3-3 (71-63; 4 GB in NL West)
7-5 L vs. SD; 2-1 W vs. SD; 3-1 L vs. HOU; 2-1 W vs. HOU; 2-1 4-3 L vs. HOU
Every Giants’ season that I can remember ended with the Giants screwing something up. Sometimes they screwed up before the season began (see 1995, 1996, 2008) and so the finale was somewhat anti-climactic. Sometimes they blew it at the end in heart breaking fashion (see 2002, 2003). No matter how it happened, I learned to always expect the worst. At some point, you just realized: this is not going to happen for us this year.
Then 2010 happened. All along, it seemed like the same script would hold. But it never did. Someone always came through, some lucky bounce went our way, disaster was always averted. World Championship. A paradigm shifting moment.
This year, the Giants have kept us firmly ensconced in this new way of looking at the world. One run victories, great pitching, and walk off wins have reinforced that “hey it will all work out” perspective. Overcoming early season injuries, the Vogelsong story, and the fact that the Giants actually “got better” after Posey went down all helped to convince us that in the end the Giants will prevail.
There is still a lot of baseball left, and plenty of opportunity for the Giants to overcome Arizona, but I think yesterday was the first day that I really began to accept the fact that 2011 might be a lot more like 2004 than last year. I’m not throwing in the towel, I’m not losing hope, but I do think the perfect world I’ve been living in has now had a fair shake of reality added to it. Not every season ends like 2010 and it’s foolish to think otherwise.
The Giants are good, and the future is bright, but no one can win them all.
Hitter of the Week:
Statistically this honor should go to Carlos Beltran (.429, 1 HR, 2 RBI, even a SB). I want to give the honor, though, to Mark Derosa. Mark Derosa is a good baseball player and most Giants fans never got a chance to see it. Blame the Giants for signing a broken player to two-year, 12 million dollar deal, but don’t take it out on the dude. He finally got a couple of big moments here recently and that’s good to see. It’s a shame we never got to experience him at his full powers in a San Francisco uniform.
Pitcher of the Week:
I posted about Tim Lincecum earlier this week. I’m happy that Romo is back. Cain and Bumgarner had good turns at the end of the week. Santiago Casilla held it down in the 9th a couple of times to earn this honor. He was the man in the 8th last year in October, if anyone remembers. A lot of that had to do with Bochy playing the hot hand, but this guy had a really important role on a championship team and has been lost in the mix a bit this year. Well done Santiago.
Hopefully the Giants don’t look past the Cubs! Things do line up well for them in this series. Kip Wells and Rodrigo Lopez are completely beatable, even with our anemic offense. Matt Garza has gotten the Matt Cain treatment, going 6-10 but pitching much better than that. Hopefully the trend continues. They NEED 2 of 3 against the Cubs, and then 2 of 3 against Arizona and they could be 2 games back by the end of the week. Of course better is better (nice turn of phrase), but I think this is completely reasonable. A bad week, though, and we might start seeing a lot more of the Grizzlies, if you know what I mean.