fine work, all around.
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In case you were wondering about how Santiago Casilla felt about being pulled for Javier Lopez when David Ortiz came up:
Everything is so hunky dory. A win is a win is a win is a win is a win. Just like that poem that Churchill wrote.