It's been a baseball weekend for me. Saturday listening to SF Giants day game, then later through the miracle of YouTube I finished watching the 2004 ALCS in which the Red Sox came back from three to none to win four in a row over the Yankees, propelling them into a four game sweep and the first Boston World Series victory since 1918. Then rewatched the 30-30 docu on that historic ALCS. At the time, with a crucial election coming up etc. I hadn't watched the ALCS until the 7th game, when I finally caught on to the historic possibilities for the team that had once been my home team, in the years I lived in Cambridge MA.
Then today listened to another Giants day game, another victory, with another twist of history. Saturday the game ended with a baserunner hit by the ball, a bizarre finish that none of the experienced announcing team nor any of the players interviewed could remember ever seeing before. It turns out it had happened, but was very rare. And then, before the day was out, it happened again, in the Dodgers game. Oh the wonders of baseball.
The weekend victories completed the Giants 3 game sweep of the Angels, drawing them ever closer to a .500 record. The most promising aspect was the starting pitching--Tim Hudson a strong 8 innings plus, Tim Lincecum a strong 8 and a shutout. The game began with the first two Giants at the plate hitting home runs--the first time that quirk had happened on Giants teams in 51 years. The 2-0 lead became 5-0 by the late innings.
The Giants aren't the only team struggling with a number of key injuries or gaps--arguably the Angels are, and the Dodgers certainly are. But at the moment the Giants seem to be adapting to adversity the best. But they will be tested with the hot bats of the Padres coming into town, a team that some project to win the division they share with the Giants, and most place ahead of the Giants. Hunter Pence is taking batting practice but the two starting pitchers who are down are still weeks away.
Meanwhile the Pirates seem to have lost the ability to hit, and have lost three tight low scoring games to St. Louis. Given each team's circumstances, the Giants are probably overperforming but the Pirates are underperforming.
Anyway, I enjoyed this baseball weekend. It's just a joy to listen to the Giants announcing team (and fun to hear Jon Miller's voice on 30-30 calling some of the 2004 Red Sox moments, probably for ESPN radio.) Baseball and the radio go together for me, and these guys are knowledgeable, informative during the game (an eye for pitches that I envy) and a lot of fun, especially when teamed up and for the post-game show when they all gather. It's usually the only time I hear Mike Krukow, and he's the most interesting about aspects of the game, particularly the pitchers. Plus you get seagulls in the background--how great is that? I've said all this before but it's still true. I still enjoy them.
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