If someone had told you on Friday morning that the New York Yankees would come into Oracle Park and sweep the Giants easily, you would’ve believed them. If that same person had told you the Yankees would outscore the Giants in the series 24-12, you would’ve said, “lol that’s wrong — there’s no way the Giants score 12 runs in three games.” That was the biggest surprise of the weekend, and those 12 runs were mostly the result of the Yankees being bored.
It was a boring, bad series, and today’s 11-5 demolition was mostly boring and mostly bad. The Giants didn’t get their first hit today until Dereck Rodriguez singled in the bottom of the third inning. That was not the hardest hit ball of the day for the Giants, though. That honor went to this lineout by Pablo Sandoval in the bottom of the second:
They did that thing again, though, where they started to make some noise late in the game and against the opposing bullpen, but Will Smith giving up three runs in a “just needs to get some work in” relief put an end to any wild notions of an improbable comeback.
Getting swept by the Yankees is no honor, but it should be expected by now, given the state of the team, and even more so when you factor in all the defensive miscues and bad pitches the Giants made today.
The old saying goes that Dereck Rodriguez and the Giants “just didn’t have it today”, but this team has picked up that criticism and worn it like a badge of honor. They’ve reversed its meaning. They had everything everyone else watching the game needed.
The Yankees needed a sweep. The Giants obliged them. The Yankees needed good pitches to hit. Dereck Rodriguez provided them. Fans needed a calm Sunday afternoon, either to recover from a chaotic week or the big popular movie that opened on Friday or in advance of the big popular TV show spectacle to air tonight, and the Giants gave them five soothing innings of calming stadium noise and soft outs on offense.
The Giants go out of their way to make the world a better place for everybody else, and if we follow suit and detach ourselves from the idea of them winning baseball games, watching a Giants game at this point becomes a practice in transcendental meditation.
Dereck Rodriguez surrended six runs (four earned) through the first three innings, yet came to bat in the bottom of the third inning. As mentioned, he got the Giants’ first hit of the game, and it’s almost psychically soothing to believe that the reason he then went out to begin the fourth inning was because Bruce Bochy wanted to reward him for getting that hit.
That wasn’t the catharsis or transcendental moment, though. No, gentle reader, that came after the circuit was completed: Rodriguez hit, Bochy leaves him in as reward, and Rodriguez gives up back to back singles to open the top of the fourth. Ahhhh that’s my soul leaving my body. That’s my mind finding peace.
The only constants in the universe are gravity, death, and Bruce Bochy’s managerial style, and that’s a tether in the chaos of existence, let me tell you.
Another, and perhaps just as durable constant has been the absolute dominance of the New York Yankees. I can’t imagine that the San Francisco or New York Giants used to be their equal, but history suggests that was once so. In my lifetime, the Yankees have always been an elite squad of hitters with the occasional run of dominant pitchers.
Domingo German didn’t look like vintage Roger Clemens or anything, and our perceptions are skewed by the lack of talent in the Giants lineup, so instead let’s just focus on what the literal emergency backups of the Yankees roster was able to do this weekend. Those 24 runs coming from 6-7 atypical starters is depth. That’s the goal of modern baseball. That’s what Farhan Zaidi will need two or more years to build up (or perhaps longer, given how most professional baseball players don’t want anything to do with the Giants) and that’s how good teams can survive the injuries and grind of a 162-game season.
And then there are your frontline starters. It helps when they’re just way better than the other team. Here’s Gary Sanchez’s second home run of the series, which was somehow more impressive than yesterday’s, which was a g-d grand slam:
That poor ball.— Sporting News (@sportingnews) April 28, 2019
Gary Sanchez has done it again!pic.twitter.com/5OrtiV4AhP
For additional perspective:
Gary Sanchez just hit a baseball really, really far pic.twitter.com/X20lUU6LFU— Sung Min Kim (@sung_minkim) April 28, 2019
Nick Vincent is a movement and location pitcher and he was at the end of his third inning of bail out relief — this isn’t a condemnation of Vincent or even the Giants at this point. The Yankees coming into Oracle Park to hit home runs in defiance of the park’s physics — or, at the very least, the physics as posed by the team’s PR department — was no surprise.
Gary Sanchez getting up near Andres Gallaraga territory? That’s really something.