It was a long shot in the first place, but stranger things have happened and I can’t say I haven’t been scoreboard watching and drinking the Even Year BS tea. But there will be no Even Year BS this year. And honestly, this was the most fitting way for the 2022 team to get eliminated. Bad defense, relief pitcher meltdowns and a too little, too late offense?
/takes a sip
Yeah, that’s the 2022 flavor I’ll remember.
Now, it’s not the worst way for a playoff bid to end. We know that. The 2020 season saw the Giants’ playoff dreams die on the last pitch of the season, with a really bad strike call (after a lot of really bad calls throughout the game that hurt the Giants, specifically Austin Slater). The 2021 playoffs, well, we all remember how similarly that ended. I think I’d much prefer the team to end their own playoff ambitions, instead of the umpires. So I guess I’ll take it.
Now, this team had no business being in the playoff hunt this late in the season. I get that. But if there’s any team for whom the baseball gods might have come together to make a very, very specific and unlikely set of conditions come to pass in order to get them in the playoffs, well, the Giants would have had the best chance.
There’s not a lot about this game that’s worth your time. Scott Alexander had a strong opening bid, pitching a clean inning and a third before Jakob Junis entered. Thairo Estrada stole two bases and knocked in the first run of the game, that was cool. J.D. Davis hit a bomb to the kale garden. You should watch that.
In the eighth inning, Mike Yastrzemski hit his own solo shot off of Mark Melancon. That was also cool.
Back-to-back games with a home run for Yaz pic.twitter.com/WPvSZs82jW— SF Giants on NBCS (@NBCSGiants) October 1, 2022
But even with Austin Slater scoring a fourth run on a sac fly in the ninth, it was all too little too late. Because Junis allowed four earned runs on eight hits with four strikeouts and two walks. Jarlín García entered in the seventh inning with a runner on (who would get charged to Junis) and allowed four additional runs on four hits with a strikeout and a walk. It also doesn’t help when the defense has a tendency of playing like a bunch of clowns pouring out of a tiny car.
And it’s fine, honestly. Like, we got a little bit of a fun “what if” moment at the end of the season. Given the way this team played for the majority of the year, this is more than I would have expected a month ago.