That noise you’re hearing that sounds like a slow fart is actually the orange balloon you blew up before Tuesday’s game and wrote “I <3 the Giants” on in sharpie, deflating. It was deflating most of the game and you may or may not have noticed it.
You’ll be noticing it now.
The raspberry hum grew louder and louder with every runner in scoring position that the San Francisco Giants failed to score, and it culminated in a noise I can’t quite find the letters for when Jason Vosler, hitting with two outs in the ninth, the tying run 90 feet from home, and the walk-off run on first base, drove one deep the other way only for Dylan Carlson to do a Mike Tauchman impression that was so good that ... okay, if we’re being honest, it wasn’t the best Tauchman impression, but he did a damn fine job given the material he was working with.
It is merely because of journalistic integrity that I am forced to embed this video. I cannot, however, force you to watch it, or keep your eyes open if you do.
WHAT A FINISH.— Bally Sports Midwest (@BallySportsMW) July 7, 2021
TV: Bally Sports Midwest
App: Bally Sports app#STLFLY pic.twitter.com/5EBinyXpNg
In addition to making a great catch, Carlson expertly showed an example of one of the rare occasions where running face first into a wall actually feels satisfying.
I’ve never done that. But after this game, I think I’ll go try running into a few walls just to see what happens.
So how did we get to the heartbreak that we all saw coming?
Let’s rewind a little bit, to the start of the ninth inning. The Giants trail 6-5 and Brandon Crawford, who already has three hits, is leading off, albeit against a lefty. He slaps one the other way down the line for his fourth hit of the game, but holds at first. You briefly berate him for not trying for second, and then you remember about Tauchman and are okay with him snuggling into first.
Then Donovan Solano, who is not having a good game, draws a walk and suddenly the Giants are in the most dreaded of situations: runners on first and second and no outs. No good has ever come of this situation for the Giants.
Well, not in the last week, at least.
Next up is Steven Duggar who twice attempts to lay down the first sacrifice bunt of his career, and twice fouls the ball off. A bit of an odd time to bunt, but with a lefty on the mound and the offense scuffling, you can see the reasoning.
Duggar then settles for a sharp grounder up the middle, which initially looked like it could be a single, but ends up being a fielder’s choice. So basically a bunt.
With no one left to pinch hit except Curt Casali, Chadwick Tromp steps up with one out and runners at the corners, needing just a decent fly ball to tie the game.
He pops up.
Which brings us to Vosler.
Which brings us to me running into a wall again.
Let’s back up further.
How did the Giants get so close? Because they play at a lovely ball park full of air that is drunk on life, which resulted in three pop ups that the Cardinals could not catch, including this glorious one:
The Cards are helping the Giants stay in this game pic.twitter.com/lcrYAL1Ynk— SF Giants on NBCS (@NBCSGiants) July 7, 2021
They also got there with three runs batted in by Crawford, because he is good.
.@bcraw35 ties it up pic.twitter.com/xOWusdliVz— SFGiants (@SFGiants) July 7, 2021
Okay, let’s rewind a little bit more. How did we get there? Like, how did we really get there.
You know. You know how we got there.
You always knew.
I even spelled it out for you before the series began.
Nolan Arenado got the Cardinals on the board with a two-run home run that scored, you guessed it, Paul Goldschmidt. After the Giants tied things up, Goldschmidt put the Cards back on top with a two-run single.
When the Giants inched closed, Yadier Molina gave the Cardinals a much-needed insurance run, with a single that scored Arenado.
Some things never change.